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Old April 29th, 2011, 01:23 PM   #1
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What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using After Ef

What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using After Effects CS5?

What I'm after is more or less WYSIWYG -- I want the AE composition viewer to show me the colors, contrast, shadow detail, highlight detail, etc. that I'll see when I export the composition to a Blu-ray and look at it on an HDTV. Mostly interested in HD, but I'll probably end up doing some SD work (DVD) too.

I've searched this forum and others, researched all around, and I actually thought I understood it for a few minutes. Sadly, now I'm confused again. If I read this article correctly, it would seem that AE can do more or less WYSIWYG with a single monitor setup, if the monitor is an HP dreamcolor or an Eizo CG243W (that supports at least Rec.709 for HD, but Rec. 601 for SD). Has anyone found this to be true?

How do most people setup an Adobe CS5 NLE workstation to do color correction and grading? It seems like maybe the best value might be to use a cheap-ish monitor for most of the panels and a decent HDTV (one that can be calibrated) for the composition viewer, but IDK.

Just a note here -- I realize that the "best" way to color grade would be using a big honking production monitor with all the bells and whistles run by a dedicated color grading system. But that's a little out of my budget. I'm trying to keep this down below, say, $3000 USD.

Clearly I need to tap into the group's experience with this. Please tell me what you think.
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Old April 29th, 2011, 02:19 PM   #2
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

Use a calibration tool like Spyder3 Elite Datacolor - Global Leader in Color Management Solutions to properly calibrate your monitor and proceed from there.
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Old April 29th, 2011, 03:13 PM   #3
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

For under $3000 you can easily have Blackmagic Decklink Studio and a decent JVC 17-inch studio monitor to get your output there.
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Old April 29th, 2011, 04:37 PM   #4
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harm Millaard View Post
Use a calibration tool like Spyder3 Elite Datacolor - Global Leader in Color Management Solutions to properly calibrate your monitor and proceed from there.
My understanding is that the problem with this is that computer monitors support computer and graphics colorspaces (generally sRGB or AdobeRGB). To get WYSIWYG with video, the monitor needs to support the video colorspaces (Rec. 709 for HD, or Rec. 601 for SD).

For example, computer monitor color spaces generally think of black as 0 and white as 256, while video color spaces think of black as 16 and white as 235. This probably effects the gamma as well.

So... can you really get WYSIWYG from AE with a fully calibrated computer monitor (e.g. NEC PA241W SpectraView display that does not support Rec. 709)?
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Old April 29th, 2011, 04:55 PM   #5
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bart Walczak View Post
For under $3000 you can easily have Blackmagic Decklink Studio and a decent JVC 17-inch studio monitor to get your output there.
Yes, something like the
JVC DT-R17L4DU
perhaps. That's an option. Problem is, I need a calibrated computer monitor too (for Photoshop work), something like a
NEC PA241W SpectraView.
Now my budget is blown.

But that's the question -- if a studio monitor is the only logical path, then I have to make it work somehow.
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Old April 30th, 2011, 03:40 AM   #6
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

For Photoshop work I found Eizo panels Coloredge series better than Nec's. Both in quality, and in pricing. Take a look here: EIZO / ColorEdge Hardware Calibration Monitors
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 03:35 AM   #7
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

Hi Bruce,

I have an Eizo CG243W and use AE CS5 quite a bit. I also have a Quadro FX3800 connected via Displayport to the Eizo so I get 10bit. I must say that this setup works beautifully.

I have a brightness setting of 120cd/m for video calibrations (rec 709 and Rec 601) and 80cd/m for photo work. To change the saved calibration settings, it is as simple as pushing a button on the monitor.

And I use the cheaper $149 X-Rite i1 LT as this works with the Eizo ColorNavigator software.
X-Rite i1Display LT Color Management Solution EODLT B&H Photo

FYI, using an I/O card usually incurs restrictions in AE with 16bpc and 32bpc comps - some cards/boxes work with some settings and some don't work at all (like the Matrox Mini and 32bit comps).

For $3000, I would get the Quadro 2000 or Quadro 4000 (depending on your 3D software needs) as both have 10bit Displayport in addition to the Eizo CG243W and i1.
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Old May 3rd, 2011, 02:14 PM   #8
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Re: What's the best way to setup monitor(s) for color correction / grading using Afte

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Kalle View Post
I have an Eizo CG243W and use AE CS5 quite a bit. I also have a Quadro FX3800 connected via Displayport to the Eizo so I get 10bit. I must say that this setup works beautifully.
I am sorta leaning in this direction.

Just to be clear, what you see when working in AE (using the Rec. 709 preset) is the same thing you see when you write a blu-ray and play it through a standard blu-ray player to an HDTV? Shadow detail, highlight detail, saturation, contrast, all that?
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