Color matching the XL2 to look like XL1? at DVinfo.net

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Canon XL and GL Series DV Camcorders
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Old November 9th, 2005, 10:01 AM   #1
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Color matching the XL2 to look like XL1?

Hi, we are using a Canon XL1 and a XL2 dual camera shoots--interviews and such. The problem is that the colors are so drastically different on the two cameras that switching between them looks like two different things, and not the same event. For example, a dark red shirt on the XL1 is a faded pink on the XL2. A blue shirt looks like a purple shirt, etc...

FWIW, the XL1 seems to have the more accurate color compared to what I see with my eyes, which is why I think the XL2 should be adjusted. I've read a little about the custom presets, and was thinking that maybe I needed to hire a profesional to come in and make some adjustments to the cameras to match them.

Thoughts? The other possibility for us is to get rid of these cameras and buy two matching units instead. Which would be the easier, but more costly option.

Thanks in advance,
Steve
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Old November 9th, 2005, 01:10 PM   #2
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Are they white balanced the same? Is it an XL1 or XL1s? The XL1, depending on the light/aperature/shutter/gain will oversaturate or undersaturate. The XL2 image is focused on clean, noiseless, sharp images that remain broadcast legal.

Things to check... make sure the gain is set to zero on both. Make sure they are both white balanced the same. I would use them at different lengths, one tight, one wider.

No need to hire anyone, email me or post some grabs and I will tell you what to adjust on your XL2. Off the top of my head I would recommend for the color matrix/gamma to be normal, the knee to high, black to middle, color gain +2, color phase +2 toward red, Red Gain +2, Green gain -2, Blue gain, +2, sharpness -3 to -6, set-up level -2, Master Pedestal -3 to -6




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Old November 9th, 2005, 11:13 PM   #3
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Thanks for the tips, Ash. I will try them out, and post back with the results.
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Old November 11th, 2005, 02:13 AM   #4
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I was recently on a shoot* that used an XL1 and an XL2. Both cameras were white balanced in the same light but the XL2 looked a bit green in comparison to the XL1. It wasn't anything that couldn't be fixed in post, but there was a difference we couldn't get rid of on the set.

* The trailer is here: http://www.killjanedoethemovie.com/KJD%20Trailer.htm if you're interested. (I've very proud of the crane shot.)
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Old November 13th, 2005, 07:16 AM   #5
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Actually, it's the other way around. Color reproduction is more accurate on the XL2. The XL2 reproduces colors at a lower level (less saturated) than the XL1. Unfortunately it is not simply a matter of turning chroma down on the XL1 and up on the XL2 but that's probably a good place to start. You should shoot a few frames of gray card in each situation where lighting changes - actually a Macbeth card would be better. You can then try adjustments to the chroma amplitude to try to match the Macbeth cards and do further color correction as necessary. Some secondary adjustments will probably be required.
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Old November 14th, 2005, 02:54 PM   #6
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I've got to be honest with you guys and say that I don't think it's going to help. Shooting a shot of a blue folder, a green card, and a bright red pen sitting on a desk, it was impossible to get the two cameras to reproduce the color in a similar way. You can get the greens close, but that just makes the blues look worse. If you try to get the blues to match, the reds get really bad, and so on and so forth...
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Old November 14th, 2005, 11:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. J. deLange
Actually, it's the other way around. Color reproduction is more accurate on the XL2. The XL2 reproduces colors at a lower level (less saturated) than the XL1. Unfortunately it is not simply a matter of turning chroma down on the XL1 and up on the XL2 but that's probably a good place to start.
If we're talking the original XL1, it can't be adjusted at all. The XL2 will have to be adjusted to the XL1 as much as possible.

-gb-
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Old November 15th, 2005, 06:49 AM   #8
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I didn't mean to imply that the tweaking be done in the camera (though the way my post reads you certainly can't be blamed for thinking that's what I had in mind). Given that secondary correction is necessary, as Steve's post confirms, this all needs to be done in post with an application like Color Finesse. Bottom line is that it sounds like a Herculean task to me.
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Old November 15th, 2005, 10:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. J. deLange
I didn't mean to imply that the tweaking be done in the camera (though the way my post reads you certainly can't be blamed for thinking that's what I had in mind). Given that secondary correction is necessary, as Steve's post confirms, this all needs to be done in post with an application like Color Finesse. Bottom line is that it sounds like a Herculean task to me.
Oh don't you just hate some of the vagaries of written communication. I think your last sentence above is pretty much on the mark. I haven't even tried matching since I have a second XL-2 to shoot with.

-gb-
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