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Old June 15th, 2011, 10:20 AM   #1
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ProRes Export Darkens Footage

When I export from final cut pro 7 via quicktime conversion the resulting clip is signifgantly darker than the original clip. I am using the quicktime conversion option opposed to the quicktime movie option because exporting a quicktime movie even off a ProRes timeline results in footage that is too low bitrate to be ProRes. This is a common problem I am having with transcoding and exporting ProRes clips from multiple programs like compressor, adobe media encoder, final cut pro 7, and after effects (even cineform). The only program that seems to work is MPEG Streamclip - which produces ProRes files identical to the originals If I export a 10 bit 4:2:2 uncompressed file from final cut pro the footage does not appear altered, the same is true with a DVC Pro HD export.

I have searched constantly for a solution to this issue as it seems many others are experiencing similar problems, but I have yet to find a solution.

I have checked the "final cut studio compatibility" box in quicktime, and unchecked it. I have set gamma correection to none, and to automatic. These have had no effect on the way footage is rendering out of final cut pro, or the other troubled programs.

I would greatly appreciate any help with this.

-Ben
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Old June 15th, 2011, 11:43 AM   #2
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Re: ProRes Export Darkens Footage

Welcome to the Apple gamma bug.

This is a widely known/debated topic. In theory, the issue should be sorted next week with the release of FCPX which doesn't use QuickTime for colour management.

Until then your best bet is to go: File>Export>QuickTime Movie and check both "re-compress all frames" and make "self-contained movie". Then you should be okay when you transcode in MpegStreamclip or Compressor.

Not sure why you've been getting poor quality ProRes. Are you sure you're working in a ProRes timeline?
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Old June 15th, 2011, 02:40 PM   #3
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Re: ProRes Export Darkens Footage

That's very odd. I've never had this problem with ProRes exports.

Make sure your sequence is a standard variation of ProRes. Or create a new sequence in ProRes422 (not LT or HQ or proxy) and copy and paste your entire edited sequence into it and see if the bit-rate problem still happens. Also you have to remember that TV color space is not computer monitor color space so files playing in QuickTime player don't always look the same.
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Old June 15th, 2011, 09:18 PM   #4
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Re: ProRes Export Darkens Footage

I did encounter problems with gamma shift when exporting as ProRes out of Motion (part of a round trip from the FCP timeline to Motion and back to FCP). I eventually solved it by changing my export codec (out of Motion) from ProRes to Animation. From then on I've never used ProRes when exporting from Motion. For what it's worth.
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