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Old August 28th, 2006, 09:56 PM   #1
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Good Coloring Keying Program

Hi! Does anyone have an tips for good color or chroma keying software? Something you've used or seen in action that works great with uneven lighting? Thanks!
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Old August 28th, 2006, 10:10 PM   #2
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Feel free to visit us at the Compositing and Effects board here at DVInfo :)

What software do you have already?
What camera are you shooting with?
What are you shooting conditions? What are the projects like?
What is your budget?
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Old August 28th, 2006, 10:21 PM   #3
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I'm on FCP 5.1. I'm working with footage shot on a cruddy Sony Hi8. Its the cameras my work uses because its low low budget and they need a lot of them.

Right now I'm looking at Ultra 2 from Serious Magic. What do you think about them?

Thanks for the reply!
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Old August 29th, 2006, 04:22 AM   #4
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Part of getting a good key is good lighting. And part of that is the material used for the green screen background. If your background isn't evenly lit you can cover up some of the problem areas with a "garbage matte." But the areas around the subject still need to be consistent and clean to key well.

I just started using a green screen from EEFX.com. It lights evenly and the green seems to key VERY nicely with Keylight in After Effects.

I had a model doing a turn and the strands of her hair actually held.

It was shot with a Panasonic HVX200 at 1080 p30.
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Old August 29th, 2006, 07:12 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal Thorpe
I'm on FCP 5.1. I'm working with footage shot on a cruddy Sony Hi8. Its the cameras my work uses because its low low budget and they need a lot of them.

Right now I'm looking at Ultra 2 from Serious Magic. What do you think about them?

Thanks for the reply!
IMO, at $500, Ultra 2's main value is in the built-in 3D sets and animation. If that's the driving force behind your decision, then there really isn't another choice.

If you're mainly interested in keying though, you can find solutions that are every bit as effective for much less. Also, for a FinalCut user, it's important note that Ultra does not run on a Mac .... at least not in OSX. (Has anyone tried Ultra in XP running on an Intel Mac ??)

Anyway, since you're using final cut, I'd highly recommend giving the DVMatte Pro FinalCut plugin from dvGarage a try:
http://www.dvgarage.com/prod/prod.php?prod=dvmattefcp
It's free for 30 days and only $200 to buy. Even though you're not shooting on "dv" (why not just get a bunch of low-cost dv cameras ??) the calcualtions in dvMatte Pro should be very helpful with your Hi8 shots.

If you're able to post a typical frame from one of your shots, it may be possible to get more assitance and advice on your lighting and physical setup too. As Dean mentioned, these things are as critical (if not more so) to your composite as the camera and software.

Hope this helps.
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Old August 29th, 2006, 08:51 AM   #6
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This seems to do a good job and makes your budget happy

http://www.oakstreetsoftware.com/gkey/
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Old August 29th, 2006, 09:39 AM   #7
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If you're looking at Ultra 2 for $500, why not Shake? I'm no expert, nor a user of Shake or After Effects, but I'm sure Shake can handle the green screen well, and give you tons of other features to use, and now that Apple dropped it to $499, why not?
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