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Old December 27th, 2009, 07:56 PM   #1
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color grading questions from still photographer

I'm experienced with color management for still photography, but have some questions regarding color grading for video. I'm using FCP 6.06 on a Mac with Snow Leopard (10.6.2). I have a NEC 2490WUXi display (without an added video card), and also an Ikegami TM9-1 broadcast monitor. At this point everything I'm working on is for Web viewing only (not for DVD/TV viewing) Here are my questions:
  1. What settings are recommended for the display? I use Spectraview software to calibrate my NEC display. 2.2 is the suggested gamma to use for video post production, right?*
  2. My broadcast monitor does not have a digital input. Is there any point in using it for Web only distribution? Would something like the Matrox MXO be much better than my current NEC display (without any added video card)?
  3. I've read a bunch of stuff online regarding Snow Leopard, QT, FCP, and Gamma (1.8 vs 2.2, etc) and I'm still confused. Again, so far I'm using Spectraview software to calibrate my NEC display, using 2.2 gamma (D65). Assuming that's OK so far, do I need to change any gamma settings in FCP or elsewhere?

* I use a calibration puck with Spectraview and the NEC. Also, there are several settings in the Spectraview software; here's how the manual describes them (the last item under each setting is gamma). I'm not planning on showing my work on TVs or projection, so I assume "broadcast monitor" and "digital cinema" would not be the correct settings. Maybe "monitor standard?" But those settings look off--1.8 gamma and 9300k...


Print Standard
Commonly referred to as Proofing Standard. Used widely for the proofing of color transparencies or press output.
D50 (0.346, 0.359)
1.8

Broadcast Video
Used for editing images and video intended to be displayed on televisions using the NTSC, PAL, or SECAM standards.
D65
(0.313, 0.329)
2.2

Monitor Standard
Images intended to be displayed on most standard uncalibrated computer displays. Suitable for use with office lighting.
9300K+27 MPCD
(0.283, 0.297)
1.8

Digital Cinema
Images and video intended for cinematic projection.
(0.314, 0.351)
2.6

Here's another thread about Snow Leopard and gamma confusion:
http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/non-line...n-exports.html
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Old May 19th, 2010, 02:06 PM   #2
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Bump...thought I'd give this thread another chance. I'm still not entirely clear how to calibrate my computer display for video. Also wondering, if I use the waveform monitor in FCP, where the whites and black should be for 1) DVDs, and 2) the web.

ETA: the notes at the very bottom of this page are very helpful, although I'm still interested in hearing suggestions about calibrating my display etc.
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Old May 19th, 2010, 10:04 PM   #3
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With video, the usual method of calibration is with bars. Here is a very simple breakdown on how to do it.

Color Bars and How To Use ‘em Video University

Do you have your broadcast monitor hooked up? If so, how is it connected?

The more accurate process of color correction/grading involves a high quality monitor (CRT still works for SD but LCD has become the norm for HD) and an HD-SDI card (Aja Kona/BlackMagic Decklink) or external box (Matrox MXO2). But for the web, CC is not as critical.
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Old May 19th, 2010, 10:20 PM   #4
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Hi Steve:

Thanks for the response. I know how to use color bars. My broadcast monitor does not have digital connections--one of my questions in the OP is if there's any point in using it if my videos will mainly be viewed on the Web. After reading the article I linked to in my second post it appears that the broadcast monitor is pointless for that.

My question is more about how to calibrate my NEC computer display. I know how to do that for still photography, but am not sure about video. Let's say I'm grading video for DVD use. What gamma should my computer display be set to? Which white point? Which intensity level?

I have an MXO (original, not 2), but am having trouble getting it to work with my 5DMII files. Here's a thread I started regarding the MXO and displays: best display for use with mxo2 mini

And at the Matrox forums, a thread where I'm trying to get the MXO working with my displays, FCP, 5D footage: Matrox MXO User Forum :: View topic - help please: 5DMII FCP 6 OS X 10.6.3
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