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Old August 11th, 2010, 01:11 PM   #1
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Profile setting for increased contrast

Can anyone please suggest which setting I need to tweak specifically to add more contrast without adding the least amount of noise? I am currently using profile settings found in this forum (gamma cine 1) and it has reduced the noise considerably, but I need to add extra contrast when using long lenses, especially in the summer haze. If I add contrast in FC or Avid MC, I tend to see more noise than if not using any color correction.

I have just read on this forum that the QT player can add noise as well. Is this true?

My apologies if this is an issue that has been hashed out, but I would appreciate some help with this.

I am shooting 24PHQ with the EX3 using profiles suggested by Alister Chapman and Matin Beek, I am editing in FCP and/or Avid and outputting to ProRes 422 HQ (clients preferred format)

Any help would be appreciated.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 01:58 PM   #2
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Define what you mean by adding more contrast. Do you want blacker blacks and stronger whites?

The cinegammas produce the widest dynamic range and are tailored for post production processing, but the pictures straight out of the camera do then to look flat. You could add some black press using some negative black gamma or use a standard gamma (prob Std 3) which will look a bit more contrasty than a cinegamma. Again you could use negative black gamma to pull the blacks down even further.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 02:37 PM   #3
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Hello Alister and thanks for replying.
I've attached two samples. The one with blacker blacks is what I want, the less contrasty of the two is what I am getting. If I go to standard 3 gamma, by your own experimenting and suggestion, I will increase noise.

Obviously, it is simple to make the adjustment in FC or MC but then, upon close inspection of the final 1920x1080 quicktime file I see added noise in the grey areas that is not there if I do not contrast correct.

I have no other way of viewing at this time other than on Apple monitors 23 or 30". having read that the qt player can add noise of its own, I wonder if I am chasing a ghost.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 02:42 PM   #4
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Sorry, didn't properly attach the files. They should be here now.
Attached Thumbnails
Profile setting for increased contrast-picture-5.png   Profile setting for increased contrast-picture-6.png  

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Old August 11th, 2010, 02:47 PM   #5
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another example
Attached Thumbnails
Profile setting for increased contrast-picture-7.png   Profile setting for increased contrast-picture-8.png  

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Old August 14th, 2010, 10:09 AM   #6
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decrease your Black level as well as Black Gamma, continue using Cine Gamma 1 and try decreasing the Gamma level. i believe lowering the Gamma level with crush the midtones thus separating your highlights from black levels. and in certain situations try using a polarizer.
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Old August 14th, 2010, 09:53 PM   #7
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Thanks Michael.
I have already begun testing what you have suggested by duplicating my current profile and changing nothing but the black gamma and/or black to different degrees on the duplicate profiles. This should allow a fairly simple comparison. It seems like an obvious move and my biggest concern was what else I might effect.
(screw up)

I do use a polarizer when appropriate, but in a sunrise such as in these examples it would not be effective.
Thanks again
Chuck
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Old August 15th, 2010, 04:47 AM   #8
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As Alister said, the Cine Gamma settings are best used with post production testing; I find the application of a Y curve filter always enables me to get the result that I'm after, good dynamic range with low noise.

Geoff
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Old August 15th, 2010, 07:41 AM   #9
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Geoff,
I am not familiar with the why curve filter, could you please elaborate? Are you referring to the "curves" in either FC or Avid's color correction or something available to tweak in the camera?
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Old August 15th, 2010, 08:16 AM   #10
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Reducing the black gamma level slightly has helped increase my blacks without much change in the other levels. With some additional testing, I am finding that the flair caused by shooting into the sun is upping the black level and in some way increasing noise. (Much like flashing film in processing for you old timers)

I have been careful to balance the sky and foreground using grads up to 1.2 but in some instances while shooting direct sun I am apparently be pushing the sensor beyond its limitations.

Thanks for all the input.
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Old August 15th, 2010, 03:57 PM   #11
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Chuck,

Unfortunately FCP does not have Y (Luminence) curves in its filter set. You need to get a plug-in such as Natress G Curves; I think that Colorista also has them.

Geoff
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