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Old January 16th, 2016, 03:23 AM   #1
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Best set up for grading and what hardware?

I'm on the verge of having a new edit system built and I was just wondering what folks think is the best option for grading 4K?

Right now I have a good domestic 1080p HDTV connected to my Mac via a Blackmagic break out card. Thus my timeline (from Premiere Pro) is displayed on it and I making grading adjustments accordingly. I also run dual monitors for the Premiere Pro interface out of my graphics card.

The original reason for this set up, ie grading on a 1080 HDTV, was my end videos a few years back would mostly be watched on DVD's and thus played on domestic LCD TV's.

But my new system will be built for 4K and I'm wondering if an external 4K UHD TV displaying my timeline via a break out card is still the way to go or whether a 4K PC monitor is a better option? One good thing (I assume) about a 4K TV is I'll have the necessary size at a reasonable price to see the extra resolution and consequently grade with it. I say this because we have a 55 inch UHD TV in our living room and unless you get within about a 1.5m of it you can't easily tell the difference between 1080 and 4K at normal viewing distances.

Finally for the foreseeable future most of my projects will be shot in 1080, which begs the question why upgrade to a 4K system? Well I intend to shoot static interviews in 4K so I can recrop in post for the impression of 2 cameras and 2-3 times last year clients gave me 4K actioncam footage to work with.

So the key reasons for making this post is to ask folks for recommendations on specific display/graphic/break out cards as well as whether to go to the UHD TV or monitor route? In the past I've found some cards are prone to issues and I'm looking to avoid this.
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Old January 18th, 2016, 04:37 PM   #2
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Re: Best set up for grading and what hardware?

Anyone have thoughts on this?
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Old January 25th, 2016, 02:36 AM   #3
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Re: Best set up for grading and what hardware?

Hello Nigel

Thoughts - yes, but probably not what you are looking for. My first thought is I am somewhat amazed that there are not more threads here about viewing 4k footage.

I am also going down this road, I have two cams that shoot 4k, and editing and viewing the clips on a regular Dell U2410 HD monitor. I searched in vain seeking to understand what viewing 4k is really all about. In another thread Roger Gunkel tells me 'Due to the pixel density of 4k footage, you are really not going to see much difference on a 4k 24" monitor, and an HD monitor of any sort is not going to be capable of showing full res 4K images. If you compare the two on a 60" 4k tv, you will certainly see the difference.'

If one needs a 60" 4k TV to see the visual value of 4k...

The early adopters of 4k cams claimed that 4k is so much sharper than HD, so much so that even when rendered off to HD the resultant HD is sharper than HD recorded directly. I'm not so sure this is now true perhaps because of the overall improvement in HD with the newer cams.

Whatever, perhaps you might as well continue as you are and pass on the 4k monitor/TV, for now. Your experience 'unless you get within about a 1.5m of it (your 55 inch UHD TV) you can't easily tell the difference between 1080 and 4K at normal viewing distances.' confirms Roger's input.

That's perhaps not much help but it might get more discussion going on this whole 4k viewing business.

Cheers...
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Old January 25th, 2016, 03:49 AM   #4
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Re: Best set up for grading and what hardware?

The words '3D TV' and 'emperor's new clothes' spring to mind.
The most compelling reason for using 4k seems to be the ability it affords to zoom and reframe footage.
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Old January 25th, 2016, 09:40 AM   #5
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Re: Best set up for grading and what hardware?

I would say of course, guys.


My 27" Imac can show 1080p at its full resolution. . .but with only a little room on the screen left over. You would need something a little less than twice that wide and twice that high to see 4k at full rez. And if you can't see it at its full rez, it means it's being downscaled/downrezzed/whatever the right term is to fit your display. . .which means you're not REALLY seeing what it REALLY looks like.

I've also been advised (i.e. I'm a little less certain on this aspect) that for grading, you need to be able to view whatever res it is at its full size or things get compressed and again, you won't see what you're REALLY getting.
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