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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old February 28th, 2011, 12:18 PM   #1
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color stressed out...help

Hello all....

I'm a bit tired and stressed out from working too much so I apologize if i sound repetitive with my issues....i will try to keep researching more on this subject but I'm taking the easy route right now and ask directly the cool people here...

I have so much more to learn and improve and find myself not having enough time to read on or do some test and some practice on my own...maybe I need to learn how to edit faster or just be better at time managment..

Right now I wanted to ask you al....l how do you go about color/ light monitoring?
Found myself doing something in FCP but then looking really bad on TV
For web is a bit easier thou. I even look at the video scopes and keep the blacks on the line and still looks too dark on TVs...ummmm.

I know the ideal is to have a proper broadcast monitor..some cool video card and that kind of stuff...
I have not gotten there yet....and also trying to get a break from buying, buying, buying...I have a huge list of stuff to get and never stops...

So, wondering... if you only do weddings..what is your setup for this?

I been doing some MB presets and while they look cool and interesting on computer the do look way to contrasty on TVs...blownout and too dark.....

I need to spend more time learning to color grade but sometimes i'm don't have the time and just go for the presets....

Do you all use broadcast monitors...calibrated LCD monitors? do you have issues with TV and contrasty footage? how you deal with this?

Thanks for taking the time...I'll keep reading and leaning...thank you.
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Old February 28th, 2011, 02:35 PM   #2
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Re: color stressed out...help

What I hear you saying is that your system/monitor is not calibrated?

If your colors are off, look into getting something along the lines of a Pantone Huey (cheap), or one of the more expensive monitor calibration devices/software setups (they can get pretty pricey). I picked up a cheap ColorMunki that just does the (multiple) monitors, pretty happy for under $100.

Generally a "factory" preset monitor is about as inaccurate as a factory preset TV... meaning it was set up to "look good", not look ACCURATE. You're running into the problems that result from uncalibrated displays (which is MOST displays out there!).

You've probably heard the acronym NTSC described as "Never The Same Color", and while I don't know that it's really THAT bad, you do want to get things calibrated enough to get reference points (some DVD's have "setup" sequences to help you optomize your display/audio - IIRC most Disney animated DVD's have it, so you can "tune" your TV a bit). Keep in mind that a "bought" DVD is likely to be fairly well dialed in color/brightness/contrast wise, and your hope is to match that - so you in effect have sort of a "reference" point there. If you achieve a fair match, you at least know your finished discs won't look any worse to clients than a purchased DVD... even if their TV is completely "off"!

You can't "beat" the problem entirely, BUT if you have a calibrated monitor on your computer, at least you have a fixed and presumably fairly accurate "starting point" on which to CC and mix, then if you need to make adjustments to gamma/brightness/contrast it's relatively easy to sort out.

Hopefully this will give you a "non budget busting" approach!
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Old March 1st, 2011, 08:38 AM   #3
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Re: color stressed out...help

Thanks Dave.

I will look into one of those monitor calibration things....Thanks for your feedback.
I was reading that new adobe 5 has an option for doing the YUV to RGB convertion inside the program and therefore avoids the need of an external converter..like matrox...wondering if anyone here is using this feature and how it does...it it works it means you get to safe some bucks and that's really good. I've been tempting to make the switch from FCP to Adobe....so close to...but now also there's talk of the new and improve FCP...so to make it more difficult...hehehe... it it doesn't have this option then i might take the jump...hehehe...

Wondering what people in the weddings business are using for color monitoring?

Matrox, video card, displayport???????


Thanks again
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Old March 1st, 2011, 02:12 PM   #4
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Re: color stressed out...help

Well, I've got a still editing program that has a simple "monitor calibration" function - it goes through a series of color bars and sliders asking you to eyeball until they match up - it does "work", but it only creates a profile for use in that ONE program... so if you go to a different one, or playback on a different program, now you're right back to "off"...

That's where the little calibrators come in. They create a profile for the OS to use in displaying everything on your monitor. So at least in theory, anything on your display should be pretty close to color correct.

I don't know if the Huey has Mac software ( I thought it was on the disk, and they have updates on the site IIRC), but I've got my old ones sitting around here - if you don't need multiple monitor support, and they would work for your Mac, I don't think they were bringing a lot on eBay last I looked!
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Old March 1st, 2011, 02:35 PM   #5
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Re: color stressed out...help

There is something new out called a spider, goes onto your monitor and callaborates with the colours and sorts it??? heard its fabulous, no links sorry but try check it out?
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Old March 1st, 2011, 03:59 PM   #6
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Re: color stressed out...help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bleasdale View Post
There is something new out called a spider, goes onto your monitor and callaborates with the colours and sorts it??? heard its fabulous, no links sorry but try check it out?
The Spyder 3 Pro is not so new. I have one & it works very well. You especially notice the value if you have 2 or 3 monitors & can calibrate them so that an image looks the same on all of them
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Spyder-3-Pro-PC-Mac/dp/B0037258L4
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Old March 1st, 2011, 04:36 PM   #7
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Re: color stressed out...help

Nice one Nigel.
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 01:39 AM   #8
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Re: color stressed out...help

I've also used the Spyder - it's another decent option, and yes, if you use multiple monitors, even "identical" models, having a calibration device becomes mandatory, otherwise it's like a man with many watches - he never knows exactly what time it is...
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Old March 2nd, 2011, 03:31 AM   #9
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Re: color stressed out...help

Since i'm a photographer, I had to deal with calibration issues since the first time I dealt with digital capture.
I got my first calibrating device and software in 2005 (Monaco Optix XR Pro, now discontinued) and without it I would be in deep sh*t with my prints. However i have the feeling that in video land things are different and a simple monitor calibration the way I know it is not what it takes to get accurate colors for TV viewing.
It probably has to do with the way the video signal is handled by our TVs or the broadcast system, i don't know, but calibrating a monitor with a photo-oriented calibrating device will not give you the precision you are looking for.

I think i've read somewhere that while photography has white levels at 255 and black levels at 0, in video white level is somewhere in the 215-235 (can't remember) area and black at 5-15 (can't remember the excact number of that either). That means that whites clip and blacks crash sooner in video than in photo,(you are actually looking at photo levels on your monitor) that's why you see blown out highlights and dark blacks on your TV.
Also one more thing that makes it even worse is the fact that most TVs come with a "dynamic' preset as a default, that enchances contrast even further thus exaggerating the problem. You may use (and suggest your clients to do the same) the flatest setting on your TV to reduce the problem.
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