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Best Practices for Color Grading with LUTs
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  • Looking over this on YouTube, so many folks wonder 1) where you get LUT's and 2) how to find LUT's for their specific camera. When I first started with video, yea, I bought some good ones ... but in the first couple uses I was needing to tweak them to look how I wanted my footage to look ... and found that as I got some sense of how SpeedGrade worked, I could make a Look (the Adobe format of LUT) in about the same time I spent tweaking the LUT's I'd bought ... and it was better.

    Grow your own, dudes & dudesses! ;-)

    Neil

  • Good advice rNeil.

  • With 100's of LUT packs out there it's hard to decide. These are the 2 sets that I think are far and away my favorite:

    http://luts.iwltbap.com/

    http://www.vision-color.com/impulz/

  • @aaronchicago the LGG's thread that Benjamin Lambinet (creator of LUTs from your first link) opened to sell his LUTs is just too delicious not to give it a go: http://www.liftgammagain.com/forum/index.php?threads/pack-of-luts-made-by-me.4999/ also very instructive... I bet my own LUTs are frikin saws under the gradient lupe :P

    Me like film emulations (film and photo stock), the Koji stuff and VC's Impulz and Osiris. As I complaint before too bad one cannot apply the LUT as output only in prememê's new Lumetri thing. The lumetri panel is also the only instance of a program that gives me different displayed and output rendition, go figure!
    Among the many forgettable, there are some useful LUTs in this pack

    PS
    Forgot to thank you @aaronchicagoyou as Lambinet free 4k scanned grain (proRES_HQ) is quite nice... and thin, at least comparing with the Kodak 5219 Rough DCI I've been using =)
    Case anyone interested, direct download link
     

  • The only issue with using luts is how the ranges are mapped. I have had some luts that clip highs and lows due to the difference between full range (0-255) and video (16-235) levels. Knowing the range used by the lut for input levels is fairly important. In DaVinci Resolve I always use a node before the lut to adjust the levels to work best with the lut. Using technical luts for log footage is a different matter entirely. Generally I only use luts for very specific 'look' processing and avoid them if I can.

  • The "filmstock" LUT's can be pretty useful to tie a project together ... most I know will put them on a second layer (SpeedGrade) or put a node in front of the (Resolve) and then do basic WB/neutralization on the layer below or the node in front of them. Some variation of this.

    I've also seen a grading/adjustment layer (PrPro & Sg) or final node (Resolve) that has the film-look LUT ... and then per-shot work done prior to that with the LUT layer/node turned off & on as useful to check both individual shots & over-all "fit & feel".

    Lots of ways to do it, can be complicating ... can be totally awesome. Requires a further testing/learning curve to do well & fast. Like everything else in cine/video! ;-)

    Neil