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Blackmagic: Test footage, Grading, Discussions
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  • Pizza is here at last! The few samples I have seen look good, sharper than I expected but maybe not super sharp, can't tell about artifacts, but there are some odd colors in for example strands of hair but that could be anything. Of course a lot depends on the lenses and so on. The grain looks nice and smooth. Bottom line for me is that I would consider investing in this system, but I'll wait to see what the GH3 brings. One way or another, they have put a lot of chips on the table.

  • @DrDave if it´s any sharper you can bet there is some sharpening! This is what you can get in a 1080p frame, pretty much.

    I have to say, the raw footage looks great. Texture, detail, colors..

    This camera will change a lot of stuff.

    p.s. this is a specialized tool, if ever that was unclear. I´ll still keep my gh2´s and will most likely get a gh3 when it´s out.

  • Here is a natural grade I did with only the RAW settings when interpreting footage in AE.

    P.S. When I tried to use Resolve B3, it did some weird clipping thing on the footage no matter what I did on the raw input settings. Any grade looked blotchier compared to AE. The footage played smoother in Resolve, but I cant figure out how to get a level image before grading.

    1920 x 1080 - 1M
  • And for that matter, I am amazed at the grading that can be done just using the Adobe Camera Raw importer! ;-)

  • The footage looks great! Am I correct though there is no workflow in existing NLEs to deal with the footage -- one needs to first deal with it in resolve, then export and edit in a NLE? Unless I'm reading it wrong the eoshd review seemed to imply you had to grade first, edit second?

  • @JDN if this is corect it is very bad! So if i have 30minutes footage i should grade it first before i start cutting to create a 2 minutes VideoClip for examble ??????

  • I think the approach would be to:

    1. Load the footage into an NLE (Premiere CS6) either the DNG or proxies

    2. Make your cuts, export an EDL.

    3. Import EDL into grading software (Resolve, AE, Color,etc.). Grade cut footage only.

    4. Render for distribution or to uncompressed for final teaks back in NLE.

  • @shian has laid out an example workflow here: It's based on AE, but the concept is the same.

    So yeah, cut the footage first and then grade.

  • @redbaron - excellent workflow, not too disimilar to what we would do with DPX sequences on 35mm.

    Things to look out for, making sure the frame rate is correct when interpreting. It seems like a simple thing, but I ran into a nightmare years ago on a project where an Asst Editor created 29.97 proxies for a 23.98 project as a result some adjustments that were made in AE wreaked havoc with the timeline, when it came time to turn the proxies off and render.

    And that's thing number 2 to watch out for - make sure you turn them off when you render, or be sure when you make them to select "best settings" and not "draft" or this will happen.

    Super Saturated look rendered from ProRes proxy

    And same exact grade rendered from the RAW DNG - notice the difference in sharpness.

    Shot 3 proxy(
    2400 x 1350 - 4M
    Shot 3 (
    2400 x 1350 - 4M
  • @shian those images are night and day in regards to detail (eyes, bracelet, wall texture). Looks like I need to stock up on hard drives for these DNG sequences! ;-) P.S. Love that saturated look!

  • But that being said - if you create ProRes 444 (liner off) proxies using "best settings" it won't matter. I had to zoom into 400% to see any difference between the proxy and DNG, and it was a infinitesimal amount of pixel blurring, and even when completely and ridiculously oversaturated and crushed, it still looks beautiful.

  • Whoah that crush looks awesome! The transition to the blacks is still smooth.

  • @shian What did you use to ingest the DNG and convert to ProRes 444?

  • After Effects

  • Anyone try grading directly in Speedgrade?

  • Updated that last video.

    Well, I did finally manage to break the footage - as you can see in the shots that are not the CU, some serious compression noise on the walls behind her on the balcony and @:05. That noise shows up on both DNG and the proxies.

    BUT I had to really bend the image, and tweak the knee to get that to show up.

  • @redbaron In resolve, there is a small camera icon on the bottom left of the color tab page. In here you can change the "exposure" slide to bring the range down (or up) depending on the shot.


  • Another workflow, which works well for me on MAC/FCP, is to use Resolve to transcode to ProRes 422 (which it does really fast) and edit from those. Any shots that need further CC, you can either tweak within FCP, or GO BACK to Resolve to finish it once editorial is finished. Via XML, Resolve is smart enough to reference the original DNG files if you do this.

    You can also edit DNG's natively in FCP but I wouldn't say it edits them well. There's a bug with setting the black point properly so they tend to no not look very good.


  • Thanks @johnbrawley. I did set the exposure, but I was wondering if there's a default LUT or curve added to the raw file on import? It seems like the DNG files from the BM camera default to a higher contrast than what I have seen with raw or Red files.

  • I think that's just the way they are interpreted. So yes it's like a LUT, but at a system level. not one you can "control"

    You will always still have the full DR. Like in LR, when you import a RAW file, you get a kind of default look but you can still recover a great deal of highlight and shadow. Same with BMCC CinemaDNG's. It might be worth you asking on the BMD forum under the resolve topics if you want a LOG look though that emulates the LOG look it does when shooting ProRes. A few have already asked and the more that ask, the more likely they are to do it.

    To be honest though, it doesn't make any difference because all the same range is still there. It's only how it's displayed by default.


  • Cool, that's what I was wondering and didn't understand. Even after the raw importers default settings are applied in Resolve, the color correction tools still utilize the full DR range of the raw file? Thanks so much for your help on here @johnbrawley.

    On a related note, how does it feel to have everyone grading and regrading your work? Do you ever look at some of the samples and think "what the hell were they thinking?" ;-)

  • Some of these grades are burning my eyeballs but they show no real signs of damage so I guess they show how flexible having a 12bit image with a decent dynamic range can be :) Consider me educated; but now make it look nice.

    So now there are affordable 12bit oil paints are we still happy with the broadcast colorspaces? You guys might be breaking the destination container rather than the source is what I am thinking.

  • @redbaron I'm used to it. Directors and Producers have been screwing with my grades since the beginning of time ;-) In all seriousness, you can't get proprietal about it. Thats part of the job. You advise, suggest...It's someone else final decision. I've had series where I don't even get invited to the grade.


  • Wow, I wasn't expecting the graded BM images to be that good, very impressive indeed John and Shian

    If there was a m43 mount option, I would buy one asap.

    If there was some way of getting a m43 convertor working with it, I would go for that too