Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera Footage: Grading Test
As Blackmagic and John Brawley have kindly made RAW footage from the new Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera available for download I thought I would take it for a spin! Make sure and watch the before and after at the end.
To get the most latitude when grading this footage you need to use the Blackmagic Divinci Resolve Application, Photoshop, or something of that nature.
In this test though I thought I would give the footage more of a challenge and did all grading in Final Cut Pro X.
1.) Opened Final Cut Pro X and created a new Test Event and Project for the color test (Option+N, Command+N).
2.) Imported the DNG’s into the test Event.
3.) Put all the photos (as they come in as individual photos) into the timeline (Command+A then E to append) and set the duration for all of them to one frame (Command+A then Control+D then type in duration).
4.) Selected all photos for a particular shot and Command+G to make each shot a compound clip therefore separating each of the four shots out for editing as a video clip.
Steps one through four took about a minute to do.
5.) Corrected and colored the clips one step at a time as shown in the video. Including the use of Motionvfx.com’s mLooks 2 Color Correction Plugins in combination with Final Cut Pro X’s Color Board. I can’t tell you how much I love the Color and Shape masking abilities that are right there within the program!
6.) Exported 1080P.
Also notably, and amazingly, Final Cut Pro X played back the 2.5K footage un-rendered in the 1080P timeline no problem, even with all grades, color and shape masks, and titles applied. Put that on the list of things that make me smile as an editor.
(Tip: If you select a clip or clips and hold option+click and drag and then drop them, before letting go of option, it will duplicate the clips you have selected as well as their settings. I used this to move from one step to another in the video.)
In the end I was very impressed with how clean the footage was and I largely have had to work with DSLR footage. It’s a big difference. It held up incredibly well to grading directly in the application. It was very resistent to the normal color noise and artifacting you see when grading DSLR footage. There is some noise in the final low light shot but it is mostly luminance, not color noise. That I can deal with.
For more info check out the links below:
The Final Cut Pro X Editor: http://thefcpxeditor.tumblr.com/
Final Cut Pro X NLE: http://www.apple.com/finalcutpro/
Blackmagic Cinema Camera: http://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/blackmagiccinemacamera/
John Brawley: http://johnbrawley.wordpress.com/
Motion VFX: http://www.motionvfx.com/mplugs.html