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Workflow Issues

May 20, 2012 7:46 PM

  Latest reply: Jim Simon, Jun 4, 2012 6:01 PM
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 27, 2012 7:39 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    The key to everything you ask  is...

     

    Clips are CC/graded as discrete entities.

     

    Need to add a new scene.  Take it to SG...grade it (use grades from the original project even) and bring it back to your edit.

    For the rest of us, all the transitions, graphics and such are often already in place when it comes time to grade, which is after editing.  Editing includes transitions, graphics, titles, etc.

     

    Yes and no to the above.  Every one of these is a discrete item and not a sum of their parts until exported.  Any item can be edited as a unique object.

     

    Thanx for the debate Jim but I dont think I can convince you or add much more to assist you.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 27, 2012 8:08 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Wow, that's a lot of discussion to go through!  I think I get the gist.

     

    Jim has laid out two criteria for useability:

     

    "1) The ability to see everything from the PP sequence in SG, and

    2) The ability to perform significant reedits without losing the grading we've already done."

     

     

    Item (2) is acheivable with Speedgrade now by using a digital intermediate or proxy.  i.e. You grade the underlying clips,  not the timeline sent from premiere.  Then when you make edits in premiere the timeline elements are still pointing to the graded clips. Doesn't matter where you move them, or if you trim them, add transitions, etc.  If you need to add clips from a pool of material you haven't already graded, then clearly you would have to add these to speedgrade and render out just thoses clips. Also, any clips that you want to re-grade would also need to be re-rendered. Note:  you can render out batches of separate clips from the speedgrade timeline automatically by using the "src.PathElement.0" metadata tag.

     

    Item (1) is considerably trickier.  I cannot see any way that one could re-create a facsimile of the premiere timeline inside of speedgrade without rendering out a copy like the "Send to Speedgrade" command does (with all the limitations this has, including violating item 2).   Even in the future, if one envisions a 'dynamic link' , you would still need to have speedgrade match everything that premiere can apply to the timeline (various transitions, effects, third party plug-ins, ...).  The current dynamic link to After effects does not acheive this. Challenging for sure!

     

    Personally, I am willing to live with not seeing an exact facsimile of the premiere timeline in speedgrade;  I can check the grade against the transitions & text, etc. back in premiere, which I would have to do anyway because Speedgrade doesn't currently support 'monitoring out'  except with the very expensive Nvidia SDI soltution (which I don't own).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 27, 2012 8:41 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Well, maybe it's just me that doesn't understand how to keep it.  (That was the point of this thread, after all.  To learn something I hadn't yet found myself.)

     

    It's not just a matter of the client not liking the grade I did for a clip, it's more like the client wanting a whole section removed, or a whole section added, or a whole section moved to another part of the timeline.  Understanding that the DPX workflow is currently the only method that allows point number 1, how do I perform another Send to SpeedGrade and keep all the work I did before the reedit?  If you know of a way that works, do tell.

     

    Jim, I talked about this back in my first response here (post 15) - may be you missed it (or ignored it)? Basically, SG has these grading layers that you can add on top of your clips. Each grading layer in turn can have multiple look layers, which is where you preserve your grading decisions. The key point is that you can re-use these grading layers between PP edits/exports.

     

    E.g., if you render out from PP to SG you will see the rendered clips (DPX sequences) on the SG timeline. You can then add grading layers for each of the clips or for the entire timeline. Then say you need to re-edit in PP - you will re-render the PP timeline as DPX to create a new SG project. If you load that it will appear as a separate timeline. You can then drag the grading layers from the old timeline on top of the new clips. I.e., no re-doing the grading. You just render out the graded material.

     

    The same thing happens if you export out from PP as EDL. You load the EDL into SG the first time and create the grading layers. After that, as you load each new EDL exported from PP (following subsequent PP edits), you likewise drag your old grading layers on top of the new clips. Again, no re-doing any grading work. You can of course tweak the grading as needed.

     

    To add a grading layer, drag the "Grading" icon (Timeline->Setup->Timeline Elements) on top of your clip - you can drag the ends to extend/compress the length. If you forget to do this and directly grade a clip, you can convert all the grade settings to a grading layer (see Timeline->Setup->Tools).

     

    SG also provides a way to save your looks. Although not as simple/powerful as the grading layers, custom looks provide another means to preserve your grade settings between edits. I.e., as you grade a timeline or a clip, you can save the look and re-apply it in the next import from PP (DPX or EDL).

     

    Hope this explains how SG can address both the scenarios you have in mind. Even if you reject this (or ignore it), I hope this will help other readers of this thread. I'm very excited by SG and have been spending more time with SG than any other product in CS6. It's quite buggy for me at this time though...sorting through it.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 27, 2012 10:07 PM   in reply to Sekhar Ravinutala

    Both of you got the  "gist" exactly.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 28, 2012 1:41 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Again, I don't see a problem. EDL does handle transitions. E.g., if you have a clip A followed by clip B with a dissolve in-between in PP, when you export it as EDL from PP to SG, SG will import it as three layers: clip A, transition, and clip B. You can then grade clip A and clip B as you wish without touching the transition. Try it.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 28, 2012 2:17 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Ah, but they're not always.  A range of clips might get a specific CC/grade (this is where the grading layers come in very handy), and at the same time some clips within that range will get an additional or different CC/grade.

     

    They are still graded discretely in a CC Timeline but obviously same grade can be  applied across a range of clips if desired. Its just that one does not deal with a range of clips in a CC timeline. Its one at a time.

     

    SG and Resolve allow one to store the "look" and apply it anywhere and everywhere.  If one revists the grading project ..one can use the stored look to grade any new clip. (Editability)

     

    One can even use the "look" in a new grading project.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 29, 2012 1:40 PM   in reply to Jim Simon

    Simply means you grade one clip at a time and not the entire range of clips.

     

    You then can apply the same grade to a range should you choose.

     

    You should understand that because I know you use MB Looks a lot in your work.

    There you actually only CC grade one frame and not even the entire clip ....but you can then copy the Effect to other clips back in the timeline.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 1:58 AM   in reply to Jim Simon

    In this issue of a workflow where you can re-edit in Premiere after making grading in SpeedGrade, I think the problem is in Premiere and not in SpeedGrade.

     

    I mean, everything would be easier if Premiere had a more complete project manager, where you could transcode all the clips used to a new intermediate codec, with extra frames (handles) in head and tail. These new clips should be renamed and numbered, but with reference to original names in Premiere database.

     

    SpeedGrade then open all these new clips (without EDL or XML), which are already in order, do the color grading, and export it as individual clips.

     

    Finally in Premiere you can relink all these new clips to the original edition.

     

    Not perfect, but simple and functional.

     

    My two cents.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 8:26 AM   in reply to Manuel LP

    "...transcode all the clips used to a new intermediate codec..."

    Have you found (and tested)  a codec / format that works?   (For this to work it needs to be something that Speedgrade can read / render and keep audio in the clip.)

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 9:04 AM   in reply to kinvermark II

    Well, this is is only a assumption, Premiere lacks an option in project manager for transcoding to an intermediate codec. But if this will be possibly, GoPro Cineform is my favorite codec.

    In addition, it appears that "GoPro is also supporting the efforts of SMPTE to adopt the codec as the VC-5 video compression standard to provide an open codec standard for video acquisition and post-production".

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 9:55 AM   in reply to Manuel LP

    Unfortunately, GoPro (Cineform) does not work.  See my posts here: Re: Output to Cineform AVI  

     

     

    Manuel, your suggestion that using an intermediate is   "Not perfect, but simple and functional"  is a good one, but we need a WORKING intermediate. To date I have not been able to get anything to work:  AVI's drop audio,  MOV's get audio from entire timeline stuffed into each clip file and have a gamma shift (I thought the Quicktime LUT would fix this but it won't render on my system).

     

    So, my request (please!) :  HAS ANYONE FOUND AN INTERMEDIATE THAT SPEEDGRADE CAN READ / RENDER / KEEP AUDIO?

     

     

     

    PS -  Much of what you want from Premiere is already acheivable: use Media Encoder to batch render your original clips to the intermediate and then once cc is done rename folder (e.g. camera1-old) to force premiere to relink all the clips to a new folder (e.g. camera1-graded) with speedgrade rendered clips.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 1:37 PM   in reply to kinvermark II

    kinvermark II wrote:

     

    PS -  Much of what you want from Premiere is already acheivable: use Media Encoder to batch render your original clips to the intermediate and then once cc is done rename folder (e.g. camera1-old) to force premiere to relink all the clips to a new folder (e.g. camera1-graded) with speedgrade rendered clips.

     

    Yes, it's true, but transcoding the complete clips is a waste of time and space, and moreover the main problem is after, in SpeedGrade, where you don't know the part what is need for grade.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 2:31 PM   in reply to Manuel LP

    Yes, not ideal, I agree.  But if you have clips with large chunks of unusable footage you can set in/out points in media encoder to leave that stuff behind.

     

    Do you have time to test some codecs?   I know things don't work here, but I don't know if it is just my system or if it is a more general problem / limitation / bug. My latest attempt was Avid's DNxHD codec as a .MOV file.  Speedgrade reads and renders, but has gamma shift and puts the entire timeline worth of audio into each clip.  Wierd!

     

    Thanks,

     

    Mark.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jun 2, 2012 2:59 PM   in reply to kinvermark II

    kinvermark II wrote:

     

    Do you have time to test some codecs?   I know things don't work here, but I don't know if it is just my system or if it is a more general problem / limitation / bug. My latest attempt was Avid's DNxHD codec as a .MOV file.  Speedgrade reads and renders, but has gamma shift and puts the entire timeline worth of audio into each clip.  Wierd!

    Yes, final rendering is a problem. At the moment I am doing the final render to targa files, and after I use After Effect (or AME) for render to uncompressed YUV422 or to Cineform avi (if I can, I avoid Quicktime). Yes, it's awkward (many steps) but works for me.

     

    The audio lack is no important for me, it is worked in another machine.

     

    I hope this help you.

     
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