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Simple, After FX was designed for compositing whereas Premiere was designed to edit.
to be done in AfterFX, then somewhere along the pipeline Premiere is used to edit all the footage from various departments into the final product.
Keylight is the best keyer for AfterFX BTW.
I took some green screen footage a while back and yes, Keylight took care of it in one click. I looked around for ways to improve it, but realized it was fine the way it was. It is hard to improve on a reasonably perfect key against a nice green backdrop that is well lit (or a little blown out, but not too bad).
Yes, I recorded a lot of footage using a green screen. Well lit and evenly lit, with the subject about 8 feet from the screen to no spill plus the subject was lit seperately (using different lights) so as to no affect the green screen and add seperation (back light) from the green screen.
Took that footage into PPro and struggled with the various settings and just could not achieve even close to acceptable results. So we gave up that idea and had to re-think our strategy.
I just happend to start up AE today (never used it before) and was fiddling around and found the key light option. So I brought in my footage into AE and bam! One click and the green screen just vanished leaving behind all the details including strands or hair flying about.
Yes, it is amazing isn't it. Far superior. And in my opinion, superior to Ultra as well.
Keylight is more capable in the right hands than Ultra. But it is agonizingly slow if you have to use any of the color correction or edge treatment features. (which is often if you dont have a perfect shoot - especially in SD DV video).
I can normally get as good a key in ultra in much shorter time, much more intuitive interface, and renders sometimes faster than real time. The renders are very fast even when doing pre and post color correction. Use the edge treatment features and color correction features in Keylight (if you can figure out how they all work) and you may as well run to Starbucks for coffee while it renders. In ultra you can actually play the clip in real time while making adjustments to parameters which is very useful, because things like shimmering of edges dont appear in a static frame.
Keylight is very capable and a good keyer. But adobe could learn a lot from Serious Magic on performance and interface (keylight is a plugin after all; adobe's native keying is bleak)
I never gave rendering any thought because I brought it into Premiere Pro with Dynamic Link.
Interesting information. Thanks Curt.
True, DL is a benefit, but it will still render when you finally export, and its really slow. And with chroma keying, rendering to see final quality is pretty important before finallizing the settings. A preview or still frame may not give the motion detail you need to make the proper key settings..
By the way, when you guys use After Effects, which keying did you guys use to get rid of the green screen? Because I use the color distort, but it doesn't work that well.
> Yes, it is amazing isn't it. Far superior. And in my opinion, superior to
> Ultra as well.
The compelling reason to use Ultra is the library of tracking virtual sets.
If you are not planning to use a tracking virtual set, then yes, use AE.
To be honest, I am not all that enamored of the virtual backgrounds supplied with the program. Not bad, but not great.
Perhaps because I shoot HDV and there are no 16:9 backgrounds. I have to stretch a 4:3 background to fit.
> To be honest, I am not all that enamored of the virtual backgrounds
> supplied with the program. Not bad, but not great.
It's the "tracking" virtual sets that add the coolness factor. If you don't
use tracking, the sets are ho-hum.
> Perhaps because I shoot HDV and there are no 16:9 backgrounds. I have to
> stretch a 4:3 background to fit.
Yes, they need to move to HD. They also need to enhance the product so
users can create their own tracks.
I use a couple of the ULTRA tracking sets for teen productions. The tracking stuff turns an avg shoot into something that looks like you paid mucho bucks for cranes and staff. (or cgi staff) They are really cool.
But, Most of them are on the cheesy side. I dont understand why serious magic did not film and produce tracking shots and sets of Real Sets! The cgi stuff is pretty obvious. In some cases its supposed to be obvious, but in the sets that are supposed to look realistic, it just looks cheesy.
There is a huge opportunity for adobe (now) to produce tracking sets of real places. That would provide some killer potential to the app.
That is, if Adobe plans to continue the ULTRA app as is. Perhaps they will just integrate the serious magic keying technology into existing apps and do away with Ultra? Ultra is pretty unique.
So what would the work flow be for this kind of situation? That is to say some footage needs to be chroma keyed in AE and then used in PPro CS3.
I find AE to be Dog slow. In PPro CS3 I can have multiple HDVs composited (I've done upto 5) and I still get real time previews. In AE the simplest of animations are impossible to see in real time. My chroma key test played back at about 5 frames per second.
After effect Keylight is the best way to do a chromakey and the meant way to do it.
If you're interested in AE there is a great practical resource on the net, Andrew Kramer's http://videocopilot.net/tutorials.html
It's a good AE tutorial web site, for a keying basic tutorial go there http://www.creativecow.net/articles/kramer_andrew/colorkey/index.htm
AE works differently than a video editor (for clarification, AE isn't a video editor). It renders each frame in FULL for whatever resolution and quality settings you have specified. If you reduce the comp window size to 50% or 25%, and the resolution to half or third, then you might very well find real-time playback (depending on effects applied and such).
The workflow for you might be to capture all of your clips in PPro, then choose File > Dynamic Link > New After Effects Composition. Save the AEP file somewhere, then when AE is open, import your PPro project. Do all the magic on your clip(s) and then see the updated composition linked inside your original PPro project.
Keep in mind...importing a PPro project to AE doesn't do either of the following:
1) modify your original PPro project when you make changes to files in AE
2) reflect any changes to you original PPro project once you have imported it into AE.
If you create multiple additional compositions inside of AE after the original Dynamically Linked one, just import them into PPro - or, while you have both projects open in PPro and AE, click and drag your compositions from the project panel in AE to the project panel in PPro.
That's a great website for AE stuff! Thanks for the link.
Didn't know AE was so capable. Things don't move as fast on my machine though (even though my machine is way better than his - faster cpu more cores, more RAM, faster HDD).
SM sold it to Adobe just for that purpose. Those sets are over 2 1/2 years old. SM was writing a virtual set plug in for Maya and Lightwave and now Adobe has it. Why Adobe did absolutely nothing to Ultra is beyond me.
Chris is quit right about keying though, Ultra's Tracking is great and set building is intensive. I made on set of my own and it took forever, well actually I just tweaked their studio set to add life like plants and softened up the focal length. That is one thing that makes the cheesy sets look chessy, the depth of field is always the same. IMHO
What would be in hours ti render and key a 2 hour green screen shoot using a dual core,good graphics card and af for keying out the screen? 3 times 5 times or 20 time real time?
Ultra typically keys in real time or even faster than real time.
Keylight rendering is highly Dependant on what keying parameters you set. If you use any of the edge enhancement or color correction built into keylight, expect very slow renders. Could take several hours in your case. If you dont have to use any edge enhancement parameters it keys much faster, but not close to real time.
Try a 1 minute sample and do the math.