4 Replies Latest reply on Apr 28, 2009 1:01 PM by dddnlb

    ProRes workflow solutions

    dddnlb Level 1

      I cut a TV show where we work in HD in ProRes (HQ) and do our own finish. We do our effects in After Effects and then drop them into our final sequence for output.


      Last season, due to After Effects CS3's inability to properly interpret the ProRes codec, I would export my source clips in TARGA format so to maintain proper quality and then render out ProRes files to drop back in the project. That worked flawless and I got no color shifts and my renders were virtually and exact match to the original clips.


      However, this season we upgraded our After Effects to CS4 and we are also on a newer version of Quicktime. The same workflow now renders undesirable results. There is a distinct color shift to the dark side which makes the renders unusable. I can match the color/gamma by using the original ProRes clip. However, sometimes the gamma shifts unpredictably in a few frames in the render.


      I read the After Effects support article discussing altering the AE interpretation rules and have done that. However the article also states that for that to work, I must use the Color Management and make sure to have the proper color profile selected. However, it does not say what the correct color profile for ProRes is. I only know that sRGB is incorrect. Does anyone know what is the correct profile to use for that Rule Interpretation to work?



        • 1. Re: ProRes workflow solutions
          Todd_Kopriva Level 8

          ProRes 422 HD is in the HDTV Rec. 709 color space.


          In this blog post, I provide the interpretation rules for correct interpretation of ProRes footage, and these interpretation rules also tell you what the color space is for each of the ProRes variants.

          • 2. Re: ProRes workflow solutions
            elaine montoya Level 3



            It's true - sRGB does not work for ProRes.


            I would try the following:


            1. edit your interpretation rules file (for more info on this: <http://help.adobe.com/en_US/AfterEffects/9.0/WS3878526689cb91655866c1103906c6dea-7f82a.htm l>

            2. add the following right above the line “# this soft rule should be the last in the list of soft rules”


            # soft rule: Apple ProRes 422 720x480 & 720x486 are SDTV NTSC

            *, 480, *, *, "apch" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6nf", *

            *, 480, *, *, "apcn" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6nf", *

            *, 486, *, *, "apch" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6nf", *

            *, 486, *, *, "apcn" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6nf", *


            # soft rule: Apple ProRes 422 720x576 is SDTV PAL

            *, 576, *, *, "apch" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6pf", *

            *, 576, *, *, "apcn" ~ *, *, *, *, "r6pf", *


            # soft rule: Apple ProRes 422 HD is Rec. 709

            *, 720, *, *, "apch" ~ *, *, *, *, "r7hf", *

            *, 720, *, *, "apcn" ~ *, *, *, *, "r7hf", *

            *, 1080, *, *, "apch" ~ *, *, *, *, "r7hf", *

            *, 1080, *, *, "apcn" ~ *, *, *, *, "r7hf", *


            (thanks to Dan Ramirez who figured out these rules....)


            3. use a plain text editor to add these lines (like BBEdit or Dreamweaver) as a wordprocessing app will add incorrect characters

            4. save the file and start After Effects.

            5. make sure you are using the color management features - enable a project working space by going to File > Project Settings, and select a working color space from the Working Space menu.

            6. When you render from After Effects, make sure that you've assigned an output color profile that is appropriate for your output. ie. if you're round-tripping back to ProRes 422, assign the same profile to the output file that you used to interpret the input file.



            good luck!


            • 3. Re: ProRes workflow solutions
              dddnlb Level 1

              Thanks Elaine,


              Sorry if I wasn't clear. I have already changed my interpretation rules file to contain that new code. My question is really which profile to use for the color management part of the process. I have tried a couple and both have gamma hits and also I have a situation where colors I sampled for matching certain areas of the image shift on output.


              I am hoping to find which specific profile to use for the color management of ProRes.



              • 4. Re: ProRes workflow solutions
                dddnlb Level 1

                Thanks Todd!


                That's what I was looking for.