6 Replies Latest reply on Jul 15, 2011 9:28 AM by Frédéric Segard

    30-bit color


      I'm putting a new system together and considering an NVIDIA Quadro 4000 with a Dell U3011 display.  Do applications (e.g. Premiere) need to support 30-bit color for display or is it automatic (with Windows 7)?  If I understand this article correctly, Premiere can handle 96-bit color (32-bit per channel) internally, but what about when it comes to display?


      What's the difference between displays like the Dell U3011 (or HP ZR30w) and the more expensive, lower-resolution HP DreamColor?  They all claim 30-bit (billion+) color.


      Any drawbacks to "deep color" apart from cost?

        • 1. Re: 30-bit color
          Frédéric Segard Level 2

          Yes, you will see the 10-bit benefits with PremierePro, After Effects, Photoshop. As long as you have 10-bit footage, like AVCIntra, HDCAM-SR or some other 10-bit source. Otherwise, if your project is in 10-bit, it just upconverts the 8-bit footage color information to 10.


          I'm personally getting the HP ZR30w. The Dell Ultrasharp series are good monitors too. With them, you'll be very close to broadcast color accuracy. With the Dreamcolor, you'll only get an extra edge, but for the money, it's really not worth it. You'd be better off with a real broadcast monitor. Most DreamColor users output to print, and need the extra edge to be 99-100% WYSIWYG accurate.

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          • 2. Re: 30-bit color
            illucine Level 1

            Thanks Frederic.  I work mostly with 8-bit footage but thought that when it comes to color correction a 10-bit display might help.  Plus I'm getting a Quadro 4000 (because I also do 3D animation) and figure I might as well take adavantage of it's 30-bit capability.  The HP and the Dell both seem to be about equally color accurate from what I've read and pretty darn close to the Dreamcolor (99% Adobe RGB coverage vs. 100% with the Dreamcolor).  Best as I can tell, the main differences are the Dell has an OSD and some extra inputs while the HP costs a little less.  Is that why you're leaning towards the HP?

            • 3. Re: 30-bit color
              Frédéric Segard Level 2

              If you do 3D animation, then that will be an advantage to have 10-bit. As for color correction, you will see some advantages, even if the footage is upsampled to 10-bit, especially if you apply other effects to it. But it won't be a night and day difference, as if you had 10-bit footage to begin with. But it will help. Is it worth the extra money JUST for color correction with 8-bit footage? I'd say no. But in your case, you have another application, 3D animation, that will shine in 10-bit.


              I went with the HP, partly because it was cheaper, and because it was recommended to me by some graphic designer and video editor friends of mine. I got some good references from the Dell to, but apple for apple, even if there are less inputs on the HP, the final choice came to price (about $350 less in my case. I guess my vendor has good pricing with HP).

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              • 4. Re: 30-bit color
                Frédéric Segard Level 2

                Oh, and apparently, from searches I made on the web, the Dell has some input lag that could be an issue. But that is only hearsay, and have not seen of been told first hand that this is true.

                • 5. Re: 30-bit color
                  illucine Level 1

                  Yeah, I've also run across things mentioning greater input lag on the Dell but am not sure how signigicant that is.  Those comments usually come from hard-core gamers which I am not.

                  • 6. Re: 30-bit color
                    Frédéric Segard Level 2

                    Quite honestly, for your application, in might be a non-issue. I would guess for gamers it might be a problem.