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    HELP!! AE frame rate conversion contrast problem in rendered converted clips.
    #1
    Senior Member Deuceofspades's Avatar
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    Hi Guys, Faith Granger here. I am about to release a beefy docu mini series titled: "AGAINST ALL ODDS, THE MAKING OF DEUCE OF SPADES" sharing my first time indie filmmaker success story (see my previous film thread http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread...EUCE+OF+SPADES).
    Anyway, I am running into technical problems and really could use some help: I am using AE and Andrew Kramer's frame rate converter preset to convert my docu onset behind the scene footage (shot at 29.97fps). I need it to be 24P, like the rest of my interview footage and timeline project settings.

    I have been able to figure out how to best approach this, and it seems to be working OK for me BUT (there's always a but - sigh) the resulting footage looks too contrasted in comparison to my original footage. Hence, I am losing quite a bit of details in many shots . Is no bueno.

    I have tried no less than 8 different render settings, with EXACT same poor outcome. So here are my current render settings: (BTW composition is set at 16 bpc)

    Format: QUICKTIME
    codec: JPG 2000 (at 95% quality - to save disk space without compromising too much on quality)
    video output: RGB, millions colors, Premultiplied (I tried all the other settings in video output and it did not change the outcome of my contrast)
    Color management: I left it as is (but I also did one test with color management turned OFF and it did not change the outcome either)

    So I have TWO question:

    Question #1: Can this be fixed and how? I don't want AE to alter my original footage color and contrast, just change the frame rate.
    Question #2: WHY ME???? (LOL) been working on this docu mini series for 10 months straight now and REALLY want to get it done and move on with my life (or lack thereof HAHA).

    CAN ANYONE HELP? Pretty pleeease?
    Last edited by Deuceofspades; 11-12-2015 at 11:07 AM.
    FAITH GRANGER, Multi Award winning filmmaker

    "Best Feature Film", "Best Cinematography", "Best Editing", "Best Screenplay" Awards





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    Well. I am guessing you mean ANDREW Kramer's frame rate converter. ;-) Andrew has some of the best tutorials on the web, so we can assume the process is correct.

    "Can this be fixed?" Absolutely, frame rate conversion should not impact the contrast. The challenge will be to find what is causing the problem. My suspicion is some problem with render settings, specifically your version of Quicktime. QT had some contrast issues for awhile. It was referred to as the "Quicktime gamma bug," if you want to do some googling. It was several years ago and I would assume that it has been fixed by now. (I seem to remember that Andrew Kramer had a technique to fix the problem, but it was pretty cumbersome.)

    My next guess is JPEG2000, since it has not yet been widely implemented. For troubleshooting purposes, try one of the other codecs.

    If neither of those is the problem, you may need to provide more information.
    Are you viewing the output on the same monitor as the source material? Have you used the exact same render settiings, but without the frame-rate conversion? Is it still too contrasty? Can you provide a still frame of "too contrasted" to make sure we all agree on the terminology?

    As far as "WHY ME????" There is an unwavering rule in post-production that the likelihood of some mysterious problem arising is inversely proportional to the length of time until a deadline. So, the shorter the amount of time until the deadline, the more likely there will be some mysterious problem. I have proven this experimentally countless times in the last 25-years. Rest assured that After Effects is not attacking YOU personally. ;-)


    Jim
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    Senior Member Deuceofspades's Avatar
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    dang, I can't believe I called him Matt LOL. OK to rouble shoot I have done all the following:

    1. Tried many different render settings, codecs, such as avi, quicktime lossless, quicktime jpg2000 etc... All yielded same problem. NOTE: I am on a PC, and have tried only avi and quicktime, but maybe you have suggestion for another near lossless render format... ??
    2. Tried rendering a clip with Andrew Kramer preset and same clip without the Andrew Kramer preset - both looked the same as far as contrast go - same problem
    3. Tried setting color management to OFF or to ON, no changes in results.
    4. Tried render as RGB only, then tried as RGB + alpha - no changes.

    My conclusion so far is that the contrast is AE created, right when it "reads the clips" it interprets them differently than Vegas and renders them that way too. I don't think, at the light of all above, that the problem is render or Andrew Kramer preset generated.

    Even when I just preview the clips in AE after importing it, it already looks more contrasted than original clip viewed in Vegas.

    I am looking at all the clips tests on the same monitor, so to be able to really compare apple to apple.

    CONTRASTY: blacks are crushed, brights are much brighter, I am losing details (information) in the mid and high range, especially on the already overexposed candid shots filmed by my cast while on the set. trying to then bring contrast back down does not yield satisfactory results.


    Just to give you an idea, in VEGAS, I had to color correct the behind the scenes clips and added to all of them a tad of contrast and color. Just a tad. Well, I remove all effects (including color correction) when sending the clips to AE for frame rate conversion. I compared the AE render to the clips WITH color correction in Vegas, and the "virgin" AE clips (no color correction) are MORE contrasted than my original clips WITH color correction.

    I will post 5 screengrabs to demonstrate.

    So basically to sum it up: If I take a plain clip (as was shot) and import it in AE and render it backout, (whether avi or quicktime), without doing ANYTHING to it, and then compare it to the original clip, the AE render will look more contrasted. So AE is reading the color information differently, when the clip is first imported, and spitting the render back out with same color interpretation...that is what I need to figure out: how to make it interpret the footage color information to remain closer to the original clip.


    OK here are the screengrabs:

    ORIGINAL CLIP (prior to color correction) and AE RENDERED CLIP (prior to color correction)

    clip 4.jpg

    clip 5.jpg

    if you look at the first two above it is most obvious, because the shot is already overexposed, so you can see how adding more contrast causes a problem.

    The next 3 screengrabs also show the problem, although in that case, I kinda like the AE version LOL, because it was a grey sky, overcast day so the clip benefited from a little extra "push" as far as contrast goes.

    1. Original clip (no color correction) 2. original clip (with some cc) 3. AE rendered clip (no color correction)

    http://www.deuceofspadesmovie.com/tech_related.htm
    Last edited by Deuceofspades; 11-12-2015 at 12:39 PM. Reason: Adding two more screengrabs
    FAITH GRANGER, Multi Award winning filmmaker

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    Senior Member Deuceofspades's Avatar
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    OK here are the screengrabs (click on link below), if you look at the first two (side by side) it is most obvious, because the shot is already overexposed, so you can see how adding more contrast causes a problem.

    The next 3 screengrabs also show the problem, although in that case, I kinda like the AE version LOL, because it was a grey sky, overcast day so the clip benefited from a little extra "push" as far as contrast goes.

    http://www.deuceofspadesmovie.com/tech_related.htm
    FAITH GRANGER, Multi Award winning filmmaker

    "Best Feature Film", "Best Cinematography", "Best Editing", "Best Screenplay" Awards





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    Senior Member Michael Carter's Avatar
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    Hmmm… why not give ProRes a try? I rarely render from AE to anything else, unless it's a pre-render. It's Quicktime, but a heck of a codec...


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    Senior Member Andrius Simutis's Avatar
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    It's gamma correction that's changing your image. Computer monitors and TVs have a different gamma, and quicktime can "correct" that to make them match. Also, if you change codec as in going from H264 to JPEG200 or Animation, you run the risk of switching gamma levels too.
    As Michael says above, why not go with a flavor of ProRes? It's much less prone to image differences.


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    Senior Member Deuceofspades's Avatar
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    OK, can you guys be more specific, as in, explain step by step what I need to do. I am on CS5.5 and when I looked at my "output module" drop down menu, where I can chose my format I don't see anything listed as "ProRes" , and if I select QUICKTIME and then open the video codec menu, no ProRes option either. I am new at AE so bare with me, until 10 days ago I had NEVER ever touched it, and I am teaching myself as I go.
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    Senior Member Andrius Simutis's Avatar
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    Are you on a Mac? PC? Mac should have it, as it's an Apple codec. PC...not so sure.
    In Output Module, choose Custom, then you should have Apple ProRes 422 as an option.


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    Senior Member Deuceofspades's Avatar
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    I am on a PC, no wonder I could not find it LOL. Alright, so NEXT suggestion?
    FAITH GRANGER, Multi Award winning filmmaker

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    Moderator David Jimerson's Avatar
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    Faith, when you say your footage was "29.97," does that mean 30p or 60i?
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