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#1 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 07 February 2016 - 11:37 AM

I'd like to put together a new color grading setup this year without breaking the bank. I've been using Sony Vegas for 12 years and it's great. But now that I'm working with mostly raw negative, the mouse route is killing me! I really need something like this:

http://www.bhphotovi...=Y&A=details&Q=

 

Can anyone recommend a good track ball setup and grading package for home use?


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#2 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 02:14 PM

I'm leaning on using the panel with Da Vinci 12 free version, which seems a little too good to be true? The Studio version is almost $1000, however the extras appear to be overkill for my purposes. Anyone try Davinci 12 free version?


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#3 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 08 February 2016 - 04:19 PM

Yes, Resolve Lite is great. Took awhile to learn it and am still finding new things every day. It's crazy to remember that not long ago a full setup was many tens of thousands of dollars.
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#4 Jan Tore Soerensen

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 11:39 AM

I'm a long time Sony Vegas user as well. I mostly use Color Balance and Color Corrector for grading. Are there features inside Da Vinci that will make the grading easier or better? 

 

And so, would the correct path be; footage into da vinci, and then Vegas for edit?


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#5 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 12:27 PM

I'm a long time Sony Vegas user as well. I mostly use Color Balance and Color Corrector for grading. Are there features inside Da Vinci that will make the grading easier or better? 

 

And so, would the correct path be; footage into da vinci, and then Vegas for edit?

It's actually the control panel I need more than Da Vinci. Unfortunately the panel I want doesn't seem to be compatible with Sony Vegas. The Vegas color corrector plug-in is an incredible tool, works wonderful with flat scan color negative. But the fine tune adjustments required get too painstaking after a while when using a mouse. I would like nothing more than to access the tools in SV with a hands on piece of hardware.. If there's a control panel someone has used in conjunction with Vegas, i'd like to hear about it. 

 

I downloaded the free version of Da Vinci 12 last night. Apparently my graphics card doesn't have the memory needed to run it properly. I'm looking for a 8GB card, then probably only use it for color grading and stick with Sony Vegas for all my basic editing. It seems unclear right now if Sony will come out with a Vegas 14. 


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#6 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 09:06 PM

Are there features inside Da Vinci that will make the grading easier or better? 


Yes, You have the basic primary color wheels and curves, but also keyers, power windows, trackers, reframing tools, and effects available in one window, and they are all keyframable. Also many tools like LUTs, scopes, frame grabs, lots of ways to monitor. And a way to save a library of complex grades so that once you build a look you can apply to the rest of clips as a starting point.

It is a node-based program, so basically you build a node tree from input to output for each shot. The benefit to nodes as opposed to layers is that by applying one or two corrections per node, you can easily toggle secondary corrections on and off. It becomes a lot easier to do a primary, and then isolate different parts of the frame and make separate corrections with the full suite of tools. The different types of nodes (serial, parallel, outside) available makes it easy to do whatever you want.

Workflow - It depends on the project, but usually you would edit with the raw footage first, then export an XML file out of your NLE. Import that XML into Resolve, reconnect the media, and then your editing timeline pops up and you just color and render the frames in your final cut. If you want to do a one-light dailies pass first before sending the footage to editorial, you can color full takes and render out but that will take up more disk space. Or if you want to send out a single clip of the whole timeline with audio for approval cuts, you can do that as well. I like the program a lot.
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#7 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 09:11 PM

I'm using a 2012 Retina MacbookPro with 16GB RAM and an Nvidia GT650M graphics card with only 1GB of vRAM. Works ok, would be a lot smoother with a faster card but I got through a feature and a few web series with it. It won't handle SonyRaw or Arriraw, but most everything else is ok.
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#8 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 09:23 PM

The bottom line is that resolve doesn't specifically do anything special, or anything that's not been available in a lot of other software since the mid-90s. What makes it most useful is the way the tools are presented, which makes it possible to perform the usual tasks of grading in such a way that you won't grow old and die during the process. You can grade in After Effects - hell, After Effects does massively more than resolve, at least in terms of direct image manipulation.

Perhaps I say this because I realised perhaps quite early that the photoshop-style tools that started to become standard in NLEs in the mid to late nineties essentially facilitated grading. At the time this was hotly denied by both equipment vendors and their customers, the facilities, but it quickly became obvious that the writing was on the wall for companies like Da Vinci. Even now, popular though resolve is, I return again and again to the thought that the actual toolset is probably something that most NLEs could bolt on without too many real problems, and would solve a lot of interoperability problems in so doing.

In short, if you're operating on the assumption that Resolve is a bit of an esoteric pain in the neck that doesn't offer anything particularly unique or technologically novel, and that the effort of learning such a squirrelly piece of software is not adequately rewarded by its feature set... Well...

You might not be alone.
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#9 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 09 February 2016 - 09:47 PM

Yes, well. It's also free.
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#10 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 12:29 PM

I downloaded Resolve 12 and quickly learned that this software is totally GPU dependent. My images come up in the Resolve timeline looking like minced meat, then I keep getting an error "GPU is full". So I ordered a new card last night with 4GB of RAM and max rez of 4K. It should suffice 1080P and 2K with ease I hope.

 

I got to see all the tools and the tutorial, this should be just what I need for color grading. It may even eliminate the need for a panel. But when it comes to editing and effects, I'm sticking with Vegas all the way. I really despise the "clip bin" approach that most NLE's try to push. With Vegas I can just drop and entire video file in my timeline and go to town, then save the project under one file name. If I need anything else, I can grad it with explorer no problem. 


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#11 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 12:38 PM

Yes, one of the things I like least about Resolve is the amount of admin it throws at you.

 

In Premiere I can drag-and-drop a file into a bin and thence onto the timeline. I can load a project simply by loading a project. It should always be this easy.

 

I suspect the Resolve approach is based on largely historical requirements of specialised storage setups for high-bandwidth work - those things just aren't necessary anymore.

 

P


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#12 Maximilian Motel

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 04:06 PM

I absolutely love Davinci. A great way, concerning the Dailies and the Hard-Drive-Space issue, is to create a basic Look in Resolve, then export the LUT and load it e.g. in Premiere via the Lumetrie Effect. For (very) small projects I often end up generating a LUT in Davinci, then applying it in Premiere to a Correction Layer on top of everything and then I use effects like curves on single clips that need some finessing.

 

I personally don't like the final cut (not the program) export to Davinci solution too much, as I often have clients changing their minds at the last second, so being able to fix stuff very late in the project without creating a mess is always nice. Haven't really looked too much into this though yet, as I don't usually need it, so I am sure there is a way to manage this more easily.

 

By the way, it runs okay on a 15" Early-2011 8GB 2xSSD Setup with a AMD Radeon HD 6490M 256 MB for my purpose, involving some keying / tracking and usually not more than, say, 20 nodes, on DSLR footage à la Nikon D810, if that info helps.

 

Edit: Just realized that this is sorta off-topic. Sorry about that.


Edited by Maximilian Motel, 11 February 2016 - 04:07 PM.

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#13 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 04:46 PM

There is an Edit page in Resolve where you can make adjustments to the edit if necessary. On the current project I'm coloring, the editor sent a scene with a lot of 2-3 frame cuts. Unfortunately, they were on a second track above the track 1 so the app got confused and missed some clips when exporting. I ended up consolidating everything onto track 1 in the Edit page and re-exporting. Took two minutes.
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#14 Perry Paolantonio

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 04:51 PM

I suspect the Resolve approach is based on largely historical requirements of specialised storage setups for high-bandwidth work - those things just aren't necessary anymore.

 

Um, unless you're dealing with lots of high bandwidth material. Like we do. Every day.

 

I don't find Resolve to be nearly as onerous as some software we use, such as PFClean, which is totally overwrought in its project management. We use Resolve a lot like we used to use FCP - make a quick project, drop a file in, render it out. It's one of the quickest ways to get a DPX sequence into Quicktime that I'm aware of. 


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#15 Perry Paolantonio

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 04:57 PM

I'd like to put together a new color grading setup this year without breaking the bank. I've been using Sony Vegas for 12 years and it's great. But now that I'm working with mostly raw negative, the mouse route is killing me! I really need something like this:

http://www.bhphotovi...=Y&A=details&Q=

 

 

I don't have any experience with the Avid panel myself, but people like them. Also look at Tangent's Element panels, which are modular, so you can add them as you need to expand. They're more expensive up front, but very nicely built. They're also coming out with a new panel, the Ripple, in April. It's entry level and less expensive than the Element, but it gives you three trackballs and three sets of rings, which covers a lot of what you'd do with a panel.  Ripple-Feb-16.jpg

 

I use a JLCooper Eclipse with Resolve 11, and I love it. Very responsive, most functions we need to deal with are mapped to the panel, and it's nicely laid out. 

 

Grading with a panel is a completely different experience than using the mouse. Completely. You have no idea until you do it, how much of a pain it is to do this kind of work with the usual interfaces. It's absolutely worth getting one if you're going to do any serious grading.


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#16 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 09:13 PM

Thanks Perry, that's a really great option. I was kind of leaning toward the Element vs the Avid. But the pic you posted is the Ripple! I really like the design but had to look around for it. It appears to only be available from one seller, and the price looks too good to be true. Has it been officially released? 

http://www.avalive.c...t3rNRoCy2fw_wcB


Edited by Anthony Schilling, 11 February 2016 - 09:13 PM.

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#17 Anthony Schilling

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Posted 11 February 2016 - 11:24 PM

Apparently it's on the verge of release at a target price of $350. I'll hold out and wait for the initial reviews, but it looks like just the right thing at just the right time. It might it might have a hub available for Sony. 

https://www.cinema5d...-control-panel/


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#18 Perry Paolantonio

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 09:10 AM

Apparently it's on the verge of release at a target price of $350. I'll hold out and wait for the initial reviews, but it looks like just the right thing at just the right time. It might it might have a hub available for Sony. 

https://www.cinema5d...-control-panel/

 

Latest update from Tangent that i saw was that they haven't finalized deals with resellers yet. I'm sure the usual suspects will have it - B&H and the like. It's meant to be entry level, so I'd expect it to come in at less than half the cost of their full-featured trackball panel, which does a lot more than the Ripple. Looks like a nice choice though. 

 

They say it's shipping in April and they'll be demoing it at NAB.


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#19 Shawn Sagady

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 03:14 PM

I love resolve 12, infact I work exclusively in it except for special effects round trips to fusion or after effects.  I have been editing and grading in it and its fantastic working in the same package.  I'm going to pick up the new Tangent soon as it comes out, will make grading a real pleasure not having to use a mouse to fidget with the UI for the most common tasks.


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#20 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 12 February 2016 - 04:26 PM

I hate to default to my usual position of contrariness, but I started off as a "mouse" guy in the mid-90s and never really got the whole trackball thing. I don't pretend to be any sort of colourist, though.

 

P


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