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Forums Apple Final Cut Pro Legacy FCP, Snow Leopard and Gamma

  • FCP, Snow Leopard and Gamma

  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 9:25 am

    Just checking if this is a local machine issue I have or perhaps an error between FCP 6.0x and Snow Leopard… My problem is gamma, big time gamma differences in FCP vs every other application in the system as well as gamma on other systems (for instance a FCP 6.0x / Leopard machine). On FCP 6 and Snow Leopard everything is MUCH darker than it really is and when I output stuff it’s shows up washed out (since I’ve compensated for this in FCP, which evidently is showing things wrong).

    Has anyone experienced the above? Is FCP 7 a better citizen in SL-land?

    I was considering this was a screen gamma correction error but everything else in the system renders fine. The only error is how FCP shows things internally. The error is much worse for ProRes than Uncompressed but both have similar tendencies of error. I’m at the moment only running PAL footage (if that matters).

  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 11:10 am

    Hmm… Found another thread stating FCP 6.0 will correct the display gamma to 2.2 which ever gamma your display has… This is fine (good) when working in a 1.8 gamma situation originally but SL defaults to 2.2 gamma hence I think I’m seeing a gamma correction on something that doesn’t require this…

    Is this correct? How do I solve this? I actually prefer sitting in a 2.2 gamma world since most of the outside world does this as well.

    Erik Lindahl
    Freecloud Communication

  • Jeremy Garchow

    November 3, 2009 at 2:53 pm

    Trust a broadcast monitor through a capture card.

  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    Not an option at home and it shouldn’t be this bad (it isn’t in FCP 6.0 on Leopard).

    Erik Lindahl
    Freecloud Communication

  • walter biscardi

    November 3, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    [Erik Lindahl] “Not an option at home “

    You know how many home based editors there are these days working with broadcast monitors, film quality projectors, 5.1 surround sound workstations and the like? Yes it is an option at home.

    You may not have this in your home, but the option is there.

    Any external monitor is better than the Viewer Canvas in FCP. We’ve been saying for years on this forum to never trust the Viewer / Canvas. Heck I don’t ever trust the After Effects composition screen either, I only go by the external video output via the AJA Kona boards.

    Walter Biscardi, Jr.
    Editor, Colorist, Director, Writer, Consultant, Author.
    HD Post and Production
    Biscardi Creative Media

    “Foul Water, Fiery Serpent” now in Post.

    Creative Cow Forum Host:
    Apple Final Cut Pro, Apple Motion, Apple Color, AJA Kona, Business & Marketing, Maxx Digital.



  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    This is true and it is best practice but does not answer my question at all, sadly.

    Are there gamma-issues with FCP 6.x in terms of monitoring the canvas in Snow Leopard?

    From what I can see and what I’ve read there are severe issues. Question is if this can be sorted somehow or if FCP 7 handles the gamma issue better.

    At our studio the FCP canvas and my broadcast monitor look similar – not identical but very similar. At home the FCP canvas is A LOT darker than what the image actually is when viewed on the same machine in QT Player, Color or in my studio at work (in the FCP canvas or on the broadcast monitor). The studio machine resembles QT Player at home quite well, hence the problem relies in FCP at home. The only difference is the fact I run SL at home compared to Leopard at work. This issue also worries me if we move over to SL / FCP 6 or 7 at the studio… I don’t want the canvas and my reference monitors to have this massive difference in look.

    I could try to take some screen-shots to really show the differences if that helps.

    And again no, it’s not an option for me to get a Kona card / broadcast monitor at home.

    Erik Lindahl
    Freecloud Communication

  • Jeremy Garchow

    November 3, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    [Erik Lindahl] ” The only difference is the fact I run SL at home compared to Leopard at work. “

    And what is your monitor gamma setup for?


  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    – At home on Snow Leopard I use the standard 2.2 gamma
    – At the studio on Leopard I work in 1.8 gamma.

    The odd thing is:

    FCP: Good Color Correction
    QT: Washed out

    FCP: Washed out (similar to QT at Home)
    QT: Washed out (similar to QT at Home)

    I get that a 2.2 setting at home should produce a slightly darker / more contrasty image in general but it shouldn’t be the massive difference i see now (and it’s only in FCP I see the problem, QT and other apps only show the slight gamma difference there should be since we’re talking 1.8 gamma vs 2.2 gamma).

    The same thing goes for the following:

    Color: Good Color Balance
    QT: Similar to Color, looks good
    FCP: Very Dark, looks bad

    Perhaps just using 1.8 gamma at home will sort it given that should also render the images even brighter in QT / Color so I’m not sure about that…

    I know there can be inconsistencies between apps esp. when not working in RGB but this is extreme and far beyond anything I’ve seen before.

    Erik Lindahl
    Freecloud Communication

  • Jeremy Garchow

    November 3, 2009 at 4:14 pm

    And are you watching in QT7 or X at home?

  • Erik Lindahl

    November 3, 2009 at 4:18 pm

    I’ve tried both. Setting QT7 player with the “Final Cut Studio gamma” preference rendered things slightly better but it’s still miles off. The main oddity lies with-in FCP on SL. The issues was greater when using ProRes than Uncompressed media also (i.e rendering the timeline as the former or the later and comparing the two outputs). In FCP they however look the same.

    Erik Lindahl
    Freecloud Communication

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