Thread: Improving the camera image. Pt2: The transformation.

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  1. #1 Improving the camera image. Pt2: The transformation. 
    New advancements in independent research of transformation part of color science.

    Three years after...things move on.









    Achieved:


    – Improved color accuracy, separation, harmony & consistency

    – Optimal DR distribution for sensor response with improved density, rich signal and minimal noise floor

    – Analogue response signal treatment for organic, natural imagery

    – Visually referent colorimetry with cinematic image feel

    – Scene-independent image shaping tools structured into a body of a high precision LUT, improving the imagery regardless of the shooting scenario

    – Set of signal transformations designed for each sensor response and corresponding color science, for optimal exposure decisions on the shoot and reliable high-quality post-production








    EDIT.


    11.6.2018.


    New Era. Gen4.




    EDIT


    31.12.2018.

    Updated examples with Primers EQX Gen 6




    EDIT 21.4.2019.

    Gen 8.

    Only temp, tint and ISO were manipulated before the Primer in the signal chain.
    Same base image settings for both transformation routes.



    EDIT 30.4.2019


    More examples added from latest generation.




    Useful info prior to viewing:


    1) I've chosen imagery which I can post publicly and offers the insight into many image properties which are optimized with Primers.
    Tonal feel will be the most obvious. Look for others.


    2) These are NOT "grades" so don't attempt to rationalize these as the outcome of post-production image manipulation.
    These images are manifestations, the outcome of per-sensor & base CS tailored signal design and optimization.


    3) I've chosen one of the IPP2 LUTs with the closest appearance to chosen Primers to give you some kind of useful reference of departure from the known.
    With other IPP2 LUTS and Primers differences enlarge in various image aspects. These are mutually the closest.


    4) Some images may seem "darker" if perceived reference is the chosen IPP2 LUT.


    5) Some image properties you will not notice through side by side viewing, you will need to toggle A/B for some to become perceivable.


    6) Staring too long at the option B may trick your eyes into perception of option A.


    7) There are many things optimized which are not visible but necessary for what becomes visible and the feel of the visible.


    8) Principles of image signal optimization manifest with all currently supported RED sensors. It doesn't matter which one it is.


    9) Full size grabs are scaled to HD. Looking at scaled of scaled misses some things.


    10) For the best insight into images and differences, calibrated professional OLED is the route.







    Hats off to fellow Redusers who provided some of these images, Jacobo, Luigi, Erich, Tomasso, Milan and Jason.































































































































    Analog > Apollo wooden handgrip http://omeneo.com
    Digital > Primers - professional image transformation tools http://omeneo.com/primers

    imdb


    "Como delfines en el fondo del oceano
    volamos por el universo incentivados por la esperanza"

    "L'esperanza", Sven Väth
    "It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards"
    Jung/ Carol
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  2. #2  
    GENERAL INFO:


    Primers are
    a) monitoring tools
    b) post-production first-light tools.



    Every Primers set is designed based on custom in-depth camera analysis and post production signal analysis.
    It takes into account sensor performance mapped into camera manufacturer color science.
    Some tools were custom developed in-house just to make the analysis possible.


    Primers work by improving the signal inside the transformation step from input base color science to standard gamma and gamut.
    They are embodied within a high precision 3DLUT, designed to enable optimal exposure decisions based on monitoring and allow high quality post.



    ...

    Every Primers set is scene-independent.

    Unlike "scene-referred" transformation routes, Primers correct fixed sensor + base color science induced unnatural signal offsets and normalize the signal.
    Every time.

    Every Primers set keeps the full recorded DR of the camera.
    Every Primer set keeps the full gamut data.
    Every Primers set improves imaging performance of the camera.
    Every Primers set does technical corrections and additionally "naturalizes" the digital signal.

    Neither set is a replacement for a Colorist.

    ...


    Improvements using Primers compared to standard transformations:

    - Colour separation
    - Colour harmony
    - Colour stability
    - DR & lattitude utilization
    - Gamut utilization
    - Overall signal density
    - Contrast - overall, midtone, microcontrast
    - Tonal smoothness
    - Transition to signal extremes (under/overexposure)
    - Noise characteristics - amount, texture, consistency


    What needs to be accurate - is.
    What needs to be analog-like and visually organic- is.
    The rest is left to the creative mind of a Colorist.


    Care has been taken to assure organicity while keeping picture neutrality for the grading process.



    Unlike standard transformations:

    - No clipping or clamping of luminance or gamut
    - Full DR utilization with all transformations regardless of contrast, with more usable signal extremes
    - No generic and unnatural "choking" of the signal parameters
    - No typical digital over-pumping of signal parameters which causes problems in post workflow



    Once the image is optimized by the Primers the multitude of deep-reaching signal improvements brings:

    - More accurate exposure on set based on monitoring
    - Deeper and more accurate insight into scene colour tonality, lens color bias and light casts on set
    - More natural image aesthetic
    - More filmic imagery
    - More practical first light
    - Faster, more stable and consistent post workflow
    - Easier camera matching
    - Larger creative range in grading
    - High quality first light color correction and reduced image signal deterioration



    Workflow-related parameters to get the most out of the camera and best signal for post production process:

    1) Monitor and expose based on Primers preview

    2) Apply Primers in post with white balance and ISO set before the Primer (while previewing the image through the Primer)

    3) Avoid:
    a) other pre-LUT image transformations and generally generic pre-cooked image enhancements in the signal chain
    b) "auto" software image balancing (white picker is okay for temp & tint, chart matching and "look matching" is not)
    c) pumping saturation & contrast into the Primer
    d) relying on digging data out of shadows



    IMAGE MANIPULATION SIGNAL CHAIN


    1) Base colour science (Log3G10 & RWG in case of RED cameras)

    - temp/tint tonal positioning, ISO equivalent luminance positioning > compensates for the light

    2) Primer > optimizes the imperfections of sensor + base CS, naturalizes image properties of digital acquisition, preps the signal for shaping

    3) Creative look design > on superior signal basis



    ...
    Analog > Apollo wooden handgrip http://omeneo.com
    Digital > Primers - professional image transformation tools http://omeneo.com/primers

    imdb


    "Como delfines en el fondo del oceano
    volamos por el universo incentivados por la esperanza"

    "L'esperanza", Sven Väth
    "It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards"
    Jung/ Carol
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  3. #3  
    Place for the holder.
    Analog > Apollo wooden handgrip http://omeneo.com
    Digital > Primers - professional image transformation tools http://omeneo.com/primers

    imdb


    "Como delfines en el fondo del oceano
    volamos por el universo incentivados por la esperanza"

    "L'esperanza", Sven Väth
    "It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards"
    Jung/ Carol
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  4. #4  
    REDuser Sponsor Martin Stevens's Avatar
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    Wow! Thanks for posting this. I love the look.

    :)
    Regards,
    Martin Stevens

    President and Founder of Glidecam Industries, Inc.
    Producer and Director at Metaphoric Pictures Corporation.
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  5. #5  
    Senior Member Adrian Jebef's Avatar
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    HS has been up to some interesting things over the past couple years. Definitely worth checking out.
    Adrian Jebef
    DIT
    www.jebefcorp.com
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  6. #6  
    Senior Member Chris McKechnie's Avatar
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    Good stuff!
    Chris McKechnie
    Director of Photography
    Email - redepicguy@gmail.com
    Reel - https://vimeo.com/314919326
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member
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    H, You're killin' it, man!
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  8. #8  
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    Beautiful. Great work. I noticed a (possible) small typo. Under the Helium package, it says that the package contains Primers DRAGON info document. (Not Helium)
    Will definitely buy this.
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    Hrvoje, I first saw these a week or two ago when I noticed a blog post by Timur Civan about the Primer for the Sony A7 (JPEG photos, not video). I am very impressed by the improvement in skin tones. The only instance where the Primer did not work is on the example image of the Ferrari F40. The Primer seems to have made the red paint somewhat duller. Also, the image of the sailboat was better without the Primer. But the tomatoes looked beautiful!

    I guess the photographer/DP has to use their judgement, in the end, as always.
    Good production values may not be noticed. Bad production values will be.
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  10. #10  
    Thanks guys, much appreciated.


    Quote Originally Posted by Joachim Hoge View Post
    Beautiful. Great work. I noticed a (possible) small typo. Under the Helium package, it says that the package contains Primers DRAGON info document. (Not Helium)
    Will definitely buy this.
    Thanks Joachim. Corrected.

    :)


    Quote Originally Posted by Karim D. Ghantous View Post
    Hrvoje, I first saw these a week or two ago when I noticed a blog post by Timur Civan about the Primer for the Sony A7 (JPEG photos, not video). I am very impressed by the improvement in skin tones. The only instance where the Primer did not work is on the example image of the Ferrari F40. The Primer seems to have made the red paint somewhat duller. Also, the image of the sailboat was better without the Primer. But the tomatoes looked beautiful!

    Thanks for the input Karim. I appreciate it.

    If you saw the Ferrari before this topic was started or on the main Primers page half/half image, good call. :)
    You saw the previous Gen3 version from December last year.

    Two months later Gen3.1 has that taken care of. Update is hitting emails soon.
    Check Ferrari on this thread again. Also here you have it side by side:

    http://omeneo.com/primers/red/


    Also, keep in mind two things:

    1) If you use standard LUT as a visual reference your perception is biased and some things may seem duller, that is normal because some image parameters are always over pumped with standard transformation routes. I've seen that with every camera I've tested, from Sony, Canon, Red, BM and even Alexa and their in-house designed transformations.

    2) I am showing you here NTR Primers with milder contrast response, and that affects the "punch" of colors. There are two more contrasty ones and colors pop out more. If red was any more pronounced on these examples I am showing now, on those luminance levels, it would disturb delicate tonal relations which predetermine the organicity and balance of the image and would mess up the skin tone palette and you'd get back to "uncanny valley" visual effect if you have a human being in the shot. And it would cause problems in a grading suite. Tried, it doesn't work.

    The sailboat image is more accurate with Primers, that was RX10Mk2 and I shot that on my vacation and no, the scene did not have those "electric" Sony colors. I have a custom designed testbed to determine how much what offsets. Standard routes of transformation always overpump the image and unnaturally offset the signal. Only Fuji has that mastered.

    Primers are designed to give you a more healthy and referent image signal and you can always grade a specific look. It doesn't work the other way around and if offsets are used as a basis, whether from in-camera gamma/gamut corrected image or by a standard transformation LUT, or just log base color science, they will always limit and condition more what is possible to achieve with a camera.

    Btw stills cameras are due for an update with everything I've learned in the last two years so you haven't seen what is possible to achieve with them using this technology.
    Analog > Apollo wooden handgrip http://omeneo.com
    Digital > Primers - professional image transformation tools http://omeneo.com/primers

    imdb


    "Como delfines en el fondo del oceano
    volamos por el universo incentivados por la esperanza"

    "L'esperanza", Sven Väth
    "It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards"
    Jung/ Carol
    Reply With Quote  
     

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