Grading Modes in LiveGrade

Please note: The documentation is currently in transition from LiveGrade Pro version 3 to version 4 and may not be up to date yet.

 

 

figure 1: The LiveGrade Grading Panel

figure 1: The LiveGrade Grading Panel

 

The LiveGrade Grading Panel consists of multiple node controls for manipulating the image filtering:

  • Grading mode selector: You can switch between the different grading modes available on the drop down menu.
  • Grade name: LiveGrade shows the name of the currently applied grade.
  • Grading node controls: Here you find all the nodes for a certain grading mode such as CDL color controls, 3D LUT loading node, saturation etc. Each node can be individually disabled by un-marking the blue check box.
  • Clear buttons: You can clear either the entire look or just the color manipulation (and not LUTs or tone mapping curves)
  • Filter configuration: You can temporarily bypass color or show the original signal (no filtering at all) or enable the false color mode.
  • The Panel Lock button lets you lock the controls on the 3rd party hardware grading panel. It can prevent accidental modifications of the current grade.

Additional Options

Furthermore there are some additional functions to be found at the bottom of the grading panel (figure 1)

  • Using the «Neutral» button you can reset all settings to a «neutral» state.
  • Using the «Reset Colors» button you can reset the color settings to a “neutral” state.
  • The command «Bypass Color» allows you to bypass the undertaken settings in the color controls and show the image from your input device with only the 3D LUT (CDL and LUT modes and ACES modes) or the Alexa tone mapping (Alexa Grade mode) applied.
  • By selecting the «Show original signal» button you can replace the graded image displayed on you monitoring device by the original image coming from your camera device.
  • The False Color button displays the false colors within your image on the monitoring device.

 

 

Grading Modes

LiveGrade supports different grading modes designed for specific camera setups and workflow environments.

The new node-based design allows you to disable and reorder individual filter nodes to have greater grading freedom. You can disable a certain node by unchecking the blue check box. Have in mind that the processing order is from «top to bottom» when reordering the nodes.

Each mode allows different levels of grade customization, as the compatibility of the grades down the workflow creates some restrictions on how the color information has to be processed. For example, the camera compatible grading modes can have the nodes locked in a certain position to ensure the compatibility of the grade when being uploaded into the camera.

The grading modes allowing the greatest level of customization are the Advanced and Freestyle modes, which are only available in LiveGrade Pro.

figure 1: grading mode selection menu

figure 2: available grading modes

 

CDL and LUT

More information in the article Using the CDL Grade mode.

CDL Advanced

Allows you to add and reorder multiple nodes on advanced workflows. This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

ACES CDL

A mode adapted to the ACES standard. More information in the article Using the ACES grading mode. This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

ACES CDL Advanced

A mode adapted to the ACES standard. Allows you to add and reorder multiple nodes on advanced workflows. This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

Alexa Looks

This mode is designed to create .xml ALEXA Looks compatible with ARRI ALEXA cameras. More information in the article Using the ALEXA Looks grading mode.

Amira Compatible

This mode is designed to create .aml AMIRA Looks compatible with ARRI AMIRA cameras.

Varicam Compatible

This mode is designed to create 3D LUTs and looks compatible with Panasonic Varicam 35 cameras.This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

Freestyle

This grading mode has been created to allow complete grading freedom. For this reason, there are some limitations on the available export formats for looks created on this mode. This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

Freestyle ACES

This grading mode has been created to allow complete grading freedom for ACES based workflows. This mode is only available in the LiveGrade Pro version.

 

Node Editing

The Advanced CDL compatible and Freestyle grading modes allow you to reorder, add and delete filter nodes. The node editing feature is only available in LiveGrade Pro. To start customizing the grading nodes, you have to click on «Edit»:

figure 2

figure 3: «Edit» button detail

 

Once you are in the «Edit» mode, it is possible to reorder the nodes using drag and drop. You can remove a node by clicking on the «x» button. The «+» button allows you to add new filter nodes to the grading mode. Here are the new node options:

figure 1

figure 4: additional node options

In order to maximize the compatibility of the grades along the production workflow, as well as the ability to export the grades in a certain format, there are some limitations on how you can reorder the grading nodes. The Freestyle modes do not have these limitations, but you can only export those looks as 3D LUTs and not as CDL files. These are the limitations:

 

ReplacedForPFDStart[]

Grading Mode
CDL and LUT CDL Advanced ACES CDL ACES CDL Advanced Alexa Look Amira Look Varicam Freestyle ACES Freestyle
Nodes (not editable) 1CDL, 1Sat, 1LUT3D xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary (not editable) 1IDT, 1CDL, 1Sat, 1ODT 1IDT, xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary, 1ODT Alexa Look has fixed nodes
xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary, xLUT3D xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary, xLUT3D xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary 1IDT/1ODT, xCDL, xSat, xLUT1D, xLUT3D, x2ndary
Reordering (not editable), CDL + Sat + LUT3D xCDL + xSat (All CDL nodes together, all saturation nodes together) (no edit) IDT + CDL + Sat + ODT xCDL + xSat (All CDL nodes together, all saturation nodes together), IDT before ODT, Alexa Look has fixed nodes
xCDL + xSat (All CDL nodes together, all saturation nodes together), nothing before xCDL+xSat xCDL + xSat (All CDL nodes together, all saturation nodes together), nothing before xCDL+xSat IDT before ODT
Default Nodes CDL + Sat + LUT3D CDL + CDL + Sat + LUT3D CDL, Sat, LUT3D

ReplacedForPFDEnd

* xCDL, xSat, where «x» means multiple nodes.

* For a list of the Look export combinations available, please check the article Exporting Grades.

 

Available Grading Nodes

CDL Node

The CDL node contains a color wheel for Offset, Power and Slope. It can be used to adjust the color on the image.

figure 5: CDL node

figure 5: CDL node

ASC-CDL files can be directly loaded and saved to/from the CDL node (supported format: *.cdl).  Click the gear button on the left side of the CDL node and select if you want to load or save a CDL.

Please be aware that the ASC-CDL specification always includes a saturation value. When one saturation node is present CDLs will be loaded and saved from/to the present saturation node. When multiple CDL and saturation nodes are present you will be pointed choose the saturation node you want to load the saturation to (indicators A,B,C etc.).

The size of the color wheels can be adjusted in the Preferences menu. Just choose a size that fits your display resolution.

figure : CDL controls preferences

figure 6: CDL controls preferences

Additionally there are the Temp and Tint buttons to easily adjust these values. The tint and temp can be adjusted on the Gain (Slope-Based) or on the Printer Lights (Offset-Based), as set on the preferences (figure 6). When set to «printer lights» it is usually used with LUT. On the other hand, when set to «gain» it behaves as a typical white balance filter.

The CDL node can be controlled by an external hardware grading panel. To have more information on how to use it, please check the following articles:

Saturation Node

Just drag the slider to either side to increase or decrease the saturation on your look.

figure : Saturation node

figure 7: Saturation node

3D LUT Node

The 3D LUT node is designed to load your own 3D LUTs by pressing the «Load…» button. Alternatively, you can also use one of the available preset 3D LUTs to convert the image to a Rec.709 color space.

figure 4: 3D LUT node

figure 8: 3D LUT node

Supported formats for loading into the 3D LUT node are:

  • Adobe Speedgrade (.cube; size 32,33, 65)

  • Assimilate Scratch (.3dl; size 32)

  • Panasonic Varicam (.vlt)

  • Autodesk Lustre ( .lut) 

  • Truelight (.cub)

1D LUT Node

The 1D LUT lets you load your own 1D LUT file. Click the “Load…” button and select the 1D LUT you want to load to the node.

figure:

figure 9: 1D LUT Node

In contrast to the curve node the LUT in the 1D LUT node can not be edited afterwards.

Supported formats are:

  • *.txt
    • channels: 3
    • range: 0.0 … 1023.0 (float)
    • header: “R G B – HDLINK GAMMA TABLE”
    • entries: 1024
    • row example: “221.37 221.37 221.37”
  • *.data
    • channels: 4
    • range: 0 … 16383 (integer)
    • entries: 16384
    • row example: 15040,15040,15040,15040
  • *.lut
    • channels: 3 (4 columns with leading index (0…65535, R, G, B)
    • range: 0 … 65535 (integer)
    • header: “LUT16”
    • entries: 65536
    • row example: 45490 58366 58366 58366

Curve Node

 

figure : Curve node

figure 10: Curve node

The Curve node lets you adjust the 1D LUT curve on the image. If you click on «Edit», the curve editor window will pop up. It allows you to precisely grade your footage:

  • To add a point just click on the curve, and in order to modify it’s value just drag and drop.
  • To remove a point simply move it out of the curve editor’s window.
  • When you move your mouse over the curve editor, the graph shows you the value of the exact point where it is.
Figure 1. CDL curve editor

figure 11: Curve editor window

 

HHS Node

The HHS node –Hue to Hue and Saturation– is a new kind of node that allows you to map a certain hue on the image and replace it by another color with different hue and saturation. Here is an example where the red has been desaturated, but the other colors remain the same:

HHS comparison

The HHS editor allows you to drag and drop the hue circles to another location on the color space to replace the original color with another one.

figure 5: HHS editor

figure 12: HHS editor