Analysing 4 Useful Colour Grading Softwares for Video Editors

By August 5, 2020video editing
Toronto video editing

Colours go beyond being just something to ‘look’ at.

Why is it that on some days you feel like wearing vibrant colours, whereas on some days you opt for sober shades? It’s not because your laundry isn’t done! You select to wear and see colours basis your mood on a particular day. Colours influence emotions, deliver key messages and a lot more. If you’re an editor, you’ll already know that in order to deliver the script’s message; colour is one of the key factors. Although for some it may seem a subtle factor, we say: it’s the subtle things that make a stark difference always! 

There are two major elements that can influence the overall tone & mood of your video production. 

  1. Light on set
  2. Colour grading in post-production stage

Editors and studios are always on the lookout for multiple colour grading softwares and their abilities to help deliver the tone of the script in the best possible way. 

Firstly, let’s make this clear-cut and a useful read for you! Let’s bifurcate the softwares into two categories, so you can simply get one on your dart-board from the beginning. 

Economical on Pocket SizeHigher cost but aiming to upgrade and harness most power
Lumetri (Adobe Premier Pro) or Color Board (FCPX) Da Vinci Resolve or Colorista

 

Now, here’s our breakdown on 4 useful colour grading softwares basis pocket size, features and overall goal intended.

 

  • DaVinci Resolve 16 (from Blackmagic Design)

No guesses for knowing that this is a popular, industry-standard colour grading software. Well, to a point that even a non-editor must have heard this name ‘DaVinci Resolve’.

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Blackmagic has built Da Vinci as the ‘one-stop hub’. DaVinci, originally crafted for high-end colour grading, now also helps in video editing. While the basics of colour match (you can match the set/environment in which the footage was shot), colour wheel, RGB mixer exist; it is node-based (which can be mastered over time). Going several steps further, it also helps in face-alterations and refining. With the help of face tracking, you can correct complexions, smoothen/ brighten or even erase out acne! 

Other useful tools offered

  • Auto colour balance
  • Matching
  • Noise reduction

Payment

One-off! This is apt for professionals (even Hollywood uses it) who are looking to upgrade and learn in their career journey of video editing.

  • Colorista IV (Red Giant Magic bullet) – actually a plugin

This one’s a quick plugin and can work in most video editing softwares. However, it specifically does a great job on the Adobe suite. The integration is quick and works smooth. 

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Worried about speed? You can almost instantly see the colour changes. This is because it is connected to the graphic card’s GPU, so it runs off it. 

Other useful tools offered

Loads of LUTs, boy! The built-in LUT presets house ample of diverse looks which are single clicks, allowing one to experiment quickly. Let’s scan a few. ‘Mojo gives that ‘film’ look – quite cinematic to work for short films and fashion ads. 

There is ‘Denoiser’ to cut out those irritating grains and noise. 

If you’re aiming to go retro, then try ‘film’. To add in a bit of noise, try Renoiser.

Payment

The Colorista IV has a free trial option, academic version as well as full version. You can purchase step-by-step so to be sure its worth your money.

  • Lumetri (Adobe Premier Pro)

The Lumetri Panel is quite traditional. It works well for two situations: for those who already hold Adobe subscriptions and aren’t keen to spend more or for those who’ve already mastered the colour grading game with the traditional tools and are experiencing good results on each video. 

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While if offers the traditional colour wheels, curves and sliders, there are quite a few enhancements that have come in.

It offers six menus which work independently. It’s important to note ‘independently’ and not ‘interdependently’.  Basic correction, Creative, Curves, Color Wheels, HSL Secondary and Vignette. This means that lifting up/down the colour wheels and creative colour wheel is different. 

Other useful tools offered

Input LIT in the basic correction panel.

Payment

If you already have an Adobe subscription for Premier Pro/ After Effects, then this is quite a keeper.

  1. Color Board (FCPX)

Built into Final Cut Pro X, this one’s quite a magic in itself. The dynamic colour wheels are super easy to work with, and take care of any exposure or colour balance issues within the clip. It’s also surprisingly easy to remove colour casts from shadows.

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It’s high on flexibility with its 4 adjustable pucks – Global, Highlights, Midtowns and Shadows. 

Color Finale is a plugin specific to FCPX which offers what Color Board may lack. The auto white balance and secondaries vector tool do a pretty good job!

Payment

If you already have FCPX, then Color Board is built-in. The idea that Final Cut has aimed and succeeded at is ‘do it all within FCPX’

If you’re looking to dive in further, do check out the below compilation of softwares, programmes and presets that can change the tone of your videos.

  • Neat Video
  • Color Fixer Pro
  • Colorfast
  • Film Convert Nitrate

Ultimately, while selecting a colour grading tool, you need to be sure of your goal, pocket-size and the range of flexibility offered. It’s absolutely crucial to understand what ultimately is the brand trying to communicate to its target audience. This can help decide a tone that works with the brand’s mood & storyline. 

At Twisted Frame, we’ve an experienced pool of video editors who excel in a myriad of video edit styles. The narrative can change its value with the power of edit. Do you want to engage customers through video-marketing and kick-start business? Let’s have a chat as to how your business can leverage from the different video types through our Toronto video editing, production and motion graphic services. Reach out for a free chat at (416) 619-1116 .