Vegas and look-up tables (LUTs)

Yoyodyne wrote on 5/3/2011, 1:21 PM
Does anyone have any tips or know if it's possible to use LUTs in Vegas?

I'm currently playing with the new Technicolor Cinestyle picture profile on my 7D and am trying to figure out how to get the Technicolor LUT to be used in Vegas. I imagine I could just use the color curves and tweak to taste but I would really like to apply the "official" Technicolor LUT if possible.

Thanks for any help, suggestions or info.


robwood wrote on 5/3/2011, 3:04 PM
from what I've been able to find out, Vegas & Premiere don't currently accept LUT's, tho After Effects does.

but check out Cineform's color correction app called First Light which may offer a solution... here's the line of interest:

"Additionally, Active Metadata supports 64x64x64 3D LUTs compatible with the Iridas .Look format, also processed in real time, for essentially infinite mapping of one color to another."

...more info on First Light is at the Cineform site; look for links to Neo or Neo3D.
paul_w wrote on 5/3/2011, 4:10 PM
I asked the exact same question on here a few days ago, see threads further down about LUT in color curves.
The general answer is no. You cannot load in LUTs just using Vegas alone.
I even emailed Technicolor to get a final answer and they suggest simply copying the S curve shape manually into Vegas's 'Color Curve FX'.
I did this by printing out the Raw data file they supply (download from web site) and printing it out as a graph. It worked. Technicolor also suggest that the S curve will have to be adjusted by you anyway to fine tune the result. So it seems to be not so critical, rather just a starting point to get proper gamma correction. They also said they 'may' look into producing a Preset for Vegas. Not so sure about that. Hopfully!

PS - totally love the CineStyle they have produced! amazing.
Eugenia wrote on 5/4/2011, 2:33 PM
David Newman of Cineform tweeted the .look file you can use with First Light and Technicolor:!/David_Newman/status/65853163940483072
Seth wrote on 5/4/2011, 4:39 PM
Thank you Paul! Why don't we just share a preset here on the forum based off of the LUT that you imported?
Yoyodyne wrote on 5/4/2011, 5:15 PM
Thanks for the info folks. I've also stumbled across this on youtube:

Kind of lo-fi but looks like it should work pretty well and it is a rather clever solution.
paul_w wrote on 5/4/2011, 5:37 PM
The Youtube video basically shows exactly the same method i used, except i printed on paper from an Excel graph rather than just from a google xl sheet. Same thing.
Trouble with this is, its not exact, however it seems to be close enough.
I would be glad to share my preset - but Vegas does not allow exporting presets!. This is because Vegas FX presets are saved into the windows registry, and not as files.
But you can use Vegasaur to save and load presets, thats possible, or simply export a preset from the registry using Regedit and share it that way - thats not a good idea. Could cause problems. So just make your own preset from the curve, its not too difficuilt. Took me about 10 mins to get it looking 'correct'.. at least to my eye. Then save as 'Technicolor CineStyle' or something like that.
GlennChan wrote on 5/4/2011, 10:41 PM
One way is to simply save the .veg file.

Somebody else can go into the effect and save those settings as a preset.

example here:
You can for example use the title generator to add your own notes/descriptions.
paul_w wrote on 5/5/2011, 3:39 AM
Hi GlennChan,
I see the logic in that, my only concern there would be that whatever project settings i have in the template (from my setup) may be carried over to however loads them. Would this then not effect someones Vegas setup? I would hate to think it could do that, sound settings, video settings, vegas layout preferences etc.

But really, this is just my interpretation of the S curve as I see it - that does NOT mean its correct! I would simply urge anyone interested to create their own preset. Until a more accurate method can be produced. Hopefully by Techincolor themselves! Remember what was said, this curve will probably change by you anyway depending on the footage you have and/or style you want.
NickHope wrote on 5/5/2011, 3:48 AM
That shouldn't be a problem Paul. Your veg shouldn't affect anything in our setups beyond it's individual project settings. Loads of veg files have been bandied around here in the past.

I'm wondering if the best way to check or reverse-engineer an accurate curve would be by applying it to a test pattern and examining the result in a big RGB parade window.
paul_w wrote on 5/5/2011, 3:57 AM
Ok Nick, thanks for that, and i just edited my last comments while you posted.
There should be a better way to get this closer to the intended curve. Then us folks can have a accurate starting point. This is just me doing it by eye!
Will post .veg shortly.
paul_w wrote on 5/5/2011, 4:11 AM
ok, as requested, this is my attempt at the curve.

Load in to Vegas 10 pro, open the inserted video FX on track 1, save the Color Curve FX as a preset. Done. vegas Pro 10.c Technicolor cinestyle[/link]

Remember this is just a guestimate - not exact.
farss wrote on 5/5/2011, 5:16 AM
For what it's worth I've worked with 3D LUTs from IRIDAS. I think you'll find you need to do more than just develop a custom Colour Curve to really nail some of the film looks. If you dig back through this forum you should find a challenge to emulate the look of 2 strip technicolour and the winner was one of the SCS guys using the Channel Blend FX.
My understanding and I'm really lacking the maths knowledge to back this up, is that a 3D LUT lets you map all points in the 3D colour space, the CCs let you do a 2D map / transform and that's not enough when you need to remap the primaries. The good news is that yes, it can be done using the tools that Vegas provides, it's just a failry complex toolset to use for the task if you can't fathom the maths.
By comparison I had a set of Looks that emulate a number of Kodak emulsions and loaded into our SI2k and shown to critical eyes they produced a result friggin close to the real deal. Probably another factor to consider is this process seems to work best with RAW camera source files. This was something that puzzled me for years. I'd look at the uncorrected images in magazines and what they could be made to look like and no way could anyone do that with Vegas. As it turns out it's not so much a limitation of Vegas as what's going into it.

paul_w wrote on 5/5/2011, 5:39 AM
Hi Bob,
Interesting stuff. I see what you mean and if this Technicolor gamma curve was complex or even color separated to give a film 'look' then yes i would totally agree, you would need a better way and looking at a simple curve by eye would not be good enough to get it 'right'. But! (and theres always a but)... This raw data table they provide has no color separation, its just RGB all linked together in a simple curve S Shape. Nothing too complicated there. If there had been RGB separation going on, i would not have tried doing it this way.
Nicks idea using RGB parade to get the levels right sounds good. But it would need a reference to compare to - and that means (i think) using a Mac with FCP to load in the LUT file, then using a test file, compare the result from FCP's RGB parade with Vegas then adjust away. Someone i am sure can tell me an easier way, hope so, because i don't have a mac! or anything else that loads LUTs for that matter.

farss wrote on 5/5/2011, 7:03 AM
OK, did some more research and now I think I understand what you're trying to do. You're trying to post process the images from the camera that have been shot with the Kodak picture profile loaded.
These result in a rather flat image that needs to be processed with something like a S Log curve or "gamma lift". Of course what you really want is the inverse of an S Log curve.

Sorry I thought you were trying to achieve the whole process including what was happening in the camera inside Vegas, silly me.

Yes, well, I kind of hope SCS get a better handle on this too. With the very affordable F3 soon being capable of shooting in S Log....

paul_w wrote on 5/5/2011, 7:25 AM
Quite right Bob, except its a Technicolor picture profile not Kodak.

Just to reapeat for others reading this - Technicolor released a profile for the Canon DSLR range or 'Picture Style' as they call them in canon world. This is loaded into the camera and is called "CineStyle". The bit we are doing is the opposit, converting the rather flat image (with extended dynamic range) from the camera footage back to something with contrast. Technicolor's LUT is the exact opposit of the curve in the camera. And thats the bit we are playing with here. The whole point being, with this extended dynamic range, Canon DSLR's have a new lease of life with greatly increased shadow and hi-light definition compaired to 'Standard' profile settings. Its actually very good, and gives you more artistic control over the resulting images. Now if the LUT curve is right, the footage should look as intended by Technicolor.


Yoyodyne wrote on 5/5/2011, 9:49 AM
Thanks Paul, great explanation.

I agree that it would be great if Vegas provided some kind of LUT tool. With the F3, S-log and this new Cinestyle for the Canon DSLRs I imagine more people are going to be playing with LUTs.