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Making your iPhone 12 and 13 footage look normal - avoiding blown out footage

Adobe Employee ,
Jan 19, 2022 Jan 19, 2022

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Copied from a post by Francis Crossman, the product manager for Premiere Pro. Great advice, including how to switch off the function in your phone so you never have the issue until you are ready to embrace HDR.

 

Francis wrote:
"One thing that is tripping up so many people here is that the iPhone is shooting in HDR by default, and it has an HDR screen, so videos look phenomenal on it. High Dynamic Range video contains more light and color level than Standard Dynamic Range video (Rec709).  Unless you have an HDR display on your computer (and have everything is set up properly), you will never see it the same way as on the phone.  The vast majority of people have an SDR display.  When you send the video to your computer, QuickTime player will do tonemapping while sending it to your SDR display so it looks decent.  Premiere Pro does not have this capability yet. 

 

Here's what's happening.  PPro reads the metadata in the file, sees that it's HDR (HLG to be specific) and treats it that way.  If you create a sequence from the file the sequence will be set up as HLG automatically.  But your monitor is physically not capable of displaying the light levels in the file so that's why things look blown out.  If you look at the scopes, you will see that nothing is actually lost.  You could use Lumetri to grade the file down to SDR levels. 

 

Here are a few options that I recomend.  Choose the one that works for you:

Don't capture in HDR on your iPhone.  

  1. On your phone- Go to Settings > Camera > Record Video > turn off HDR video
  2.  This will create Rec709 SDR clips
  3.  Edit in PPro like you are used to

 

OR . . .

Override the colorspace of the files to Rec709

  1.  Select all your clips in the project panel
  2.  Right-click > Modify > Interpret Footage > Color Management > Set the color space to Rec709
  3.  Now your clips will be treated as if they are Rec709 - this is not a conversion, it just tricks PPro into thinking it's Rec709
  4.  The clips will likeley look a little flat
  5.  Make sure your sequence is in Rec709 - Sequence settings > Working color space > Rec709 
  6.  Color grade to taste with Lumetri.  You will never get it to look as good as on your phone because your phone has an HDR screen and your computer (probably) does not.

 

OR . . .

Actually work in HDR and create an HDR video

  1.  You need an HDR monitor hooked up through proper cabling  https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT210980
  2.  Turn on Display color management and Extended dynamic range montioring in PPro Preferences
  3.  Import HDR footage from iPhone (iPhone shoots HLG)
  4.  Add the footage to an HDR sequence (HLG)
  5.  Export using an HDR encoding preset (HLG).  Either H264 or HEVC are good options.

 

Hope this helps.  HDR is legitimately confusing!"

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Explorer ,
Jan 20, 2022 Jan 20, 2022

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WOW! what a great answer!!!

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New Here ,
Apr 07, 2022 Apr 07, 2022

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Thank you!!

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Explorer ,
Sep 12, 2022 Sep 12, 2022

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I don't have "Modify" in the right click menu, and I don't see it in any other menus. Where can I find those settings? Do I right click on the clip or the preview?

 

Pr Pro 22.5.0 Build 62

 

27" iMac Retina 5k

4.2GHz Quad Core i7

Radeon Pro 580 8GB

 

 

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Community Expert ,
Sep 12, 2022 Sep 12, 2022

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Select the clip or clips in the Project panel/bin. Then right-click, and you should have Modify as one of the options.

 

Neil

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Explorer ,
Sep 12, 2022 Sep 12, 2022

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Thank you! I found that just before you posted. I also found that more specific steps are as follows

Right click on the clip's file name in the Project pannel and select Modify > Interpret Footage (Use Shift+left click to select multiple clips)

Look for the Color Management section near the bottom of the Interpret Footage dialoge box.

Select "Color Space Override"

Choose Rec. 709 from the drop down menu.

Select "OK" to close the dialogue box and commit changes.

 

 

 

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 14, 2022 Sep 14, 2022

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I am wondering if the latest versions of Premiere changed those settings—at least on macOS. No longer seeing the change colorspace under Color Management. 
Screen Shot 2022-09-14 at 5.08.30 PM.png

 

 

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Community Expert ,
Sep 14, 2022 Sep 14, 2022

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No, that whole three-option area should be showing. That's a puzzler.

 

Neil

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 16, 2022 Sep 16, 2022

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Yeah, thought the same thing. It has been like that with all versions of Adobe Premiere Pro 2022 on my end. Even uninstalled and reinstalled. 

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 21, 2022 Sep 21, 2022

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Worked like a charm. It made a massive difference in how the iPhone video now appears. Thanks! 

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New Here ,
Nov 02, 2022 Nov 02, 2022

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Thanks for this. I still have the issue it seems.

Left to right: Rec709, then Rec2020, then original.

So confused.

Screenshot 2022-11-02 at 14.16.56.png

 

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Community Expert ,
Nov 02, 2022 Nov 02, 2022

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LATEST

First, I have no idea what you're comparing ... are those screen grab images from within PrPRo or a mix of Pr and a video player, or a video player? What's your OS, as that does make a massive difference unfortunately?

 

Second ... no camera made has a really accurate viewing screen, not even the $70,000 RED, Arri, and Sony rigs. For field work, they pay for a highly accurate heavily calibrated screen to be on-set, if not connected to the camera. Next, very few computer setups actaully show an accurate image on-screen according to full specs of either Rec.709 or any HDR.

 

Unless the image is run through a breakout-device like BlackMagic or AJA cards to the screen, so that neither the OS nor the GPU touch the image. That's how pro colorists work, and they never consider a computer monitor 'accurate'.

 

Premiere tries to give the most close approximation it can to the standards of the CM it's set for within the program. On most systems, and ALL Macs, users must set the Preferences option for Display Color Management to 'on'. And viewing an accurate SDR/Rec.709 image is a lot easier than an accurate HDR image ... period. Even though the Mac color management system uses a wrong gamma to display SDR/Rec.709 videos, within Pr, you'll see a decently accurate image. IF you have the CM for the clip and sequence set correctly.

 

Last ... Rec.709 has a different set of three primary colors and both the gamut (range) and volume (the actual discrete colors available) are much smaller than the HDR forms, whether HLG, PQ, or say HDR10. Which are all slightly different from each other.

 

So yes, there will be differences in the image when properly displayed within any color space when transformed to different color spaces. If there wasn't, we wouldn't need them, or want them, would we?

 

Neil

 

 

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