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QuickTime gamma shift [Prevent color shift on export from premiere on MACOS]

LEGEND ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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A common issue I've seen here. When exporting a sequence from premiere the color shifts dramatically in the majority of playback programs. Quicktime, Vimeo, Youtube etc. VLC works fine but not everybody is using VLC. Makes for lots of wasted time on color grades.

 

Comments from Adobe below

This is an issue we (Adobe) are aware of. The best desciption of this issue is in this article and the related video: 
https://www.todddominey.com/2021/01/24/why-are-videos-washed-out-on-the-mac-exploring-quicktime-gamm...

 

A feature for handling this issue - adjustable Viewer Gamma - has been added to Premiere Pro v24 and is explained in this documentation: https://community.adobe.com/t5/premiere-pro-ideas/quicktime-gamma-shift-prevent-color-shift-on-expor....

 

Fergus

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correct answers 1 Pinned Reply

Adobe Employee , Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

Premiere Pro v24 has been released and includes a control for changing Viewer Gamma; see the edited original post for more information. 

 

Regards,

Fergus

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LEGEND ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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I've had the same problem. Regardless of whether any effects have been added to the video, the color in the exported video shows up desaturated, with lower contrast, and a white balance shift. Reimporting the video into Premiere reveals that Premiere interprets the video with the original color, but in all external mediums I have tested (Safari, Chrome, Opera, QuickTime, YouTube, Vimeo), it shows up distorted. Can you please advise on how to fix this? My business has expensive productions underway, and we would much prefer to not have to switch to using a different editing software platform. The problem seems clearly to be a Premiere issue.

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LEGEND ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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I have the same issue no matter what I try nothing seems to solve this. I'm using a 27inch iMac

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New Here ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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How to fix color shift problem
Any suggestion

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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We encounter this daily as well. Seems to be an OSX / Premiere problem. For example, when viewing the exported clip in Quicktime or on Vimeo in Chrome, Safari, and Opera, the colors are way off. When viewing the clip on VLC or the Vimeo app on a phone, the colors are fine. Don't know if this is Premiere talking to OSX or what exactly. Watching clips rendered from Resolve doesn't seem to have this issue.

We've dealt with the problem by adding an adjustment layer with a Lumetri fx and adding +7 to contrast and +12 to saturation. Then it's close-ish to what it looks like in Premiere, but watching in VLC or Vimeo app makes the over-saturation fix very apparent.

Basically adding tons of guesswork to the last stage of post 😕

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Contributor ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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I've always noticed my H264's being slightly desaturated over the years, but lately it's been absolutely awful. I've recently updated to 13.0.1, and 13.0.2 just came out, so I'm hoping when I do the next update it will fix this.

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LEGEND ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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It was bugging me so much. I finally figured out how to get my colors not to desature on export. My export preview still doesn't match my program monitor but the actual file when exported is correct. I made a tutorial on how to set it up. H.264 High10 Rec 2020 🙂 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjncAjK0coc&t=0s?sub_confirmation=1 Hope it Helps!

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LEGEND ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Please Fix this Adobe! I have never noticed it since my last exports in the past 3-6 months! I thought I was tripping at first, but it's clearly a bug with Adobe.

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New Here ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Is there truly no fix for this yet?! ADOBE???!!!

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Contributor ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Premiere Pro on the imac Pro has been having issues for the past year with exports coming out desaturated and losing contrast. Basically I’ve been having to add some additional saturation & contrast to all my final exports for the past year, which look bad on the program monitor, but it helps on the exports maintain their color (somewhat). I just got off the phone with Adobe Tech support because I’m planning to create a film master in the next month. Here is what I was told:

call to adobe tech support on August 17, 2019:

This is a known issue

The iMac pro exports get desaturated and lose contrast.

There will be an update to premiere pro released in October (possible names are 13.1.5 or 13.2).

Engineering team says this new version will 100% have the issue fixed.

The engineer told me that I should marry the final color & sound of the film I plan to export using my macbook pro to avoid any color issues with the final export.

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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This is happening to me while trying to turn in for a deadline. Super annoying color shifts and blown-out highlights only after exporting.

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New Here ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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After updated to 13.1.5 this is definitely not fixed for a 100% not fixed!

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Contributor ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Allow me to save your lives. I can't believe this took as much searching as it did to find an OFFICIAL FIX FROM ADOBE for this issue (until they can figure out how to unbreak it again). Adobe's own version of this video should have been sent out by Adobe to all users of Premiere Pro the second they discovered this issue. Why it wasn't is beyond me. Well, not really because Adobe is both so amazing at enabling us to do what we do, but so utterly abysmal at fixing things that won't work. Enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t61b6Nk-YPw&list=PLA05pELl8mMiABtsCSEB4XdivVupnYcyc&index=5&t=229s

I do want to add one important fact: Today I married the final sound and color on a project. The color was delivered to me via prores HQ from my colorist, who graded in Resolve. There was NO NEED to apply this LUT to my final export. I double checked my export against what my colorist gave me, and there was no shift in color at all noticeable in either premiere pro or using quicktime player.

So the BIZARRE thing about this color shift issue is that it only seems to happen when you use Premiere to grade our projects. Which is super weird since Adobe can't seem to export the color we create with the very tools they provide unless we use this LUT as a fix.

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Colour shift on export in 13.1.5 is indeed 100% unfixed on an iMac Pro running Mojave. Try again adoob. And enjoy my money in the meantime, isn’t it great?

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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You guys and gals (and the Premiere developers too!!) should watch this video explaining the problem to the dot.
Made by the guys from Filmlight (I assume they know what they're talking about):

https://vimeo.com/349868875

So what Premiere Pro is missing is the correct NCLC tagging of QT files during render/export.

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New Here ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Well just updated to premiere 2020
guess what still not fixed..

Already using the Lut for some exports.. mainly doing commercial billboards, and using that is usually fine. But this still is a big problem adobe. thanks

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Contributor ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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What codecs did you use ? What software to play the file ?

You could try to export with AfterCodecs Exporter for Adobe CC https://www.autokroma.com/AfterCodecs

there is a free 500 frames trial, or H264 is free when resolution is < 720p

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Explorer ,
Jan 24, 2023 Jan 24, 2023

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Does anyone even answer here?

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Explorer ,
Feb 10, 2023 Feb 10, 2023

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Been dealing with this for years. Best I've figured out is to make sure directors and clients use VLC to do their official reviews (esp if reviewing color). Not ideal, but I've got nothing better! arkalmed is on to the real fix there, just need to make engineers aware of it.

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LEGEND ,
Feb 10, 2023 Feb 10, 2023

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That Vimeo from Baselight is one look at the issue. It's not necessarily accepted as an accurate view, though, by many of the other folks out there in color management. One significant misreading is typically cited. Whether by Steve Shaw at LightIllusions or others.

 

That video assumes that the original Rec.709 standard from many years ago is still the entire standard. But it hasn't been for years! Not since flat-panel digital monitors replaced CRT monitors. The digital monitors had a very different image from the 'native' digital signal. They therefore required either the additional spec of a display gamma or a change to the camera transform process.

 

Adding a display transform to the Rec.709 standard was thought simpler.

 

Bt.1886 was appended to the Rec.709 standard years ago. And the traditional broadcast/network/streaming processes for years now have included the expectations below for Rec.709:

  • sRGB primaries
  • camera transform of 1.95
  • display transform of 2.4 (dark room viewing) or 2.2 (bright room viewing) {added as Bt.1886}
  • 100 nits screen brightness in moderately-dark-room grading

 

This workflow was the accepted manner of working with NCLC tags of 1-1-1, and the monitors were carefully calibrated and profiled to the above display specs. It's what both Resolve in "auto" mode and Premiere Pro applied to Rec.709 files.

 

Apple chose to return to the original Rec.709 spec and ignore the Bt.1886 appended specification. Think of this as "the real Rec.709," ... but Apple changed that years ago. And applied throughout professional workflows.

 

Until ... ColorSync reverted.

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Adobe Employee ,
Apr 10, 2023 Apr 10, 2023

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An update to Premiere Pro that makes this issue easier to handle will be coming later in 2023. We will update this thread with more information when it is available. 

 

Regards,

Fergus

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LEGEND ,
Apr 10, 2023 Apr 10, 2023

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That would be appreciated, Fergus! And there's a lot of us that will be very interested in what options you may add.

 

I know quite a few want to be able to easily mod the files to get around the Mac display issue. And well, if someone wants to, and understands the other problems that choice may cause, it's their file. I'd always go for more user options. (No matter how wise they may be at times in certain uses.)

 

But then there's also issues with cameras that can be set to do full range with YUV files, or people running their monitors in full ... so again, user settings there could be of use to many people.

 

But anyway, looking forward to seeing some further options.

 

Neil

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New Here ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Any updates on this? Ive been having this problem for about a year or two now. Happens whether I export from Premiere or After Effects. Exported footage looks totally fine in VLC but totally washed out in Quciktime on my Mac Mini. Then sent it to my Macbook Pro and its the same thing. I even tried viewing it on my iphone and it was washed out there as well. So the only time it looks okay is in VLC or if I bring the footage back into Premiere or After Effects. So essentially nowhere that someone is going to view the video when I send it to them. This is so infuriating. And I see so many solutions that are just adding new LUTS to correct this gamma change (or whatever it is) but if or when this issue is ever fixed, then that footage with the lut is going to look too contrasty. So do we just make 2 separate exports of all our videos now? One how it was originally graded (but will be washed out in Quicktime and all devices but look correct in VLC). And the other one with the corrected edits/lut (will look correct everywhere except VLC and if you drag back into Premiere/AE). I don't understand how I've never run into this issue with 10-15 years of editing/coloring experience, or has it really just flown under my radar?

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LEGEND ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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I work for/with/teach pro colorists. So I've been through HOURS of presentations and discussions on this, in person and over zoom/whatever with high-end colorists. And with the people that make the calibration software used by the colorists.

 

It annoys and pisses them all off, btw ... but at Apple, who created this mess.

 

And as Fergus and other staffers will point out, Adobe has given you some good new options in 24.x. But before you choose, you need to know what happens depending on your choice. As in ... you get to pick your poison. 

 

So have you read through the many threads on here alone, discussing the issue? Simply put:

 

  • The broadcast/streaming/professional standards for Rec.709 media include Bt.1886, which suggests using a display gamma of 2.4 for Rec.709 media, 2.2 allowed as a choice, for web-destined media. Premiere has 'natively' followed the professional standard.
  • Your Mac is using an Apple utility called Colorsync, that is designed by Apple, and uses a display gamma for Rec.709 video of 1.96.
  • You cannot display a video file at two divergent gammas and get the same view.

 

Even though it's the same file, it will look different if you use two different gammas for viewing it. Well, that's pretty obvious, right?

 

Which leads to the following:

  • If you visually correct the file to look "correct" diplayed at gamma 2.4, it will look too light and a bit desaturated on a sysem using 1.96. (What you've been seeing it seems.)
  • If you visually correct the file to look "correct" displayed at gamma 1.96, it will be too dark (crushed blacks instead of shadows) on a system using 2.4. (What I would see on my correct broadcast-type setup for a file set for gamma 1.96)

 

Neither option is what any of us really wants, sadly.

 

New for the 24.x Major Version Builds

In Pr 2024, you have a much easier color management setup in Premiere. Go to the Color Workspace, Lumetri panel, the Edit tab. 

 

All CM options for the program are in the various sub-tabs. Including several new things, so you should look through it in general.

 

Especially for Macs in 2024 (though of good use for all users)

There's a new option for setting the Premiere display gamma. With three settings available, which will set the Program Monitor of Premiere to the gamma you select.

 

  • Broadcast 2.4 ... this is the general standard for professional Rec.709 deliveries worldwide.
  • Web 2.2 ... this is allowed in the standards for use with web-only deliveries.
  • QuickTime 1.96 ... this sets your in-Premiere display gamma to match the Mac  Colorsync gamma of 1.96.

 

And this is the pick your poison choice. Where do you want this to look "correct"?  As you can't have a file that looks good at "proper" gamma 2.4 and at Mac gamma 1.96

 

Adobe can't "solve" this, though they've given you choices now. BlackMagic can't solve this, they give you similar result choices. No colorist can solve this. Only Apple could 'solve' this for all users across platforms.

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Adobe Employee ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Premiere Pro v24 has been released and includes a control for changing Viewer Gamma; see the edited original post for more information. 

 

Regards,

Fergus

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New Here ,
Oct 26, 2023 Oct 26, 2023

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Thank you for explaining. I'll have to update my system so I can run Premiere 24 because those changes really sound worth it. I started viewing random video files on my mac and comparing them in Quicktime and VLC to see if theres any difference or if its just videos I've exported from Adobe software. To my surpirse its every single video, totally raw videos that were never imported or exported to Adobe. Every single video I watch has a different gamma in Quicktime vs VLC. So is that just because of Mac's Color Utlity controlling Quicktime? Its just crazy to me that the same file will never look the same between those two programs. 

 

Some screenshots I took. QT on Left. VLC on Right.

 

Screen Shot 2023-10-26 at 10.41.08 PM.png

Screen Shot 2023-10-26 at 10.43.15 PM.png

Screen Shot 2023-10-26 at 10.55.50 PM.png

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