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Red hue and increased saturation on YouTube with codec vp9

Community Beginner ,
Jun 17, 2020

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When I upload a 25-minite long video on YouTube and play it on Chrome, the video looks highly saturated and gains a red tone compared to the original file when seen in Quicktime or VLC. This ONLY happens when YouTube uses the codec vp9 because when I upload a shorter video, of for example 1 or 2 seconds, YouTube uses the avc1 codec in Chrome and the video looks identical to the original file.

I've noticed that on Safari, YouTube uses avc1 for all videos and the exact same video that I uploaded which looked overly saturated in Chrome looks identical to my original file when played in Safari. I am aware that different browsers can show variations of color/gamma when playing a video but the problem is that the difference in color/saturation of other videos that are played with vp9 in Chrome and avc1 in Safari is not as huge as it happens with my videos.

I have seen posts about people experiencing the same problem regarding the shift in color and saturation when YouTube plays the video using codec vp9 in Chrome browser but have not found a solution.

I have tried multiple export settings in Premiere Pro (for example, using h.263, ProRes444, YouTube 1080 Full HD preset, changing bitrates, etc.) and have also tried exporting the video file I got from Premiere Pro in Final Cut Pro and iMovie but the color shift and change in saturation keeps happening when the codec YouTube uses is vp9. There is no change in color/ saturation when I upload a trimmed version of the same video (2 seconds long) and YouTube uses avc1 in Chrome.

I would greatly appreciate any help or advice on how I can export the video in Premiere Pro so that the color shift is not so drastic when YouTube assigns codec vp9 instead of avc1 in Chrome. I did a lot of color correction using Lumetri in Premiere and it drives me crazy that the colors look so different when codec vp9 is assigned from YouTube to longer videos.

(LEFT IMAGE: codec vp9 in Chrome, RIGHT IMAGE: same video trimmed, codec avc1 in Chrome)

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Correct answer by R_Neil_Haugen | Adobe Community Professional

Short answer?

 

You can't.

 

Because you are trying to figure out how to create one file that works like X when A is applied but Z when Q is applied ... and there isn't any way to do that.

 

No pro colorist can do this either, and they talk about things like "Gramma's green TV". Meaning ... you grade a commercial, go visit your gramma. While visiting your commercial is broadcast, she says oh it's gorgeous ... and you're cringing because it's GREEN. Because gramma's TV is set that it's showing everything greenish. To her, the color looks good relative to the OTHER professional color she sees on that device.

 

You have no control of what devices, apps, streaming services, and user choices do to your material after it is released into the Wild. Forget about it ... just setup to grade on the tightest Rec.709 controlled system you can, which is what is still used for over 90% of pro video production. Then your material will look professional, in relative terms for each user, on their system.

 

It's the only way you can work.

 

Neil

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Red hue and increased saturation on YouTube with codec vp9

Community Beginner ,
Jun 17, 2020

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When I upload a 25-minite long video on YouTube and play it on Chrome, the video looks highly saturated and gains a red tone compared to the original file when seen in Quicktime or VLC. This ONLY happens when YouTube uses the codec vp9 because when I upload a shorter video, of for example 1 or 2 seconds, YouTube uses the avc1 codec in Chrome and the video looks identical to the original file.

I've noticed that on Safari, YouTube uses avc1 for all videos and the exact same video that I uploaded which looked overly saturated in Chrome looks identical to my original file when played in Safari. I am aware that different browsers can show variations of color/gamma when playing a video but the problem is that the difference in color/saturation of other videos that are played with vp9 in Chrome and avc1 in Safari is not as huge as it happens with my videos.

I have seen posts about people experiencing the same problem regarding the shift in color and saturation when YouTube plays the video using codec vp9 in Chrome browser but have not found a solution.

I have tried multiple export settings in Premiere Pro (for example, using h.263, ProRes444, YouTube 1080 Full HD preset, changing bitrates, etc.) and have also tried exporting the video file I got from Premiere Pro in Final Cut Pro and iMovie but the color shift and change in saturation keeps happening when the codec YouTube uses is vp9. There is no change in color/ saturation when I upload a trimmed version of the same video (2 seconds long) and YouTube uses avc1 in Chrome.

I would greatly appreciate any help or advice on how I can export the video in Premiere Pro so that the color shift is not so drastic when YouTube assigns codec vp9 instead of avc1 in Chrome. I did a lot of color correction using Lumetri in Premiere and it drives me crazy that the colors look so different when codec vp9 is assigned from YouTube to longer videos.

(LEFT IMAGE: codec vp9 in Chrome, RIGHT IMAGE: same video trimmed, codec avc1 in Chrome)

Adobe Community Professional
Correct answer by R_Neil_Haugen | Adobe Community Professional

Short answer?

 

You can't.

 

Because you are trying to figure out how to create one file that works like X when A is applied but Z when Q is applied ... and there isn't any way to do that.

 

No pro colorist can do this either, and they talk about things like "Gramma's green TV". Meaning ... you grade a commercial, go visit your gramma. While visiting your commercial is broadcast, she says oh it's gorgeous ... and you're cringing because it's GREEN. Because gramma's TV is set that it's showing everything greenish. To her, the color looks good relative to the OTHER professional color she sees on that device.

 

You have no control of what devices, apps, streaming services, and user choices do to your material after it is released into the Wild. Forget about it ... just setup to grade on the tightest Rec.709 controlled system you can, which is what is still used for over 90% of pro video production. Then your material will look professional, in relative terms for each user, on their system.

 

It's the only way you can work.

 

Neil

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245

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 17, 2020

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Short answer?

 

You can't.

 

Because you are trying to figure out how to create one file that works like X when A is applied but Z when Q is applied ... and there isn't any way to do that.

 

No pro colorist can do this either, and they talk about things like "Gramma's green TV". Meaning ... you grade a commercial, go visit your gramma. While visiting your commercial is broadcast, she says oh it's gorgeous ... and you're cringing because it's GREEN. Because gramma's TV is set that it's showing everything greenish. To her, the color looks good relative to the OTHER professional color she sees on that device.

 

You have no control of what devices, apps, streaming services, and user choices do to your material after it is released into the Wild. Forget about it ... just setup to grade on the tightest Rec.709 controlled system you can, which is what is still used for over 90% of pro video production. Then your material will look professional, in relative terms for each user, on their system.

 

It's the only way you can work.

 

Neil

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 18, 2020

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Thank you Neil.
I just realized that my unedited footage also looks a lot more saturated in Premiere than in QuickTime or VLC.
The color display on my macOS Mojave 10.14.6 is set to AdobeRGB(1998), and within Premiere I have Display Color Management on. Do you know if I can change the settings in my system preferences or Premiere so that the saturation of the raw footage when seen in QuickTime/ VLC matches what I see when I import the same footage into Premiere?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 18, 2020

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You've got a basic problem: you're working on a newer Mac, which is using a Retina monitor that is NOT designed directly for Rec.709 work, and made worse because the Mac Colorsync utility that controls color management does NOT properly apply Rec.709 standards.

 

Nearly all video is still Rec.709 ... which requires both the camera and display transform functions specified in Bt(Rec.)709 standards. Gamma 2.4, and assumes a 100 nits brightness on the monitor in a semi-darkened room.

 

Color sync applies only the first transform, the camera one. It does not apply the also required display transform function. Then to pile on, it uses "sRGB gamma" ... a statement that puzzles some of the best color management minds out there. What it does apply is mostly sort of like a 1.96 gamma with "an odd flat spot near the bottom". Then of course, the Retinas are designed to be a rather bright monitor.

 

Premiere assumes the user is working on a Rec.709 compliant system. They do include the option for Display Color Management option which on a Mac, you should certainly enable. Premiere will look at the ICC profile of the monitor and attempt to remap the signal for showing a proper Rec.709 image within that monitor's color setup.

 

This can help with work inside Premiere, it cannot make your Mac properly show Rec.709 media outside of Premiere.

 

Understand ... your Mac is using things that are similar to about 10% of the screens out there. And among the other 90%, only God knows what they will do to images, but every device will show everything a bit to a LOT different than on any other device. If you try and make the media so it looks "good" on your Mac outside Premiere, it will not look good on most any non-Mac device.

 

Pro colorists spend a ton of cash to get a system setup for tight adherence to color standards, and produce to that standard. If you want your material to look like the pro stuff does, produce to the same standards. And forget about what it looks like here or there ... as you have no control over it once it leaves your computer anyway. Neither does any colorist.

 

Neil

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 18, 2020

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Thanks.
I guess I'll just have to deal with the gamma differences until I get a quality monitor to connect to my MacBook.
I've been searching a lot on the Internet in vain for a solution but thanks for clearing things up. I appreciate it!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jun 18, 2020

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Color management or more actually, mangling ... across devices is a massive rabbit hole. As I spend a lot of my time "around" colorists, I hear and work with people who live by Standards.

 

It isn't "easy" now out in the wild, and as HDR comes in, it's probably going to be more problematic. Cheering, ain't I?

 

Yea, getting a monitor that shows solid Rec.709 is the best way to ensure you are working with material that will look decent across devices at this time.

 

Neil

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Thank you for the response Neil! I am planning to buy a monitor for video editing to connect to my MacBook Pro (2018). From my Internet research, the best monitors for video editing within my budget of 1000USD seem to be DELL ULTRASHARP U3219Q and BENQ PD3200U. Do you know which one would be a better option to buy? I would appreciate any other recommendations as well that are color accurate and non-curved. Thank you!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 10, 2020

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limononce,

 

Either would probably work. The BenQ monitors in general tend to have a bit more obvious issues with screen uniformity, but if you get a good one, it's not an issue compared to others in the price range. Most places you can send one back for that.

 

Either way, you need the i1 Display Pro puck/software to actually calibrate a monitor. First, turn off ALL auto-adjust features. Second, set it to the full color range it's got. Then start your calibration procedure.

 

Neil

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Guide ,
Jul 10, 2020

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dunno if this helps, but adobe has a free 2.4 to 1.96 gamma lut for final render for chrome.

https://community.adobe.com/t5/premiere-pro/quot-why-does-my-footage-look-darker-in-premiere-quot-co...

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Community Beginner ,
Jul 10, 2020

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Thanks! I'm actually already using that LUT which makes the rendered video when viewed in QuickTime match the gamma of the footage in Premiere. But sadly, when I upload the video to YouTube, the footage looks darker and a lot more saturated than in QuickTime.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jul 10, 2020

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The problem is a mish-mash of color managmement across the OS and various apps. Your OS does one thing, but each app does its own thing. You can't do one thing  that will work everywhere. Sadly.

 

Neil

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