Color Matching a Canon C300 to an Arri Alexa
They said it couldn't be done. Maybe, but I got close. How close? You judge...
By Art Adams | January 26, 2013
First, the standard disclaimer:
While I plan on using these settings myself for future projects, your mileage may differ depending on a number of factors including taste, camera software version, lens choices, etc. As a result I take no responsibility if you don't like the results. It's up to you to test these settings before you use them professionally to make sure they work to your satisfaction. By using these settings you indemnify me against any claims in the event that someone down the road doesn't like how these settings look and that costs you money.
If everybody loves you as a result of these settings I'm happy to bask in the glow of your success.
NOTE: As I mentioned in an update to the front page, I received some complaints saying that the daylight matrix made reds look blueish on some cameras. I came up with a replacement daylight matrix while shooting with a C300 the other day so I've replaced the original settings below. I hope to have a new version of both matrices, version 2, posted by sometime next week that should work well on C100s, C300s and C500s.
Here they are:
Detail circuit settings are not included. When we compared camera detail we discovered that setting the C300 detail circuit to its lowest value resulted in an image that was still sharper than the Alexa. Adjust it to your own taste.
As color and gamma are completely decoupled in the C300 you can use this matrix with any gamma, although be sure to test this first to make sure the results are to your liking. I like Cinema1 and Cinema2 myself.
Don't use these matrix settings with any matrix other than EOS Standard as you will get untested, unintended and unpredictable results.
One last very, very important note:
THESE SETTINGS WILL NOT TURN YOUR CANON C300 INTO AN ARRI ALEXA REPLACEMENT. I've attempted to replicate aspects of the Alexa's colorimetry in a camera whose design and color science are completely different in every way, using very coarse tools whose settings sit on top of Canon's proprietary color science. The C300 doesn't have the subtlety of color that Alexa offers, nor can it match Alexa's dynamic range, and it doesn't duplicate that delicate Alexa softness that makes everyone and everything look great. On the other hand, the C300 is less expensive and much smaller and lighter, and is the perfect tool for certain projects.
If you own a Canon C300, if you can only afford a C300, if you need the mobility and size of a C300, use a C300. If you can afford an Arri Alexa, use the Alexa. Get the right tool for the right job.
You can download a PDF version of the settings here.
Art Adams | Director of Photography & Motion Picture Technology Consultant | 01/26/13 | www.artadamsdp.com
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editblog - Sat, May 25 2013 - 9:56 am
RT @craigaw1969: At Heathrow wirelessly editing footage on ISIS in Germany using @Avid @MediaComposer & Interplay Sphere #postchat http://t.co/ZPGphL7RHk
editblog - Sat, May 25 2013 - 9:46 am
@jonnyelwyn no you shouldn't. But those should be backed up anyway right?