If you’ve ever been disappointed with the colour reproduction of your video when you’ve got it into post I’ve got the solution for you – and you’ll be very happy to know that it won’t break the bank and it’s also very easy to use. The colour checker passport video from X-Rite as the name suggests is a tiny piece of kit that will make a big impact on your videos.
The first step to getting accurate colours is to set your camera as you usually would and compose your shot.
Simply hold or stand the X-Rite in your shot and make sure you can see all the colours and that yellow is top left – as in the picture.
It’s important to note that on the bottom row third in from the left is a glossy black square, ensure you can’t see any reflections on this square.
The photo at the top of this page is a screen grab from from my Canon C300II showing the X-Rite in shot, I simply went on to record a few seconds of video with the Colour Check Video Passport in shot.
This is where things get clever. If you are using Apple FCPX you’ll want to get hold of the great ColorFinale plug-in from Color Grading Central.
Apply the filter and from the inspector select use chart and show chart. You can then click around the chart in the video window from top left, top right, bottom right, bottom left and back up again to make a rectangle. Maybe you’ll want to adjust your shape by dragging the handles to ensure the coloured circles line up with the chart – as in the photo below.
Now for the magic:
Of course I know this isn’t really magic. It is however very clever. You see the plug-in we are using knows exactly what the colours are printed on the chart are. Meaning that when you click match it will correct your footage based on the actual colours of the colour checker test chart itself. In short the colours in your video will then match the real world colours of the test chart. Other 3rd party software support includes: 3D LUT Creator (Adobe Premiere) DaVinci Resolve 12.5.
As you see this product simply and quickly lets you reproduce accurate colour in single camera shoots. It’s great and saves lots of time in post when shooting multicam with different manufacturers!