LiveGrade version 4 is here for public beta, you can go download it right now and see for yourself:
Not everything is intuitive right out of the gate with the new UI, took me a while to find a workspace that I like, and now that I have it set up, I kinda like it…but I didn’t at first (I still don’t like parts of it, I hope @pomfort fixes some of these or lets us customize commands).
Here’s how it looks out of the gate.
I’ve just copied over my library here for my current show, giving it a test run for these final 3 weeks on The Good Cop Season 1 for Netflix.
As you can see, the devices panel is right in the middle of the screen off the bat. Depending on if you use the video portion of LG which has been around since v3, this can be annoying or helpful.
Personally I like being able to edit the metadata here, it helps for data entry (although hopefully in the future this can be passed through the air with wireless), but as I explain below it doesn’t carry over from shot to shot when you create a new look like it used to. some of it carries over, but it probably only does from this dialogue, and not from the shot library (which is where you’re going to be editing your information 90% of the time).
quick note: having the TC here is great and all, but it’s a slow update, especially if you don’t have the slot selected. You can see that the TC doesn’t match, even thought they are both jammed to matching TC.
Gone are the commands from v3. You used to be able to hit cmd + N for a new grade, that’s not the case anymore. It’s C for Create a New Shot. Why they call it a shot vs look now is beyond me, other than maybe it has to do with the screenshot options they’ve improved upon.
“Apply look” no longer has a hot key, you have to right click, use the menu, or double click it (more on that later).
Create is now C
Update is now U
Also gone are the update, apply, & open commands for each “look”, or shot, or whatever.
Top is v4, bottom is v3
The thing that I use the most, which seems to be absent here, is the “create” dialogue no longer carries over all of the metadata from the previous look information like v3 did. As I stated above, it probably carries over from the device metadata and not the shot library, which I think it should pull from the shot library as you’re editing most of your tweaks there (with v3 it did this).
Full disclosure here: I do not use the capture devices portion of LiveGrade, I use ScopeBox for taking stills and references, as I have one Ultrastudio4K (you will need multiples if you have multiple cameras, one per “slot” which is annoying). However, Pomfort has greatly improved upon the devices portion.
Under Devices, you can “Add Device” to a slot and select Capture Device at the very end of the list. If you’ve used this before you’ll get a very familiar dialogue.
There are two important choices here: Direct camera output & LUT box output (graded).
If you are using LG to capture stills, I would recommend the second one, as direct camera output for whatever reason double LUTs itself. If you use the second option your grades will come in properly and you can capture appropriately.
They’ve added some new options for capturing stills, which is cool if you have multiple capture devices, not so much if you have only one.
You can customize how the screenshots are labeled in GENERAL under preferences, but only with their wildcard tokens, you can’t relabel them with custom text at all.
You get a quick dialogue that pops up when you capture a still, with the metadata you have setup in your wild card
And they’ve added a “record” function to PRO this time around….which I don’t know how I feel about. I know some DITs take recordings of clips to be able to match to, but then that’s some grey area with regards to VTR. Either way, here’s the options.
And you can add clips to your slot clips after you’ve selected record.
One thing that’s interesting is the scopes function, which pretty much eliminates the need for ScopeBox if you so want (I personally like ScopeBox as I switch between cameras on my US4K, see the screenshot below as B cam is on A slot).
It’s interesting to see the 3DLUT displayed with the curve, that is pretty neat.
Now if you’re like me you tend to double click on looks to apply them to the current slot. If you do that you’ll be greeted with this screen:
It’s called the browser. See in the upper right hand corner of this screenshot? It says “close browser” that shit took me forever to figure out to close. Also you can just hit 1 or 2 on your keyboard to switch slots and it will switch you back to the device view.
Here’s what you see in the Browser window:
If you want to change it so this doesn’t happen, it’s in the General section under “Shot Log” in the “action on Double Click”. Change this from “Open in Browser” to “Apply grade”
Here’s the drop down menu for every single top menu option:
There’s a LOT of options here, as well as a lot of shortcuts. I wish we could do some custom mappings so we can make these for whatever we want.
And finally this is where I’ve landed in my UI layout:
I don’t use the preset browser windows, which I assume is kinda like a PowerStill like in resolve, which could be good if you have a lot of starting LUTs you use, or specific looks for a show, but personally I don’t use it yet.
So that’s my initial impression of version 4 of LiveGrade. What do you guys think? Has anyone played around with it and prefers these new changes? Leave a comment.