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TOPIC: Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already.

Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 03:36 #90357

  • Smesh
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I made the massive mistake of using Color Finale Pro as my grading tool for a 6 episode TV series. I bought the color checker passport for all of our interviews to speed things up too.

There is very little support for this app and it is killing a new iMac 2017 maxed out. I had thought my new iMac had a defective video card because it was so bad, but I just had apple replace it and now I can't even use the app after restoring from time machine. The app shows the CFP checkbox in the clips but no grade shows and there are no controls. There is no way to activate, so I looked up an old email from when I was having trouble activating, went through the stopes and it says I have no activations left. I guess you only get two? It's already on my old laptop so...

Meanwhile support said weeks ago there was an update coming out to fix the bugs, crashes and choppy playback and nothing. I email support to get help and denver riddle himself? Nothing. I lost the whole day again with a deadline. And I can't quit now because I have 6 episodes 90% graded with the app and starting over now would be a disaster.

If anyone knows how to get hold of the support people by phone or knows how to get around the licensing crap since I already bought the damn app, I would sincerely appreciated. Once I finish this project the app goes in the trash so I never get the urge to give it a go again. I have absolutely had it.
Last Edit: 08 Sep 2017 04:03 by Smesh.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 05:01 #90362

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Uninstall it and reinstall it from scratch.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 06:27 #90365

  • Smesh
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Tried that. It doesn't work.

I seriously hate this app. Now I have LUT Gallery and CFP uninstalled and all my LUTS are messed up. I am pretty f**king fed up with this POS. I am going to do a video showing how it kills your processor even on monster Macs, how there is almost no support, and recommend NO ONE uses this app for editing. Ask Apple's FCPX team how many calls they get that turn out to be CFP and LUT Gallery issues. It's a LOT!
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 08:55 #90371

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Smesh, I sent you a PM
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 13:37 #90380

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Smesh wrote:
....it is killing a new iMac 2017 maxed out....now I can't even use the app after restoring from time machine. The app shows the CFP checkbox in the clips but no grade shows and there are no controls. There is no way to activate, so I looked up an old email from when I was having trouble activating, went through the stopes and it says I have no activations left....Meanwhile support said weeks ago there was an update coming out to fix the bugs, crashes and choppy playback and nothing....

I also have had similar issues with CFP which were exacerbated by the confusing licensing procedure, the fact that the "check for updates" doesn't work right, and the lack of information about a manual uninstall procedure. The color checker component was broken in various ways for a long time. This was apparently fixed in the latest version 1.7.0 (Build 196).

Since "check for updates" was broken, I manually removed the app using the 3rd party utility AppDelete: www.reggieashworth.com/appdelete, then I re-installed CFP. Fortunately I had four downloads left so was not stopped there. I did use their automated support page to request an updated download link -- that also seems broken as I never got a response.

I like CFP pretty well and I appreciate all the educational work Denver does. I have his paid Color Grading Master Class, which is very good and I highly recommend it, despite the price. It's that good: classes.colorgradingcentral.com/courses/...-grading-masterclass

However support, testing and maintenance fixes for CFP need to be improved. The ColorChecker component was broken back in 1.6.0 (Oct 2016) -- gear pane went blank if trying to select ColorChecker card, then also in 1.6.1 (Dec 2016) -- positional mis-match on color picker caused incorrect color selection. Fix was blade a single frame, apply correction, then copy/paste to rest of clip -- repeat for each clip needing correction. This was finally fixed in 1.7.0 in August 2017.

Smesh, it is easy to get frustrated when you're on a deadline, software malfunctions and support seems unavailable. However if you are not on 1.7.0 your problems may be fixed in this version. Your solution might be that close, if you can only get the download. I suggest you persevere on this.

Part of this is Apple's fault -- there should be much better standardization in plugin installation, deinstallation, updates and version checking. You won't see this on the typical "top 100" requested FCPX improvements -- people are fixated on superficial UI elements like color-coded video lanes. However in the real world, some structural, architectural improvements are needed.

To check the CFP version you must launch the stand-alone app itself from your Applications folder, then pick menu option ColorFinale>About Color Finale.

There may be a manual removal procedure but I couldn't find it so I just used AppDelete, then I re-installed.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 15:26 #90381

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I recently moved to using Coremelt's Chromatic and for the most part I like it more then Color Finale. Especially since it has a RGB curves adjustment.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 16:51 #90382

  • Smesh
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Hi Ron. Thanks for the PM. I see the icon for the message, but for some reason, can't view it in mobile or from my desktop.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 16:58 #90383

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Hi Joe. I am indeed running 1.6.1, which it says is the latest version when you check for updates. I haven't received an email or any information about version 1.7. Some guy named Brodie sent me a message on August 3rd saying a new version that would fix many of these issues was in Beta, but nothing since. No response from my several support emails either.

Meanwhile, I am getting emails, even this morning from denver Riddle about some search for "content providers" and a short list, that has nothing to do with me. He obviously needs to hire more support people. You are correct about the "downloads" being confusing. I have no idea why I would need to "download" again. I already have the app downloaded and my license/activation key. I followed the information on the website and emailed support asking them to remove my returned iMac from their "system" so that I can activate my new computer. All in all this method policing copyright SUCKS and is even more ridiculous considering they have almost zero support. I'm into my second day of being dead in the water and am faced with possibly having to regrade 6 episodes of a show because the grades are now disabled. NOT cool.
You are correct
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:07 #90384

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Hi Joe. Any idea how to download again using their purchase system. I forgot about the 5 downloads thing or whatever. Can't recall how it works or any email referring to it. I have the one with the activation code and the link we need to copy/paste into safari to "activate it" but that's it. I don't think that's going to solve the max licenses bit that they apparently need to reset on their end.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:33 #90385

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You should have an email with subject "CGC Order". If you search your email for that you should find it. That has the download link. Unfortunately it is apparently different for each sub-version (regular, trial, Pro, etc), and the version # is not stated on the download link. You have no way to know whether it's been updated, and they don't affirmatively tell you.

The app update system apparently doesn't work right, because I also was at 1.6.1, tried the update several times and it said "You're up to date, 1.6.1 is the newest version available."

Then I manually removed it, downloaded from the link in my email, re-installed it and was surprised to see version 1.7.0.

With some software you can download the trial version then enter your license key and that's sufficient. I think with CFP it's not like that but they don't affirmatively document this.

In a time-critical situation like you're in, the combination of broken update mechanisms, tight control and poor support responsiveness is really bad.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:36 #90386

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I had an epiphany and figured out how to "deactivate" the apps on my laptop. It was risky because I still do some editing on my laptop and have projects using CFP that are in progress there too, and if that was gone it would kill any possible backup plan of using it.

I did the deactivation and have been able to get my iMac activated. I also found a phone number in an email for emergency "text" support. But so far no response. I'm going to phone shortly.

I still don't see a version 1.7 anywhere. It sure would be nice to have all bugs fixed, because I still have choppy playback and other slow rendering issues with CFP, especially when used with LUTS and it slows me down.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:37 #90387

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yeah I saw there was maybe a problem with PMs ... I am not sure what ...
mail me at my nickname on gmail
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:45 #90388

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joema wrote:
In a time-critical situation like you're in, the combination of broken update mechanisms, tight control and poor support responsiveness is really bad.

Yeah. Can you believe I actually had a to return the iMac I ordered? It behaved like a defective video card. Apple Tech support and FCPX tech support staff said they had had a TON of calls from people who had issues that turned out to be related to CFP and LUT Gallery. I refused to believe them and was too far into using CFP anyway, so they sent me a new computer. Talk about a time pit.

You are right about the color picker too. They would be greyed out or not function. I'd like to see the new version so hopefully I can get it installed and it speeds things up so I can finish. Until they get all this crap worked out and hire some support staff, I recommend no one use this in a professional environment where you have deadlines.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 17:52 #90389

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Smesh wrote:
...this app and it is killing a new iMac 2017 maxed out....

You obviously have multiple issues, such as it's not working at all vs just slow. The first step is get it working, and the best way is remove and re-install it. Admittedly that has been held up by the download and authorization issue.

Once that is done and basic CFP functionality is restored, evaluate whether it's just too slow and if so why. E.g, if you turn off CFP in Inspector, is it still slow, or only with it enabled? Is it CFP itself or LUTS you've applied? On those clips do you have any other CPU-intensive effects such as stabilization, flicker reduction, or Neat Video?

If it is only slow with CFP enabled or certain LUTS applied, what is your editing codec and resolution? If it's H264 4k you could transcode to proxy which generally speeds up everything. If it's ProRes that is already very efficient, so proxy would help less. You could also try deleting all render files in case there are some damaged ones.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 18:01 #90390

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I f you download the demo from their site it will be 1.7 and you can activate that one. I just did it myself.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 18:26 #90391

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I deactivated my laptop and downloaded the new version. Why oh why was this not rolled out? I get a bunch of spam from Denver riddle, but no response from support and nothing about an upgrade available? WTF?

I have it installed now, but the controls are still super slow. Try the color wheels. Try dragging around in the circle. It's unresponsive and choppy. You drag and nothing, then it jumps, then a delay and the color changes. It's archaic and painful to use. I will finish this project and then good bye forever. I will never trust this app again.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 19:14 #90394

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bobmax48 wrote:
I recently moved to using Coremelt's Chromatic and for the most part I like it more then Color Finale. Especially since it has a RGB curves adjustment.

Me, too.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 08 Sep 2017 20:59 #90400

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Smesh wrote:
...I have it installed now, but the controls are still super slow. Try the color wheels. Try dragging around in the circle. It's unresponsive and choppy. You drag and nothing, then it jumps, then a delay and the color changes....

On my 2015 and 2017 iMac 27, the wheels are relatively quick and responsive. This is CFP 1.7.0, on 4k H264 content, not proxy, and with the viewer set to "better quality".

Can you reproduce this on a test clip in a separate library without any LUTs or other effects? You may have a config or system problem, maybe unrelated to CFP.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 09 Sep 2017 21:42 #90421

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So I found what I believe is a big part of the problem. Not the be all and end all. I still have problems, but this seems to have helped a lot.

My interview clips were shot in VLog then transcoded to ProRes 422 HQ. The clips in the viewer had the color processing set to VLog. This means v-log was "turned on" to the whole clip, not just the pieces that were being used. Then color finale was applied to further grade the footage. When color processing was turned off, and the vLog LUT applied using Color Finale Pro, all other additional layers functioned much faster and performance improved. Still not super smooth, but better.

I am still having problems with CFP though. My grades keep having the LUTS disappear. They don't show in the clips, then they do. They are missing in the tool, then they're back or I have to play with them to get them to appear.

The worst part is that now that I changed everything back to have VLOG applied in CFP, when I export, my grades are not taking effect. It's like they are straight out of the camera.

Any ideas on why my CFP grades are not exporting?

Still nothing from CFP support. I did get a message from Brody through Denver Riddle's email address, but he just told me to email Dimitri at support. No return emergency text, no returned support email. Very frustrating.

I'm a little nervous about doing it but I'm thinking about trashing my render files and rendering everything again. I suppose that I could trash my preferences like in the old days of FCP 7 but I'm nervous about doing that as well.
Last Edit: 09 Sep 2017 22:15 by Smesh.
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Color Finale Pro...Comebody SHOOT me already. 10 Sep 2017 17:17 #90434

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bobmax48 wrote:
I f you download the demo from their site it will be 1.7 and you can activate that one. I just did it myself.

I did likewise and confirmed. Checked the CGC "App" and did a check for update and it had shown 1.6.1. was current. It now shows 1.7.0.

Disappointing that update notification isn't working and that CGC didn't alternately do an email blast to users about the update. I do hope they improve their support.

I do very much appreciate the depth Coremelt Chromatic has (which I also use0 although I have had issues with that as well. Their support has been responsive.
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