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FilmConvert Nitrate: 19 classic film stocks and Cineon Log film emulations

FilmConvert Nitrate – what movies look like, is the short sentence with which the new plugin from FilmConvert is presented. Discover how to have more power and control over your color grading.

FilmConvert Nitrate: 19 classic film stocks and Cineon Log film emulations

Premiere Pro and After Effects now, Final Cut Pro X and DaVinci Resolve by the end of 2019. That’s the roadmap for FilmConvert Nitrate, a plugin to create your own Pleasantville and much more.

Filmmakers love the built-in FilmConvert film stocks for their authentic look, but sometimes they want more control over the final image. That’s the reason why FilmConvert decided to create Nitrate, an update that offers new ways to have more power and control over footage.

Nineteen classic film stocks find their way inside the Nitrate plugin, and that includes Cineon Log versions of FilmConvert ‘s original film stock emulations, meaning users can dial the contrast or saturation of a film stock back to their liking, while still keeping the authentic film stock colors.

Cineon log takes us back to the Cineon System, which was was one of the first computer based digital film system created by Kodak in the early 1990s. It led to the creation of the Cineon ( .cin) 10 bit log file format, designed to handle digital film frames. The Cineon file format defined by Kodak formed the basis for the newer SMPTE-standardised Digital Picture Exchange (DPX) format.

From Snow White to Pleasantville

Glenn Kennel, the principal architect of the Cineon digital film system, helped launch Kodak’s Cinesite Digital Film Center in September 1992, the premier test site for Cineon. According to Wikipedia, the system was used in the digital restoration of Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which became the first film to be entirely scanned to digital files, manipulated, and recorded back to film.

After the end of Cineon, Glenn Kennel worked with Philips to extend the Spirit DataCine motion picture film scanner to Cineon-compatible digital file output, first applying it to the 1998 movie Pleasantville, the first digital intermediate film scanned on a Spirit DataCine. This process produced the mix of B&W and color pictures that are the the hallmark of Pleasantville. The black-and-white meets color world portrayed in the movie was filmed entirely in color, and in all approximately 163,000 frames of 35 mm footage were scanned, in order to selectively desaturate and contrast adjust digitally.

It’s some of that power that FilmConvert Nittrate puts in your hands. Time to create your own Pleasantville! The plugin does offer more options, allowing users to design their own film response curve and offering advanced film grain controls, so you can adjust the appearance of the grain individually in the highlights, mid-tones, and shadows.

Keep the full dynamic range of your footage

With the adjustable film response curve, says FilmConvert, who designed full custom curve controls for each of the FilmConvert film stocks, it is possible to create exactly the look you want: modify highlight and shadow roll-offs, or even design your own film stock from scratch. Nitrate now uses a full Log image processing pipeline, so you can retain the full dynamic range of your footage through the grading process.

The FilmConvert Nitrate plugin for Premiere Pro and After Effects is available now. The company indicates that the plugin is coming to Final Cut Pro X and DaVinci Resolve by the end of 2019. So, in case you just want to know the key features, here they are:

  • Cineon Log film emulations – matched to your camera’s Log mode
  • Full Log workflow – grade using Log controls to preserve all the dynamic range and contrast of your footage
  • Custom curve control – craft your own film response curve to create the exact film look you want for your project
  • Advanced film grain controls – control grain in the highlights, midtones and shadows

All new FilmConvert license purchases include free upgrade to FilmConvert Nitrate (excluding Bundle license upgrades and Photoshop plugin). Users who purchased FilmConvert after April 6 2019 have a free license upgrade, says the company. With a FilmConvert Nitrate sale that allows users to save 20% off all software, maybe you should check FilmConvert’s website. There is also a trial version of the plugin you may want to download.


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Journalist, writer and photographer since 1979, both print and online, with a vast experience in the fields of photography, software, hardware, web, aviation, History, video games, technology, having published content in almost all Portuguese newspapers…

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