For this latest round of tests I decided to use a preset that both had in common. This way I could better judge the render times and the differences in the way they each do a specific task. Here are the two results

Link #1 (OFFLINE, sorry) – First scene is original footage. Then Magic Bullet Bleach Bypass, then Nattress Bleach Bypass. 145 MB – H.264, fullsize (but squeezed, sorry)

Link #2 (OFFLINE, sorry) – Split screen. First one is Magic Bullet, the second is Nattress. The upper portion is the color corrected material, bottom is raw image.

The sequence is 41 seconds long. MB took 22 minutes to render. Nattress took 7 min.

Magic Bullet’s filter looks pretty good. And when I added the filter it stayed within the broadcast safe area. Nattress’ didn’t…but with the addition of the LEVELS filter if fell right into place. I like the general look and black levels of MB…I can see more detail in the darker areas. But I really like the color and washed out results that Nattress’ provided. But I am sure with a little tweaking I could get the desired color from the MB set…and the shadow detail is what really sells me on this one. Overall, I would have to say that I really liked what Nattress’ Film Look filter provided, and the render time is a very nice plus, but that I preferred the result that Magic Bullet provided. And there is one big reason why…

Look at the first clip. The Roman soldier on the parapet. Look at the sky…nice sharp blue sky. Look at the raw image first, then look at the MB result, then the Nattress result. Do you see it? Play them all…one after the other. Artifacts. Both plugins have it, but it is most prominent in the Nattress filter. This is something you don’t see when there is movement, but in areas of solid colors, black, blue…it is very obvious. This is on your computer monitor…imagine it on a huge HD display that people are fond of buying lately. I myself didn’t notice it until I did Digital Cinema Preview.

To be truthful, both results are less than desired, and might make us decided to color correct in a DaVinci after all. But there is one more thing I would like to try. Putting that shot in a 10-bit uncompressed HD timeline and adding the filters, then rendering. I wonder it that will clear it up any…