Custom ACES Part 3: ODTs, Deliverables and HDR

June 14, 2020

Learn how to use a custom ACES workflow to easily manage deliverables in different color spaces, and easily take your grade from SDR to HDR.


Custom ACES and multiple deliverables

In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, I showed you the fundamentals of building your own ACES pipeline in the Resolve node tree. Then we took it to the next level by using a complex, fixed node structure designed specifically to make the best of this workflow’s advantages.

But we all know – the job isn’t done until the files are delivered in all the different specs and formats needed (and the client is happy!). This is another huge advantage of this workflow – it makes changing colorspaces for output way easier.

Let the ODT do the work!

Because the grade always happens in ACEScct space, the ODT does the heavy lifting for outputting various colorspaces, allowing you to use your original grade as a starting point, and easily do shot by shot trims after switching ODTs. It even makes it easier to go from SDR and HDR.

In this insight I’ll show you:

  • The pros/cons of adjustment clips vs timeline nodes for ODTs
  • How to easily switch ODTs
  • How to use ripple to switch between shot by shot trims for different ODTs
  • Different settings and precautions when using ripple
  • How to take a grade from SDR to HDR, and even into Dolby Vision

As always – leave any comments or questions below. I would love to hear how this workflow is working out for you!


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Homepage Forums Custom ACES Part3: ODTs, Deliverables and HDR

  • R Neil Haugen

    Joey …

    As always, your examples and explanations are logical and to my poor old brain, sequential and understandable. This was very useful to get me past a few different things I’ve struggled with.

  • Ben S

    Thanks Joey, double thumbs up!

  • Paul H

    Thanks Joey, lots of great tips in there.

  • Manju R

    Thanks for the great explanation on Custom ACES, joey!!

    in the Color management settings we have set Colorscience to DaVinci YRGB and TIMELINE Colorspace to REC 709 2.4, BUT, when we change the ODT on the Timeline level from rec709 or P3 OR HDR TRIM, should we retain the the same on the color management settings or it should be changed accordingly?

  • Greg Greenhaw

    Seems like resolve could add some new feature to better handle various output formats and trims. I know initially in HDR we were trying to use right and left eye settings in 3d to support the hdr trim.

  • Joey D’Anna

    Thanks! I just leave the project on defaults across the board since I don’t use the project based color management.
    The only thing to be aware of is when outputting things like MP4s, you need to set the metadata flags accordingly.
    But switching the timeline space in the project settings wouldn’t harm anything either.

  • Greg Greenhaw

    If you could attach a output color space to a project, Resolve could let you limit a node to affect a certain output colorspace

  • Balaji G

    Hey Joe,

    Currently starting an HDR Project with above ACES workflow in YRGB Color Managed Pipeline. I have an doubt to be clarified.

    Currently my Project is set to YRGB CM with Timeline and Output ColorSpace set to REC 2020 and Gamma to ST2084 with Limit Output Gamut to P3-D65 in Project Settings. In my Node Structure I follow same principle of ACES Transform for both IDT and ODT and in ODT I kept P3-D65 ST2084(1000Nits) for Output Transform and I keep my Ezio CG3146 in PQ_ST2100 Color Space and another Output to LG OLED C9 driving HDR Trigger via AJA Hi-5 4K Plus.

    My question is If my EZIO CG 3146 set to PQST2100 and LG OLED C9 what output Transform I need to set in ODT node?

    If I keep “P3-D65 ST2084(1000Nits)” it looks perfect in both Ezio and OLED C9.

    If I keep “Rec2020 ST2084(1000Nits, P3D65 limited) there is shift in colors in my Ezio monitor alone.

    What would be your suggestion to keep in Ezio and Output Transform?

    Attached Screenshot of my project settings and node structure

  • Jeff B

    Hi Joey, I love this workflow. Nice work. The highlight node is gold!!
    Question though – I’m finding my shots tend to have more noise with ACES then if I grade myself to REC709.
    I’m shooting Panasonic EVA1, vlog. Checked and rechecked my IDT/ODT – (using panasonic v35),
    have you experienced a noise increase using ACES?


  • Ken S

    I had a discussion with some folks at work who mentioned that having the ODT on a Timeline node can change the behavior of dissolves due to how the dissolve curve works underneath the ODT (as opposed to using the ODT in a post group which I don’t like since I use groups often for other things. Do you have any insight on this dissove issue?

  • Robbie Carman

    Hey Ken – def. an issue. This came up on a recent feature doc I worked on and you’re right the curve in CCT makes those dissolve not linear. I didn’t see it at first but it was diving my client NUTs. The fix wasn’t great. We made black solids, placed those above an adjustment layer with the ODT and used fade handles on them. I’m still try to figure out the best way to handle this in the future.

  • Robbie Carman

    Jeff, I’ve actually found this with EVA1 as well (we have a client that shoots on this camera exclusively). My fix has been a CST from the EV1A to Alexa and then run the IDT as Alexa input. So V-Gamut/V-Log > Alexa. The ACES Transform IDT as you point out only has the V35 IDT…I dunno maybe the math is a bit different there but the CST flip first seems to work for me.

  • Norbert L

    In this pipeline where would you put a film emulation lut (like kodak 2393 rec709 d65)?

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