Using the Safe Color Limiter Effect in Avid

The Safe Color Limiter Effect in Avid is to help you maintain the integrity of the color in your videos. You may want to set your own limits, or you may be required to on a project. Broadcasters and/or distributors will issue limits for luminance, RGB gamut and composite signal in order to make sure your videos process correctly during the encoding process and transmission. It must look good on a TV monitor. The Safe Color Limiter Effect will help you to stay within those limits.

Step 1: Enabling the Safe Color Function

In order to use the safe color function in Avid, you need to turn it on. While you are in Avid, click on Settings in your menu bar. A drop down menu will appear and then you check or click on safe color. There should be a check mark next to the safe color option indicating it is now enabled.

Step 2: Setting the Values

Now that the safe color option is enabled, a dialog box will appear on the screen. This is where you enter the limits for composite, Luminance and RGB Gamut. There are boxes for low and high for each, so you can easily set your range.

Step 3: Applying the Set Values to Images

Open the Image Category and drag the image you want to apply the limits to over to the Effect Palette. Then, simply click on the segment you want the limits applied to. You can either select one segment, the entire video or just filler.

To select the filler on the entire video, add a new top level video track on the time line. Then drag the color safe option to that empty track.

Step 4: Setting Values in the Effects Editor

The effects editor will let you alter values for all limit types, but they will not change the limits you set up previously in the dialog box for safe color settings. The effects editor also allows you turn the display on the Source monitor on or off by clicking on the option. You can enable the 422 Safe option here as well, which when turned on will do extra checking to make sure every pixel is within range. This option is good to have on when you are working on a project that has very exact limits to meet. To operate faster, you can always turn this option off and get faster processing, but a few pixels might be out of limits.

In order to see which images are not in your color range, the Source monitor will display an analysis of the values set by the Safe Color Limiter. The pixels that are out of range are highlighted in solid colors. Red, Green and Blue indicate the colors are out of the RGB Gamut range, while white will let you know your pixels are in luminance range. The pixels that are out of the composite range will be yellow.

Once the Safe Color Limiter Effect is turned on and the limits are set, you will receive warnings in the Color Correction user interface when the limits are not met. The limits you designate in the dialog box are applied automatically to any images you are checking unless you change them.

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