Still Getting WASHED OUT Images? Use These Export Settings To Fix It!

Have you ever experienced the frustration of getting washed out images after exporting them? Well, worry no more! In this blog, we are going to discuss the common issues that lead to washed out images and how to fix them with the right export settings. Whether you are a professional photographer, a graphic designer, or simply a social media enthusiast, getting the perfect image quality is essential. We will delve into the technical aspects of image exporting and share the best export settings to ensure your images look vibrant and true to their original colors. Say goodbye to washed out images and enhance the visual appeal of your work with these export settings!

Still Getting WASHED OUT Images? Use These Export Settings To Fix It!

Still Getting WASHED OUT Images? Use These Export Settings To Fix It!

Isn’t it so frustrating when you spend a ton of time editing a video, making sure that every minute detail is absolutely perfect, and then when you go to export and upload it, it looks completely different? If this sounds like you, then you’ve probably fallen victim to the dreaded export damage shift issue, And I’m gonna show you how you can fix it, like actually fix it in DaVinci Resolve without having to use LUTs or plugins to compensate. And while I’m at it, by popular demand, I’m going to give you my export settings for high quality video uploads. So, secure the cup, and let’s dive in.

System Settings

There are three parts to fixing this issue. There are system settings, color management settings, and export settings that you need to change. So first, let’s go into the system settings. The first thing that you wanna do is go to the DaVinci Resolve menu, choose preferences, and go to the general tab. Inside the general tab, there are two settings that you wanna make sure you have checked.

  • The first is the use Mac display color profiles for viewers. This pretty much does what it says on Apple computers. You have a display profile, which is kind of like a LUT for your screen, and when you Calibrate your monitor, it will automatically create this profile and apply it. Inside DaVinci Resolve, if we don’t have this selected, the colors that it applies to what we see are different. So if we want the colors to look the same inside DaVinci Resolve as they are outside, like in a separate video Player or on YouTube, then we wanna make sure this option is clicked so that it uses those profiles while we’re editing.
  • For those of you on PCs, my understanding is that Windows doesn’t actually have a system level profile like macOS, but I also haven’t used a PC in almost 20 years. So leave a comment down below if you wanna share some info on what you see in this settings box.
  • The next setting that we wanna make sure is enabled is automatically tag Rec.709 scene clips as Rec.709A. This is more of a precaution than anything, but we’re gonna talk more About Rec.709A in a bit.

Color Management Settings

The next settings that you need to configure are your project or timeline color management settings. The reason that I say project or timeline is because being able to do color management at the timeline level is a new feature as of Resolve version 18, so this might be new to you. For the project level settings, you can hit Shift-9 or click the cog in the bottom right. Then you wanna go to the color management tab where we’ll find the settings that we’re looking for. Now, for the sake of keeping things simple, I’m not gonna dive too deep Into color management and color manage workflows because it’s a lot of info, but if you wanna see a video on that alone, leave a comment down below.

The most important thing for our purposes today is the output color space, which typically for social media you may have heard should be Rec.709 Gamma 2.4, But we’re actually gonna change it to Rec.709A and we’ll talk about why that keeps coming up soon, I promise. As for your timeline color space, I like to work in DaVinci Wide Gamut color space because it gives me a bit more flexibility, but if you have no idea what that means Or why you might want it, you can just choose Rec.709A in that field too and you should be fine. And if you’re already using a color-managed workflow, the same thing applies. Choose whatever timeline color space you’d like, but choose Rec.709A as the output color space.

To choose these settings on a timeline basis, Right-click on your timeline in your media bins and then click timeline settings. Uncheck the use project settings box and then you’ll be able to set individual color management settings for that specific timeline under the color tab.

Export Settings

So now that we’re all set up, we can color grade our project, confidently knowing that We’ve got all our settings in place, but the final step that is super important is our export settings. Heading to the deliver page and because I get asked this a lot, like a lot, I’m going to talk you through my basic export settings. If you wanna create a new preset, click custom export And then you can copy these settings once you’ve got all the settings in, you can click the three dots and save as new preset to save those settings.

For YouTube, I choose MP4 under format and H.264 under codec. I know that YouTube can now accept H.265, but H.264 is still more widely compatible And because I might wanna do other things with the videos, I prefer to have an H.264 still. Then for resolution, I choose 3840 by 2160 Ultra HD because that’s what I film in and that’s what my timeline is set to. Under frame rate, I choose 23.976 because again, that’s the Frame rate I film in and edit my timelines in. Under quality, I click restrict to and I type in 80,000 kilobits per second, which is more than the recommended setting for YouTube uploads, but I find that the quality still looks great after upload and it also gives me a higher quality file In case I want to cut pieces out or do other things with it afterwards. Everything else in this section, I just leave as default.

And the only thing that changes for me when I’m making vertical videos for reels, shorts, or TikTok is that my resolution is 1920 by 1080 And then I select use vertical resolution and then I set my restriction to 16,000 kilobits per second. That seems to work pretty well for me, but the most important setting to check when talking about that gamma shift is under the advanced settings dropdown. Under here, you’ll see a spot for color space tag And gamma tag. Technically, if you’ve set everything else up right, you can leave this as same as project, but I generally change them just in case.

As I mentioned before, you may have chosen Rec.709 and Gamma 2.4, but we’re going to choose Rec.709 and Rec.709A, and here’s why. There’s one little tiny thing Inside the information of the file that changes the way that a video player will read these files. If I export a file as Rec.709 Gamma 2.4 and I choose to get the info on that file under color profile, it says 121. But what we want for video players like QuickTime and websites like YouTube to read the file and display it properly is for that to say 111. Now, if I export another version as Rec.709 and Rec.709A, and I check the info, guess what we see? 111. And if we switch back and forth between what I’m seeing in DaVinci Resolve and then what I See in QuickTime, the Rec.709A version is identical, whereas there’s a minor shift in the blacks of the Gamma 2.4 version. That being said, it is a much more minor change than it would have been if we didn’t choose that use Mac display color profiles for viewers setting earlier. But more importantly than QuickTime, When we upload it to YouTube, the Rec.709A version is again basically identical to what we’re seeing in Resolve with the exception of any minor changes that you might get from YouTube compression. And there’s nothing you can do about that. But we are definitely not getting that massive shift in color and our image Doesn’t look washed out after upload like it did before.

As always, if you have any questions or things you want me to cover in a future video, leave a comment down below. If you found this video helpful, give it a like, subscribe, check out this other video that I definitely think would Be perfect for you. Thanks so much for watching!

Still Getting WASHED OUT Images? Use These Export Settings To Fix It! – FAQ

Q: Why are my images appearing washed out?

A: The washed-out appearance of your images may be due to incorrect export settings.

Q: How can I fix the washed-out images?

A: Follow these export settings to ensure your images appear vibrant and not washed out:

  1. Export format: Choose a format that supports higher color bit-depth, such as JPEG or PNG.
  2. Color profile: Use the sRGB color profile for web-based images, as it is widely supported by browsers.
  3. Resolution: Opt for a resolution suitable for web usage, typically 72 or 96 pixels per inch.
  4. Compression: Adjust the compression level to achieve the desired image quality without significant loss of color information.
  5. Brightness and contrast: Make necessary adjustments to the brightness and contrast to enhance the image appearance.

Q: Are there any specific WordPress settings I need to consider?

A: When using WordPress, ensure that you are using the correct image dimensions as defined by your theme to prevent automatic resizing, which can lead to quality loss and washed-out images.

Q: Can I use image editing software to correct the issue?

A: Yes, you can use image editing software like Adobe Photoshop to adjust the image settings and export them with the recommended settings mentioned above.

Q: Are there any other factors that can cause washed-out images?

A: Yes, in some cases, monitor calibration or display settings on different devices can affect how images appear. However, optimizing your export settings will ensure better consistency across various screens.

Q: How can I test if the export settings have resolved the issue?

A: After exporting the images with the corrected settings, upload them to your website or view them on different devices to confirm if the washed-out appearance is resolved.

I hope you find useful my article Still Getting WASHED OUT Images? Use These Export Settings To Fix It!, I also recommend you to read my other posts in my blog at this link.

If you need help with anything join the community or do not hesitate to contact me.

Best of luck! and follow your passion.

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