Sony Behaving Badly? - There is no Avid-compatible LUT for Sony's S-Cinetone Camera Settings

 If you work in a professional environment, you're probably used to production DPs insisting on always using the newest, fanciest, most whizz-bang gadgets on the market without ever checking to see if the people they're delivering footage to can actually work with what they're shooting. Usually, the result of this is a few hundred (or thousand) bucks extra cost to post for buying card readers and codecs that aren't pack-ins with Avid.

Ahh, but now there's Sony's "new" (it's a couple years old, actually) S-Cinetone camera setting. And it's a motherfucker. First, I appreciate what Sony is trying to do. They're combining color look-up-tables (LUTs) and gamma information into a single setting on their cameras in order to get their digital video to look as rich and deep as film. Kudos, you spectacular assholes.

What Sony did not do, and which they absolutely fucking should have done, is produce LUTs for editing suites that are able to work with the new S-Cinetone look. I mean, they made some LUTs. They're just not for Avid. Because fuck Avid, right? I mean, yeah, I get it, and yes, fuck Avid, but NOT LIKE THIS! You cannot tell Avid to go fuck itself by refusing to do the thing that is literally your job and hoping that Avid will pick up your own shitty slack. Because if you know anything about goddamn Avid, you know THEY WON'T.

And they didn't. Pick up Sony's slack. At all. Avid, as one should expect, did not do shit. Avid did do something though, and that something was fuck all.

Now, you can go to Sony's website and see that they have some LUTs.

But none of those are for S-Cinetone. Why? Because S-Cinetone isn't strictly a LUT. It's a LUT+Gamma setting. So which LUT to use???

Answer: None of those.

Or you could go to Sony's other website and see that they have color profiles made specifically for S-Cinetone:

But most of these are .art and .cube files for use in their cameras and are NOT compatible with Avid. At the verrrry bottom of the page, there are three actual LUTs, but they don't solve the problem, because it's totally unclear which of the .art and .cube files S-Cinetone actually uses, especially because S-Cinetone also lets the camera op make some adjustments on their end (and doesn't generate a pack-in LUT alongside the footage like a smart person would).

So what can you do? In Avid, the answer is nothing. It just doesn't work. Practically, you can use DaVinci Resolve (which is free, thank goodness) to load up those .art and .cube files and do some proper color-correction (conversion, really) on your S-Cinetone footage, and then export new master clips for use in Avid. Weeeeee.

Thanks, Sony. Very cool. Assholes.


  1. Hi, next month I have to import some terrabytes of S-Cinetone stuff into the Avid and I could not find a Lut or tutorial. So my question is if you have got a new solution in the meantime? Best for you, TM


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