iOS Devices as Client Reference Monitors

Part I: The iPhone 12 Pro Max as a Consumer Reference Monitor

Part II: iPhone 12 Pro as a Consumer Reference Display (cont’d)

Part III: iOS Devices as Client Reference Monitors

Part IV: Consumer Displays: When Your Client is David Fincher

We’ve already talked about how important smartphones can be when evaluating content made for YouTube. Post-production houses have always used consumer televisions to judge how their shows made for streaming services like Netflix would appear to viewers at home; but, particularly when it comes to productions like music videos and advertisements, clients need to know how their work will look on mobile devices. In the first clip, there’s an interesting discussion regarding clients whose intended audience will be viewing content on an Apple device from the perspective of a colorist and Richard Muller, an accomplished DIT who has worked on feature films and several Netflix productions.

Conversation starts at around 1:36:00

Charles Kline: Just as the industry is moving in that direction towards HDR higher dynamic range, a larger gamut of color, Apple seems to be at the forefront for the masses and introducing that and getting the general public accustomed to seeing that so as as we said a few weeks ago, once you get used to seeing more colors the way that you do in real life what we’re trying to do is get closer to what your eyes see when you’re looking out the window when you see in real life because if you look at a color chart what we are used to in [rec.]709 is very constricted. You know it’s very small to what the eye can actually see so if there is a bit of an upgrade to a P3 space the way that all the Apple monitors are, and iPhones and iPads, it’s getting us closer to real life which is essentially what it’s trying to recreate. As far as trying to grade with an iPad Pro, it’s going to give you a great picture. I wouldn’t suggest it, but that being said, I’ve said this before, I’ve been in sessions where the client knows that all their content is going to be viewed on an iPad or an iPhone or something like that and they will not approve anything until the file is sent to their iPad and they view it there and that depends on the client knowing the final destination of the the content.

Richard Muller: I mean yeah, the way we do things on set nowadays I mean you have a lot of your reference sort of material is sitting there on an iPad or an iPhone or the director is literally when he’s mobile watching the feed on his iPhone or like I’m taking stuff on an iPad to the cinematographer and saying ‘do you want it this way or do you want it this way?’ […] so […] even just on my slightly older iPad Pro, I’m getting enough consistency with the DOP’s cell phone which I might have sent a WhatsApp which is quite a compressed like JPEG to image and like we’re literally looking at stuff side-by-side on our two devices and up against the monitors at the same time. So absolutely, like the iOS devices are increasingly common in terms of like reference devices.

Alex Lindsay: Definitely, if I’m in a situation where I’m talking to somebody who where we don’t have any calibrated monitors if the monitors aren’t calibrated I will trust my iPhone over everything that I see you know like, it it as accurate as a Flanders or a Sony, no. But is it more accurate than all the monitors that aren’t calibrated? Yeah, absolutely, like it definitely hits the color a lot a lot more accurately in my opinion.

And there’s this video with Dado Valentic and colorist Dave Hussey of Company 3.

The discussion of remote work starts at 59:34.

Dado Valentic: So tell me, how did you guys adopt, how do you work at the moment?

Dave Hussey: Right now, I still come into the facility. I have a private entrance and I come in and we have a big building so I really don’t see anyone except for my assistant. We had always done for many years virtual sessions. I was constantly doing color sessions to Chicago, Minnesota, you know, Miami – wherever – so that part of it I wasn’t un-used to but now basically people are viewing on their laptops or ideally uh an iPad Pro and we get on a Zoom call and we do the session and it’s been working very well. I mean, we’ve been doing it.

Dado: What kind of software do you use for them to view the session? Is there an application or internal or what is that?

Dave Hussey: We do stream box.

Dado: Okay, and that runs on a laptop or an iPad as well, right? So they can see you know your live stream as you’re grading – they can see what you’re doing.

Dave Hussey: Exactly.

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