Dehancer 5.3 Improved Grain

With update version 5.3, Dehancer introduces significant changes to the Film Grain tool:

1. The dependence of the optical resolution on the resolution of the timeline has been fixed. Now with a timeline size less than 4K the image no longer has a blurry look, and the maximum value of Film Resolution = 100 provides full detail of the source footage.

2. The distortion, which could slightly change the scale of the image and cause it to shift by a few pixels, has been fixed.

3. Added Negative / Positive processing mode switch.

Negative
An improved grain algorithm. The grain is more pronounced in the highlights and the image has a slightly higher microcontrast, which is more typical for negative films.

Positive
This old algorithm, slightly improved, reproduces a softer grain, which is less pronounced in the highlights and more typical for reversible positive films.

4. A new grain type and the corresponding Analogue / Digital mode switch has been added.

Analogue
The ‘legacy’ type of grain. Requires more processing power.

Digital (Experimental)
Additional (new) type of high performance simplified grain. It can be useful for dithering tasks (for example, to eliminate the posterization of 8-bit videos from drones), as well as for low-resolution projects, rendering for Youtube, etc.

Grain adds texture to an otherwise squeaky clean, sterile digital image and, as HDR is rather unforgiving, is all but indispensible for hiding imperfections in complexions, makeup, graphics, visual effects and prosthetics. Another seldom discussed aspect of grain is that it’s in constant motion, breathing life into each and every frame. Many find grain pleasing, as it mimics the look of photochemical film. However, as the aggressive compression algorithms of video sharing platforms like YouTube absolutely destroy high frequency detail, turning the voluptuous grain seen on the monitor in the grading suite into unsightly macroblocking, it may be preferable to not add grain to projects at all. After all, we can’t recall a single instance where a viewer, however sophisticated, complained of the absence of grain in a YouTube or Vimeo video but there have been countless criticisms of the way grain has been botched on Blu-ray discs and on streaming network shows.

If, in spite of the preceding, you decide to forge ahead and add grain to your project anyhow, a monitor with as many pixels as the signal format to be displayed is indispensible. Additionally, the appearance of grain should only be judged on a screen large enough to allow viewing at 1.5X picture height.

Download a comparison between Dehancer 5.3 grain and DaVinci Resolve grain here. It’s well-nigh impossible to see how the plug-in compares to Resolve on something like the MacBook Pro Liquid Retina XDR mini-LED, which is why we recommend throwing the clip on the timeline of your favorite NLE, setting it up for HDR and viewing on an external UHD monitor or television set.

10 thoughts on “Dehancer 5.3 Improved Grain

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  1. I installed the try it version of Dehancer and it seems better and more subtle than FilmConvert, especially concerning the film simulations.
    I made some tries with the grain tool but didn’t get something good until now.
    I watched the Brandon Li video about Dehancer and he has not bad results.
    But for now, I don’t think I purchase a license excepted if I get correct results.

      1. Yes, it seems Vimeo is better for that.

        The overall image look I get is too much digital.
        Too much sharpness?
        Lack of grain?
        Colors too much normalized / lack of film colors?

        The “details” and “noise reduction” settings of my XT3 are set at the minimum value of -4 but it’s not enough to reduce the sharpness aspect.

        When shooting:
        Should we stop using more and more sharp lenses and prefer lenses with character?
        Should we use a kind of Black pro mist filter for softness?

        About motion:
        I rarely respect the 180 degree shutter angle rule because of:
        – rare (unexisting?) ND filter without any color casting (despite the marketing of the brand).
        – they must be IR resistant so that blacks don’t turn magentas.
        – Screwable ND filters are difficult to install on the field. If we add a magnetic layer, it generates vignetting.
        – Square ND filters must be used with a matte box without any light getting inside by the edges.
        This makes the natural motion aspect not so easy to respect without side effects (Of couse I didn’t mentioned if used, the AF accuracy is affected).

        In post processing:
        Should we add softness?
        Should we add grain?

      2. I usually reduce sharpness a bit when adding grain. I’m not a big fan of screw-on ND filters either, but when I do use them, I try to leave them on for the duration of the shoot. I dislike any diffusion filters that make the image noticeably soft. For colors, you might want to try split-toning and see how you like that. Cullen Kelly also has a Kodak 2383 LUT you can download for free on his website.

      1. Ok, I understand.
        That would be interesting to see if the effect is better that the one generated by Resolve tool.

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