FilmConvert's popular Nitrate plugin is now available for Final Cut Pro X. The original FlimConvert software has been a hit among filmmakers since its debut, and is compatible with all the major non-linear editors, including Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects AVID Media Composer, and DaVinci Resolve for Mac or Windows users.
Nitrate is the next iteration of the software, offering Cineon Log film emulators, custom curve control, and grain control. It's still in the process of finding its way across all editing platforms, but it is more robust than the original software. The plugin allows editors and filmmakers to replicate the color effects of different film stocks and camera profiles, regardless of the camera it was shot on. Nitrate offers 6 different camera profiles including ARRI, Blackmagic Design, Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, and even DJI to simplify workflow.
Nitrate is ideal when you want to match footage from 2 different cameras or want to make the sensor of one camera look like another. Let's say you shot B-roll with a Canon and want to match it with the color profile of an ARRI or a Panasonic. Instead of dialing in the grade yourself, Nitrate does the work for you, while still allowing you to fine-tune the footage.
The plugin also emulates 19 different film stocks, including Kodak 5207 Vision3, Kodak TrX 400, and Fuji Vivid 8543. While never an exact match, the emulations are a solid starting point. The grain layers are scanned at 6K and are not simply an overlay image. Instead, they are based on calculations of the underlying colors to replicate the natural characteristics of the film stock. If you've used Red Giant's Magic Bullet Looks, the software that offers 22 film stocks and 4 print stocks, Nitrate works very similarly. It gives you the "look" without breaking the bank.
Nitrate includes all of the Cineon Log versions of the original film stock, meaning you can control the contrast or saturation of the film stock while keeping the authentic film stock colors. It also gives you full curve control of the film stock, allowing you to modify highlights, shadows, or roll-offs. The plugin is compatible with Log images, so you can maintain the highest dynamic range throughout the grade. On top of that, the grain can be adjusted via highlights, mid-tones, or shadows.
Now, plugins like Nitrate shouldn't replace the color grading process entirely, but if you don't know where to start, it's a viable option. FilmConvert offers a free trial of the software but costs $119 thereafter depending on the bundle. At the time of publishing, Nitrate is only available for Premiere, After Effects, DaVinci Resolve, Final Cut, and Motion. Versions for AVID Media Composer and Photoshop will arrive at a later date.
Have you used FilmConvert or the new Nitrate? What are your thoughts on its emulation? Let us know in the comments below.