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How to fix washed out colour after premiere pro export?

 

So I’m sure some of you are wondering why your colour looks just fine in the premiere pro preview window but once you’ve exported your video it just seems more washed out and desaturated with milky blacks. Or when you import your footage into Premiere Pro it looks darker and more contrasty.

It’s no doubt this colour shift is a frustrating experience when you’ve worked so hard on your colour grade but once you’ve uploaded to YouTube or Vimeo it’s just not the same. Don’t worry you’re not the only one, let’s fix this!

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Why is this happening?

 

Now there are a couple different reasons why this could be happening as we all have different editing setups, whether it be a PC or a Mac, the type of external monitor you’re using or even just the platforms/apps you’re playing back on as they can use varying display standards.

Premiere Pro is set up for broadcast quality and assuming your monitor is calibrated for a standard Rec.709 and your footage shot with Gamma 2.4. This is not always the case and let’s be honest, most of us are not exporting or working on videos for broadcast.

Applications are a lot less standardized than monitors and can vary in gamma profiles. Apps like QuickTime or web browsers such as Chrome and Safari are actually set to Gamma 1.96 which is said to play back video in a way that seems closer to what you see in real life, lighter blacks and softer whites.

The miscommunication is happening between the apps and the monitor they’re being displayed on, it’s not your fault.

How to fix this?

 

  1. So the first thing to do is enable a feature called “Display Color Management” in Adobe Premiere Pro. This will coordinate with your monitor’s display settings and make sure it’s displaying in a Rec709, gamma 2.4 profile.

Premiere Pro > Preferences > General > “Enable Display Color Management (requires GPU acceleration)”

how to fix washed out colour export premiere
  1. The last thing you need to do is use a Gamma correction LUT when exporting from Premiere Pro, this correction LUT will make sure to add contrast and some saturation to the final export so that it looked just as it did within Premiere Pro. 

Download the LUT here – Gamma correction LUT

Prepare to export your sequence as you normally would.

File > Export (Command+M or CNTRL+M) will pull up the Export Settings window.

Go to the tab marked “Effects” and you’ll see an option to enable a Lumetri Look/LUT. Check that box, open the drop-down menu, and click “Select…” to navigate to the folder you saved the gamma correction LUT in.

Take note that after selecting the LUT it may say ‘None’ is selected but this is just another common Premiere Pro glitch.

how to fix washed out colour export premiere export settings

Your video should look just the way it was in Premiere without that washed out, desaturated look we all hate haha.

If you ever want to remove this Gamma correction from your final export you can use this reversal LUT here.

I hope this helps and explained how to fix washed out colour after Premiere Pro export. It’s tricky with so many apps and monitors offering different colour profiles. I guess as long as we understand where our content will be displayed and what gamma these applications use, it will allow us to export correctly and make sure what we see in our editing studio is exactly what our audience will see when they view it.

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If you’re looking to spruce up your edits with some cinematic stylized LUTs, take a look at some of our very own unique looks.

5 thoughts on “Solved : Fix Premiere Pro washed out colour export settings.

  1. Letty says:

    Does this process work also for exporting to H.264 Bluray ? My exports from PPro using Media Encoder are brighter than the timeline. When I burn to disc, the image is always washed out on the hdtv screen. (hdtv is calibrated) Thanks for your advice. My PC monitor is calibrated rec709 2.4 gamma, Nvidia card 16-235 color range.

  2. Matty Ross says:

    Bryn, I just wanted to say a huge thank you for this. Am delivering a project this week & this issue was driving me absolutely bananas. THANK YOU SO MUCH. If I could I would knight you for your services to editors!

  3. Arin says:

    Thank you, this did the trick for me! I’ll dive into learning all about color management as I get more advanced, but in the meantime this lets me get good results.

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