Alexander Starbuck

Using Macbook Pro M1 Max monitor for any sort of grading?

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Hi all,

Recently I got the new MB Pro M1 Max and am using it for my photography and video editing work. No color critical work work here, just a huge desire to properly learn image mastering workflows, so I was wondering:

  • how accurate, if at all, are the Apple display presets (BT.709, P3, ...);
  • when mastering for web, should I switch my display fro Apple XDR to BT.709, dim the room and master like so;

If the second answer is yes, meaning I should switch to BT.709, how would I handle the issue where most smartphones and tablets increasingly implement some flavor of P3 color space? I am struggling to make things look decent on my Macbook, iPhone 12 Pro Max and an older TV from the early 2010's.

Many thanks for any tips! :)

(P.S. I am somewhat educated on the proper worflows and pipelines - I religiously follow Cullen kelly's work but am unsure of how to approach using the Apple hardware. Possibly an external BlackMagic card with a ref. monitor would be the way to go, but for now unfortunately, out of budget)

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Wondering the same! My internet search led me here, but haven't found a good answer yet. I'm traveling and don't have access to my Flanders Scientific at the moment, just and MB Pro M1 Max.

Edited by Rodrigo Balseca
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Hey Guys,

We recently got an LG C2 calibrated to Rec.709 and then did a tiny adjustment to a Pro Display XDR that we have (originally bought for offline editing). 

With the Pro Display in the BT.709 preset and the output colour space in Resolve set to Rec.709-A, to eye it's a perfect match to the C2 (accounting for the fact the Pro Display is an LCD, so blacks/shadows not quite as deep). 

I also have an M1 Max MacBook Pro and everything I've looked at is pretty consistent between it and the Pro Display. There's definitely some bloom in deep shadows depending on what content you're displaying, but that's to be expected for the tech. Also I've noticed the backlight zones don't always keep pace perfectly with the LCD and can go slightly out of sync when there are quick flashes from near black to bright white which produces a momentary green flash. 

Those caveats aside, it seems pretty accurate to me, so in a pinch when you're on the road or if you can't afford a BMD Ultrastudio, OLED, & calibration set up yet it seems like the best option for grading off a built-in monitor. 

I'm sure there are folks with far more expertise and experience who would disagree with me, but that's my two cents. 



Edit: the calibration on the TV was a 5000 patch 3D LUT calibration by a dedicated pro with a Klein colorimeter, not just me with a cheap probe. So I have a high degree of faith in the accuracy of the LG. 

Edited by Matthew Blacklock
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No prob!

Also, assuming you're running Resolve Studio and not the free version, under Preferences > System > General make sure that you have "Use 10-bit precision in viewers if available" and "Use Mac display profiles for viewers" both checked. 

Then as mentioned, with project output colour space set to Rec.709-A and the Rec.709-A tag for the gamma on the delivery page I've avoided the gamma shift in Quicktime/ Everything has looked consistent everywhere I play it back. 

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