iMovie's Brightness adjustment sucks... why does VLC so much better job?

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by Quotenfrau, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. Quotenfrau macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2011

    i have a lot of dark video clips which I tried to brighten up. I tried with iMovie, but the results are terrible. VLC has so much better results, but I can't save the new version of the file :mad:


    Does VLC uses ffmpeg for Brightness filters? If yes howto do that on CLI?

    If no howto save new version of video (but with more Brightness)? What's the best freeware or open source software for Brightness control?
  2. daybreak macrumors 6502a

    Sep 4, 2009
    You have dark videos and you are transferring them into VLC format and they are better quality?. That is how i'm reading your post.
    If the video was shoot in the dark are you planing to edit them with iMovie?.
    VLC is not a editing software.
  3. Zwhaler macrumors 604


    Jun 10, 2006
    This option might be overkill but check out DaVinci Resolve Lite, it is free and has advanced grading tools on top of basic 3 way color and brightness adjustment not to mention Hue vs Luminance adjustments and loads of other tools.
  4. Quotenfrau thread starter macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2011
    Thank you. I am not a video pro. 302.18 MB software download and 51.52 MB manual is really overkill for me.

    But at least it's free.


    is the correction as simple as in VLC? Some sort of auto-correction?
    Do I need to learn hours or even days bevore I can user the software?


    Yes I have a lot of dark videos and brighten them up with VLC and iMovie. The VLC results are very good, but the iMovie results are terrible. I know that VLC is a player and iMovie and editing software.

    I ask what other tool should I use for brightness control. I love open source tools and I am not a video pro. It should be some sort of easy software.
  5. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2007
    You haven't explained what's bad about iMovie/good about VLC, but before you go installing and having to learn new software, see if iMovie has a 'gamma' adjustment, and try using that instead of 'brightness'.
  6. Quotenfrau thread starter macrumors 6502


    Mar 6, 2011
    I can't exactly describe what bad and good. I am only an end user who says the result is bad or good. There is a big quality difference between VLC and iMovie.

    See screenshot:


    I clicked auto - and adjusted brightness by "try and error" (there is a preview). I don't see gamma adjustment.
  7. Artful Dodger macrumors 68020

    Artful Dodger

    May 28, 2004
    In a false sense of reality...My Mind!
    You also have an issue where there is not the full adjustments showing in your screen shot. You should also have a red, green, blue adjustment to help out. I do not see that between the other two adjustments, not sure why.

    Most use VLC to watch the playback of video however your video is dark as others have mentioned and your levels are slammed so when you go to "brighten them up" iMovie can only do so much before the video looks like total crap.

    Think of it as you are trying to lighten up black, it starts to turn into shades of gray and then into white eventually. This is no different than using paint, drawing or when color correcting in video unless you have a good base and a good point to start with. Take a still shot and iPhoto, PS or Aperture and the same thing will happen.
  8. daybreak macrumors 6502a

    Sep 4, 2009
    I think iMovie 9 was not a very good software. Looking at your screen shot of the video you will not be able to bring it up to the standard you require. Try playing around in altering the shot to "Black" and see what that looks like.
    You stated iMovie brightness sucks? also dont forget the person who took those shoots.
  9. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2007
    'Exposure' looks to be the equivalent of 'gamma'. You could also try moving the "100%" Levels slider towards the clumped up colours on the left.

    It's difficult to make suggestions because the VLC screencap in your original post doesn't look like a good result to my eye. Can you post a screencap of the results in iMovie?

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