This is the first industry newsletter that I actually rush to my email on Sunday to check for. I have so much junk mail that never informs me of anything, but the Tao has seriously ignited my already burning crave to be a colorist.

Shawn P.
Welcome to the Home of:

The Tao of Color Grading Newsletter

A weekly newsletter about the craft and business of Digital Color Grading.
Delivered for your Sunday morning coffee.

privacy We value your privacy and never spam you

Editors, Finishers, Colorists, DITs (and your assistants)...

Scroll down to read our most recent Newsletter:

(emailed on Sunday at 3:05 am, New York time)

Curated by Patrick Inhofer, Colorist | Mentor

Issue CDLXXIII: The GaiaColor Edition

The Tao of Color Grading Newsletter

Curated links of news, reviews, thoughts, career advice, and humor for professional Video / Film Colorists & Finishers. Delivered Sundays.
Sunday, 28 February 2021 | Web Archives | [email protected] Team Page
From The Publisher
When I sat down this week to recalibrate my FSI DM250 (sadly, discontinued) I re-discovered a recent firmware update for all DM- series FSI displays that enabled 'GaiaColor AutoCal', which is automatic volumetric calibration on-board the display.

In sum: Attach a supported probe into the back of the reference monitor, choose AutoCal from the display's menu, and it'll profile your display in under 10 minutes - no other hardware or software required (except for verification).

After that,  choosing any combination of Color Space, Gamma, Color Temp, and Color Matching Function results in an initial 10-second delay as the monitor calculates the proper display LUT - and saves it internally for instantaneous recall. Put another way: You spend 10 minutes profiling the display and these displays will generate highly accurate viewing LUTs on-the-fly, for any combination of viewing settings, as you need it.

It's a brilliant solution. I shared this news in the Newsletter late last year but hadn't tested (and forgot about it) until this week.

This reminded me again of why we pay premium dollars for professional displays. Of course, you will need a high-end colorimeter (X-Rite meters are not supported since they don't store matrices internally, as required for this workflow). You will need calibration software if you want to verify the accuracy of the calibration. You can read all about this process on FSI's website, which also shares the validation charts.

GaiaColor AutoCal is just another reason why I love having Flanders Scientific as a sponsor.

Happy Grading!

I'll see you next Sunday.
(and remember - if you have a story that's a fit for this Newsletter, hit reply or email it to '[email protected]'! Include a quick reason for the suggested link.)

- Patrick Inhofer
Colorist | Publisher | Coach

Join the 'Color Cartel' Protein Folding Team - [email protected] allows you to donate the spare CPU cycles of your rig to the scientific fight against coronaviruses and cancers! The Tao Newsletter's Color Cartel is a Top 5% team and climbing. Join [email protected], set up an account, start 'folding', and connect to The Color Cartel team.
The Craft
Featuring the work of creative craftsmen, the theory of color, and industry news. Learn practical workflows, useful theories, and actionable insights from existing (and emerging) leaders and teachers in our industry.

How some big cities are re-opening: "Cinemas in England, Quebec and New York City are setting dates to reopen their doors, albeit with reduced capacity and, in some cases, prohibited concession sales."

(forum) Colorist Marc Wielage posts: "My acquaintance, videotape restoration whiz David Crossthwait over at DC Video, just posted a fascinating document I had forgotten about: our rate card from Complete Post 25 years ago."

It's safe to say, our rates haven't kept up with inflation - but I suspect our massive drop in infrastructure costs make up for a significant part of the difference. Of course, increased talent supply due to those reduced infrastructure costs also suppresses wage gains... although the increase in the amount of content being produced helps to support a larger talent pool (macroeconomics is dizzying).

Get it done, Faster, Better and Cheaper with the OWC Flex 8
OWC's New Award-Winning ThunderBay Flex 8 Powerhouse Solution Is Now Shipping

This Industry-first Thunderbolt™ 3 storage, docking, and PCIe expansion solution (with 85w charging) is dollar for dollar, the best way for serious media professionals to handle their storage, connectivity, and PCIe expansion needs.

All eight bays can utilize SATA 6Gb/s 2.5-inch SSDs or 3.5-inch HDDs. To take advantage of 40Gb/s PCIe technology, the top four bays are NVMe U.2 SSD ready.

The OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 is a recipient of the 2020 Future Best of Show Award, presented by Video Edge. Video Edge awarded the ThunderBay Flex 8 their Special Edition Best of Show Award in the store, charge and connect category.
Learn more at
The Tools
Our craft keeps changing. And growing. Learn about updates to your favorite software. Discover new tools to help you work faster or more creatively. Build your toolchest with new techniques and approaches. 

This is a bit confusing... Resolve 17.1 beta 10 got released this week, alongside the 'final' not-beta Resolve 17.0. It took me a few minutes to figure out why my install still said 'Public Beta' until I realized I downloaded the universal binary. Resolve 17.1 was buggy on my Intel Mac, so I switched to the 17.0 final release.

If you've not been following along, this post is a quick summary of what's new in Resolve 17.

(video) Like the headline says.

"This third article illustrates a few tricks for dual-monitoring in HDR and SDR, talks about color grading HDR vs. SDR, and goes through a few pitfalls that can occur."

It looks like this malware isn't yet actively doing anything other than calling home' - but it is infecting and can be detected and removed. More details in the article.

"Apple has filed a trademark update that paves the way for a future Final Cut Pro subscription." At this point, speculation based on an EU trademark update.

Sponsor is the only good way to make end credits.
Want to see what we're all about?

 TAO newsletter subscribers get to skip the waitlist. 
Get your free ENDCRAWL demo project.
Pushing Photons
These stories are from's membership Library of color grading articles, tutorials, and podcasts (Tao Of Color is co-Owner). Do you want to read a story listed here but not a member? Sign up for a free 7-Day Test Drive.​​​ There's also color correction Practice Projects for purchase.

"How much should a post production artist charge for their work? Learn an easy step-by-step process that gives you confidence in your rates." Written by well-known post production workflow specialist and mentor, Katie Hinsen.

(video) "In the finale of the series, colorist Peder Morgenthaler puts what we've learned into action creating 3 looks with the Color Warper."

"Learn the basics of 3D printing, and how you can use it to improve your post production environment with custom upgrades."

Flanders Scientific XM310K Professional HDR Grading Display
The XM310K has a peak luminance of 3,000cd/m2 making it one of the brightest HDR mastering monitors on the market.

It supports both PQ and HLG EOTFs, multiple color gamut selections, and a contrast ratio in excess of 3,000,000:1. The XM310K is ideal for a wide variety of demanding HDR workflows.
Gear Heads
Stay updated on the latest hardware that's shipping - because the craft of color grading isn't just about software. Plus, keep an eye on future equipment trends and hardware odds-and-ends.

Editor Kevin P. McAuliffe details his PC configuration (and his thinking behind it) in this build guide.

Are you in need of upgrading your secondary system and have an eye on the Mac Mini? There are some good tips in here about the M1 (with limited RAM upgrades) versus the Intel Mac Mini.

This is a nice introductory article into this high-performance storage concept. It's a good bookmark for sharing with editors, assistants, and clients when they ask you about this.

"Black reproduction is among the best we’ve seen in an LCD television. High dynamic range (HDR) images are presented with nicely defined dark shadow detail and pleasingly inky blacks, though, as mentioned, the technology still exhibits some light blooming (or haloing) around bright white objects on black backgrounds."

But how bad is that haloing compared to other LCDs? Click through to find out. At the same time, get a first look at the new consumer display tech that our friends are sure to ask about.

Sunday Fun(nies)
Random thoughts, tidbits, and fun stuff that caught my attention this week. Maybe it's color grading related. Maybe not. Ya got'ta read to the end of the Newsletter to find out.

(video) With 30 million views over 7 years, this is new to me: "Salut Salon is a German musical quartet that plays classical music with a "passionate virtuosity, instrumental acrobatics, charm and a great sense of fun." Agreed.

I think I can: "If you have . . . fears about fermenting your own pickles, I’m here to assure you that you’re a damn adult and you can be trusted with this process." Have fun!

This is new to me... making a digital asset, unique: "Using blockchain technology, NFTs designate an official copy of digital media, which then can be sold by artists, musicians, or sports entities to make money on content that would otherwise be cheap or free." More interesting than fun.

Th- th- th- that's all folks! I'll see you next Sunday.