A common problem with underexposed footage is grain. And this could pop up with all types of cameras and all types of lenses. What software from Adobe is best for removing grain from your footage? In this movie, author Richard Harrington walks you through how to remove grain with Adobe After Effects.
- Grain, or noise, is often present in video footage. Particularly footage shot under low lights or with high ISO settings. You'll see this often as dancing pixels. They can be black and white or color noise in a shot. Let me show you what this looks like. In the project, I'll jump up to a higher bin and locate bin eight. Let's just mouse over the panel for a second and press the accent grave key, maximize that panel.
And I'll hold down a modifier key and step into bin eight. And let's open up sequence 8.1. If we take a look at this at 100 percent, it'll be easier to see some of the grain. You'll particularly notice it up here in the sky. The night sky has a lot of dancing pixels. Let's zoom in to 200 percent, there. And you can really see it there, in the flicker and noise.
Well, there's a couple of ways of getting rid of this. I'm going to focus on a solution that's kind of built in. Unfortunately, Premier Pro doesn't have built in noise reduction right now. But you can jump into After Effects and do it there, or turn to a third party filter. We'll use After Effects, first. In my sequence, I'll just right-click on the clip and choose Replace With After Effects Composition. Earlier, we'd explored making an After Effects project. You can use the same project, or choose to make a new one here.
I'll make a new one called Noise. And now it's stored. It opens up and hands the shot off. Let's type in the word "grain". And you'll see: Remove Grain. We can add, match, or remove, and in this case, I just want to get rid of it. So I'll drag the effect on. What happens is there's a preview region. This is initially the only part of the shot that's affected.
Place that near where the problem area is so you can better judge. I'd recommend getting a small spillover, though, into some other parts of the shot. Then, zoom in to 100 or 200 percent to better view that area. Holding down the space bar, you can pan and move if needed. There we go. If you'd like to, you could adjust the size of that preview box to preview a bigger area.
The reason why it's set small initially is so that it takes less time to render. That's a good zone. Now, let's take a look at the settings. Noise Reduction is the amount of noise reduction, and how many passes means: how many times does it go through and clean it up? Rather than using fewer passes and heavier noise reduction, you may choose to go the other direction. You see here that heavy noise reduction leads to a loss of detail.
Let's undo that, and instead do a smaller amount. Let's try 1.5, more or less, and three passes. You also can tell it to go after one channel, or all channels, since noise may be different. Remember, you can view individual channels here. This can make it easier to see the problem with noise. Let's zoom in. In this case, there's the red channel.
And on the right is the preview box. On the left is before. Red, green, and blue. Well, the red channel has the most problem, but blue has some as well. Remember, different channels will show different information. So I'll do a multichannel approach. Fine Tuning allows you to adjust any chroma suppression. Or texture.
Here, you can go after things more aggressively, to remove any color spill. This noise is looking monochromatic to me, more or less, but I do see a few green splotches in here. So a slight chroma suppression comes in handy. Temporal filtering is quite useful. I recommend turning this on, and it will look over multiple frames to try to smooth things out. The Unsharp Mask is render-intensive, but allows you to put some detail back in.
So after an area has had its noise reduced, it's going to try to sharpen. Let's zoom back to 200 percent, here. And that seems to be helping. Sampling also allows you to set a source frame. You can choose where to sample and how many samples are taken, and how large of a size. Usually, most people will let this selection be chosen automatically, but if you want to, you can be very specific. For example, I'll say that there's much more noise up here in the night sky, so it looks up here, rather than at other parts of the image.
Let's fit that into view. There we go. And you'll see that you can control these. So I can adjust where those sample points go. By default, they're all dropped in the middle. But you can drop them into the problem zones, in this case, allowing it to select multiple places. You choose how many samples you need. I think four is going to be enough here.
I've got one at the lower end of the sky, one in the middle, one towards the top, and one in the shadowy well. But that's up to you. When you're ready, you can take a look at this. That looks pretty good. And I'll switch this now, to see the final output. Takes a little bit to process, and it shows me the finished frame. This is a render-intensive filter. So please keep that in mind.
You see here, building the preview at full quality takes some time. But, if we zoom into 100 percent or even 200 percent, and take a look at the problem areas, I'll hold down the space bar here, you see that that night sky is dramatically cleaner. The noise has been reduced. This is not the sort of filter you want to apply on every shot, but it does work well, albeit a bit slowly. When you're done, you can toggle the effect on and off, if you want to see the before and after.
And feel free to save the project and return to Premier Pro to hand off the dynamic link. We'll zoom back out here and fit, and this shot can be rendered using the sequence command or right-click and choose Render and Replace to swap it out with the completed movie.
This course was created by RHED Pixel. We're honored to host this content in our library.
- Fixing white balance and achieving the proper tone
- Achieving proper tone and restoring the correct saturation
- Sharpening video
- Saving corrections as a Look
- Adjust RGB and use Hue Saturation curves
- Balancing color with color wheels
- Relighting a scene using Lighting Effects
- Stabilizing the exposure
- Changing color and neutralizing color
- Removing grain with After Effects
- Fixing overexposed and underexposed footage
- Adding a vignette or border
- Working with raw video, a .R3D file, and a DPX sequence