Review: Hawaiki Color for FCPX

August 21, 2013

by Jeff Riegel for Tokyo Productions and Lawn Road

Hawaiki Color by Tokyo Productions and Lawn Road is a custom interface with key grading tools within the FCPX effects browser.  Three larger than average tactile color wheels are a great feature with industry standard controls of temperature, exposure, hue, saturation, contrast, blur and sharpen.  Simple up/down sliders affect the warmth (red) or coolness (blue) of your image in the Low-Medium-High-Global range; the sliders actually change color to match warmth and coolness!  As always, it helps to aim for strong color contrast in your grade to help your subject matter ‘pop.’  But if you don’t like the direction you’re going with your grading, a single option-click will reset the parameters to the software default.

A customizable user interface (UI) allows you to alter the view mode to your liking by simply toggling to dim the menu, overlay the image, or sensitivity of the color wheels for finer tuning.

Within the right-side parameter section of FCPX are the saturation, sharpness, blur and contrast sliders that have more rough controls if you’d like to adjust them in broader detail.  A single slider is even available to make quick contrast alterations and ‘Bypass Grade’ toggles on/off to see your original pre-effected clip.  A handy ‘Legalize’ checkbox makes everything broadcast legal.  Nice.

My only suggestion for the next iteration of Hawaiki Color is the ability to save and name a color grade I’ve created for later use in other projects, or perhaps to share with other colorists.

Hawaiki Color is an immersive experience that’s more natural, fast, and convenient than FCPX’s Color Board while adding greater functionality, yet ease, to the often awkward color grading process.   A free trial of Hawaiki Color is available through the free download of Noise Industries’ FxFactory.

Special thanks to Noise Industries and Zazil Media Group for allowing me the opportunity to spend time with their fine products and to share my take on them all.  Come back tomorrow when I describe my time with Ripple Timelines for FCPX.

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