The "One-Click Wonder" Test

I took a professionally shot blue-screen composite, provided courtesy of The Foundry's website sample gallery (Figure 9.29). I then applied the different plug-ins and used only the initial color key selector—the "one click" in our "one-click wonder" test.

Figure 9.29 Here's the original chroma key shot and background for the composite test.

To avoid confusion, I'm listing these in the order in which they appeared earlier in the chapter—starting with Keylight (Figure 9.30). Notice the matte screen with the pointer showing the subtle areas that are masked out, allowing the light reflections from inside the car to show up on the window. As I stated before, if you have the After Effects 7 Pro version with Keylight, you may not need anything else for all-around general keying. The only exception may be dvMatte Pro for those DV clips that cause us so much grief.

Figure 9.30 Keylight does a great job with just a single keying.

Next, I tried Ultimatte AdvantEdge. It provides excellent keying as well, but the matte shows extensive image graininess from the original shot (Figure 9.31). This matte would probably require some refinement to soften the lighter areas a bit before making the final composite.

Figure 9.31 Ultimatte AdvantEdge does an equally excellent job of keying out the blue and leaving the details of the reflections in the matte.

With the first application, zMatte does a basic key, removing all the blue and the highlights as well (Figure 9.32). It would take some adjustments on the mattes to bring back the reflections in the window.

Figure 9.32 zMatte has a hard time distinguishing the subtleties of the matte right off the bat and needs further tweaking of the matte.

dvMatte Pro does a surprisingly decent job on the chroma shot from just the straight keying (Figure 9.33). Because it looks at two keys, I had to actually give it the "two-click" test, but I sampled the same spot in the back window, so as not to lose the reflections on the side window. dvMatte Pro created a somewhat greenish cast over the chroma layer that would need some color correction.

Figure 9.33 dvMatte Pro steps up to the plate and hits a double.

Primatte Keyer seemed to eliminate the reflections in the window, even with a 1-pixel sampling (which I tried in several areas of the window just to see if I could get a better sample). But looking at the matte, it appears that a coarse shading of the reflections remains in the matte (Figure 9.34).

Figure 9.34 Primatte Keyer has a hard time retaining the subtle reflections in the window.

Figure 9.34 Primatte Keyer has a hard time retaining the subtle reflections in the window.

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