Sapphire Drop Shadow on Avid imported graphics

Working on a 2020.12.3 version of Media Composer.
I have graphics created in AE and exported with straight alpha. (ie not pre-multiplied).
Avid always expects straight alpha but when you drop the Drop Shadow effect onto the clip it breaks.
It does work however if the clip has Pre-Multiplied alpha from AE but, was that always the case? Maybe I’ve always been given Pre-Mult graphics and never realised before.
Is there a way to apply the Drop Shadow effect to a straight alpha graphic and get the same result?
Tim

Hi, sorry i don’t have AE or Avid but in my editors (Vegas Pro & Hitfilm Pro) it doesn’t seem to matter if the alpha is Straight or premut when applying S_DropShadow, both work.
I’m just curious & was waiting for you to get a reply, did you resolve this?

No, no reply as yet. Very frustrating.

Tim

Hi, Tim,

In my tests I find that Sapphire seems to expect straight alpha, not premult, for imported graphics in Avid. Could you attach a sample graphic file and a screenshot of the output? The Sapphire experts might have a better answer, but if you have access to Continuum as well you could perhaps hack around the issue by applying a null BCC+ effect ahead of S_DropShadow since the BCC+ effects can interpret the alpha.
-Apply BCC+ Blur to the graphic
-Enable Apply to Title Matte
-Set Blur amount to 0.
-Change background to None (so alpha will pass through to the next effect.
-The BCC+ filters have a Title Alpha menu in Avid where you can choose to interpret the filter as either Straight or Premult so you can adjust this to match the source media. Basically the BCC+ filter with blur amount set to 0 is just a trick to ingest the clip with control over the alpha interpretation.
-Now ALT+Drag S_DropShadow onto the clip. By stacking the Sapphire filter this way it will be able to use the live alpha channel passed in from the Continuum filter.

There is probably a more elegant solution, but that might get you going in the meantime. But again a sample graphic and screenshot of your result would be very helpful in making sure we understand the problem.

-Jason

Hi Tim,

Sorry, just catching up on this. Just to confirm, are you alt-dragging (stacking) S_DropShadow onto your clip?

Thanks,
Brian

Thanks for the thought, Jason but this approach doesn’t work.
BCC Blur completely breaks the alpha.
Strangely enough though the BBC Blur did work if I deleted the effect off the imported clip in the timeline then placed the Blur on that clip. Some how it retains the alpha data and blurs the foreground and alpha perfectly. The only problem then is you can’t nest anything on top of that.
Weird behaviour indeed.
Tim

Sorry for the late reply, Brian.
Nesting doesn’t work. This will break the Alpha.
The only thing that did work is to have an pre multiplied graphic. Then the Sapphire effect works as expected.

Tim

Hi, Tim,

Can you please attach a sample image? Your description does not match what we see, so I suspect there is something specific in the workflow that doesn’t match, but we’d like to be sure we’re testing with the exact same media format you are using.

-Jason

Thanks Jason for staying on this.
The company I’m working for (I’m freelance) updated the drivers for their plug-ins and Saaphire now works as it should.

Thanks again for you help.

Tim