Magic Lantern RAW Workflow – By

I am a fan of Brandon Li’s work over at because he is about telling stories without letting the gear get in the way.  In fact, he is about minimizing the gear to help tell the stories better.  I feel the same way.

He just posted his current Magic Lantern RAW* workflow here:

Check out his RAW workflow and his work when you get a chance.

Some tips that stood out to me:

His exposure tip to protect the highlights:  Use the ML Zebras to watch for overexposed highlights but don’t be afraid to overexpose if your subject is in the shadows because pulling up in post introduces too much noise.

Use ML Zebras to guide you to protect the highlights.  Image from

Also, he just does a Rawmagic convert to CinemaDNG’s, then a ProResHQ transcode in DaVinci Resolve, and then edit and finish in FCPX.  No roundtripping.  And based on his results, looks really good.

Personally, RAW is currently still very cumbersome for most of our gigs.  Certainly the results are awesome but in terms of cost of time and resources (in production and post-production), it is not necessary in most of our current gigs.  Perhaps if/when FCPX can edit the ML RAW files natively, then we shoot more gigs in this format.  Regardless, there are some great tips in Brandon’s post.

*RAW – yes, I know it’s not an acronym.  But I prefer RAW over raw to denote the format is capturing all the sensor data as opposed to footage straight out of the camera like the raw H.264’s instead of the RAW images.  I hope that makes sense.  If you disagree, I understand and we will have to just disagree on this one.  No hard feelings.