The use of creative LUTs has exploded over the last few years. One company that you might not have heard of was there at the start, Picture Instruments. They've got a new FCPX plugin that allows the mixing of up to 5 LUTs in the Inspector. 

Cast your mind back to early 2014 and there were only a few companies making products that dealt with LUTs. A LUT or look-up table is a matrix of numbers that maps one colour space to another. Yes we had to look it up back in 2014 as well!

Back then, a company called Picture Instruments contacted us about a product called Unlimited Filters which allowed the user to build LUTs to be used in third party apps such as NLEs. In 2015 they launched Color Cone, a HCL based colour correction tool that is now available as an FCPX plugin.

Robin from Picture Instruments has got back in touch, this time with another product called LUT Mixer.

Priced at $47, LUT Mixer does exactly what it says on the tin, allowing the user to apply up to 5 LUTs to video and adjust each one. All within one plugin.

'LUT Mixer lets you combine up to five LUTs and apply them to an image simultaneously. You can determine for each individual LUT whether it is processed summed or averaged.

All LUTs which are applied averagely will be combined according to their set intensity then normalized to an overall intensity of 100% and eventually added to the remaining LUTs in summing-mode.

The advantage of this approach is that when you change the intensity of one individual LUT within the average-group you don’t have to check whether summing several LUTs will cause individual color channels or the overall brightness to clip (granted that each individual loaded LUT is not already over-saturating).'

So isn't that the same as applying 5 instances of the creative LUT effect stacked up in the inspector? No, and this video explains why. (Shame it is not in FCPX)

Clever, also quite a bit of maths going on in that plugin.

The plugin is $47 each for an Adobe Premiere & After Effects or Final Cut Pro X licence. There is a bundle price for both of $66.