Neat Video plugin has been around for ages widely known as one of the best cross-platform noise reduction plugins used extensively by a multitude of video editors all over the world. Beyond any doubt, it can drastically reduce the amount of unwanted noise in your footage, whether you’re using Final Cut Pro X, Adobe Premiere Pro CC or any other of the supported NLEs.
Nevertheless, many folks still find it intimidating to get the most out of the plugin in post often ending up with mixed results. So, if you’re an FCP X user who’s eager to learn how to use the Neat Video plugin in the most efficient way, take a look at this video created by Ryan Nangle below.
To start off, import your footage and add it to your FCPX timeline. Then drag the Neat Video plugin from the effects panel to your clip. In the Effects Properties, click the Select to Open option, and after a few seconds, the Neat Video will open up.
Inside of the interface, you will be presented with a preview of your footage, in addition to a vast array of tools that can help you fine tune the noise reduction accordingly. First, use your mouse and drag around a specific area of the image to sample the amount of noise in the shot.
As you’re creating the reference box, the Noise Level setting will show up on top. Ideally, you’ll want to find an area of your footage that has a level between 2 and 3. Higher values tend to make the noise reduction seem too obvious, while lower numbers may not affect your footage at all.
Once you’ve selected an area in the frame, click on the Auto Profile button. Afterward, select the Auto Fine Tune option. Lastly, go into the Noise Filter Settings and under Spatial, enable Sharpening.
This will allow you to adjust the sharpness of your image, helping you restore any loss in image detail as the denoising took place. After you’ve made your adjustments, click Apply and leave the plugin do the rest for you.
As you can tell from the steps showcased above, the process of using Neat Video is rather simple and straightforward. Do keep in mind, however, that the effect can be very processor-intensive.
Using the plugin will result in slower timeline previews and longer render times. That being said, you may want to consider reducing noise for the final stages of your post-production workflow to avoid frustration and waste of valuable time.