What is a LUT? Look Up Tables explained.

color, Color Grading, Custom LUTs, Look Up Table, LUTs

What is a LUT -Look Up Table

What is a LUT is a common question.

In image processing:  a LUT – A Look Up Table, is employed to control and assign, or convert and change, the color value of pixels. Read more below,…

A Look Up Table is also used in numerous computer sciences along with image processing. A LUT is a mathematical technique to aid in all sorts of computations.

Look up tables perform the role of converting colour from one space to another. Anytime you adjust any colour or luminance in a digital file, you are essentially adjusting the values in a Look Up Table.

In video editing and production, a LUT plays a vital role at the beginning of optimising and realising color and luminance.

Installing an accurate  LUT at the start of your video editing not only provides a full tonal range and accurate color, but it provides the absolute best starting point for you to refine and customise your color fully.

Once your camera has captured your data (video, photo, or footage)  and after importing that data into your video editing software, we are in the initial stages of converting that captured data and a LUT can be applied. A correctly installed global Look Up Table performs a vast array of editing adjustments to provide the best color platform for additional and further refining.


An accurate custom LUT designed for your captured footage will always be more accurate than a pre-paid one.


See – What is a Raw File? to understand more about the process.

See why pre-made LUTs are not a wise choice

Managing and adjusting color can become incredibly complex in photography due to the enormous amount of choice available for color spaces, but with video, it’s actually a lot more straight forward.

As you may of gathered by now, here at ViolaFrank we’re really not interested in blowing you away with our depth of knowledge of color management and processing. We are more concerned about teaching you how to manage all that data that the camera sensor records, as per the engineers that have to made that sensor, and how to deal with that data product the camera provides, all in the hope that we all make beautiful work.


Because that’s what we’re here for right?  Making beautiful color outputs.


Further Reading:

The advantages of a custom LUT

Why premade LUTs are not a wise choice.

Dynamic range and LUT’s

Color Grading or Color Correction

Visual Perception

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