Saturday, November 24, 2012

Quick Links

What difference does a lens make? | Den Lennie | F-Stop Academy
Den compares Canon L lenses with some Zeiss lenses
I prefer the warmth and resolution of the Zeiss lenses.  I think they manage to retain detail particularly when the image is zoomed in even at 400%.  They seem top hold more contrast also.  To be completely fair I did not put every focal length up like for like as I don’t own the full set of Canon Primes but if you are looking for a great set of affordable cine primes then the Zeiss ZF.2 will give you a lot of bang for buck. 

Live 4K in Remote Sports Production Is Still a Way Off | Brandon Costa
| Sports Video Group
“It’s not about technology, and it’s not about equipment [in sports],” said Jerry Steinberg, SVP, field operations, Fox Sports, during a panel on the future of 4K at last week’s Content & Communications World convention. “In the television business, and I emphasize business, it’s about eyeballs. Whether it’s sub fees from homes or advertising dollars, that’s the revenue stream..."

Canon 4K EOS-1DC | Fito Pardo | Vimeo

Camera Tests with Canon EOS-1DC, we tested the camera with various settings, We did not used any cine light, the lighting was available light, the model that we had didn't had all the settings yet, it was still a prototype, so I knew I could not play with some of the setings like slow motion, I was curious, but I just could't.I did mostly tests around the things that us cinematographers encounter in the regular basis, I push the limits in the camera with ISO and shutter speed, I even played with lenses either canon cine lenses, normal canon lenses and lenses that were not from canon, like vivitar and sigma, they look great.

Ikonoskop A-Cam dll vs Blackmagic Cinema Camera – first impressions
| Andrew Reid | EOSHD
The Ikonoskop is a 16mm camera – a considerably smaller sensor size than the Blackmagic Cinema Camera. Classics have been shot on 16mm, but shallow depth of field has become a make or break issue – seemingly to be considered ahead of everything else even overall image quality. To these people I say please look at the Sony NEX VG-900 and tell me that sensor size is still the most important aspect of a cinematic image! 

The Kessler Shuttle Pod Mini - Features, Assembly & Use | Preston Kanak | Vimeo
The video above showcases the features, assembly and use of the Kessler Shuttle Pod Mini.
The Kessler Shuttle Pod Mini is a smaller, easier to transport version of the original Shuttle Pod. It is about half the size and half the weight of its big brother, yet still provides the versatility needed to get the manual or motorized shot you require.
In the kit seen in the video, 6’ of track was used. However, the track sections are available in 2’, 3’ and 4’ lengths and can be connected end to end to achieve any length desired. It is recommended that you support the track at least every 4’.

So beyond the technical capabilities, what’s it like cutting multi-camera footage in Premiere?  Well, if you like multicam editing in FCP 7, I can only say that Premiere is just as good and a whole lot easier to set up.  For me FCP 7 always fell down when you tried to multicam with non-continuous clips.  By that I mean, occasionally we’re supplied with rushes from a concert or performance where camera ops start and stop.  Obviously this is not ideal, but it happens.  

More Artist Exploitation | MARK MAYERSON | Mayerson On Animation
While I suspect this is more of a defensive move to prevent people from suing them for using ideas that seem similar - rather than a land grab on Sony's part - it does seem a bit of an over-reach:
Essentially, the above states that Sony takes ownership of your portfolio material when you apply for the job. [...]
What's clearly disturbing though, is that any original work in your portfolio becomes their property.  This does not depend on whether they hire you or not, they get ownership because you applied.

$400 off Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Telephoto Zoom Lens | BHPhotoVideo
You can get this lens for $2099 through December 1st.
B & H also now have the Sony NEX-EA50UH Camcorder with 18-200mm Servo Zoom Lens in stock ]$3,599] and the Canon C100 [$6499] is expected by the end of the month.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


BOSCPUG Screens Side By Side with Director Chris Kenneally

Advance RSVP is required to attend:

Save the Date! On Thursday, December 6th, BOSCPUG is excited to bring you a special event exploring the digital cinema revolution as we pose the question,"Can Film survive our Digital Future?" We will begin with a private screening of the documentary SIDE BY SIDE, followed by a Q&A and reception with CHRIS KENNEALLY (Director) & guests.

B & H Black Friday Deals

Bryce Bayer c1929 - 2012

Known as the Bayer Filter, Bayer’s invention is still used in nearly every digital camera, video camera and camera phone on the market today. The Bayer Filter array was patented in 1976 (U.S. Patent No. 3,971,065) and features a checkerboard arrangement of red, green, blue filters that enable a single CCD or CMOS imaging sensor to capture color images.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Quick Links

B-Side: How a Bunch of First-Timers Made a SAG Ultra-Low Feature Without Blowing Up the Garage | Amos Posner | Filmmaker Magazine
We planned to not fix anything in post. Anyone who says “Fix it in post” during production should have to donate a dollar to the crew beer fund. If you don’t plan to fix anything in post, you’ll still have lots to fix. Don’t invite more. 

The Making of legendary skateboarder Danny Way documentary, Waiting for Lightning | Webinar | Adobe
Thursday, December 13, 2012 | 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
See how the video pros behind Waiting for Lightning used high-performance Adobe post-production tools to document the life of Danny Way, one of the world’s most visionary skateboarders. This presentation will cover Bandito Brothers’ digital workflows which relied on After Effects, Adobe Premiere Pro, and other Adobe Creative Cloud tools to tell the story about how much abuse the body can sustain, how deep you have to dig to survive family troubles, and how high and far dreams can fly.

The camera conundrum: which one to buy? | Philip Bloom | Blog
A phrase that is bandied about by a lot people (including me) is ”it’s not the camera”…well yes to a point. There are times when you absolutely need an Epic or an Alexa or a C300, and there are times when a Canon 550d (T2i) will do. Why do you think Roger Deakins shot Skyfall on the Alexa and not say a Canon 60D from Walmart?

XAVC Sonys implementation of Advanced Video Coding | Peter C | Sony Forum
The Sony XAVC format complies with H.264 level 5.2, which video essence is encapsulated in an industry standard MXF OP-1a wrapper, accompanied by audio and meta-data elements. The primary objective in adopting the XAVC format is to develop a family of professional production tools that can economically handle High-Frame-Rate (HFR) HD and 4K imaging formats.

Seeing Things | The Worlds of Stanley Kubrick | Brooke Hodge | New York Times
Massive backlit transparencies are like signposts in the exhibition, leading viewers through the director’s films. Kubrick’s many camera lenses — he was obsessed with technology — are displayed like jewels in cases near the beginning of the exhibition. To tell the story of the range and depth of his vision, each of the films is connected to a theme. 

FCP X and the Future of Editing | David Leitner | Filmmaker Magazine
Final note: I cut a 17-minute documentary one evening last summer (footage I shot) using FCP X on a 17-inch MacBook Pro with an internal 500GB SSD and fast G-Tech 8TB RAID with Thunderbolt. I loaded files, reviewed footage, cut picture, sound, music, added titles and credits, and finished in 11 hours straight. 

Audio Component Editing in Final Cut Pro X | Mark Spencer | Pro Video Coalition
Ok, so last week’s episode pushed to the beginning of this week, and now here we are with this week’s episode just making it by end of the week. Today, Steve Martin from Ripple Training tells me all about the new component-level audio editing feature in the Final Cut Pro X 10.0.6 update. Some good tips in this one, check it out.

FCP X: Two Cautions | Larry Jordan | Blog
Final Cut Pro X has an effect and a composite mode that you need to be wary of when using them in your projects. This article shows you what they are and explains why.

Premiere Pro: Green-screen Keys | Larry Jordan | Blog
Premiere Pro provides several different ways to create this key. In this tutorial, I’ll show you the preferred method: the Ultra key.
The big benefit to Ultra Key is that it is fast and looks great.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Quick Links

The Iron Psyche was shot on the Kinefinity Kineraw camera. This camera records 2k 12bit RAW files to either Cineform or Cinema DNG.
The camera used was an engineering sample and not a production model.
It was edited in Adobe Premiere and the sound mix was done in pro tools.

The EOSHD Blackmagic Cinema Camera Shootout | Andrew Reid | EOSHD
Until now I was very satisfied with my FS100 and the DSLRs but going back to them after the Blackmagic Cinema Camera is very difficult. They look way too digital. 12bit raw is like looking out of a window. Truly film-like. The colours all look odd on the DSLRs now – compressed 8bit just doesn’t cut it any more.
This is the first time DSLRS (and the FS100) are completely outclassed on image quality by a $3000 camera.

Gopro3 vs 5D3 vs GH2 vs Gopro2 camera test | TobyLoc | Vimeo
Please note this test is slightly useless if you don't download the file and watch it at 1080p, Vimeo compression will likely obscure a lot of the differences between these cameras. So, here's another quick camera test in slighly more controlled circumstances. Which image do you prefer and why? In no particular order, these are the cameras used:GoPro3 at 2.7k, Gopro3 at 4k, GoPro2, 5D3, GH2. You don't need to be Poirot to work out a couple of those but getting them all might be more tricky.

I posted this page because a client asked me for a few video files that could be used as a test on their editing system. I decided instead of posting these files privately, I would post them to my website so that others could benefit from using them.
The formats I posted below are from a Red One MX, Sony PDW-F800 & PMW-F3, Canon 5dmk2 & mk3, GoPro Hero2 and Fastec TS3.

RED EPIC Monochrome vs. RED EPIC: a Jaw-Dropping Black and White Comparison | Joe Marine | No Film School
So with that out of the way, what happens if we take off the color filters? It means we no longer have to interpolate any information. Since we’re starting in monochrome, and staying that way, each pixel is represented 1:1 in the final recorded media. This means not only higher resolution, but also finer tonality within the image.

A Lesson in Creative Problem Solving from Underwater Realm | Ron Dawson
| Dare Dreamer
Think outside the box. Yes, yes, I know this term is cliché. This term is so cliché, even saying this term is cliché has become cliché. But when it fits, it fits. Sometimes a solution to a big problem is solved by thinking of it totally different. Watch near the end how they solved the problem of making a 10 meter deep pool look like 30 meters of water, withOUT  computer graphics or special effects to make the water look deeper. 

Sony Forums
Sony has now started a couple of community discussion forums, one for the F5 & F55, and the other for the F65.

And two posts about Sony 4K content:
4K TV: What the heck is it and what can I watch? | Ray Hartjen | Sony Blog
Secondly, while 4K Ultra HD broadcasts aren’t the norm yet, you have already been viewing the first broadcast applications. At one of its NFL games each week, Fox Sports utilizes a Sony 4K F65 Cinealta camera to capture footage for instant replays. When the network enlarges the video to get an up close look at say a receiver tiptoeing a sideline, the video naturally loses resolution, common to enlarging any photo or video.

Sony teases 4K content delivery with 'full-length Hollywood features' for its Ultra HD TV | Sam Byford | The Verge
While there aren't any details on exactly what those movies will be, Sony promises that further news will come after Thanksgiving. Presumably the company will be able to leverage its sizable Columbia Pictures library, but it'll have to go some to justify the $5,000 premium over rival Ultra HD sets from the likes of LG.

Rokinon Cine lenses for Sony E Mount | B & H Photo Video
B & H now has some of the Samyang Cine lenses for the Sony E-mount in stock, under the Rokinon label: Rokinon 24mm T1.5 Cine Lens for Sony E [$749], Rokinon 14mm T3.1 Cine Lens for Sony E [$449] Rokinon 35mm T1.5 Cine Lens for Sony E [$549] Rokinon 8mm T/3.8 Fisheye Cine Lens for Sony E [$349]

Monday, November 19, 2012

Quick Links

Sony 4K cameras: PMW-F55; PMW-F5; XAVC 4K codec; NEX-FS700 4K interface unit | Rick Young | Vimeo
David Young, Product Specialist from Sony Europe, discusses the latest announcements made by Sony of the new 4K capable cameras, the PMW-F55 and PMW-F5, plus the newly announced XAVC codec and 4K RAW recording interface unit for the NEX-FS700E.

FS100 – Ferrari Profile | Sam Morgan Moore | Blog
Tuning the Sony NEX-FS100:
And that is how my FS100 camera is tuned right up. My colour profile is designed for minimal grading.. which means minimal banding, which means a smooth file. But it is contrasty – it wont bear an exposure error, and will get noisy if you up the ISO. This is for accurate shooting and using lights or reflectors when you need them.

Creating a Beauty Light with a Book Light | Shane Hurlbut | Hurlblog
A book light is simply a bounce source that is diffused with another layer of diffusion. It creates an image of an open book. Your light is positioned 45 degrees off of your bounce; then your diffusion layer can be joined at the end of your bounce where your space is limited. You can make a thick book, which will make your light softer because there is more distance between the source and your diffusion layer. Your bounce has now become your source, not your light.

What Display Should I Buy? An Opinion Piece… | Alexis Van Hurkman | Blog
It seems to me that shopping for a color critical display is similar to being an audiophile—you can make yourself crazy searching for the Nth degree of perfection. Unlike audio technology, displays are subject to a concrete standard; Rec 601, Rec 709, or P3 dictating the gamut, and a gamma setting that depends on your specific application (more on that here), and a specific peak brightness measured in foot-lamberts (more on that here).

How Steven Spielberg’s Cinematographer Got These Eleven Shots | Kyle Buchanan | Vulture
Few men know Steven Spielberg as well as Janusz Kaminski. The Oscar winning, Polish-born cinematographer has shot all of Spielberg's films since 1993, and their latest collaboration, Lincoln, is in theaters now. What better time, then, to talk to Kaminski about how he managed to create some of the most interesting shots and sequences in Spielberg's modern ouevre?

Redrockmicro has come up with an inexpensive and simple cheeseplate solution that gives the Cinema Camera multiple 1/4” 20 mounting holes and a cold shoe mounting socket for accessories like microphones or LED lights. The best part about this is the price – a mere $45 US.

Time Warner CEO: Cord cutters not an issue, “cord nevers” might be
| Jeff John Roberts | Paid Content
Despite his dismissal of cord-cutting, Bewkes did acknowledge the emergence of “cord nevers,” which are younger people who never acquire cable in the first place. For them, he said it’s not a question of money — “they can afford three Starbucks a day” — but rather different habits and expectations. Bewkes pointed out that the “cord nevers” are not receiving the best content (it will be interesting to see if this argument one day sways them into signing up).

10+ steps to becoming mega successful in video production and probably winning many awards whilst becoming super rich!! | Philip Bloom | Blog
2: The work will not come to you. Getting the big break while sitting around waiting is about as likely as winning the lottery. No matter how well your student film from film school was received, Adidas is NOT going to call you up to make their next spot. You will need to put in a lot of hard graft. Getting your name out there may never happen.

Avid Digital Cinema Camera Workflows [PDF] | Avid
Note, the above link goes directly to the PDF.
Since the introduction of the Sony 24p HD camera in late 1999, the world of digital cinema has changed. Digital technologies have been chasing film—the gold standard—not only in imagery, but also in providing additional benefits such as reduced costs and immediate access to the dailies in post. With changes in technologies, the advantages and disadvantages of new formats and solutions need to be weighed in context of the overall goals and delivery of the program itself. Content producers need to take a holistic approach to what is right for the entire production.