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New Red Camera - Raven


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#21 aapo lettinen

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 05:49 AM

Hi Aapo

 

Just wonder..what are the Slog glitches you have found.. 

 

Thanks

mostly the white balancing difficulties and not very good basic LUTs.

 

most Sony cameras seem to have this ugly video-ish highlight/saturation handling which you have to try to tune out if wanting pretty pictures. I have seen lots of wonderful material shot with the F5 in both xavc and raw mode so you can definitely get great results out of them if you have the time for all the testing and adjustments. out of the box they are like "in your face RED, look how much saturation we can bake to the image before it breaks up"  :lol:


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#22 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 06:01 AM

mostly the white balancing difficulties and not very good basic LUTs.

 

most Sony cameras seem to have this ugly video-ish highlight/saturation handling which you have to try to tune out if wanting pretty pictures. I have seen lots of wonderful material shot with the F5 in both xavc and raw mode so you can definitely get great results out of them if you have the time for all the testing and adjustments. out of the box they are like "in your face RED, look how much saturation we can bake to the image before it breaks up"  :lol:

 

Ah yes.. the trick is shoot in Cine EI slog3.cine..  then you are out of the custom REC709 look.. "broadcast" look.. f5/55 is very much 2 camera,s in one..  The WB is only preset in cine EI.. but Ive found that way better than doing any manual WB in custom.. 

I think the LUTS are fine.. the LC709A  "Alexa" look is very nice.. and now you can load your own 3D LUTs..

Maybe it was an early model you had.. Slog3 is very good and the subset .cine is very easy for post.. very easy to set up now.. Cine EI /slog3.cine  and your away.. 

A lot of people are just not using custom at all.. but burning in a user LUT or in camera LUT/LOOK.. for quick turn around.. I think you,ll fine it very easy to get a good look these days with V6..  just avoid Custom mode basically :)


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#23 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 10:22 AM

most Sony cameras seem to have this ugly video-ish highlight/saturation handling which you have to try to tune out if wanting pretty pictures. I have seen lots of wonderful material shot with the F5 in both xavc and raw mode so you can definitely get great results out of them if you have the time for all the testing and adjustments. out of the box they are like "in your face RED, look how much saturation we can bake to the image before it breaks up"  :lol:


I'm beginning to think the "wonderful" images are in controlled situations. Both Sony and RED cameras suffer from similar "video-ish" highlight clipping. So when you go outside in direct sunlight, you see these issues come to life. There is a great graph I found a few years ago which shows this phenomena in greater detail, wish I could find it now. It showed the Sony and RED cameras have a harsh clipping at the top end, where the Alexa was very soft. The less-expensive Sony cameras have the worst problem with this. I'm always amazed by the harsh clipping and why nobody see's it. I see it, bothers the living crap out of me because it looks like a CCD imager on an ENG camera all of a sudden. What humors me the most is my Blackmagic cameras don't have this phenomena and when I shoot and edit with other cameras, it's generally under controlled lighting in one way or another. However, I have edited a lot of FS7/F5/F55/F65, Dragon/Epic and Alexa material, only to be blown away by how consistent the Alexa looks over the other's.
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#24 Mark Dunn

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 10:42 AM

I expect that accounts for the extra zero on the price.


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#25 Keith Walters

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 08:56 PM

I believe there have been far more productions using RED then Alexa. That's mainly due to RED coming out way before Arri got their act together. It's also due to RED's incessant marketing strategy to push for resolution over color science and quality. Arri spent too much time perfecting the imager and not enough time making the system higher resolution. So it wasn't until very recently that Arri had a 4k (and now 6k) solution for digital cinema acquisition. Also, RED cameras are substantially cheaper then anything Arri makes, so more people own RED then Alexa.

I just saw "The Martian" and if you like blown out highlights and a "video" looking image, check out that film at your local 4k theater. It boggles the mind why anyone thinks that RED cinema looks good. I really think people have forgotten what a good image looks like.

 

 

Also, RED cameras are substantially cheaper then anything Arri makes, so more people own RED then Alexa.

 

I did say "Big Time". Numerically there may be more Red productions that Arri, but where cost isn't really an issue, Arri wins just about every time. Clearly resolution (real or imagined) isn't a major factor.

Naturally if somebody owns a Red camera, they're going to use it for their own productions

But I don't think too many people  who regularly make >$100 million productions actually own any cameras.

 

and not enough time making the system higher resolution.

Nobody appears to be particularly interested in resolution though. If they were, either fewer cinema release features would have been shot with Arri cameras, or Arri would have come out with higher resolution cameras. Arri have actually had "4K" CMOS sensor chips available for at least as long as the Alexa has been available, but they said nobody appeared to be particularly interested. (Well nobody who was likley to be actually going to shoot anything of any significance, which is pretty much where we came in, about 10 years ago).

 

In any case, I think the real competition now is the Sony F65.


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#26 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 08:59 PM

Now? Hell I'd say the 65 is on the way out-- not that it was ever really there. If anything, the newer F series are kind of competition for Red and Arri, though even then not really. Much like the new Varicam, I can't really see them breaking into major productions. Maybe if they brought out a more robust less, well less Sony F camera which doesn't share as much ENG DNA, maybe then.. But as it stands now, it seems the F series are relegated too--- I don't even know. I only ever really touch them on MoWs.


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#27 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 01:32 AM

Hi Tyler

 

I know you have a strong dislike of Sony.. :).. but really 16bit RAW from an F55,and certainly an F65.. .. there is no way that high lights are being clipped anymore than Alexa .. even with XAVC EI slog you have 14 stop DR.. 

There have been many blind side by side tests and no one can tell..   maybe you have been editing PDW800 ENG shoots..what are the low cost Sony camera,s you speak of.. ? thats a another deal altogether. and would never be compared to Alexa... or your monitors are 8 bit.. 

 

Sog3 curve is almost identical to LogC.. there is no harsh clipping of highlights.. that statement is cow poo I feel ..  but the $1,000 BM pocket camera as always shows none of these defects ..  :)


Edited by Robin R Probyn, 08 October 2015 - 01:43 AM.

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#28 aapo lettinen

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:07 AM

actually one usually CAN tell quite reliably which camera is which, especially if DP's and colourists use the same kind of style for certain camera models but also when they are trying to hide the differences. It does not necessarily mean that the other camera's image is better or worse than the other but the differences are impossible to hide completely. 

 

I, for example, watch a lot of movie trailers and can usually tell which camera a movie is mostly shot on, especially when there is lots of skin tones which try to look natural. For example, Tomorrowland trailer looked like Alexa more than a RED but there was something on the colours and skin tones which was more screaming than usual Alexa image (like halfway between Fuji and Kodak in terms of colour response) so I was sure it was something different from those two and thus most likely a Sony camera. It is quite interesting that like in the film era, Japanese manufacturers are more interested in bright lively colours and western manufacturers are more interested in contrast/latitude and forget the colours completely (except Arri which is aiming for subtle natural colour response like Kodak film and is mostly interested in drama uses (skin tone response) )

 

I sometimes confuse low end Alexa stuff with the Red One MX, you can usually spot REDs by their lifeless skin tones and highlight handling but sometimes low budget Alexa stuff looks quite a lot like that with horrible colour correction and blown out highlights :P

 

"low cost Sony camera" =at least FS7 and, if somebody still shoots on them, the F3


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#29 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:28 AM

Well there have been umpteen blind tests with well known DP,s who have not been able to tell..  you must be one of the few .. are you going to the cinema to what these trailers..

My post was about highlight harsh clipping in Sony camera,s.. ENG yes of course.. but F55/65 with Slog RAW / XAVC  there is 14 stops..16 bits in RAW.. to say they have harsh highlight clipping is nuts..  yet a BM pocket camera is of course fine ..   come on really.. 


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#30 aapo lettinen

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 11:24 AM

It's a bit different to watch a movie trailer than a simulated camera test. In a trailer there is much more different lighting conditions and shooting situations and you can better see the camera's performance in production environment. I usually watch the trailers from itunes using calibrated display and best playback quality. Comparing a single image or two might not be enough but in a trailer you can seen 30-50 shots and then you will usually see very clearly what is going on.

I've been working a year and a half as a dit/assistant editor in a nature documentary which is shooting on lots of different cameras, the main camera being F5 in raw mode so I might be overly sensitive to Sony image, and also Bmpc, bmcc, c300, Epic mx, gh4, and so on...

Try to watch this movie's trailer and spot the most obvious Red One shot (hint:two boys on schoolyard.look at the skintones) http://www.imdb.com/...f_=nm_flmg_dr_5
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#31 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 12:36 PM

It's rare that by the end of watching a TV show or movie that I can't tell which camera was used and even what the post process was. I know PLENTY of cinematographers who have the same ability. I've gone to movies with them and we've argued for hours afterwards about why the RED still looks like crap or why the Alexa is the closest thing to film, but not quite there. It's always funny when you get home and go on IMDB to check if you're right. It's also getting harder to tell as the cameras get better and colorists have learned how to hide the problems.

Digital cinema as a whole is simply an interpretation of what actually exists. Then manipulate the ever living crap out of it through coloring and special effects process, what remains is something entirely different. So when I see highlight clipping on a big screen in a huge theater projected in 4k, it really, really, really pisses me off. Film doesn't clip harshly, the Alexa doesn't clip harshly, so why would you ever shoot with a camera that clips harshly and even if you DID, why wouldn't you clean it up in post?

This is why I firmly believe, people who shoot with the RED are after something the Alexa doesn't have. If you're not after quality of image, what are you after? It must be resolution, that's the only thing that makes any sense. If you're making a $100M+ dollar movie, you can afford a few Alexa's, even an Alexa 65, which has a 6k workflow. So again, why would ANYONE in their right mind shoot on a RED, Sony or any other digital cinema camera on a BIG HOLLYWOOD FILM? When you read ASC and interviews, cinematographers have "excuses" like; I wanted to try this camera or I needed more resolution for XYZ reason. None of those guys realize that ILM still prefers film because it has more dynamic range and accurate colors. So if you're shooting on VFX shows, you really should be doing your plates on 70mm, but that's beside the point. It just shows, digital cinema is still in the "experimental" phase because there are still so many options. At one point, everyone will gravitate towards a single option which is the best and that will be the gold standard, like 35mm was. I think the Alexa 65 maybe just that package, but we've gotta wait and see.
 

yet a BM pocket camera is of course fine ..   come on really..


Digital cinema cameras don't have shutters, they don't have ASA/ISO, all of that is electronically controlled. Super sensitive imagers LIKE THE SONY ONES need to accept much more light AND still have differentiation between 100% white and 99.9% white. When you increase the lumens (IE lower ASA) what happens to the imager? It gets over-powered by the light and starts to distort. This is where you get the highlight clipping from, it's actually distortion. When you shoot in very dark situations, that distortion goes away, but anything that's bright and pointed towards the lens, will distort unless heavily filtered to bring down to the imagers working ISO. A good cinematographer will try to keep their cameras within the working ISO and simply use lots of filtration to compensate, this is why in some rare completely controlled situations, you don't see these problems.

The reason why the blackmagic cameras don't have these problems is because frankly, until the URSA 4.6k, the imagers haven't been very good. Blackmagic wasn't sourcing ultra sensitive imagers like Sony and RED, they were using off the shelf one's, focusing on dynamic range and colors rather then sensitivity and resolution in their first generation cameras. This gave them a distinct advantage; less sensitivity, less problems. It's the same for Arri, they started with high dynamic range, amazing colors, low sensitivity and lower resolution sensors and over time have developed better and better imagers. Taking their time and instead of making a camera for "spec" purposes like the "Swiss army knife" mid-range (FS7 etc) Sony cameras.

The only reason people shoot with Sony and RED cameras is because they either forgot how good film looks or they've never touched an Alexa. Honestly, I've seen some Alexa 65 material projected in 4k and it was outstanding. Not quite blow your mind away like 70mm film projection, but still a marketable improvement over previous digital cinema cameras.
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#32 aapo lettinen

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 03:18 PM

people shoot with REDs and Sonys because they weight less and are smaller than Alexas. They are much more owner operator cameras because of the more complicated menus/user interface and less sturdy mechanics.

You can't, for example, use an full sized Alexa with octacopter or gimbal (unless it's a really big one) and the camera mass and lenght may complicate operating in some situations.

The Alexa Mini will be nice for these uses when it is common enough in the market.

 

people may have missed the main point of the Raven camera: it is VERY lightweight for a cinema camera so it would be very nice in gimbal and copter use even though it surely has some glitches (I suspect cooling problems might be present but can't know before the actual camera is out. and nowadays when raw recording is not that special anymore it would be nice to have lower compression ratios available)


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#33 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 06:25 PM

Digital cinema cameras don't have shutters, they don't have ASA/ISO, all of that is electronically controlled. Super sensitive imagers LIKE THE SONY ONES need to accept much more light AND still have differentiation between 100% white and 99.9% white. When you increase the lumens (IE lower ASA) what happens to the imager? It gets over-powered by the light and starts to distort. This is where you get the highlight clipping from, it's actually distortion. When you shoot in very dark situations, that distortion goes away, but anything that's bright and pointed towards the lens, will distort unless heavily filtered to bring down to the imagers working ISO. A good cinematographer will try to keep their cameras within the working ISO and simply use lots of filtration to compensate, this is why in some rare completely controlled situations, you don't see these problems.

 

This is nonsense .. 


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#34 Michael LaVoie

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 06:28 PM

The only reason people shoot with Sony and RED cameras is because they either forgot how good film looks or they've never touched an Alexa. Honestly, I've seen some Alexa 65 material projected in 4k and it was outstanding. Not quite blow your mind away like 70mm film projection, but still a marketable improvement over previous digital cinema cameras.

I've never had a Sony, Canon or Panasonic digital cinema camera malfunction.  Reliability on set is just as important as the image quality and that's kind of why the Alexa reigns supreme cause it delivers on all fronts.  But I have never had any of the aforementioned brands crash on set and I've managed to get great images out of all three just by staying within their exposure ranges.

 

I can't say the same for Red or Blackmagic cameras, both of which have had crashes and bugs on set.


Edited by Michael LaVoie, 08 October 2015 - 06:33 PM.

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#35 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 06:47 PM

This is nonsense .. [/font][/color]


That's how it works and that's why the super sensitive cameras suffer from a lot of maladies like this.
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#36 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 07:15 PM

That's how it works and that's why the super sensitive cameras suffer from a lot of maladies like this.

 

{digital camera,s}" they don't have ASA/ISO, all of that is electronically controlled." so what is the ASA rating of an Arri 435 or an Aaton.. 

 

"Super sensitive imagers LIKE THE SONY ONES need to accept much more light AND still have differentiation between 100% white and 99.9% white.".. what do you mean by this..?

 

'A good cinematographer will try to keep their cameras within the working ISO and simply use lots of filtration to compensate,"..  there are many top dp,s who are shooting big budget films without any filters.. let alone lots of filters..what are these filters you talk about..  what is a camera,s "working ISO"

 

​So the F65 is a camera that really suffers from harsh white clipping.. because it has a sensitive sensor. in your experience ? .. where have you ever read that..  its native 800 same as Alexa.. you move you ISO up or down to change your grey level.. 

 

You better on the phone and impart your knowledge to Storaro.. who is foolishly using one now.. :)


Edited by Robin R Probyn, 08 October 2015 - 07:28 PM.

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#37 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 07:34 PM

Every F65 movie I've seen looks great -- "Tomorrowland", "Oblivion", "After Earth" -- it's the movies I've seen shot on the F55 that are a little more problematic in terms of clipping and saturation in overexposed areas.  


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#38 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 08:21 PM

Every F65 movie I've seen looks great -- "Tomorrowland", "Oblivion", "After Earth" -- it's the movies I've seen shot on the F55 that are a little more problematic in terms of clipping and saturation in overexposed areas.  

 

Thats only because the DP,s have been using lots of filters to compensate for the sensitive sensor..  its that .1% between 99.9% and 100% white you have to look out for..and lack of ISO.. or they were all shot in dark situations .. 


Edited by Robin R Probyn, 08 October 2015 - 08:23 PM.

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#39 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 09 October 2015 - 12:50 AM

so what is the ASA rating of an Arri 435 or an Aaton..


Film stocks dictate the sensitivity rating. Sure, you can "push" or "pull" stocks, but they inherently have a marked sensitivity which is where they work best.

So imagine a CMOS sensor in the same way. The sensor has a base sensitivity. To use the pocket camera analogy once more, it works best at 800 ASA. When you set the camera electronically to a higher shutter speed or lower ASA in order to compensate for the excess lumens above the base sensitivity, you are basically telling the imager to work over-time. This, just like pushing and pulling film stocks, won't give you an "optimal" image. With film you simply change the stock to increase or decrease sensitivity.
 

Super sensitive imagers LIKE THE SONY ONES need to accept much more light AND still have differentiation between 100% white and 99.9% white.".. what do you mean by this..?


A CMOS imager is like a potentiometer. It has individual steps from black to full white. For sake of non-technical discussion, lets dumb it down a bit and say full black is 0 and full white is 100.

Like my comment above, if you have an imager that's most happy at 800ASA at lets say 40 foot candles, it's capable of generating an image that goes the full range between 0 and 100. However, if you all of a sudden give that same imager 300 foot candles (what it would take to properly expose 50D stock at the same T stop), what happens? Well, that 0 (black level) is raised substantially and most importantly, the whites are over-driven, so there is literally no detail in them anymore. Plus, there is no difference between full white and 98% because the imager is simply over-driven. You won't see a difference until around 90% or even less in some cases.

Of course, this dramatically hinders color space as well, crushing the colors to distortion and worst of all killing any dynamic range because there is physically less of it.

The electronic sensitivity adjustment and shutter work by sampling the imager at a different rate. Imagine pushing a camera negative past 4 stops and expecting it to look good.
 

there are many top dp,s who are shooting big budget films without any filters.. let alone lots of filters..what are these filters you talk about..  what is a camera,s "working ISO"


Yep and that's why I'm here complaining about it. DP's shooting with ultra sensitive imagers outside without filtration.

Again, imagers, like film stock, have an optimal sensitivity range, this is sometimes referred to as "base" sensitivity.

I bet you can guess what kind of filtration is necessary to bring the lumens down to the imagers natural sensitivity on those particular cameras with ultra sensitive imagers.
 

So the F65 is a camera that really suffers from harsh white clipping.. because it has a sensitive sensor. in your experience ? .. where have you ever read that..  its native 800 same as Alexa.. you move you ISO up or down to change your grey level..


I can't think of a single F65 shoot where the filmmakers are shooting in direct sunlight without filtration or VFX covering highlights. Most of the films shot with that camera were on sound stages or in extremely controlled exterior locations. So I honestly can't tell you much about it. I only mentioned the F65 because I colored some green screen shots recently, I never mentioned it in relationship to the harsh clipping problems. In fact, I'd say the F65 is the best looking Sony camera ever made. It's also the least "Sony" looking camera they've ever made. I wouldn't doubt they bought an Alexa, took it apart, figured out what made it tick and built a camera around it because it's pretty darn good.
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#40 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 09 October 2015 - 01:02 AM

Have you seen 'Oblivion' and 'After Earth'?! The former is shot in day exterior deserts and the latter in day exterior forests, that's about as challenging as it gets. I've shot with both the F65 and F55, the F65 is far superior in exposure latitude, color rendering and highlight headroom. The F65 has a mechanical shutter option as well, a bit loud but it works great. And every camera malfunctions with enough usage, even the Alexa. Just like every film camera will jam at some point.
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