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Anamorfic with F900


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#1 Valentina Caniglia

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 12:07 AM

Hi all,

I am using the F900 for a feature in January. I would like to frame for 2.40 aspect ratio. Is Sony has a groundglass marked 2.40? Should I frame for 1.78 or 16x9 and squeeze the image in post?

If I want to shoot with a pro 35mm adaptor with Anamorfic lenses can I do it?

What is the the best for HD if I want to have the final film with 2.40 aspect ratio?

Thank You

V.
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 12:27 AM

We've discussed this many times before here, but to sum up your options:

HD is 16x9 (1.78 : 1). The most common method of achieving 2.35 is to compose for cropping later in post. The F900 allows you to create framelines as a guide to cropping; it has no affect on the actual image recorded, which is still 1.78.

The simplest thing is to just go into the Marker Menu and select "Vista 2", which gives you approx. 2.37 : 1 and is accurate enough. Shoot a framing chart that lines up with your camera's framelines so the editor knows how much to mask their editing monitor to 2.35 and for future letterboxing guides. The larger Sony HD CRT monitors allow you to display the same cropping framelines on the set; but if not, you can put black tape on the monitor.

The people doing the final recording to 35mm will crop & stretch to anamorphic on your request. If the tape you submit to them is full-frame, not letterboxed, it's important to remind them to crop & stretch to scope for film-out to 35mm anamorphic.

The trouble with putting anamorphic lenses used in 35mm on an HD camera is that they have a 2X squeeze, which is fine since the camera / projector aperture used is almost 1.20 : 1, giving you nearly 2.40 : 1 when unsqueezed by the 2X anamorphic projector lens. But when used on a 16x9 (1.78) HD camera, you get a 3.56 : 1 image when unsqueezed (2 x 1.78).

There is a hard-to-find Canon rear adaptor for HD lenses that adds the correct 1.33X squeeze needed to squeeze scope onto 16x9. But in post and on the set (and in the viewfinder), you'll have to live with looking at a slightly squeezed image. But the Canon adaptor is for B4 video mount HD lenses, not the Pro-35 with 35mm cine lenses. Plus the Canon adaptor adds a few inches to the lens. And the image needs to be flipped internally using the camera's menu.

The Thomson Viper is the only HD camera that can create a 2.35 image without cropping. It uses CCD's made up of groups of "mini-pixels" that allow them to be reconfigured to fit a 2.35 image and then record it to 16x9 full-frame HD, so it creates a 1.33X squeeze electronically, but without cropping.

Panavision's Genesis camera will soon have a set of 1.33X anamorphic lenses that will allow you to squeeze scope onto the 16x9 HDCAM-SR recording. But that camera has a standard 35mm Panavision lens mount (because it has a single 35mm-sized sensor); you won't be able to use these new lenses on their F900's.

IF the Arri-D20 is finished to the point of allowing the full 4x3 CMOS image to be recorded to a field data recorder (not HDCAM-SR since that's limited to 16x9) then in theory one could use a standard 2X anamorphic lens on the camera, but you won't be able to record it to HD, just as data. Right now, the Arri-D20 is mainly only using a 16x9 portion of the CMOS sensor to go out to HDCAM-SR recorders.

All of this explains why still, 99% of all HD shows that go out to 35mm anamorphic do it by cropping 16x9 to 2.35 in post. Even the last Star Wars film, "Revenge of the Sith" did it this way.

Edited by David Mullen, 23 November 2005 - 12:30 AM.

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#3 Valentina Caniglia

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Posted 24 November 2005 - 12:03 AM

Thank You David.

I apologize if I open this discussion one more time and I appreciate your help.

I need to ask you another question though if you don't mind.

Since I want to use the pro 35mm adaptor with cine lenses the best way to shoot 2.35:1 is : using spherical lenses frame it for 2.37:1 (after I go on the menu and I click vista 2) and crop it in post?

Thanks

V.
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 24 November 2005 - 12:20 AM

Since I want to use the pro 35mm adaptor with cine lenses the best way to shoot 2.35:1 is : using spherical lenses frame it for 2.37:1 (after I go on the menu and I click vista 2) and crop it in post?


Yes, it works the same whether or not you are using HD lenses or the Pro-35 and cine lenses -- they are all spherical lenses anyway. The only difference is the depth of field, which can be potentially more shallow-focus with the Pro-35. Although personally if you're worried about resolution because of transfer to 35mm anamorphic, then I would question using the Pro-35 device, which adds some softening to the image. Do you really need a shallow-focus look for this movie?

A regular HD lens shot at f/2 gives you the equivalent depth of field look of 35mm shot at f/4-5.6 split. Not shallow-focus but not hyper-deep focus either, just moderately deep-to-normal.
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#5 Robert Sanders

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Posted 28 November 2005 - 09:17 PM

Thank You David.

I apologize if I open this discussion one more time and I appreciate your help.

I need to ask you another question though if you don't mind.

Since I want to use the pro 35mm adaptor with cine lenses the best way to shoot 2.35:1 is : using spherical lenses frame it for 2.37:1 (after I go on the menu and I click vista 2) and crop it in post?

Thanks

V.


We just finished a relatively large shoot using the F900 (framed for 2.35) and we used a lot of ND filtration to keep our lens open as wide as possible so we could maintain as shallow a depth of field as possible and I am very happy with the results. I could see using the Pro35 for certain specialty shots where an ultra shallow DOF look would be required. But I don't think we'd ever use the Pro35 for the whole movie.

And BTW we're very very happy with the results we've gotten from the F900. It's the first time we've used this camera and coupled with the Canon cinestyle lenses, we think the images are excellent.
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