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HVX200


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#1 F Bulgarelli

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:27 PM

I'm getting ready to shoot a low budget feature with this camera and I'm really trying to do my homework and get ready.
I've shooting with it for quite a while and I always felt that tweaking the settings too much will only bring artificial enhancements that in one way or another degrade the image. For the most part, I've stuck to cine D or V. We all know that the camera doesn't perform that great in low light situations and that's definetely a big issue when you have night exteriors and such.

My question is:

From your experience, what's the best way to get the most out of this camera, meaning the best image quality possible, knowing that when you get to post, you'll be able to do a nice online and tweak contrast, chroma and everything else that's need it.
In low light situations I'm planning to rate the camera at 160 but I'm a bit worry about not having the lights I need for big masters.

Any comments are greatly appreciated,

Francisco
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#2 Adamo P Cultraro

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 10:13 PM

You need to remember that whereas Cine D provides by far the most latitude, and therefore the most flexibility in post, it can also produce the most noise. If I was shooting outdoors or in well lit situations, I'd always use Cine D and master ped perhaps -4.

In low light situations, I would use Bpress as the gamma curve. There is a whole cadre of people who always only use Bpress since it is te least noisy of all the gamma curves, and I may soon be part of that group.

Another thing that is cool and new is a product called neat video (loopk it up, no affiliation). It has really cleaned up noise amazingly well from shots where I was a little lazy. The product is really impressive and gets rid of the "mosquito noise" the HVX likes to generate in low light without removing detail.

Also I would only shoot a feature in 1080 to preserve the maximum amount of detail the camera can deliver.

Hope that helps!

Edited by Adamo P Cultraro, 11 February 2008 - 10:14 PM.

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#3 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 10:08 AM

Shoot in 1080pa with BPress and lower master pedestal.
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#4 Bill Totolo

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 10:59 AM

Shoot in 1080pa with BPress and lower master pedestal.

Chris,

Is that B Press with Cine Like gamma curve?
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#5 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 12:49 AM

Chris,

Is that B Press with Cine Like gamma curve?



Yeah, the BPress gamma setting.
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#6 Chris Pritzlaff

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 03:36 AM

Shoot in 1080pa with BPress and lower master pedestal.



Isn't it a 720p camera - I thought the 1080 is just an upres anyway so all you really get from that camera is 720 so you may as well shoot 720p and if you have to upres do that in post with other software?

am I wrong?
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#7 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 01:30 PM

Isn't it a 720p camera - I thought the 1080 is just an upres anyway so all you really get from that camera is 720 so you may as well shoot 720p and if you have to upres do that in post with other software?

am I wrong?

It isn't even a TRUE 720 camera, but you are getting into the old argument of 1080 24p being really progressive on the HVX 200 and its pulldown issues. I would just stick to 720 24pn Cine D, lowered pedestal, unless you are really projecting on 50 foot screens or doing a film out. In which case I would probably use S16 film.

I would also try to use a Letus 35 mm adapter.

"The HVX200 supports everything the other cameras do, and much more. It supports both 1080i and 720p, and also 1080p (utilizing 2:3 or 2:3:3:2 pulldown within the 1080i recording, The camera uses three 1/3 in 960x540 pixel (0.5 mega-pixel) progressive scan CCD's to capture the image. "

From wikipedia.

Edited by saulie rodgar, 01 March 2008 - 01:34 PM.

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#8 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 02:30 PM

Isn't it a 720p camera - I thought the 1080 is just an upres anyway so all you really get from that camera is 720 so you may as well shoot 720p and if you have to upres do that in post with other software?

am I wrong?



"Pixelshift is not upsampling."

http://www.hdforindi...hvx200-1080-res
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#9 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 02:39 PM

It isn't even a TRUE 720 camera, but you are getting into the old argument of 1080 24p being really progressive on the HVX 200 and its pulldown issues. I would just stick to 720 24pn Cine D, lowered pedestal, unless you are really projecting on 50 foot screens or doing a film out. In which case I would probably use S16 film.



It's widely accepted that "B Press" is the least noisy of the gamma settings and that 1080p is less noisy than 720p from that camera.
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#10 Mike Williamson

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Posted 01 March 2008 - 04:17 PM

I would echo your feeling that the camera isn't great in low light, so do whatever you can to get the lights that you need. I'd also plan for a lighting style that takes that into account, maybe aim for something more contrasty so you're not trying to fill large areas with soft light.

My quick ASA test using a Kodak grey card put the camera's sensitivity at 250 ASA for whatever that's worth, I know others have said 320. I don't think you gain anything by overexposing video, so you may want to double check how you're rating the camera. Obviously it depends on the specific settings that you're using.

I've always used the camera with the Cine D gamma curve, what does the B Press setting do besides reducing the noise?
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#11 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 01:46 AM

I've always used the camera with the Cine D gamma curve, what does the B Press setting do besides reducing the noise?



If shooting a feature with the potential for projection and shooting on a 1/3" chip camera, I'm guessing the least noisiest option is the best option.
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#12 F Bulgarelli

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 10:27 PM

I have been running into a little trouble with exposure, specially on day exteriors, I feel as if I'm overexposing the image a bit, even when using the zebras. At times the LCD is misleading and makes you want to open up the iris.
And of course you are dealing with a limited latitude, I'm thinking of perhaps using a gray card and set the zebras at 70% and go by the chart. Has anyone done anything like that?
I had a situation the other day where the talent was backlit and it was an overcast day, plus the actress had really deep eyes, when I was exposing for her face, the sky went completely white, I suppose I could have underexpose a bit but felt a bit unsure.


What's you method for experiors on the HVX?

Thanks for all your comments.
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#13 Mike Williamson

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 10:33 PM

If shooting a feature with the potential for projection and shooting on a 1/3" chip camera, I'm guessing the least noisiest option is the best option.


Hey Christopher, my question wasn't meant rhetorically, I'm just curious how the B Press setting affects the gamma. Is it more or less contrasty than the other curves?
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#14 Christopher Santucci

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 11:43 PM

Hey Christopher, my question wasn't meant rhetorically, I'm just curious how the B Press setting affects the gamma. Is it more or less contrasty than the other curves?



The Cinelike settings are definitely flatter than Black Press.
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#15 Bill Totolo

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 12:34 AM

I have been running into a little trouble with exposure, specially on day exteriors, I feel as if I'm overexposing the image a bit, even when using the zebras. At times the LCD is misleading and makes you want to open up the iris.
And of course you are dealing with a limited latitude, I'm thinking of perhaps using a gray card and set the zebras at 70% and go by the chart. Has anyone done anything like that?
I had a situation the other day where the talent was backlit and it was an overcast day, plus the actress had really deep eyes, when I was exposing for her face, the sky went completely white, I suppose I could have underexpose a bit but felt a bit unsure.


What's you method for experiors on the HVX?

Thanks for all your comments.


I've found that using a screw on 52mm pola (mounted on a Nikon) does great things for seemingly bland skies. Of course I'm using the normal tricks of the trade (nets, shiny boards, griff, flags, etc). I would err on the side of under exposure instead of over.

As for exposure I use the zebras on the LCD exculsively. I set Zebras to 75 and just allow a rim of activity on a face. I don't even think of evaluating the quality of light when looking at the LCD monitor. For anything else I drape duvetyn over a 7" Marshall which I set up using the camera's color bars.

Of course it helps to be in a place with interesting skies and backgrounds, right?
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#16 Bill Totolo

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 01:56 AM

By the way here's a shot without a pola or fill.

Feb 29th: Harsh condition in the desert.
Subjected to sand storms and overcast skies, we managed to get only a few decent shots off.

Posted Image
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#17 F Bulgarelli

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Posted 03 March 2008 - 11:40 AM

That's exactly the situation I was dealing with Bill.
It will be nice to have the time to evaluate your exposure with an on board monitor but it's not always possible.
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