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Should I Push Process?


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#1 Zamir Merali

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 05:19 PM

I just finished shooting a documentary for a electronic music festival. For the night party scenes we used 7218 500t. My light meter was useless in that situation because the light levels were so low. I ended up shooting wide open (f-2) and I under cranked the camera to about 18-20 fps. I wanted to know if I should request a 1 stop push process to be safe or if that would cause too much of a quality loss. There are some areas on these rolls that were exposed correctly so how much would they be affected by the push process. Thanks.
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#2 Jon Rosenbloom

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 05:29 PM

What do you mean your meter was useless? Why wouldn't you just keep upping the ASA setting so you could find out how far under you were? If you click on my website and look at my reel (great self-promotion, huh?), the shot of the guy in the cab was shot on 7218, meter set at 500, the light inside the cab either read "E" or 1.0. We shot on a Superspeed, a hair closed from wide open (1.3). The film was not pushed.

Edited by Jon Rosenbloom, 20 July 2008 - 05:30 PM.

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#3 Charles MacDonald

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 07:24 PM

What do you mean your meter was useless?

I have seen this condition. I have a self powered Seconic, and while it is a gret meter, if the light gets too low the needle just won't budge. (the meter reads out in foot-candles and then you find the exposure on the dial.) changing the film speed setting won't do a think as the limit is before the film speed is set.
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#4 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 08:12 PM

Unless you are going for more grain, the sensible thing here is to have the lab perform a snip/ clip test on your footage. Since you don't know how much the footage is underexposed, doing a clip test will let you know where you are before you commit the entire roll to non-retractable steps.

If these are party scenes, it is going to be dark anyway, unless it is a bright party. You may be fine if there are bright spots of light / dark areas, contrast. It is after all a night party. You don't wanna make it too bright either, I suppose

Pushing the film it is going to make the grain get bigger, particularly in the lower mid tones, which are the ones you need the most here. For grain-free results you want to push fast 16mm stock as little as possible, if at all. A snip test will tell you how much the film needs pushing, if at all. In my experience, 7218 handles low light good, but the limited resolution of 16mm wouldn't benefit from the extra push process, unless you want grain.

That is what I would do, anyway . . .

Edited by Saul Rodgar, 20 July 2008 - 08:17 PM.

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#5 Zamir Merali

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 08:25 PM

Thanks Saul. That is really good advice. I am going to process it normally without a clip test. I do not think the footage was too under exposed so this should work out.
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