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RED shooting - cinematic look


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#1 Maurizio Zappettini

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 11:10 AM

Hello

Next week I'm shooting a music video with both RED One and a Super16 camera.
I never shoot in RED before although I did some camera tests last week. What I'm trying to achieve is a very cinematic look in the motion so that the super16 footage and the RED one will match well.

I will shoot most of the footage at different frame rates in 2K 16:9 using a Super16 zoom lens and a wide angle prime. I'll shoot at 25, 33, 50, 75, 100 fps but 33 and 50 fps will be probably the frame rates I'll use mostly.

In my tests I noticed that working on the combination between frame rate and shutter angle the motion look becomes more "cinematic" and less video-realistic but I can't understand properly what are the best settings to achieve the look I'm looking for.

In theory I thought that keeping the shutter angle wider, the motion blur would improve therefore the motion would become more "film" look. Actually I found out that is not strictly related. For example, if I allow the shutter angle to compensate automatically my aperture, the look that I obtain in the motion is much more video than the one obtained forcing the shutter angle to a different degree: for instance I set the frame rate at 33 fps and the auto shutter was at 238 degrees and the motion-look was much more video than shooting at the same speed but with the shutter manually set at 180 degrees.

Does anyone have any suggestion on how obtaining a very film-cinematic look with Red?

Many thanks

Maurizio
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#2 John Sprung

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Posted 12 May 2009 - 05:46 PM

Motion blur is part of the film look, and even more motion blur is part of the video look. The bigger the shutter angle, the more blur you get. Film cameras rarely let you go much beyond 185 degrees, because it takes time to pull down the next frame of film, and the shutter has to be closed while that happens. Much less than about 120 degrees, and you have so little blur that you lose the illusion of motion.

Recent video cameras let you choose effective shutter angles up to a hair less than a full 360 degrees. Old time TV was effectively close to a 360 degree shutter, but at 50 or 60 fields per second.

Bottom line, stick close to 180 degrees for a film-like amount of blur. Of course that's just one part of the look.




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#3 Jonnie Schellenger

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 07:12 AM

Maurizio,


Hey everyone- Usually I sit back and read and learn, however, I had to answer Maurizio's question on this because I have a good bit of experience shooting higher frame rates.

Maurizio- Make sure you really run some good tests in the 2K flow for your overcranking. I have been doing a good bit of that myself, and to be honest, I have not been very happy with the 2K results. If you were to tell me that you had to do everything at 100/120 fps, then you would have no choice. However, in your case you said you would be backing off of such a high frame rate for the most part.

If that is the case, SHOOT 3K!!! I started doing that, and the results are far sharper and far better then going with 2K.

If you are using a hard-drive with the camera, and you are have "redcode 28" selected in quality, you will be able to shoot at 3k 2.1 at a max of 60 fps. It makes a major difference.

In my opinion, try to avoid the 2K at all costs unless you have to use it for something above 60fps.

2K is pretty soft, even with the best lenses.

I know you mentioned about blending the RED footage with the 16mm- I am not sure about everyone else, but I would get all the resolution you can while on location and then deal with blending and matching in post.

Good luck on your shoot!
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#4 Maurizio Zappettini

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 08:39 AM

Maurizio,


Hey everyone- Usually I sit back and read and learn, however, I had to answer Maurizio's question on this because I have a good bit of experience shooting higher frame rates.

Maurizio- Make sure you really run some good tests in the 2K flow for your overcranking. I have been doing a good bit of that myself, and to be honest, I have not been very happy with the 2K results. If you were to tell me that you had to do everything at 100/120 fps, then you would have no choice. However, in your case you said you would be backing off of such a high frame rate for the most part.

If that is the case, SHOOT 3K!!! I started doing that, and the results are far sharper and far better then going with 2K.

If you are using a hard-drive with the camera, and you are have "redcode 28" selected in quality, you will be able to shoot at 3k 2.1 at a max of 60 fps. It makes a major difference.

In my opinion, try to avoid the 2K at all costs unless you have to use it for something above 60fps.

2K is pretty soft, even with the best lenses.

I know you mentioned about blending the RED footage with the 16mm- I am not sure about everyone else, but I would get all the resolution you can while on location and then deal with blending and matching in post.

Good luck on your shoot!


Hi Jonnie

Thanks for the suggestion. I'd like to try the 3K resolution but I have only S16 lenses available for this project, therefore I have to stick to 2K.

Also I heard that when you shoot 3K and you import the footage in Final Cut, the resolution will be downscaled to 1.5K while if you import 2K footage it will remain 2K. Anyway I'm not sure about this, that's just something I heard.

Maurizio
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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 10:40 AM

The resolution will be whatever you tell it to be in FCP. Technically you'd change your 3K to a 2K which would help out keeping quality up; oversampling. It's the same idea behind the newer RED Cameras, record @ over 4K for a 4K downsample.
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#6 Jonnie Schellenger

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Posted 14 May 2009 - 12:15 PM

I have not had Final Cut do anything like that before. I don't think you have to worry.

Usually I am keying, so I am running things through shake, but if I ever see anything strange like that through final cut, I will let you know.

I would just make sure you run some good tests before you shoot for real.

I think you will really enjoy the camera, and I think you will find it a cool experience.

The 4K image is amazing....

One other small bit of advice that I can say is if you want the cleanest image you can get, try to keep that chip balanced at 5000K/5600K. We get the cleanest images with tungsten lighting gelled with some CTB. And of course HMIs and daylight.

Feel free to email me if you have any other questions at statusfilms@yahoo.com.
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