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Shooting 6:1 on RED - Any suggestions?


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#1 Andrew S T Gregg

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 05:03 AM

I'm working on a project for the Shanghai 2010 Expo. The final project will be shown on a screen that is curved to a 140 degree angle and is 6m x 36m.

We're shooting RED at 4K and using a strip that will give us this format.

I'm curious if anyone has come across this kind of format before, and if anyone has any suggestions for our team.

Thanks.
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#2 Freya Black

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 06:07 AM

I'm working on a project for the Shanghai 2010 Expo. The final project will be shown on a screen that is curved to a 140 degree angle and is 6m x 36m.

We're shooting RED at 4K and using a strip that will give us this format.

I'm curious if anyone has come across this kind of format before, and if anyone has any suggestions for our team.

Thanks.


Hmmm! Seems like it could work out to shoot in 4k mode with Anamorphics!
I seem to remember someone on here saying they had LOMO anamorphics is PL mount for hire cheaply.
That would get you closer and you wouldn't need as big a crop.

love

Freya
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#3 John Sprung

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 02:23 PM

A few years ago, I saw a very clever digital projection setup that allows you to combine multiple projectors, like the old 3 strip Cinerama, but with really seamless results. The brain box can feed up to 16 projectors at once. It uses test patterns and feedback from a digital camera shooting the screen to figure out what to send to each projector. You can put them side by side for more width, or overlap them for more brightness.




-- J.S.
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#4 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 03:17 PM

6:1 on 4K RED may fall apart when projected on huge screens. Anamorphic on 4k RED would be a better bet. 65mm film or above would be ideal.
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#5 John Sprung

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Posted 05 August 2009 - 07:26 PM

6:1 on 4K RED may fall apart when projected on huge screens.


The OP said that they're projecting on a screen 36 meters wide. Width will be the limiting factor in any case. Red has 4520 Bayer photosites across, so by my math, that works out to about 8 millimeters wide per photosite. Figuring that the worst case de-Bayering resolution penalty is about two thirds, that's equivalent to pixels about 12 mm wide on the screen. Of course that'll look like crap if you walk right up to the screen. From 70 meters away, it should look fine. It's a matter of taste, but I'd think it starts to get objectionably soft somewhere around 30 meters. Shanghai Expo 2010 sounds like a trade show. It all depends on how this is set up in the show venue.





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#6 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 06 August 2009 - 01:18 AM

The OP said that they're projecting on a screen 36 meters wide. Width will be the limiting factor in any case. Red has 4520 Bayer photosites across, so by my math, that works out to about 8 millimeters wide per photosite. Figuring that the worst case de-Bayering resolution penalty is about two thirds, that's equivalent to pixels about 12 mm wide on the screen. Of course that'll look like crap if you walk right up to the screen. From 70 meters away, it should look fine. It's a matter of taste, but I'd think it starts to get objectionably soft somewhere around 30 meters. Shanghai Expo 2010 sounds like a trade show. It all depends on how this is set up in the show venue.





-- J.S.



I agree, aside from being personal taste, it does depend on the venue's set up, the projectors (and their lenses, along with the ones used on the camera), the digital stitching, the distance that the audience will be from the screen, etc.

A few years back, I assisted on a similar gig, where a production company from Detroit was shooting Hummers for the big Detroit auto show, with a similar aspect ratio on similarly big screens, close to 100 ft _so a bit smaller than the ones the OP is talking about. We shot 65 mm. The DP commented that they had tried to shoot something similar on 35 mm one year and it had fallen apart when projected, that it was 65mm or bust, as far as they were concerned. We are talking about pre-RED period, though. I hate to appeal to authority, but that is one of the few experiences I have on this subject.

I personally dislike the way video looks when it is upressed beyond it is limits, particularly pretty compressed formats, ie. RED Raw. It is not that it goes soft, it just falls apart, in my experience. Pixels tend to ungracefully rear their ugly head when stretched beyond limits, not unlike film grain, but square and chunky, very un-organic.

As of late, I try not to judge a digital image too much by the math involved in the electronic acquisition process. If it looks good and the client and audience are happy, I cannot complain, even if I don't like it myself. A test may be the only way to go here, given the project's technical variables.
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#7 A. Whitehouse

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Posted 06 August 2009 - 09:04 PM

A recent article in AC magazine discussed a project for projection at airports on unusually wide screens. It was a microsoft ad I think, it might be worth reading that?I think they tried a few different things but settled on 65mm, not sure which format though. Best of luck.
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#8 Andrew S T Gregg

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Posted 07 August 2009 - 02:34 AM

Thanks everyone for all of the advice. We might end up changing the format so that we only use what we really shoot on RED for a smaller section of the screen, and use CGI to fill in the rest.

I'll let you know how it works out.
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#9 John Brawley

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Posted 09 August 2009 - 03:34 AM

Hmmm! Seems like it could work out to shoot in 4k mode with Anamorphics!
I seem to remember someone on here saying they had LOMO anamorphics is PL mount for hire cheaply.
That would get you closer and you wouldn't need as big a crop.

love

Freya



I actually don't think Anamorphic on a RED is the right way to go here, because you need to CROP out from the RED sensor, thereby reducing the resolution. Remember, RED is NOT full height anamorphic, so to get the correct desqueeze you're using LESS of the sensor...

A better way to go would be a straight crop, although for that kind of ratio I think you'd still struggle to have it hold up.

Far better would be to explore a full size sensor with anamorphic or a larger than 4 perf 35mm format...

jb



EDIT.

Actually recently i was faced with this problem. Had to shoot a short digitally, but the directors wanted anamorphic. F35 was priced and too expensive as was the D21. Instead we went with a SI-2k and used a cheap Panasonic PLASTIC anamorphic adaptor on 16mm superspeeds. Shootin 2/3 inch sensor witha 1.3x anamorphic squeeze gave us close to 2.46:1. Ad it looked surprisingly good, considering we were using a very cheap $200 video adaptor in front of the lens.

See a clip here...read the story of the how and why here.
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#10 Freya Black

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Posted 09 August 2009 - 12:51 PM

I actually don't think Anamorphic on a RED is the right way to go here, because you need to CROP out from the RED sensor, thereby reducing the resolution. Remember, RED is NOT full height anamorphic, so to get the correct desqueeze you're using LESS of the sensor...

A better way to go would be a straight crop, although for that kind of ratio I think you'd still struggle to have it hold up.

Far better would be to explore a full size sensor with anamorphic or a larger than 4 perf 35mm format...

jb


Sorry my head is all messed up at the moment as I'm in a lot of pain and popping loads of pain killers. Trying to be careful not to take too many. In fact stopped off here to distract myself. Think I'm getting better slowly but my ability to understand anything other than weird music or disney movies is not high right now. so basically I'm not sure what you are saying.

You are right he would need to crop it further as well as using the anamorphic lens but I just thought it could be a good way to maintain resolution and might have an intresting look to boot. I mean thats a big crop on it's own even at 4k mode. Maybe if they shoot 4k with an anamorphic lens, they could add computer graphics to fill out the video either side too as was suggested.

The only other thing that occurs to me is that maybe they could make some multi channel video work, like we do in art installations. Maybe 4x 1.33:1 channels. With the right idea they wouldnt have to be in sync, or maybe one of the channels would have sync sound and all others would be silent and run as is.

However it's done I suspect it will be tricky.


EDIT.

Actually recently i was faced with this problem. Had to shoot a short digitally, but the directors wanted anamorphic. F35 was priced and too expensive as was the D21. Instead we went with a SI-2k and used a cheap Panasonic PLASTIC anamorphic adaptor on 16mm superspeeds. Shootin 2/3 inch sensor witha 1.3x anamorphic squeeze gave us close to 2.46:1. Ad it looked surprisingly good, considering we were using a very cheap $200 video adaptor in front of the lens.

See a clip here...read the story of the how and why here.


Hey this is a really cool article in the pdf link thing. Everyone should check it out.
I though that panasonic adaptor was loads more expensive than $200 tho?

love

Freya
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#11 John Sprung

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 02:34 AM

Sorry my head is all messed up at the moment ....


But you got this one right.

Using the Red with flat lenses, a 6:1 crop would use 4520 photosites across the picture by 753 vertically. Anamorphic would be the same 4520 across by 1507 high. Anamorphic does use a larger part of the chip, not smaller.

But the human visual system sees a resolution mismatch between horizontal and vertical as being the lower of the two, so it shouldn't matter.




-- J.S.
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#12 John Brawley

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 04:15 AM

But you got this one right.

Using the Red with flat lenses, a 6:1 crop would use 4520 photosites across the picture by 753 vertically. Anamorphic would be the same 4520 across by 1507 high. Anamorphic does use a larger part of the chip, not smaller.

But the human visual system sees a resolution mismatch between horizontal and vertical as being the lower of the two, so it shouldn't matter.




-- J.S.



John...

Isn't anamorphic windowed on RED to correct for the 2:1 ? Therefore the pixel dimensions are something like 2764 x 2304 ???

jb
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#13 John Sprung

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 01:55 PM

The Red chip is 4520 x 2540 Bayer photosites with equal horizontal and vertical pitch -- "square" pixels. That makes it about 16:9, or with a scope lens, 32:9. The electronics wouldn't know or care whether the lens was flat or anamorphic -- just like with film. If the lens covers the chip, there's no reason you couldn't use all the data.




-- J.S.
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#14 John Brawley

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 04:08 PM

The Red chip is 4520 x 2540 Bayer photosites with equal horizontal and vertical pitch -- "square" pixels. That makes it about 16:9, or with a scope lens, 32:9. The electronics wouldn't know or care whether the lens was flat or anamorphic -- just like with film. If the lens covers the chip, there's no reason you couldn't use all the data.




-- J.S.



Why do charts like this indicate otherwise ??

Why do Hawk make 1.3x anamorphic for RED and the 2/3" mount cameras ?

jb

EDIT*. I get it. you're talking about a non standard screen size so all bets off...

jb
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#15 John Sprung

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Posted 10 August 2009 - 06:43 PM

EDIT*. I get it. you're talking about a non standard screen size so all bets off...


Right, you got it.

The Red chip is 16:9, or 1.78:1 in its native mode. You can get flat 2.39:1 from that by cropping top and bottom.

If you go 2x anamorphic on the whole chip, you're at 3.55:1. From that you can crop the sides to make 2.39:1, which is what the standard charts say. That's where they get 2764 x 2304. The OP wants 6:1, so he'd be using the full width even with scope glass, and cropping top and bottom.

The idea behind 1.34x anamorphics is that they get you 2.39:1 using the whole 1.78:1 chip.



-- J.S.
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