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"FRANK" feature film, frame grabs from ARRI ALEXA


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#1 kyle heslop

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 03:32 AM

Hello everyone,

I have just finished shooting a feature film in the uk using the ARRI ALEXA, and recording onto the sxs cards.

here are some frame grabs from the rushes. I must admit i and my camera assistants were very impressed with the camera
and workflow.

you can view large versions here.... My link


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#2 Stephen Murphy

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 04:29 AM

Kyle,
The images look very nice. Could you post some specs as well please? Im specifically interested in what asa and colour temp you shot at. There's some noise in the images and I'm assuming that came from the compression to flickr? Or did you shot at very high asa?
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#3 kyle heslop

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 06:07 AM

Kyle,
The images look very nice. Could you post some specs as well please? Im specifically interested in what asa and colour temp you shot at. There's some noise in the images and I'm assuming that came from the compression to flickr? Or did you shot at very high asa?



Hi Stephen,

thanks, i think the noise is due to the way the frames were grabbed, i basically found the frame i wanted from watching the rushes on quicktime on a mac, i then just used the frame grab function› (shift+cmd+4)... so the image resolution is considerably lower, perhaps only 72dpi.

The actual high resolution grab feature on board the alexa was not enabled when we filmed, which was a shame but the D.I has told me she can get full resolution frames once the footage is in F.C.P.

We recorded at pro res 4444, in Rec 709. we did this over LOG C simply due to the fact we didnt have the time to grade the LOG C footage prior to watching the rushes.
As for the ASA i tried to keep at 800asa, but there were times i pushed it to the maximum Asa, mainly out of curiosity and the conditions we were working in, I did watch some tests on a 2k projector and found that even when there was noise at the highest ASA it didnt look like video noise and had an almost silky quality to it. I actually quite liked it as it appeared more like filmic grain to me.

The lenses we used were ARRI ultra primes and a COOKE zoom. and I used only N.D filters (regular and grads)

I hope this all helps,

best wishes

kyle.
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#4 Edgar Dubrovskiy

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 07:12 AM

Wow. Real nice.
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 10:41 AM

Why would you shoot Rec.709 just to get the right gamma for dailies without grading? The point of shooting isn't to make good dailies, it's to make a good final product -- and with something like a 2-stop loss of dynamic range from shooting in Rec.709 versus Log, I don't see the point unless this project is for Rec.709 broadcast only, and even then, you would have benefitted from a Log recording for the final color-correction.

I went through all of this last season on "United States of Tara" when I had to shoot Rec.709 on the Genesis just because they didn't want to convert or color-correct dailies... this season I got them to go back to PanaLog and we are doing a simple overall LUT application to dailies to give us Rec.709 gamma, but the final color-correction will be from PanaLog originals.

Unless the Alexa has some sort of "hypergamma" version of Rec.709 that gives you back some of your DR.
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#6 kyle heslop

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 11:27 AM

Why would you shoot Rec.709 just to get the right gamma for dailies without grading? The point of shooting isn't to make good dailies, it's to make a good final product -- and with something like a 2-stop loss of dynamic range from shooting in Rec.709 versus Log, I don't see the point unless this project is for Rec.709 broadcast only, and even then, you would have benefitted from a Log recording for the final color-correction.

I went through all of this last season on "United States of Tara" when I had to shoot Rec.709 on the Genesis just because they didn't want to convert or color-correct dailies... this season I got them to go back to PanaLog and we are doing a simple overall LUT application to dailies to give us Rec.709 gamma, but the final color-correction will be from PanaLog originals.

Unless the Alexa has some sort of "hypergamma" version of Rec.709 that gives you back some of your DR.


Hi David,

I did press for shooting in log c, however the producers and director were not happy with viewing the dailies in a desaturated log C look. when i say we could not afford a dedicated person to colour correct dailies (no matter how basic) i meant it. this was a micro budget film, around the £100,000 mark.

thanks for your input though david, im a huge fan of your work,,, particularly "Northfork"

my best wishes

kyle.
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#7 J Costantini

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 09:49 PM

David, we've been discussing about that on the Brazilian Association of Cinematographers forum... some dops would say the same thing about the DR of the logC recording, however, I wonder if it really makes a difference, since the logC material is going to be graded at the end and present the same 'look' intended, even if it had been recorded in rec709. what I want to say is: even if you have a nice (full of information) logC material, it won't look like that at the end and you will bring in color saturation and contrast in post. I understand that it's always better to have the maximum amount of information in your raw footage, but you have to know exactly where you will be grading the material and test it, because the 'developing' of the logC footage CAN create some artifacts such as noise to color saturation on the skin tones, etc (some cinematographers had reported that - that's why we started the discussion on the ABC forum...). So, at the end we're not sure if it's 'that' better to record in logC... what do you think?

Edited by J Costantini, 08 November 2010 - 09:50 PM.

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#8 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 04:01 AM

David, we've been discussing about that on the Brazilian Association of Cinematographers forum... some dops would say the same thing about the DR of the logC recording, however, I wonder if it really makes a difference, since the logC material is going to be graded at the end and present the same 'look' intended, even if it had been recorded in rec709. what I want to say is: even if you have a nice (full of information) logC material, it won't look like that at the end and you will bring in color saturation and contrast in post. I understand that it's always better to have the maximum amount of information in your raw footage, but you have to know exactly where you will be grading the material and test it, because the 'developing' of the logC footage CAN create some artifacts such as noise to color saturation on the skin tones, etc (some cinematographers had reported that - that's why we started the discussion on the ABC forum...). So, at the end we're not sure if it's 'that' better to record in logC... what do you think?



Well, at least the DP can choose how far to go with the LOG C material in post, as opposed to being saddled with whatever information the rec709 retains. It all about options in post.

But the underlying trend here seems to be that DPs are having to settle on less desirable choices because production can't afford or won't wait for rushes in rec709. Some DPs and crews are even being asked to "color correct on set" because it will save production money. Are cinematographers just sacrificing too much control of their craft just to be rehire-able?
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#9 Oliver Temmler

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Posted 12 November 2010 - 05:35 PM

Hi everybody,

ALEXA will deliver it's full dynamic range regardless of the Gamma setting. The (big) difference, however, is how the different dynamic range distribution affects what you can do with the image afterwards. Please have a look here.
In the LogC signal, the stops above middle grey are distributed evenly in the signal, all the way up to white clipping. In the Rec709 video signal, each stop above middle grey is represented by a decreasing difference in the signal with the highest one or two stops being compressed to a very small signal difference. This makes fine-tuning your highlight detail almost impossible.
I think Saul pretty much nailed it when he called it "being saddled with whatever information the rec709 retains". The Rec709 characteristic is supposed to provide a tonal balance which is pleasing to the eye and/or looking visually correct on a monitor. On the other hand, the compressed highlight roll-off resulting from this requirement can't deliver the amount of control you get from a LogC characteristic.

Yes, shooting Log C does require the extra step of creating video rushes/files for offline edit, but doing this using a "simple overall LUT" as David suggested makes it a quick and rather affordable process with the benefit of much better control over the image once you get into grading. Until we have our LUT section back online at arridigital.com, us guys at digitalworkflow@arri.de will do our best to provide you with the LUTs you need. Just tell us how the signal was recorded and which tool you are using to convert LogC to video.
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#10 Keith Mottram

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 09:27 AM

I'm amazed that anyone would shoot rec709 for a feature. to convert log into simple viewable dailies takes no time at all- even on my laptop it is a breeze. It doesn't need to be handled by the crew an assistant editor can bash them out and provide everyone who needs them with 'corrected' qts. Personally I have never cut with the 4444 anyway it always gets downconverted to regular 422 for editing and baking a look at the same time as conversion barely dents the export time.
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#11 F Bulgarelli

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Posted 02 October 2011 - 01:19 PM

I havent shot with the Alexa yet but if you sre able to record LOG and monitor 709, could the playback guy maybe run a signal straight from the video village monitor (709) and record (709) into a drive or some other recording device so that production has "color corrected" dailies?
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#12 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 02 October 2011 - 02:25 PM

What I don't get is the idea that it is more important to get dailies to look "right" even if it compromises the final product -- ultimately the dailies are disposable! Any producer who demands that his dailies look better by baking in Rec.709 even if it makes his final project less good as a result doesn't know how to produce a movie, or why he is in the business in the first place. And there are a number of workarounds for converting Log-C to Rec.709 for viewing on set and for dailies.
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#13 Richard Boddington

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 01:36 PM

Why would you shoot Rec.709 just to get the right gamma for dailies without grading? The point of shooting isn't to make good dailies, it's to make a good final product -- and with something like a 2-stop loss of dynamic range from shooting in Rec.709 versus Log, I don't see the point unless this project is for Rec.709 broadcast only, and even then, you would have benefitted from a Log recording for the final color-correction.

I went through all of this last season on "United States of Tara" when I had to shoot Rec.709 on the Genesis just because they didn't want to convert or color-correct dailies... this season I got them to go back to PanaLog and we are doing a simple overall LUT application to dailies to give us Rec.709 gamma, but the final color-correction will be from PanaLog originals.

Unless the Alexa has some sort of "hypergamma" version of Rec.709 that gives you back some of your DR.


These are the kinds of discussions that scare me about video. I just bought an Alexa, I might consider shooting my next feature with it. But there are so many threads about "settings" on video cameras and "record modes." No one can seem to agree on the best way forward.

Film is so much easier, you load it, point and shoot. There are no "settings" to adjust per se, i.e. you can't record 35mm at a lower resolution.

I dunno?

R,
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#14 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 10:47 PM

These are the kinds of discussions that scare me about video. I just bought an Alexa, I might consider shooting my next feature with it. But there are so many threads about "settings" on video cameras and "record modes." No one can seem to agree on the best way forward.

Film is so much easier, you load it, point and shoot. There are no "settings" to adjust per se, i.e. you can't record 35mm at a lower resolution.

I dunno?

R,


Just shoot Log-C, it's basically like a film negative. The only thing you bake into the picture (besides frame rate and shutter speed) is the ASA and color temp, just like when choosing a film stock, just that you have a lot more options in terms of which color temperature and ASA. But that's a pretty simple thing to decide before a set-up.
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#15 Richard Boddington

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:35 AM

Just shoot Log-C, it's basically like a film negative. The only thing you bake into the picture (besides frame rate and shutter speed) is the ASA and color temp, just like when choosing a film stock, just that you have a lot more options in terms of which color temperature and ASA. But that's a pretty simple thing to decide before a set-up.


Ok I'm trusting you, it had better work.

It will be Denis' problem at the end of the day. :D

R,
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