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Cheating the broadcast data rate on the EX3/1


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#1 Chris Lambert

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 07:11 AM

Hi all

Like many of you I am currently weighing up the pro's and con's of various uncompressed recorders for a upcoming documentary which needs to be broadcast friendly.

A lot of the information I keep coming across online mentions that the EX1/3 uncompressed doesn't look too dissimilar from compressed because of the high noise floor.

This begs the question if it is incredibly difficult to spot the difference side by side, massive amounts of CC will not be required and no screen is planned. Will it be possible to cheat the bittrate in post production eg. a Video Mixdown in avid at MXF 10bit.

Of course I would rather shoot to be safe but if there will be no discern able difference and the broadcasters would never broadcast at 100mbps anyway then perhaps cheating is the best option? I mean the Atomos Samurai has a release date of late summer I believe and the Hyperdeck Shuttle will be amazing in a year or two when SSD's are actually affordable.

Any thoughts?
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 07:41 AM

Honestly, I would say that if the documentary is good enough it won't really matter what it was shot on.
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#3 James Mansell

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 04:37 AM

Nanoflash? Shoot onto CF at 50Mgbs?
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#4 Phil Connolly

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 07:00 AM

You might get away with it, its been done before. But its risky.

The EX series can produce nice images and without colour correction they would probably be fine. I used to work in QC for a broadcaster and we had a few studio shows shot on the XDCAM 35mbs format under controlled lighting and it was fine.

Main issue is you nearly always need to colour correct a documentary and if you unlucky with bad lighting conditions - the EX material can fall apart quickly.

If the documentary has already been commissioned then you have to shoot it in the format they require, its part of the contract you sign.

If your producing on spec - then just try to make it look as good as possible.

The broadcast rules are often exempted for purchased films - since there's no option to do anything to anything to fix it. If the commissioning dept like your film they will over-rule the engineering dept, as long as its not too bad looking and the sound quality is good.

One example in the UK was Super-Size Me. Shot 4:3 NTSC 60i Mini DV, standards converted to 25p PAL and cropped to 16:9. It looked horrible nothing like broadcast quality but it still got shown, because the content was good and there was no way to improve it.
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#5 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 07:02 AM

Addendum, too, the Nano-Flash ect will get you, as mentioned, to a ProRes HQ file at much higher data rate off of the HD-SDI on the EX series.
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#6 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 07:50 AM

The broadcast rules are often exempted for purchased films - since there's no option to do anything to anything to fix it. If the commissioning dept like your film they will over-rule the engineering dept, as long as its not too bad looking and the sound quality is good.


The BBC refused a commissioned HD production when it was found during the delivery quality check to have shot at 35 Mbit/s on EX series cameras. Of course, that is different to a bought in production.
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