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increased grain


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#1 Chris Lange

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 05:50 PM

Months ago, I had sent film to one lab with Fuji 400 stock. This was underexposed by a stop, though the results were with a desired amount of grain, and it seemed fine.

Newly sent rolls of the same stock to a different lab, under similar exposure techniques: the result was much more grainy. Now it came back too noisy for me.

Is there something that the lab can do in the developing stage that increases grain?

Any thoughts?

-Chris
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 08:05 PM

Months ago, I had sent film to one lab with Fuji 400 stock. This was underexposed by a stop, though the results were with a desired amount of grain, and it seemed fine.

Newly sent rolls of the same stock to a different lab, under similar exposure techniques: the result was much more grainy. Now it came back too noisy for me.

Is there something that the lab can do in the developing stage that increases grain?

Any thoughts?

-Chris


How are you judging the amount of grain in the negative -- by projecting the original negative or by looking at a print / video transfer / scan?

Sure, some labs seem to get "hotter" results maybe through increasing temp and cutting time, but these days the negative process is pretty consistent from lab to lab. Which is why I'm asking how you are looking at the material because increased grain could be something else, like more noise in the video transfer.
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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 08:30 PM

I find too that my perception of grain is often based on scene content. The flatter it is the more I notice it; something else to keep in mind aside fro variations in transfers (i've gotten back some appalling transfers from time to time, but the neg itself is a-ok.)
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#4 Chris Lange

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 11:30 AM

Well...It is the digital transfer I am looking at, so perhaps this is occurring in the timing, as I chose "scene to scene". Perhaps the timer should have let it be a little darker? I don't know.

Should I project the negative to see if that is clean? What is a good way of seeing if the negative is in better shape than the transfer reveals?

Thanks for the help,

Chris
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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 11:39 AM

Well...It is the digital transfer I am looking at, so perhaps this is occurring in the timing, as I chose "scene to scene". Perhaps the timer should have let it be a little darker? I don't know.

Should I project the negative to see if that is clean? What is a good way of seeing if the negative is in better shape than the transfer reveals?

Thanks for the help,

Chris


Hard to say -- if the point is finding out if somehow the negative got "grainier", you'd have to print both the first footage you thought was fine and the new footage, at the same printer lights, or else, let them be printed at a best light and compare the numbers because perhaps you underexposed it the second time.

If the point though is a final video transfer, I'd try transferring it on another type of telecine at another facility and compare the two transfers.
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#6 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 05:00 PM

The choice of Telecine can make a huge difference to grain. I have a comparison of grain on Ursa & Spirit telecines on my website Here
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#7 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 10:06 PM

The choice of Telecine can make a huge difference to grain. I have a comparison of grain on Ursa & Spirit telecines on my website Here


Stuart, I can't tell from your page which is which -- is the Ursa on the left?
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#8 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 23 May 2011 - 10:08 AM

Sorry David, yes, Ursa on the left, Spirit on the right.

I've updated the page to make this clear.
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