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Choosing a film speed - what's your thought process?


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#1 cole t parzenn

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 03:22 PM

I'll leave this open ended... Thanks for your thoughts.


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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 08:04 PM

Are you asking about the thought process behind using 200T stock versus 500T stock?  Or are you asking about the reasons behind using an ISO rating that is different than the manufacturer's recommendation?


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#3 cole t parzenn

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 08:05 PM

200T v 500T. There's such thing as too open ended, I guess. :D


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#4 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 01:54 AM

Well, you never want to be caught with your pants down. So if you think you may not have enough light for 200T, then you're better off ordering 500T and playing it safe. Otherwise, you could be stuck not being able to shoot that early morning or evening scene. But generally you'd have planned for a fine grained 200T look or a grainier 500T and ordered your filmstock accordingly.
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#5 cole t parzenn

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 03:01 PM

How big is the grain difference? The projection in my neck of the woods makes everything look the same. I know that Wally Pfister always goes (or went) for a no-grain look but he also always uses (or used) a 250D-500T combo and is (or was) comfortable pushing the 500T two stops. All with a 2/3 stop overexposure, though.


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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 05:14 PM

The difference is not dramatic but it's there.  When I saw "The Grand Budapest Hotel", all shot on 200T, I noticed how clean the image looked.  But if you shoot and project a side-by-side test, it's not like the difference jumps out at you.  In fact, the stocks were designed to look as close as possible.

 

I find that the advantage of using the slower 200T stock comes more in flexibility in post, to deal with accidental underexposure, for example, or a blow-up or other optical effect - the image holds up to that sort of abuse a little bit longer than a 500T shot.


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#7 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 07 August 2014 - 10:01 PM

Ya know, I've had a lot of luck with the Kodak vision 500ASA stocks, I think they're excellent. I've shot lots of commercials in 35mm and 16mm with that stuff, as it was my go-to stock. David is right though, you've gotta almost over expose a tiny bit because if you try to bring up the blacks in post from under exposing, you just get a mess of grain. The lower ASA stocks are better for this, but honestly even the older T grain vision stocks were amazing compared to the older EXR stocks we use to get for free from productions who switched to Vision when it first hit the market. I use to shoot stuff on short ends because I couldn't afford any other way of doing it. 

 

I'll put it a different way, if your shooting outdoors in high lumen situations, go with the 200D. If you're going to be doing a lot of indoor or night shooting, go with the 500T. I've pushed Vision 1 500T two stops in processing in a pitch black scene with only a flashlight reflection in the eye of an actor and it was grainy, but the image existed! :) 


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