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DCP projection (trailers vs features)


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#1 Benjamin Lamb

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 12:41 AM

It seems that there is a pretty substantial DCP quality difference in trailers vs a feature in an average cinema now. So is a feature most commonly projected via a 4K DCP in a cinema and the trailers projected at 2K or something like that? 


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#2 Shawn Martin

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 01:27 AM

Most DCPs are 2K.

The number of 4K movies released each year has to be about 12-15, if that. A lot of times, but not always, if the feature is 4K, the trailers will be too.
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#3 Benjamin Lamb

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 03:22 AM

Really, only 12-15 movies a year are released in 4K DCPs?


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#4 Freya Black

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 07:45 AM

Was really surprised to hear it was as many as 10-15 these days but it may be growing with the push for 4K TV's.

Sony has a website here which seems to suggest that 2013 was a landmark year with 20 releases! It seems to have fallen quite a bit in 2014 tho.

 

http://www.sony.co.u...-movie-releases

 

There are two big issues with 4K in cinemas. One is that a lot of the movies tend to be heavy on the visual effects which will probably be finished in 2K but the other issue is that most cinemas are only capable of 2K video projection.

 

I think there has been a big difference between the ads and the actual feature for a long time.

It could be that the adverts are still being projected in standard definition.

 

Freya


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#5 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 10:24 AM

I think a number of ads and some trailers are 1080P uprezzed to 2K for theatrical projection.


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#6 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 01:12 PM

Wouldn't surprise me either if some of the trailers are from very early/not nearly finalized elements-- especially perhaps some of the FXs, so they may have been rendered out @1080 due to time and then resized 2K.


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#7 Bruce Greene

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 02:15 PM

From experience with my own films...

The trailers are graded and finished in a hurry, outside my own control, and they look lousy:(

There is also the issue of the trailers being scaled for films showing in a different aspect ratio and that can degrade the image as well.

And I have, in the past, seen some trailers screened on an inferior projector used for ads and trivia, but not recently...
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#8 Benjamin Lamb

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 02:43 PM

I think it really is an issue of trailers being 1080p and resized to 2K as David mentioned. Certainly there are problems with the timing of trailers, ect. but the easy way to judge is just by looking at the green band at the beginning of the trailer; just looking at the text, if you are close up toward the screen, you can see a serious difference in the pixel quality of the trailers and the features. The trailers look like they are on a high quality laptop.

 

But I'm still surprised that most films are projected at 2K. I really didn't know that. Is there a huge difference between a 2K and 4K DCP?


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#9 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 14 March 2015 - 04:38 PM

The difference is 4X the data to put it bluntly.  It's not so much the cost of the final DCP but doing a 4K post including visual efx, and the costs are even higher if you are talking about a 3D movie.  For a 2D, non-efx movie, the jump in cost for finishing in 4K isn't so bad but it exists, which is enough for some producers to not want to spend the extra money.  Hopefully they won't have much choice soon in the matter because some of their markets will demand a 4K version.

 

Many theaters have 4K projection (mainly those who bought Sony projectors) but they are mostly showing 2K DCP's on them.


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#10 Freya Black

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 10:44 AM

The difference between 1080p and 2K is not that big however. It's something like about 5% if I remember right.

It may be that you are seeing work that is just graded to a lower quality as suggested earlier or it could even be that the trailers aren't coming off the DCP server but are on the setup being used for the adverts which may be of a lower quality depending on what they are using for that these days.

 

Freya


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#11 Freya Black

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 10:49 AM

Many theaters have 4K projection (mainly those who bought Sony projectors) but they are mostly showing 2K DCP's on them.

 

David is right.

I understand that sometimes even if they have a 4K projector the DCP server isn't up to hosting 4K.

 

Also when you do have a server that is capable of 4K then the bandwidth isn't increased at all, so the 4K just becomes more compressed to fit into the same size file as a 2K DCP would use. I've heard there is going to be a new DCP standard that is going to fix a lot of issued but it's not even been announced yet.

 

David is also right about the VFX issue. If you check out the Sony link I posted you will see that most of the 4K releases are the larger releases that aren't VFX heavy. 4K UHD TV might drive 4K releases although it's still up in the air as to whether 4K TV will take off to that extent.

 

Freya

 

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#12 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 17 March 2015 - 07:10 PM

And the worst part is, theaters which don't have 4k projectors, aren't going to be spending money again to buy them when MOST movies come in 2k anyway. 

 

David is right about trailers being done in 1080 and upres'd to 2k. I use to work for a trailer house and that's what we did. Sometimes we didn't even color them, they would come pre-colored off the HDCAM tapes. Other times, we'd send our EDL's and files to a shop for color, it all depended on the budget. 


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#13 Freya Black

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Posted 18 March 2015 - 07:26 AM

And the worst part is, theaters which don't have 4k projectors, aren't going to be spending money again to buy them when MOST movies come in 2k anyway. 

 

David is right about trailers being done in 1080 and upres'd to 2k. I use to work for a trailer house and that's what we did. Sometimes we didn't even color them, they would come pre-colored off the HDCAM tapes. Other times, we'd send our EDL's and files to a shop for color, it all depended on the budget. 

 

Well theres another possible factor as the HDCam tapes aren't even full 1080 as we know it but anamorphic at 1440x1080 with color subsampling of 3:1:1 and 8bit.

 

Freya


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#14 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 18 March 2015 - 09:36 AM

Depending on when it was being done, it might more frequently have been HDCAM-SR, I suspect.


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#15 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 18 March 2015 - 01:40 PM

Yea, Yea, I'm using HDCAM as a "slang" it refers to 12 bit 4:4:4 SR format. 

 

Sorry for the confusion. Nobody uses the older orang door HDCAM format anymore, that's been dead for years. 


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