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D21 ...


Matias Nicolas
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Hi ! I'm starting a new fil in a month and a half with the ARRIFLEX D-21 , which I never used it ... Does anybody has any recomendation for assisting and pulling focus with this camera? or technical data ? or whatever you discovered using it ... or accesories you would recomend me to ask to the rental house...

and another thing... were can I download the manual ? cause in arri'swebpage, I couldn't find it ...

thanks !

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The RED should, theoretically, have the exact same depth of field as 3-perf Super35....

 

The ARRI D-21 has (someone correct me if I'm wrong) a 4-perf Super35 (aka Silent) frame. So, it will have "regular" Super35 DoF, or anamorphic DoF if you're using anamorphic lenses with it.

 

It's also my understanding that the camera was designed to be easy to use and "film-like" in its operation. Though I've not used it myself yet, so I could be wrong.

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Funny, I talked to one of my friends the other vday, and he had a gig on a D-21 shoot. When the aperture was wide open, the dof was extremly narrow, he even had to pull focus on some wide angle shots. He requested a 35mm print to see some of the rushes, and a lot of it was soft. After they tried to at least keep the aperture around 4 or 5.6. Under that it get really critically.

 

But again it's just what I've heard. Good luck mate!

Edited by Allan Legarth Nielsen
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I agree about the RED at least....I had trouble pulling focus on it. It didn't feel like 35mm dof, it seemed that if I was off my mark even a bit, it was way off. Didn't have a chance to do any measured tests, but that's what it felt like.

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I agree about the RED at least....I had trouble pulling focus on it. It didn't feel like 35mm dof, it seemed that if I was off my mark even a bit, it was way off. Didn't have a chance to do any measured tests, but that's what it felt like.

 

Hi,

 

The thickness of a pencil line would be a big error on a CU of a face.

 

Stephen

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I wonder if there really is a difference or not -- afterall, we don't see 35mm's true depth of field until much later, when it's been projected on a big screen or transferred to HD. Whereas with these digital 35mm cine cameras, we can see the lens image "live" more or less -- even the operator on a 35mm movie camera is seeing the lens image projected onto a tiny groundglass screen.

 

So I think 90% of what is happening is basically that, until now, no one has seen focus-pulling with 35mm depth of field "live", pre-editing, pre-printing, pre-transfer. I suspect even print projection hides some of the flaws due to softening.

 

Until someone shoots a comparison test, with the 35mm footage ending up at the same resolution, I'm not going to agree that there is a fundamental difference in depth of field.

 

That said, it seems that the higher MTF characteristics of digital cine cameras, at least when viewed on an HD monitor using a live output from the camera, make it more obvious when the focus is on the subject or not. Some people used to say that about Zeiss versus other optics even in 35mm, that the contrast makes the fall-off seem more apparent. Whether that counts as having "less depth of field" or not, I don't know.

 

It depends on if you define depth of field as the characteristic of the image as it falls out of focus -- let's say, a receding line of staggered focus charts -- versus whether how clearly you can tell if the focus is precisely on the subject or not. Maybe that's the same thing but maybe not. Even in 35mm film, I question the point of depth of field charts because I feel that either the subject is in focus or it isn't, and most attempts to hold splits or accept mis-focused shots because the chart tells you that it's within the acceptable range... well, half the time it doesn't seem acceptable to me.

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The RED should, theoretically, have the exact same depth of field as 3-perf Super35....

 

I'm happy to be corrected here, but as I understand it, the RED's sensor is only s35 sized if you include the 'look around' area which is not recorded. The active pixel array is 4520 pixels across, rather than 4900pix on the whole chip. This would make it a similar width to Academy 35mm

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I agree about the RED at least....I had trouble pulling focus on it. It didn't feel like 35mm dof, it seemed that if I was off my mark even a bit, it was way off. Didn't have a chance to do any measured tests, but that's what it felt like.

Were you by chance using the Red branded lenses?

 

The focus scale on that lens is VERY compressed... a minute adjustment on the knob translates to a dramatic shift in the lens' focus. It's built like a photo lens IMO

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Were you by chance using the Red branded lenses?

 

The focus scale on that lens is VERY compressed... a minute adjustment on the knob translates to a dramatic shift in the lens' focus. It's built like a photo lens IMO

 

The RED zoom is a rehoused still lens. Creating the very fine mechanics to spread out a focus scale is expensive and, as we all know, the RED company is so very 'economical.' <_<

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The RED zoom is a rehoused still lens. Creating the very fine mechanics to spread out a focus scale is expensive and, as we all know, the RED company is so very 'economical.' <_<

I had a look at the new Zeiss 8mm lens (for 16mm) the other day and what really struck me that once you went down into the minimum focus region you had a marking for every single centimeter! And that's on a wide-angle lens.

 

Really, all these people who think they can use stills lenses for narrative filmmaking are in for a surprise.

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Really, all these people who think they can use stills lenses for narrative filmmaking are in for a surprise.

 

Yet a number of people are already claiming that they have done this on the RED, and even gotten away with no focus-pullers, shooting at wide apertures just by the operator (usually themselves) live-focusing.

 

I suspect either: (1) they are focus-pulling geniuses with Jedi-level skills; (2) not very critical nor picky; (3) can't tell good focus one way or another, (4) believe things only have to be sharp when neither the subject nor the camera is moving; or (5) have yet to see their work on a giant 75' wide screen. I suppose option #1 is a possibility...

 

I remember working with an ENG shooter who moved up to HD and couldn't figure out why the focusing was now harder, despite the fact that the HD camera had a 2/3" sensor just like the betacam he was used to using. I tried to explain to him that his focusing was the same, only now he could finally SEE his mistakes -- it wasn't that he was making fewer mistakes before in betacam.

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It also depends on what they mean by focused. HD being very sharp and clinical, there is a lot of room for soft focus, pleasant images. These may technically be out of focus but look nice or film-like because of the inherent HD sharpness, which some people really dislike.

 

Some older cameramen claim that even S4's and Master Primes are too sharp for 35mm use. And older lenses (even from as far back as the fifties) have seen a second life for this very reason.

 

http://web.mac.com/mattyquinn/iWeb/DuclosLenses/Baltar.html

 

I remember shooting a short as B camera operator on an HDX 900 last year. The DP, who was looking at the video village HD monitor came to talk to me and the focus puller. "It looks too sharp," were his exact words. So we had to throw the focus off a bit for him to be happy. Now, that was the first time the focus puller or I'd ever had that problem!

Edited by Saul Rodgar
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I agree about the RED at least....I had trouble pulling focus on it. It didn't feel like 35mm dof, it seemed that if I was off my mark even a bit, it was way off. Didn't have a chance to do any measured tests, but that's what it felt like.

 

 

I think it's two things. With all the image processing that's going on, it's very easy to PICK a soft shot now. I think projected film in a cinema meant we got away with a lot more softness because film is inherently more forgiving.

 

But there is also perhaps, a difference in the way the imager's are working. The size of the sensor thickness Vs film. I just dug up some notes from a Lecture when I was doing my MA, that was given by Steve Newman ACS who is a VFX/MOCO/Miniature specialist.

 

He has just finished Superman Returns. He'd discovered that the Genesis *DIDN"T* have the same DOF characteristics because he was able to measure it. He was doing miniature work which regularly means shooting at T22 or T32 and he consistently found the focus didn't as they were meant to. I hope he doesn't mind me posting this.

 

"A surprising anomaly came out of this shoot. We discovered the Genesis, even though the chip was the same size as 35mm film negative and we were using the same lenses, actually gave us less depth-of-field than shooting film.

From what I have been able to work out this is because the chip is an infinitely thin surface (unlike film, which has an emulsion thickness of about 25 microns) and this makes the focus more critical. The corrected Circle of Confusion for Genesis is 20 microns whereas for film it is 24.4 microns (or 1/1000?) " - Steve Newman

 

jb

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Yet a number of people are already claiming that they have done this on the RED, and even gotten away with no focus-pullers, shooting at wide apertures just by the operator (usually themselves) live-focusing.

I remember one shot on my film where we were on a 75mm Hawk, the actress was watering plants and slowly working her way into a close-up. I was standing next to the focus puller and could see how he was adjusting for every single time she leaned backwards and forwards. That really was a work of inches. There's no way an operator could have done this.

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I remember one shot on my film where we were on a 75mm Hawk, the actress was watering plants and slowly working her way into a close-up. I was standing next to the focus puller and could see how he was adjusting for every single time she leaned backwards and forwards. That really was a work of inches. There's no way an operator could have done this.

 

Hi,

 

On every lower budget RED production I have seen, using older cine lenses like Zeiss Standards, almost every shot has focus in the wrong place. On a logo on a T shirt, not the eyes or the middle of an ear. When I mention it they say 'Your being picky, don't you think it looks as good as 35mm film?" I usually reply "What do you mean, the bad skin tones & blown highlights looks just like Video" They reply "the 35mm DOF" I reply "everything important is out of focus"

 

Stephen

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The best lens in the world is useless if you don't have proper focus scales. That's one of the reasons the Primos are so popular. When they got released in the late 80s, their focus scale was much wider and more precise than that of Zeiss Superspeeds, Standards and Cooke S2/S3s. It took Zeiss and Cooke almost a decade to make lenses that were in that category.

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The best lens in the world is useless if you don't have proper focus scales. That's one of the reasons the Primos are so popular. When they got released in the late 80s, their focus scale was much wider and more precise than that of Zeiss Superspeeds, Standards and Cooke S2/S3s. It took Zeiss and Cooke almost a decade to make lenses that were in that category.

 

Hi Max,

 

Did you read the threads elsewhere that say that PV anamorphic are just rehoused Nikon's & Primos are rebarreled Leica? Funny thing is Leica does not make the same lenses for their still cameras.

 

Stephen

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Did you read the threads elsewhere that say that PV anamorphic are just rehoused Nikon's & Primos are rebarreled Leica? Funny thing is Leica does not make the same lenses for their still cameras.

That's unfortunately just wishful thinking by a bunch of amateurs. Panavision designed these lenses and Leica made the glass to their specifications. As we all know, the look of a lens is determined by the design (both optical and mechanical), not the place that makes the different glass elements. Hence why the Academy gave an Oscar to the Panavsion designers.

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Could be, that RED's chip working in 4K , has more power resolution than shooting with film ( so you get a smaller circle of confusion , so less depth of field...),

(cause also you generally work with 500T, 320T, etc).. ... I dont know if you do tests with same lenses, and 50D film.... you get a smaller circle of confusion...?

Last year, we did the resolution test with the RED, and we decided to shoot the century chart : with the camera in straight position (perfect vertical and horizontal lines matching ) , and another one with the camera very out of bubble, like in a diagonal position ... so that the small vert. and horiz. lines of the chart , dont't mix or mess with the lines or patch of the chip... and we find , the chip resolved more lines...!!

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