Jump to content

Toy camera vs. actual camera


Vincent Sweeney
 Share

Recommended Posts


  • Premium Member

I have seen it, not to mention real world use, and it really reminds you how those things can bite you badly if you aren't always on the look out, though even then you can't always catch a tweed suit or a wall of bricks in time.

 

The Alexa in that vimeo test is really impressive. I didn't realize it had that kind of DR.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

On the other hand, you could call that video "Camera that Costs $1000 vs. Camera that Costs $1000/day".

 

I'm not trying to be unnecessarily difficult but is there really any disagreement over what the pluses and minuses are here?

 

I think also that we are in a "why should you care" situation. Back when the choice was 35mm on DV, the people who were most vocally in favour of film were always the people shooting huge movies and television series, who really didn't have to care about the downsides. I suspect here, again, anyone with ACS after his name doesn't have to care what an Alexa costs.

 

P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the other hand, you could call that video "Camera that Costs $1000 vs. Camera that Costs $1000/day".

 

I'm not trying to be unnecessarily difficult but is there really any disagreement over what the pluses and minuses are here?

 

I think also that we are in a "why should you care" situation. Back when the choice was 35mm on DV, the people who were most vocally in favour of film were always the people shooting huge movies and television series, who really didn't have to care about the downsides. I suspect here, again, anyone with ACS after his name doesn't have to care what an Alexa costs.

 

P

 

That's a good point. I'm sure that any kid out there wishing to become a professional DP or Director would gladly shoot his/her short movies using a Panaflex or even IMAX. But the reality is that not everyone has the resources to use the "best" format out there so the less expensive alternatives HAVE TO be good enough, at least until those aspiring "filmmakers" build their careers to a point where they're not paying the rental bills.

 

What a test like this does provide, though, is the information for those who choose to or are forced into using technology like either of the cameras shown. It's extraordinarily helpful to see precisely what the parameters are so that when someone does shoot something, they'll be able to work within those parameters more effectively. The word of caution is to not condemn a camera because it can't perform well in some conditions. Afterall, those with ASC after their names frequently change film stocks when the lighting conditions demand it, so working within parameters isn't only a curse of electronic acquisition technology. The key to being a successful Cameraman is learning the tools that are available and knowing how to work with ALL of them to achieve the desired end product. So, there's nothing inherently good nor bad about the 7D. It just "is" what it is... a pretty remarkable tool given the price and size. No, you can't do everything with it, but then again, you can't do everything with a single film stock either. There will always be limitations no matter what medium or format is chosen.

 

Thank you for doing that test. It was very helpful to see. It would be amazing to see the same kind of thing but with every format/media available, all side-by-side like shown in the video above.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

Speaking from an educational standpoint, one of the drawbacks of the 7D (yet many student filmmakers see it as a benefit) is that you can achieve a 35mm film-look in extremely low-light with relative ease, leading many to believe that you don't need to "light the scene." Any real filmmaker will tell you that that just ain't true.

 

Gregg Toland must be turning in his grave.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Speaking from an educational standpoint, one of the drawbacks of the 7D (yet many student filmmakers see it as a benefit) is that you can achieve a 35mm film-look in extremely low-light with relative ease, leading many to believe that you don't need to "light the scene." Any real filmmaker will tell you that that just ain't true.

 

...and sometimes having to pump more light in to increase the DOF :blink:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the other hand, you could call that video "Camera that Costs $1000 vs. Camera that Costs $1000/day".

 

I'm not trying to be unnecessarily difficult but is there really any disagreement over what the pluses and minuses are here?

 

I think also that we are in a "why should you care" situation. Back when the choice was 35mm on DV, the people who were most vocally in favour of film were always the people shooting huge movies and television series, who really didn't have to care about the downsides. I suspect here, again, anyone with ACS after his name doesn't have to care what an Alexa costs.

 

P

I would say that there are many people who do not fully understand and appreciate the differences between the images from the two cameras. For instance this test could be quite useful to show a director or producer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

I would say that there are many people who do not fully understand and appreciate the differences between the images from the two cameras. For instance this test could be quite useful to show a director or producer.

 

I was in a situation recently where a producer was asking me what they could get away with for their (low six-figure) feature. I think he wanted me to confirm his wish to save money and shoot with a 7D, and explaining why it could be a bad idea can be tough but tests like this help show their severe limits. Making a test like this one but instead with a person wearing a knitted sweater might be a good move.

 

Showing how impractical DSLR's are for the camera crew is another story though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you SO MUCH for this. It's a bit of a miracle really, I've been explaining why we should go with the Alexa over these new "magic" 7ds to a client and it's not only great for me to understand where the 7D fails but I can point these out to a layperson.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree this test could be very useful to show producers and clients why sometimes its worth spending the money, though personally the test would be more interesting if they also showed the footage pre-exposure correction for me thats really the important factor, after all how many sets and locations are lit universally to one stop?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 weeks later...

In this specific example it could be grading took to far or effects of the ridiculous vimeo-compression (1800MBit/s RAW to 330MBit/s Prores to 5MBit/s Vimeo) because the highlight-handling of this camera is unheard of in the digital world, I've seen 1:1 comparisons to 7219 (from 3k ARRISCAN) which looked really close regarding dynamic range. IMHO, the overall image quality, the "look" is defined by such dull technical entities like dynamic range or noise. Many entities are bound to these aspects, like tonal transition profits from a lower noise floor.

You don't always need a dynamic range of 14 stops but when scenes become contrasty, less powerful systems fall apart and these artifacts become noticeable. Our brain processes the information of our eyes into a near-perfect, artifact-free appearing visual impression. So an "organic" or "natural" image renders reality witout adding artifacts of any kind.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

The "greyishness" in the ungraded version is simply the curve they've put in the thing to ensure somewhat even-handed distribution of compressed bitrate between shadow and highlight. This is not really designed to be viewable - it's rather like looking at film without the orange mask on it, and saying "crikey, the blue looks a bit grainy". Well, it will - it isn't designed to be looked at like that! I've heard tales of people trying to light to log (or very low con) images on monitors. Aargh, wrong, wrong!

 

I don't think the graded version is "grey", it's possibly a bit high in contrast for a general sort of scene, but that might just be my brain overinterpreting the difference between the ungraded and graded image.

 

Also, I have to say that the ultra-low-con greyishness is something I also associate with modern film stocks. Kodak and their competitor(s) seem to have been drawn into this ridiculous dynamic-range numbers battle with the video people, to the point where additional dynamic range is not actually useful or worthwhile and simply has to be graded out. The Kris Marshall BT ads in the UK are a terrible example of this - it looks like the whole thing's been shot through a double fog filter in heavy smoke.

 

P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't know about you guys, but this video is number one for aestethics ( most important thing for me ) in home digital videos that I have seen. It was shot on Lumix GH2.

 

 

P.S. OK, maybe scenery is not best looking, but that is not important. :)

Edited by Anton Papich
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...