Jump to content

IMAX DI Scans


Scott Pickering
 Share

Recommended Posts

What is the current resolution scanning an IMAX negative for DI use? Is it only 8K or do they have the capability now to go higher then that with IMAX? What are the film outs of the digital files back to film done at? I'm just trying to get an idea of what the current IMAX features are done at (like Star Wars) for IMAX sequences. I'm assuming to retain the full rez of IMAX, its still preferred to do an interpositive print then to interneg again?

 

And how bad does putting a B&W neg to color interpositive look?

Link to comment
Share on other sites


I was shocked to find out they only finished Star Wars, large chunks were shot on 35mm film and at least one IMAX plate, at ONLY 2K!

I'm a HUGE 70mm fan (no pun intended) but if they are going to just put a BluRay on IMAX film, I love to support film screens but I am staying home because that is a ripoff and a joke.


It really deserves at least 4K, maybe 6!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

I believe FotoKem can do 11k scans and 8k records.

 

Since The Force Awakens was finished in 2k, I doubt they bothered to record it back at high res.

 

Christopher Nolan's films are the only ones I KNOW, which use the full 11k scan and 8k record.

 

There are quite a few films shot in color, turned into B&W and printed onto color interpositive stock. One of them would be "The Man Who Wasn't There".

  • Upvote 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tyler: Don't forget, Dark Knight Rises was all cut negative except shots that used CGI. Same thing with H8ful Eight. They didn't put the whole movies through the digital intermediate, so it's arguably higher, as a photochemically-timed contact print is arguably the highest possible resolution.



Do you think SW Force Awakens might get a 4K for IMAX? Jesus, you'd think it would. Otherwise, what's the point of buying $40K or so worth of film, other than hype?

Unfortunately, hype really has become IMAX's marketing strategy now, hasn't it?




Also, 11K sounds like a ton, but, proportional to 65mm, 15 perforations, 11,000 lines is the equivalent of scanning the smaller area of 35mm 4-perf at 4K and getting the same level of detail off of the negative, or vistavision at 6K.

Edited by Ari Michael Leeds
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

IMAX must have gotten a new director or something. They made a precipitous push towards digital few years ago and they've literally forgot about film. It's really unfortunate because the poor theaters had just invested in 3D film projectors and all of a sudden, had to invest in digital. IMAX like THX before it, is completely watered down technology today. With Dolby Vision offering petty much the same product for A LOT LESS MONEY, the writing could be on the wall for IMAX's future if they aren't careful!

 

Ohh and yea, Nolan's films do have a lot of photochemical finish in them. Lots of shots were scanned though, especially in Interstellar.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're making it sound like overkill and purism for 11K, though. Really it's just applying the same level of resolution as you would with a 4K scan on 35.


To put it another way, if the scanner res. goes down too low, you're not really gaining anything over shooting it in 5-perf. 65 instead.

Disappointing the scans are only output at 8K. I'd want 11 in, 11 out myself. I guess taht's comparable to 4K scan, 3.2 to 2.5 K out, something like that, with 4-perf. 35.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

Yea, exactly! I was utterly shocked to learn that MOST "science" IMAX films which use to be exclusively shot on 15/70 are now shot at 2k or 4k, using digital cameras. So the format is a complete waste today. There is nothing like a photochemically finished 15/70 film on the big screen, they are quite amazing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree. Too bad places like FilmTech care more about sound racks and the number of speakers in the theatre :-o


Amazing how many totally ignorant people there are running these films, although I've met a few IMAX projectionists who really know their sh it.

Edited by Ari Michael Leeds
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

The Force Wakens was a 4k finish ! Have know idea where the 2k thing came from ?

The 2D version of Force Awakens was 2k, as the DCP files for 2D were verified as being 2k by several projectionists.

 

The 3D version of Force Awakens was finished entirely different and it was 4k. My guess is they double-streamed the 2k material for a "faux" 4k.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
  • Premium Member

Waste of film

 

My brother raved about the digital super radioactive laser dolby IMAXX projection for Star Wars.

 

But then I drove him to Tennessee to watch H8ful in 70mm... He didn't much talk about Star Wars after that. And that was even a horrid, not framed correctly but mostly in focus projection!

  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Site Sponsor

FotoKem has an Imagica Imager-XE Plus with the "Bigfoot" 65mm - 70mm gate and transport. The Imagica uses a 10K Toshiba 14-micron Tri Linear CCD and the film moves across it, pin registered. So the IMAX scan is 10K wide by the sweep which I thought was 12K i.e. 10k x 12K scans.

 

Of course IMAX has the potential to have higher than 10K or 12K of information but there is no practical CCD or CMOS imager to scan it with.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

Really? You saw it and there was no benefit to an IMAX print?

Unfortunately the print never made it to LA where I live. However, I wouldn't waste my time seeing a 4k image blown up on IMAX.

 

Interstellar had an 8k workflow for everything including effects shots and a great deal of the material was done photochemically without scanning anything. The Force Awakens had a 4k workflow, it's 100% digital. I only compare those because even Interstellar on IMAX wasn't quite the experience of the 5/70 print. Partially because the 35mm stuff didn't look anywhere as good and MOST of Force Awakens is 35mm. So it will be all soft from the grain reduction and minus any of that punch you get with the IMAX stuff.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

I have read about and had described the laser projection, and still don't understand why anyone gives a sh it and it isn't just hype. So WHAT if it's brighter?

Ohh laser digital projection is quite amazing. What they've developed is an all-new imager that works in conjunction with three different lamp sources which are already tuned to the specific colors. So what you get is more contrast, very dark blacks and very bright highlights.

 

Honestly, I was blown away the first time I saw the IMAX laser projection. Sure it was still a 4k source, but man it was glass. No aliasing, no artifacts, just perfect image throughout. It's not one, but four steps above standard 4k digital cinema projection and MOST theaters/movies are still 2k.

 

Since then, I've seen Dolby Vision twice and it didn't impress me at all. There was aliasing all over the screen and the moment the film started, the black levels went back to normal. So all the hype of rich blacks, didn't exist because the distribution company didn't send over a file with those black levels. IMAX controls all of that AND they're analyzing the image as it's being projected in real time to insure it's good and let me tell ya, IMAX laser is the best we have. Sure, it doesn't quite rival a photochemically produced 15/70 print in resolution, but once they can distribute 8k material (which the projectors can do, but the servers can't) I can see it taking over for our current technology and frankly, I'm very satisfied with what I've seen.

 

Part of me is upset because I can see the path they are taking and even I have to admit, when they're projecting 8k someday, it will probably be superior to film in every way. Right now 5/70 and 15/70 photochemically finished, have the upper hand, but that will probably stop with 8k distribution. IMAX will absolutely be the first guys to do that and I hope it comes soon.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

The "Dark Knight" movies used 4K upconverts of the 35mm sequences in the IMAX print. That looked quite nice.

Are you sure about that? I thought the Dark Knight was a photochemical finish like Interstellar with an optical blow up.

 

And Star Wars was shot on film.

Yea, but they don't push the film out 1:1, they always clean it up and remove grain. Plus, upscaling anything is never going to look good when done digitally. I've seen plenty of 35mm blown up to IMAX and I've never been impressed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What's it called, DMR, DNR?

No, the blowup was 4K, at least the 2008 installment, not sure about 2012. Better than the loss from optical. THink it was called DNR?

I rememeber someone complaining abou some slight smeariness, or interpolation effects. Still, the important thing is getting the detail off the 35mm onto the IMAX as best as possible.

I try not to be too much of a purist with sharp scans with crisp grain. Plenty of loss with an optical blowup.



I've scanned quite a bit of film in my days with several different scanners, telecines. There is nothing that say you HAVE to remove the grain. I always opt to leave it in. There's a different look to it, but there are different looks to different types of film printers too, condensed versus diffused lighting sources, optical printing, etc.

A 4K film scan from 35mm gets practically all the information and renders a crisp grain pattern. They aren't missing much. My objection has always been 2K, which threw out more information than was lost in a 4th generation film copy.

5K and 6K scans are better, but that is really just oversampling at that point.. In stills terms, 4K is ~12 MP, 5K is ~19, 6K is ~24MP for a 4-perforation anamorphic frame. Even 5 is probably more scanner info than needed for a frame 3/4" x 1" (20x25mm)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

Ahh, just read an article about it.

 

Yea, they did 4k captures from the 35mm and 8k captures from the 65mm

 

They scanned the 35mm back to 65mm @ 5.6k and the IMAX material was 8k.

 

Though it looks like they did finish the film photochemically and THEN scanned it to apply the IMAX DMR process.

 

I guess over-all I'm just not impressed with 35mm blown up to 15/70, it never made sense to me. It would be fairly easy to shoot MOST of the film in 8 perf VistaVision and those critical close dialog scenes where you need quiet cameras, use a 5/70 camera.

  • Upvote 1
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...