Jump to content

Did the Japanese ever attempt professional movie cameras?


Phillip Mosness
 Share

Recommended Posts


  • Premium Member
12 minutes ago, Giray Izcan said:

To be honest though, looking through gg won't yield an hd and a crisp image no matter what.... I agree with Satsuki on Arricam ivs and I'd much rather have the SD IVS tap over diy "hd" taps... 

That’s true, if one happens to be available for your camera!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I spent 150 dollars to fit the camera on the elbow but didn't modify the optics so you can see black bars on the sides. It looks more like 1.66 than 1.78 but it works good enough. I am using a 35mm lens but I suspect a 50mm could fill the whole screen without black bars.

I like blackmagic colors and dynamic range being similar enough to film with custom wb etc.

Edited by Giray Izcan
  • Upvote 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member

For a more compact solution than the micro cinema camera you can buy the IO Industries 2K.

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1425613-REG/io_industries_2ksdiminid_camera_2k_1080p_i_720p.html

It's nice because it is a 2/3" sized sensor, like most taps, so existing relay lenses will work, if the previous sensor was also 2/3".

It also has standard frame rates of 24,25,29.97,30,50,59.94, and 60fps which will result in a flicker free image, if the camera is running at the same.

You would have to set the tap's frame rate manually , so it is the same is the camera frame rate. For a more automated solution you could use the tri-level sync input, but this would require a special board. Maybe Aapo would be up for a development 🙂

 

At any other frame rate,  than the ones listed above, you would have a slightly visible rolling bar - because the camera doesn't have a frame buffer.

Edited by David Sekanina
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
24 minutes ago, Giray Izcan said:

I just don't see the point of spending too much on video tap especially there isn't really that much professional demand for 35... self satisfaction maybe I don't know...

Yes, it is mostly to satisfy rental requests from DPs and ACs who heavily rely on their Teradeks and on-board monitors, and also their directors and clients on-set who expect to see something better than a B&W standard def image on a monitor these days. 

But as you’ve pointed out, if your film camera already has a modern IVS system, then your image quality gains will be minimal. And you will almost certainly lose some important features.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
35 minutes ago, Giray Izcan said:

I just don't see the point of spending too much on video tap especially there isn't really that much professional demand for 35... self satisfaction maybe I don't know...

In my view, if you can't focus off it, then as Satsuki says, the real "benefit" is being able to do HD for modern wireless. But if you're like me and already have analog wireless, then the gains are minimal. Where I agree, there are 100% gains with a good HD tap, clear and present, a good analog tap should suffice. It's just if your old tap is garbage, might as well move to HD. 

I'm looking for a board camera with a frame buffer that can truly perform flicker free. Someone must make one. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, Satsuki Murashige said:

Yes, it is mostly to satisfy rental requests from DPs and ACs who heavily rely on their Teradeks and on-board monitors, and also their directors and clients on-set who expect to see something better than a B&W standard def image on a monitor these days. 

But as you’ve pointed out, if your film camera already has a modern IVS system, then your image quality gains will be minimal. And you will almost certainly lose some important features.

The problem is the rental or the demand isn't high enough to justify the additional expense... to pull focus off of monitor,  in well lit setups maybe but in low light situations the groundglass grain etc becomes almost like sd tap i think. You see the image above... its only good enough. Maybe laser brightening gg at s16 inc might help with a better tap image. 

Arricam hd tap with gg cancelation is a different story of course hence the price of it..  again though, as nice as it may be... why? Where is the market to justify the expense? To shoot some vanity projects most likely? 

Edited by Giray Izcan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

51 minutes ago, Satsuki Murashige said:

Yes, it is mostly to satisfy rental requests from DPs and ACs who heavily rely on their Teradeks and on-board monitors, and also their directors and clients on-set who expect to see something better than a B&W standard def image on a monitor these days. 

But as you’ve pointed out, if your film camera already has a modern IVS system, then your image quality gains will be minimal. And you will almost certainly lose some important features.

I guarantee you that if you get a decent CEI IV, V OR VI flickerfree tap,  the image quality will be just as good or pretty close to hd taps without gg cancelation. 

Edited by Giray Izcan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
1 hour ago, Giray Izcan said:

I guarantee you that if you get a decent CEI IV, V OR VI flickerfree tap,  the image quality will be just as good or pretty close to hd taps without gg cancelation. 

I think we are in agreement there. However, fitting a CEI tap on the Moviecam SL requires an additional adapter plate.

(I do own one made by Clairmont Camera but it doesn’t pass power thru the plate, so it adds the additional hassle of powering another on-board 12v accessory). 

You also have the issue of the CEI taps obstructing the 1000’ mag on the SL when using the Compact mag adapter. The clearance is very tight in the back due to the small body, and the CEI taps are much larger than the original B&W SL Video Assist. You’d need it to be offset to the side of the camera to clear the mag, the original is centered on the top of the camera.

That would also require a different top handle bracket than the one that I have, which attaches to the dumb side of the camera near the top. So all in all, not as easy as it might seem to adapt.

Anyway, kind of a moot point (at least for me), as the work is already done...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

After writing a lengthy response, I'm backing up a little bit and wondering if a "Universal" tap would make more sense — my film cameras are @Lyle Norton Vincent's Moviecam SL, an Arri IIC, and an Arritechno, either of which I want to gut and rebuild like this
https://www.fdtimes.com/2018/07/02/ultra-light-arris/

A 2K+4K flicker free, "clean" ground glass image that you could record to an Odyssey 7Q+ would be pretty nice as a backup, and also something to generate digital dailies from. Of course, outfitting your camera with a clean ground glass is another story. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
2 hours ago, Giray Izcan said:

The problem is the rental or the demand isn't high enough to justify the additional expense... to pull focus off of monitor,  in well lit setups maybe but in low light situations the groundglass grain etc becomes almost like sd tap i think. You see the image above... its only good enough. Maybe laser brightening gg at s16 inc might help with a better tap image. 

Arricam hd tap with gg cancelation is a different story of course hence the price of it..  again though, as nice as it may be... why? Where is the market to justify the expense? To shoot some vanity projects most likely? 

Can’t speak for anyone else, but at least in my case it has been one of the sticking points that forces a local production to go to LA for an Arricam LT package instead of renting from me.

Of course, if they can afford to do that then that’s what they should do. No question. But for a local production that wants to shoot on film and is deciding between my kit or an Alexa Mini, I’m hoping that this will help tip the scales in my favor. At least before 2020, things were looking up with inquiries. Not sure where we are now.

I certainly wouldn’t spend more than what I have already on upgrading the tap. It was a bit of a stretch for me, as it was. I bit the bullet because I was already 75% there on my own and already owned all of the components. I can’t imagine who the target market is for the €16,000 Indiecam Tap! 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 minutes ago, Satsuki Murashige said:

I certainly wouldn’t spend more than what I have already on upgrading the tap. It was a bit of a stretch for me, as it was. I bit the bullet because I was already 75% there on my own and already owned all of the components. I can’t imagine who the target market is for the €16,000 Indiecam Tap! 

Yeah, that pricing is insane. I think they know that most people now can get Moviecams of any flavor well under $10K. There was one in Turkey for $1690 a few months ago, but I bought an Inspire 2 and X5S instead. 
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Edited by sines
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
3 minutes ago, sines said:

After writing a lengthy response, I'm backing up a little bit and wondering if a "Universal" tap would make more sense — my film cameras are @Lyle Norton Vincent's Moviecam SL, an Arri IIC, and an Arritechno, either of which I want to gut and rebuild like this
https://www.fdtimes.com/2018/07/02/ultra-light-arris/

A 2K+4K flicker free, "clean" ground glass image that you could record to an Odyssey 7Q+ would be pretty nice as a backup, and also something to generate digital dailies from. Of course, outfitting your camera with a clean ground glass is another story.


I don’t think the ground glass image would be ‘good enough’ for a 4K backup, though YMMV. For a quick preview edit, sure. Though it wouldn’t be nearly frame accurate enough to do an online/offline workflow, so you’d just be redoing all of your editing work manually after you get your scans back.

I’ve had a potential client ask for an Indiecam Tap + clean ground glass, so I guess that’s a thing now. I sent them to Keslow and Panavision, as that’s well out of my league.

Also, if you want to shoot with both cameras simultaneously, I think you would want two systems (one per camera) and keep them built on the cameras, as they more or less need to be calibrated for each camera.

It’s a very simple thing to remove and replace the Video Assist on the SL, with its locating pins. But I think it would take way too much time on set to swap a universal tap like a CEI between different camera bodies and have it focused and framed correctly. But that’s just my take, maybe I’m wrong about that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 minutes ago, Satsuki Murashige said:


I don’t think the ground glass image would be ‘good enough’ for a 4K backup, though YMMV. For a quick preview edit, sure. Though it wouldn’t be nearly frame accurate enough to do an online/offline workflow, so you’d just be redoing all of your editing work manually after you get your scans back.

I’ve had a potential client ask for an Indiecam Tap + clean ground glass, so I guess that’s a thing now. I sent them to Keslow and Panavision, as that’s well out of my league.

Also, if you want to shoot with both cameras simultaneously, I think you would want two systems (one per camera) and keep them built on the cameras, as they more or less need to be calibrated for each camera.

It’s a very simple thing to remove and replace the Video Assist on the SL, with its locating pins. But I think it would take way too much time on set to swap a universal tap like a CEI between different camera bodies and have it focused and framed correctly. But that’s just my take, maybe I’m wrong about that.

I am sure you're very much right. My thought was running the IIC or modified Arritechno on a gimbal/steadicam/drone[!!!] with a lower-rent wireless tap, and spend the larger sum of money on the Moviecam tap, where 75+% of the shots would be from anyway.

When you're in the edit, you could at least rough out what you think you got, and then slip the shot by a frame or so when your scans are back. It would be physically impossible to get the same exact frame that the film saw, and vice versa. But I think it would beat waiting for film processing and scans, especially since I'm looking into some less-than-conventional options for that. It's very much a digital/analogue hybrid workflow, but as a bonus, you could also get reference sound in there as well. 

.....as I sit here trying to think of other purposes for my yet unused Odyssey 7Q+. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
2 minutes ago, sines said:

When you're in the edit, you could at least rough out what you think you got, and then slip the shot by a frame or so when your scans are back. It would be physically impossible to get the same exact frame that the film saw, and vice versa. But I think it would beat waiting for film processing and scans, especially since I'm looking into some less-than-conventional options for that. It's very much a digital/analogue hybrid workflow, but as a bonus, you could also get reference sound in there as well. 

.....as I sit here trying to think of other purposes for my yet unused Odyssey 7Q+. 

Sure, any footage is better than none when it comes to editing! You definitely might as well record the tap image, for playback at least. I have a Video Devices Pix-E7 that I was planning on using for this purpose. 

I’m just pointing out that you’ll have to do the manual work of ingesting, multi-clipping, binning, and syncing twice, since the only correlation between the video tap recording and film scans will be the visual reference of the slates. But as you say, it’s better than nothing! 😁

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
9 minutes ago, sines said:

When you're in the edit, you could at least rough out what you think you got, and then slip the shot by a frame or so when your scans are back.

The only way to do it is if there were no ground glass and the video camera started and stopped like the film camera did. Then when you got the film back, there would be an automatic scene select based on the scan. It's all possible, but nobody developed a camera that can do this OR scanner software that could read the automatic start stop. They got close years ago, but it was grossly expensive and nobody used it outside of a few people doing Multicam work in Europe. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I will get my ggs laserbrightened soon at s16 inc. I am guessing that will improve the image quite a bit.

Also, I am planning on trying a 50mm lens to punch in more and to hopefully fill the frame entirely. 

Edited by Giray Izcan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also took the DIY "BMPCC as a video tap" -route as well with my Eclair ACL. I haven't really tested it in the wild yet, but my initial tests seemed to show that the focus assist worked even from the ground glass (laser brightened).

The issue with my setup is that ACL doesn't have a separate port for a video tap. In order to use BMPCC I need to remove the viewfinder, which is not optimal. Not to mention that the camera isn't that ... ahem ... aerodynamic anymore.

For ACLs the other option though would be to go for AZ Spectrum video tap. They are fitted between the viewfinder and the camera, so there is that positive. On the other hand, they all are analog and the prices between $1500 (monochrome NTSC) and $2600 (Color flicker free, PAL). Is it worth it? Do you think I could survive without an optical viewfinder?

 

videotap.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, Tyler Purcell said:

The only way to do it is if there were no ground glass and the video camera started and stopped like the film camera did. Then when you got the film back, there would be an automatic scene select based on the scan. It's all possible, but nobody developed a camera that can do this OR scanner software that could read the automatic start stop. They got close years ago, but it was grossly expensive and nobody used it outside of a few people doing Multicam work in Europe. 

I thought the rotating mirror, aside from say a system like a Photosonics (which use a rotary prism shutter and beam splitter) passed every other frame: 1st frame film, 2nd frame viewfinder, and so on. Thereby you would never see the exact frame that was exposed on the film, as the shutter would only open for the viewfinder when it wasn't exposing the film. Of course, at 24+ frame a second, the naked eye wouldn't see this, but you've never get an exact frame match when trying to do a match frame in the edit. It would always be delayed by 1 frame. Perhaps a deep neural-network based "automatic subject detection" would be "good enough" to match the footage back.

Looks like we're stuck using slates — would be swell to try automatic slate detection like ENDSLATE.AI.

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...