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HDV For 35mm

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Hi,

 

I've asked this before a long time ago, but I was hoping to get some more up to date information.

 

Has any one here shot a feature length project on HDV and then transfered the final to 35mm for projection? What where the results like?

 

Also, any one shot a feature with HDV and then finished onto a standard def DVD for distribution?

 

Thanks

R,

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Are you sure it's wise to proceed with such a project and not pre-test the end results?

 

R,

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oh, we have shot tests obviously, but the actual feature has not been transferred yet, which i believe is what you were asking. ;-) the same company shot a feature like this last year and that's what's being transferred now, and i'm working on their next one that we're shooting this month and will premiere next fall. hopefully our project will benefit from things learned from the first one.

 

/matt

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Hi,

 

I've asked this before a long time ago, but I was hoping to get some more up to date information.

 

Has any one here shot a feature length project on HDV and then transfered the final to 35mm for projection? What where the results like?

 

Also, any one shot a feature with HDV and then finished onto a standard def DVD for distribution?

 

As I work in a film lab/video post facility, I've been involved in a few such projects. Here's my take:

 

If you really want to create a 35mm film version of a project, you're much, much better off shooting on a video format that has a true 24fps capture mode. This would include the HVX200 (not HDV, but a similar price point), the JVC, and to a lesser degree, the Canon. The Sony is perhaps the worst choice for such a project, primarily because it is a 60i system. However you look at it, converting 60i imagery to 24p imagery involves a process that basically produces 24 new images, none of which were photographically captured - they are all interpolated, and are composites of 2 or 3 different half resolution images. In doing this, some images - particularly relatively static ones - will often look just fine. However, any motion is going to be "hit and miss," in other words, the cadence that's introduced will work for some scenes and not work for others. There are other issues as well. All of the imagery will be "softer" than the original, due largely to the same factors as the frame rate change: you're not preserving any of the originally photographed imagery. And any speed changes you do in post will make these problems even more noticeable.

 

I don't say these things as a guess. I say them from experience in dealing with various film out projects. The best results, by far, are from 24fps original images. The worst are from 60i images.

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for sure. we're shooting 50i which makes things a lot easier.

 

/matt

 

 

So am I, I am shooting 50i on the ZiU for a feature that we will transfer to 35mm. Its the first time we ever do this but it seems to be the trend here in Latin America. We still dont know where to do the transfer: Swiss Effects is an option, but there are also other labs in Montreal and Spain taht we are considering. Where are you doing yours?

 

Good luck!!!!!

 

Lucita

 

As I work in a film lab/video post facility, I've been involved in a few such projects. Here's my take:

 

If you really want to create a 35mm film version of a project, you're much, much better off shooting on a video format that has a true 24fps capture mode. This would include the HVX200 (not HDV, but a similar price point), the JVC, and to a lesser degree, the Canon. The Sony is perhaps the worst choice for such a project, primarily because it is a 60i system. However you look at it, converting 60i imagery to 24p imagery involves a process that basically produces 24 new images, none of which were photographically captured - they are all interpolated, and are composites of 2 or 3 different half resolution images. In doing this, some images - particularly relatively static ones - will often look just fine. However, any motion is going to be "hit and miss," in other words, the cadence that's introduced will work for some scenes and not work for others. There are other issues as well. All of the imagery will be "softer" than the original, due largely to the same factors as the frame rate change: you're not preserving any of the originally photographed imagery. And any speed changes you do in post will make these problems even more noticeable.

 

I don't say these things as a guess. I say them from experience in dealing with various film out projects. The best results, by far, are from 24fps original images. The worst are from 60i images.

 

 

 

When I decided to get the Sony Z1, it was because of the high resolution. I figured: with a high enough resolution I can do many things in post (like deinterlacing) and still preserve image quality. The 24p, however, would capture progressive but at a lower resolution (less color and image quality). Do you find my arguments hold true at all? Thanks...

Lucita

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sorry, i forgot to reply. i've seen the results of the first project now. it looks like a dv blowup, only much sharper. the colors and contrast aren't as good as for example hdcam, but it looks sharp and artifact free. much better than dv, not as good as "real" hd, as expected, no surpises. some have said that the interframe compression wouldn't work on the big screen but there were no such problems except some blockiness when the camera shakes or moves very fast, so it's better to avoid such shots.

 

/matt

 

with a high enough resolution I can do many things in post (like deinterlacing) and still preserve image quality. The 24p, however, would capture progressive but at a lower resolution (less color and image quality). Do you find my arguments hold true at all?

not really. the limiting factor in those prosumer cameras is the lens. i've found the sharpness of the z1 to be about the same as high end sd (i.e. digibeta). a 720p camera with great glass will outperform both easily.

 

/matt

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Can anyone provide a list of critical tests to be made for a project that will be transferred from HDV to 35mm?

 

To start with I only plan to shoot in 50i with the Z1.

 

But what about the other settings: skin detail, sharpness, etc.?

 

Swiss effects has a list that can be used as a starting point, but maybe someone else has other suggestions.

 

Capture of these tests might be made to an Avid Xpress Pro or to a Final Cut Pro, but I think you need an intermediate step for FCP, right?

 

We shouldn't do anything but cutting the tests on the program, leaving color correction and/or effects for the pre-transfer suite, where we should take the hard-disk to, properly exported.

 

 

Carlos

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Just talk to the post house you are using and they will tell you the best way to test and to shoot for their transferring process.

Edited by Michael Maier

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For the cost of the HDV to 35mm transfer you could have just shot it on 35mm to begin with.

that's a myth. do the math. and please don't assume a 2:1 shooting ratio "with careful planning" or anything like that. and don't forget that a print from 35mm costs a lot of money too. for the cost of the transfer you can shoot maybe a few hours of 35mm. and then i haven't even considered the cost for renting a 35mm camera suitable for sync sound, or the extra person needed on your crew since you pretty much need both a dedicated focus puller and a loader.

 

/matt

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Hi,

 

I've asked this before a long time ago, but I was hoping to get some more up to date information.

 

Has any one here shot a feature length project on HDV and then transfered the final to 35mm for projection? What where the results like?

 

Also, any one shot a feature with HDV and then finished onto a standard def DVD for distribution?

 

Thanks

R,

 

Hi Richard,

 

I would wait for a Red camera if I were you.

 

Stephen

 

that's a myth. do the math. and please don't assume a 2:1 shooting ratio "with careful planning" or anything like that. and don't forget that a print from 35mm costs a lot of money too. for the cost of the transfer you can shoot maybe a few hours of 35mm. and then i haven't even considered the cost for renting a 35mm camera suitable for sync sound, or the extra person needed on your crew since you pretty much need both a dedicated focus puller and a loader.

 

/matt

 

Hi,

 

Im with Nate here, a film out will cost far more than you will save. If it's a HD only finish than that would be far cheaper.

 

Older 35mm sync sound cameras are very cheap to buy or rent.

 

Stephen

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frankly i don't think it's about being with someone or not. it's about doing the math. read what i wrote again and let me know exactly where i'm wrong. maybe you pay extremely little for your 35mm services or you pay way too much for your film out?

 

/matt

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frankly i don't think it's about being with someone or not. it's about doing the math. read what i wrote again and let me know exactly where i'm wrong. maybe you pay extremely little for your 35mm services or you pay way too much for your film out?

 

/matt

 

Hi,

 

What do you pay for your film out? I know Swiss Effects I live 5 miles from them.

 

Stephen

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Older 35mm sync sound cameras are very cheap to buy or rent.

older 35mm cameras need blimps and weigh a ton, so you need yet another crewmember just to carry them. i'd be happy to learn of any option i might have missed though.

 

/matt

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older 35mm cameras need blimps and weigh a ton, so you need yet another crewmember just to carry them. i'd be happy to learn of any option i might have missed though.

 

/matt

 

Hi Matt,

 

By older I mean from the 1970's/80's I am talking about Arri BL 1/II's & Ultracams, both weigh about 35 pounds with 400' stock and a lens, easy to hand hold.

 

Stephen

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What do you pay for your film out? I know Swiss Effects I live 5 miles from them.

 

maybe $50,000 for a feature at the most, same as at swiss effects it seems. minus the maybe $20,000 you'll pay for a timed 35mm contact print and you have $30,000 left. that buys you how much of 35mm stock, processing and telecine according to your price list? according to mine it buys you a few hours, like i said, not nearly enough for a serious feature. and even if you're fine with an arri II or konvas and post dub all audio it will cost you more than a z1, plus i'm still saying you need another crewmember to handle it. no, you need to bring out some hard facts to convince me. ;-)

 

/matt

 

By older I mean from the 1970's/80's I am talking about Arri BL 1/II's & Ultracams

 

ok, and you call those cheap? a package is still maybe $200 more per day than a z1, which adds up to $5,000 for a six week low budget feature. so now you have only $25,000 left. :-)

 

/matt

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maybe $50,000 for a feature at the most, same as at swiss effects it seems. minus the maybe $20,000 you'll pay for a timed 35mm contact print and you have $30,000 left. that buys you how much of 35mm stock, processing and telecine according to your price list? according to mine it buys you a few hours, like i said, not nearly enough for a serious feature. and even if you're fine with an arri II or konvas and post dub all audio it will cost you more than a z1, plus i'm still saying you need another crewmember to handle it. no, you need to bring out some hard facts to convince me. ;-)

 

/matt

ok, and you call those cheap? a package is still maybe $200 more per day than a z1, which adds up to $5,000 for a six week low budget feature. so now you have only $25,000 left. :-)

 

/matt

 

Hi Matt,

 

The thing is, I dont know anybody who pays list for film & processing. Call your friendly Fuji rep and ask if you can have 100,000 of short dated stock free, see what he says expect at least 50% off list, this is a low budget feature remember!

 

You can buy a 35mm package for $10k and sell it after the shoot, getting your money back.

 

Sure if your convinced a Z1 is the way to go don't let me stop you.

 

Stephen

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The thing is, I dont know anybody who pays list for film & processing.

me neither, but when you've moved a notch up the food chain you'll realize that many people don't pay list for film outs either. :-) just kidding about the food chain, you obviously know what you're talking about but i sure as hell do too.

 

Sure if your convinced a Z1 is the way to go don't let me stop you.

oh, i almost only shoot film myself even for video finishing and will continue to do so as long as kodak are being nice to me and my shooting ratios can be kept low. i'm just trying to protect the rest from rumors that are just contraproductive. you may say that people saying that it's so cheap to shoot "digital" are even worse spreaders of rumors, which used to be true but your side is starting to take over. "blow ups" are neither cheap nor expensive, just something that goes in your budget and the rest depends, as always. shooting hdv for theatrical release can be very cheap. if a 35mm shoot cuts corners by using cheap cameras and expired stock the hdv feature can do a diy blowup for example. and you can online on a home computer which is cheaper than both davincis and negative timing. and so on.

 

/matt

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I don't say these things as a guess. I say them from experience in dealing with various film out projects. The best results, by far, are from 24fps original images. The worst are from 60i images.

 

How about 25p?

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How about 25p?

25p is output frame by frame so the resulting image is the same, but you have to adjust the pitch of the audio if you want to screen the print at 24 fps, the normal for theaters even in europe.

 

i'm pretty sure 30p would look even worse than 60i btw.

 

/matt

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hello

we are making an hdv movie with the sony z1u camara to blow up to 35mm. We are recording in pal 50i. how did your movie go?

any advice would be greatly apreciated.

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