By the light of the moon at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Canon EOS / MXF / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Canon Cinema EOS Camera Systems

Canon Cinema EOS Camera Systems
For all Canon Cinema EOS models: C700 / C300 Mk. II / C200 / C100 Mk II and EF / PL lenses.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old February 9th, 2012, 04:48 PM   #1
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
By the light of the moon

Last night, I took advantage of the waning full moon and grabbed a model friend and the C300 and headed a few miles outside of our small town for a little test shoot. Other than the occasional passing car, there was no light other than that coming from the moon.

Footage was shot in 24p. 1/24 sec ISO 10,000, shot at 1.2 or 1.4 on the 50mm 1.2 L lens, using an adjusted version of the "Normal 1" setting, (although I think the first clip is actually in cinema "locked" mode). Most of the clips were shot with a tungsten WB to make everything bluish. I did some tests at various WB settings and I was able to get everything from a neutral to pleasantly warmish rendering even from this dim blue lighting. The final shot is with the daylight wb preset.

I've done a little work in post to brighten things up a little more, and to even out some of the mode and white balance settings I was playing with. Kindly no comments on the focusing. It was freakin' dark and my zacuto baseplate isn't here yet to set up the follow focus. :-)

I was going to shoot some comparison footage on the 5dmkII, but alas, it couldn't see anything but the moon itself, otherwise just a jet black frame.

I think this footage could be cleaned up in denoiser (which has been discontinued for the time being and I don't own), but overall I think this little exercise goes a long way towards showing that "night, exterior" is no longer a bad thing ....with this camera. (I found in an earlier test that the onboard LCD makes a nice fill in a pinch.) During other footage I shot around town last night, the c300 kept begging me to move the model into the shadows, and at that, I was hardly pushing the camera past iso 5000. Which looks infinitely more clean than 10,000.

I was unable to upload it here, so here's the link to it on Vimeo.


Last edited by Barry Goyette; February 9th, 2012 at 06:54 PM. Reason: change of status
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2012, 07:19 PM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 785
Re: By the light of the moon

It's amazing what this camera can do in natural light. The possibilities! Thanks for posting that, Barry.
David Knaggs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2012, 08:22 PM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Rossland, British Columbia
Posts: 964
Re: By the light of the moon

Holy Cr@pp that is amazing!!
The colours & detail in that light is what has me so impressed. What ISO were you shooting at, & did you push this further in post?
Very impressive indeed!
__________________
There's never enough hours in the day!
Bryce Comer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2012, 10:01 PM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Camas, WA, USA
Posts: 5,513
Re: By the light of the moon

I've also tried the 5D2 under moonlight and seen only black with a 50/1.4 - not even the famed f/1.0 lens would have helped.

I'm more than a little impressed with your results.

I believe that the 5D2 bins horizontally and skips vertically. In theory, it would gain a stop and a half if it didn't skip those lines. That would get it from a usable 1250 to about 3,200 ISO. Granted, 1250 on the 5D2 looks cleaner than 10,000 on the C300, but as you push the ISO on the 5D2 it gets ugly. In contrast, the noise profile on the C300 is quite nice.
__________________
Jon Fairhurst
Jon Fairhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2012, 10:17 PM   #5
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

I've just finished editing up the rest of this piece, and will probably upload tonite or tomorrow. There is a shot near the end of it where it becomes clear the importance of the sensitivity of this camera. While we didn't use any lights in this shoot, there's a moment where a car someways down the road illuminates her face, and we see the moonlit sky behind her. As the overall light is higher on her face, the noise is quite low...and the glow of the sky behind her...well...you can't buy that. (ok you can...for a lot of money). Being able to light with minimal wattage battery units and have your landscape still visible is huge, whether it's on a once a month lunar schedule, or everyday light pollution from a nearby city.
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 11:08 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: McBride BC Canada
Posts: 98
Re: By the light of the moon

Hi Barry,

Thanks for sharing your moonlight tests. Where I live I can only get dial-up internet so I'm unable to watch any video, however, next week I'll go to a library in town to see your video footage. Does your subjects have to be close ( 30 feet or less ) before you can get decent shots, or is longer shots possible?

Leon Lorenz
Canadian Wildlife Productions: Grizzly Bears, Bighorm Sheep in Alberta & BC Rockies DVD Videos
Leon Lorenz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 11:29 AM   #7
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

Hi Leon,

As I mentioned in your question in the "first impressions" thread the other day, the limiting factor is going to be the aperture on your lens. A typical wildlife lens is going to top out at f2.8 or 4, which is not going to be enough to record a moonlit subject. I think longest ultra fast lens that canon makes is an 85mm 1.2L, which with the super 35mm crop ends up being around a 135mm equivalent. If this is long enough to get the shot you want, then you're in business, otherwise you'll have to hope for a brighter moon! In my testing so far the best exposures are coming at f1.2 with 1.4 being borderline. Now if you don't mind the extra noise (and it's a lot extra) you can bump up to 20,000 iso. But with a 2.8 lens, you'll still be pretty underexposed, and the noise would most likely be unacceptable. (by the time you get to see the video, I'll have reposted with additional footage...there is a long tracking shot after the credits that is shot at f1.4 at 20,000 iso.)

Barry
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 12:45 PM   #8
Trustee
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Saguenay, Québec, Canada
Posts: 1,051
Re: By the light of the moon

Very interesting Barry, thanks!

There is reports floating around the net saying that the 20,000 ISO of the C300 roughly equate to about 6400 ISO on the 5D MK II. "First, the incredible low light performance of the C300 has been lauded. But in terms of actual exposure on the C300, the top setting of ISO 20,000 is only equal to ISO 6400 on the Canon 5D Mark II."

If true, you would have been able to shoot these sequences on the 5D MK II at 3200, which, while grainy, still decent.

But according to your first post, this is note what you observed. Could you please comment on that?
__________________
Jean-Philippe Archibald
http://www.jparchibald.com - http://www.vimeo.com/jparchib
Jean-Philippe Archibald is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 01:45 PM   #9
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

Yeah. No. those reports were completely incorrect in my opinion. It came from an early test video where they had a 1dmark4 (not the 5d, and a somewhat faster sensor I believe) at 6400 and compared it to Log-C at 20000 on the C300. The problem with the test is that the poster wasn't really thinking about what he was looking at when he made the claim.

The 1dmark4 gamma and the Canon C-log couldn't be more different. the 1dmark4 pushes the mid-tones up at the expense of the highlights and increased noise, Log-C protects the highlights by pushing the mid-tones down keeping noise low overall. As the camera seems to have extensive range in the shadows, there isn't much penalty with this approach...especially up to about 6400 on the c300. At 20,000 it gets a little dicey, but, well...it should. So when you look at that test footage, taken in a normally lit room with the 1dmark4 at 6400 and Log-c at 20,000...they look kinda the same, because the gamma curves are so different, but in terms of dynamic range they aren't even close. Try to adjust that 1dmark4 footage and you'll know what I mean. Alan Roberts in his review stated that the c300 iso rating is correct.

For my tests I was using the normal 1 setting which is closer to the canon dslr gamma but still darker, and also in C-log.... there was a slight benefit in terms of noise to shooting with the Normal 1 setting versus trying to stretch the c-log up in post. As the Light level was so low, it didn't really makes sense to use Log-C as nothing in the scene is getting even close to testing the highlights, except for the passing cars --(which we hadn't even planned on, and there were few of) If the light level was slightly higher, then I'd probably stick to c-log as it would have lower noise and better DR.

Anyway...what I can tell you is that midway through our shoot I took the lens off the c300 and put it on the 5d. Turned the iso up to maximum, and couldn't see a damn thing (which, as Jon mentioned, matches my previous experience.)

Last edited by Barry Goyette; February 10th, 2012 at 01:48 PM. Reason: clarity
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 01:45 PM   #10
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Belfast, UK
Posts: 4,120
Re: By the light of the moon

I suspect with a log curve the C300 won't be 20,000 ISO, you'd have to use one of the standard video type curves to get that speed, You get sensitivity variations like this when you change these settings on video cameras, often with a variation of about a stop with non log curves.

A bit late, since Barry has come in.
Brian Drysdale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 02:01 PM   #11
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Re: By the light of the moon

Nice Barry

I've been working on a piece the last few weeks for the launch here in Canada. We shot some night scenes at 16 000 iso with available streetlights, and one bi light. Ended up having to flag of some of the other streetlights. I'll be able to post it next week. To add to your piece. Cut to the moonlight
Nigel Akam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 02:18 PM   #12
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Drysdale View Post
I suspect with a log curve the C300 won't be 20,000 ISO, you'd have to use one of the standard video type curves to get that speed, You get sensitivity variations like this when you change these settings on video cameras, often with a variation of about a stop with non log curves.

A bit late, since Barry has come in.
here's a particularly ugly example, but I think exemplative (is that word?) of the dynamic range the c300. This is absolutely worst case I think. ISO 20,000 using the normal 1 setting. Moonlight at f1.4. the original file and then and extreme grade. (I've blurred the image slightly to eliminate some of the artifacts that come up at 20,000. I know this is a noise bomb (see it running though and it's not beyond the realm), but no camera should have this deep of a bottom end (and by the way...most of the original footage in BTLOTM looks much better than this...it's amazing what a half stop of lens and a better camera angle can do for you when your light level is this low).
Attached Thumbnails
By the light of the moon-picture-357.jpg   By the light of the moon-picture-356.jpg  


Last edited by Barry Goyette; February 10th, 2012 at 02:33 PM. Reason: clarity
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 02:25 PM   #13
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nigel Akam View Post
Nice Barry

I've been working on a piece the last few weeks for the launch here in Canada. We shot some night scenes at 16 000 iso with available streetlights, and one bi light. Ended up having to flag of some of the other streetlights. I'll be able to post it next week. To add to your piece. Cut to the moonlight
C 300 Moon on Vimeo
Nice one Nigel. Is the travel of the moon in the second shot in real time?

Barry
Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 03:24 PM   #14
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: San Luis Obispo CA
Posts: 1,189
Re: By the light of the moon

I've uploaded the extended version, with additional moonlight footage and some urban night interiors and exteriors. Stick around till after the credits. Same url:

Barry Goyette is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2012, 04:26 PM   #15
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Toronto
Posts: 70
Re: By the light of the moon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Goyette View Post
Nice one Nigel. Is the travel of the moon in the second shot in real time?

Barry

Real time. I opened up my front door and rolled. Just added speed in FCP of 400% I was lucky I still had the C 300. Had to give it back.
Nigel Akam is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Canon EOS / MXF / AVCHD / HDV / DV Camera Systems > Canon Cinema EOS Camera Systems

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:33 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network