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Old July 4th, 2005, 06:43 PM   #1
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Aspect Ratio Question

Hi There,

I shot fireworks last night with my new Canon XL2 and was very pleased. I used 16:9 at 30p. My question is this: I submit my films to TV and to Festivals. Will I be able to use this aspect ration for television submissions? I haven't used 16:9 before and know that this camcorder is really made for 16:9, so I would like to use it. I just read this article and it's what he mentions at the conclusion that has me concerned.....

Many DTV sets use a new aspect ratio, meaning screen shape that's wider relative to its height. Widescreen DTV has an aspect ratio of 16:9 vs. the 4:3 of analog TV. To reduce those commonly used numbers to common denominators, that's 16:9 vs. 12:9, or 1.78:1 vs. 1.33:1. Thus, widescreen proportions are about a third wider. As contemporary movies stick pretty close to the 16:9 ratio, widescreen DTV simply ratifies a decision made by filmmakers starting in the 1950s, when widescreen movies made their debut. Films can be as wide as 3:1. TV programs, on the other hand, are still usually made in the narrower shape that fits analog TV screens, as older movies were made.

So, does anyone have any advice about this? I already shot some scenes in 4:3 and tomorrow I'm going to do them over in 16:9, so I need to know what's bests for outputs to both tv and fests, etc.

Lucinda
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Old July 4th, 2005, 07:07 PM   #2
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For watching on tv, a 16:9 dvd is the best option (I think). Everyone has a dvd player and they can either watch it in widescreen on a widescreen tv, or letterbox on a 4:3 tv (or even PS if they want I guess). DVD-R's are also cheap.

I have also wondered about the film festivals. I think many accept minidv now, but I'd be scared that if I submitted an anamorphic 16:9 tape, it woudn't be displayed properly. Otherwise you have to output a 4:3 LB tape and suffer the resolution loss. Anyone have any experience submitting 16:9 minidv tapes to festivals?
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Old July 4th, 2005, 07:16 PM   #3
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Kyle,

I've always submitted either VHS or DVD's to film fests. Some take miniDV's, but not too many. I'm not sure what to do with all this. I make my own dvd'r's using a panasonic dvd recorder right from the timeline. I use this for backup and for submissions. But this is using 4:3. This is why I need to know if I can use the 16:9 and I assume I can for subs on dvdr's. I guess I'll contact one of the fests I've been in and ask.

But, if any other folks have suggestions I'd sure like to hear. I have a shoot tomorrow and Wednesday.

Lucinda
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Old July 4th, 2005, 08:19 PM   #4
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For your shoot, I'd say definately shoot in 16:9 if you want to output as a widescreen aspect ratio. The only reason to shoot 4:3 is if you are sure you'll only ever want a full frame 4:3 output.

If they accept dvd-r's I'd think they'd accept 16:9 dvds as well. Best to ask them though. I'll be interested to know what you find out.
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Old July 4th, 2005, 09:36 PM   #5
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Kyle,

So what you're saying is that 16:9 can be submitted for tv? As I mentioned, I've shown my work on tv and at fests using 4:3...so you see, I want to make sure that it can be accepted for both tv and fests. I'm almost 100% that it can be accepted for fests and will probably hear tomorrow since everyone is watching fireworks tonight except for those of us workaholics, right Kyle? anyway: I'll let you know.

Best,

Lucinda
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Old July 5th, 2005, 12:58 AM   #6
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Yeah, only workaholics - and those of us in Australia...

Just to be clear - I haven't had anything aired on tv.
You seem to want your video in widescreen.
What I'm saying is I'd shoot 16:9 then, after editing, output to the relevant format that the festival or tv studio accepts. You can supply them anamorphic 16:9, LB 4:3 or whatever.
From what I've heard some tv stations accept dvd and minidv, whereas some won't accept anything unless it is on a professional tape format. If they do accept minidv, then you also need to know if they can handle 16:9 anamorphic minidv tape so it is displayed correctly. I think this is info only the festival or tv station can provide.
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Old July 5th, 2005, 01:04 AM   #7
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Hi Kyle,

I was told by many that 16:9 is higher resolution than 4:3 on this camcorder, uses more of the CCD's and gets more info because it is a longer image. The 4:3 ratio isn't as high res as the 16:9 on XL2.

I have shown my videos on tv many times, but only in 4:3....that's why I'm curious about requirements.

Hopefully, more people out there will be able to give advice.

Say hi to Australia for me!

Lucinda
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