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The Long Black Line
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Old October 14th, 2004, 04:56 PM   #1
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Black and White

Hello. I'm sorry if this has been mentioned already, there are so many duplicate threads here it gets confusing :)

Anyway I was wondering if anyone could help me please.

I intend to shoot a film next summer - a black and white film to be exact. Can you buy black and white DV Tape? If not what tape would be best for me to get and stick to? If I have to choose colour then I will have to switch to black and white mode yes?
I'll be shooting on an XL2

Thanks
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Old October 14th, 2004, 06:43 PM   #2
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Kevin.

There is no such thing as Black and WHite tape. All the digital information is encoded in 1's and 0's. Digits is digits.

Most turn their footage into Black and WHite during their editing process. Depending on your system, it's done with filters, or color correction.

The thing you have to remember when you are actually shooting, is COLOR VALUE and texture. These are what will create the artistic effects in the Black and White sequence. It might help if you watch your footage on a Black and White monitor on the set.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 06:46 PM   #3
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Re: Black and White

Hello. I'm sorry if this has been mentioned already, there are so many duplicate threads here it gets confusing :)

Anyway I was wondering if anyone could help me please.

I intend to shoot a film next summer - a black and white film to be exact. Can you buy black and white DV Tape? If not what tape would be best for me to get and stick to? If I have to choose colour then I will have to switch to black and white mode yes?
I'll be shooting on an XL2


There is no such thing as black and white tape. The color that is recorded is determined by your camera. In the menu, you should have an option of turning the color down, until it is black and white. Or, you can film in color then change it to B&W in post - that will give you the flexibility to change your mind later if you want to.

Whatever you do, make sure you use a monitor turned to B&W in order to light. Color works a bit different in B&W than it does in color recording.
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Old October 14th, 2004, 07:01 PM   #4
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The problem with filming in colour and switching to black and white later would be the changes in lighting. My other problem is due to my low budget a monitor on set may be unlikely. I trust an lcd screen with the cam wouldn't be good enough?
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Old October 14th, 2004, 09:33 PM   #5
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Kevin,

I really don't know how to say this, but you can't "film" in black and white with a dv recorder. You get a color image, and you either lower the chroma in camera, or in post. That's it.
I advocate doing it in post because you will have more control.

If you can't have a black and white monitor on set, then you need the ability to "see" in black and white. Photographers have this ability from years of shooting stills. You have to learn what value a color will have when translated to black and white.

If you are concerned about costuming, shoot some digital stills and take them into photoshop and make them black and white. This will give you a test image. Likewise, simply shoot test photos on a black and white film, and have them processed.

Word of warning, video does NOT see black and white exactly the same as film. (And filmstocks vary as well)
Good luck
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Old October 15th, 2004, 06:26 AM   #6
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thanks. It's just the lighting that is going to be the trickiest. I will have to play around and come up with a good solution. I've only ever taken black and white photots as opposed to filming something that way so working from colour should be a challenge. I will do what you suggest and take some test shots.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 06:43 AM   #7
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would any of these be a good monitor to use with the XL2?

they seem a reasonable price

http://www.b-hague.co.uk/Monitors%20&%20Btackets.htm
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Old October 15th, 2004, 08:28 AM   #8
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Kevin,

The monitors look great. For the price, you could buy a regular field monitor though. It wouldn't be "mountable" but it would be a larger screen. Have to run a bnc cable to it from the camera though. So it all depends on what you need/want. A mountable monitor, or one you might use in the studio with your NLE when you edit. See the options? Also, for more money, you could get the Band WHite viewfinder... much more expensive, but it give you a nice sharp image for focussing while you're shooting.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 08:37 AM   #9
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Well I guess I want both. I want to be able to view my results as I film and also for editing. But if I was editing on a pc then everything would already be uploaded so would I need to have a monitor to go off also? I didn't know regular field monitors were cheaper. Are they any better?

How much more are the band white monitors? My budget will be small. I'm aiming for 5000-6000 and that will include equipment and everything. So really I just need something cheap that will give the results I need. My main concern is being able to make sure the light looks ok for what will be intended as a black and white film and ofcourse to be able to see framing would be most helpful.

So yea i don't "need" a montable monitor, just something convenient that would serve me well on the shoot and in the editing room.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 03:26 PM   #10
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Kevin,

At the very least, you should be able to turn the chroma off of the XL2 viefinder... this should give you a black and white image to check your lighting by. But I don't know much about the new viewfinder, so I am only assuming you can do this.
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Old October 15th, 2004, 04:04 PM   #11
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Thanks. I'll look into monitors more at a later date.
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Old October 18th, 2004, 03:52 PM   #12
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Yeah, what Richard said. Just turn down the color on the EVF/LCD until it is black and white. That should tell you what it is going to look like when you actually desaturate the footage in post.
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Old October 18th, 2004, 03:55 PM   #13
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Thanks everyone, youve all been very helpful
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Old October 20th, 2004, 01:21 PM   #14
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I have a question. I will have an XL1s from someone from the message boards here, and I'm also gonna shoot in B&W. People here already convinced me it's the best to do it in post, so I will, but if you put down the chroma on your colour viewfinder of the XL1S... do you then also shoot in b&w? I mean, is it then registred in monochrome on the tape? Or can I just film in colour and put the viewfinder in b&w?

Sorry if it's a stupid question, I'm also new at these things :-)

Thank you,
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Old October 20th, 2004, 03:41 PM   #15
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If you turn down the chroma values for the display you will not affect the chroma of the recorded video (which will still be in color).
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