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Old June 22nd, 2007, 11:17 AM   #1
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A week shooting with HPX500

Well, I've shot about 4 hours of material this week, mostly preliminary interviews for a feature length documentary... The footage all looks good, but I am having to get used to the 720/24pN... I wish I felt more comfortable with the stutter in movement.. I don't remember it being this noticeable when I shot a film with the DVX several years ago.. I have laid short sections from the HPX in the same timeline (60i, pulldown added) with a film transfer I had done a few months ago (Eastman 7245 transferred to DigiBeta) and the difference is quite dramatic... I can't figure it out, because it seems 24fps should be 24fps no matter what...

Anyway, the camera is very comfortable to handhold for long periods, and the controls are all very intuitive.. I like the SAFE switch in front that allows me to turn off the LCD after checking white, when I put the finder to my eye... Can't get used to the new focus assist.. the old zoom in, focus, zoom out works much better for me..

As I've said before, I originally ordered the Canon lens but opted for the Fujinon, and I'm glad I did because I like the lens alot, and a story, related to the subject of my documentary, broke this week and I would have missed it if I was still waiting for the Canon..

And, that story had me riding in a police car all yesterday afternoon.. very tight - we need a wider lens for this camera for sure...
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 12:44 PM   #2
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Steve,

Check this clip out with x11 lens in the car (rear seat with a tripod on the car floor).

http://web.mac.com/kakuito/iWeb/Kaku...67B0CA4EB.html
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 01:48 PM   #3
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Hi Steven,

I agree with you.

Try 220d shutter speed.
To my eyes, it looks and feels much much more like film.
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 06:11 PM   #4
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Antoine.. 1/220 would sure cut into the low light capabilities of this camera.. I'll try it though and see how I like it...

I know this has been discussed to death on the Canon forum, and I assume here as well, but it just seems weird to me that if a film camera is shooting 24fps at 1/48 shutter speed and a video camera is shooting 24p at 1/50 shutter speed (I do manually select the shutter speed and 1/48 isn't available) that the resultant picture should look identical in terms of judder... 24 individual/sequential pictures in a row per second, just like the race horses at Stanford 150 years ago... Roget's theory of perceptance of vision revisited...

Of course there isn't a projector shutter blink between every frame, but there isn't on a film-to-tape transfer either.. there has got to be a reason...
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 06:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Steve Rosen View Post
but it just seems weird to me that if a film camera is shooting 24fps at 1/48 shutter speed and a video camera is shooting 24p at 1/50 shutter speed (I do manually select the shutter speed and 1/48 isn't available) that the resultant picture should look identical in terms of judder... 24 individual/sequential pictures in a row per second, just like the race horses at Stanford 150 years ago... Roget's theory of perceptance of vision revisited...

Of course there isn't a projector shutter blink between every frame, but there isn't on a film-to-tape transfer either.. there has got to be a reason...
Keep in mind that part of the perceived smoothness of 24P even with 1/48th shutter requires a darkened viewing environment so that the human iris will open all the way and create a longer persistence of vision.

Nowadays, we tend to look at 24P in bright areas and wonder why it looks so stuttered in its motion cadence.

Also, you mentioned that you had to settle for 1/50 which to me would create some sort of rolling sync issue against 24p since it's not an even multiple. Didn't someone mention awhile back that 1/48 was available in the clear scan setting?

-gb-
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 07:09 PM   #6
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Hi Steve

I think Antoine was suggesting to change the mode from video to film cam in the scene file and dial the shutter open to 220 degrees.

I think I read somewhere that some DPs think this reduces the video look by slightly increasing blur(?), especially on lateral movement.

Yes, Greg, you are right. You can set the syncro scran on this to 1/48th if you wish.

If either of these work better for you, I'd love to hear about the results.
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 07:47 PM   #7
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I'm no film guy, but HD with accentuated blur looks MORE like video (to me), not less.

Strobe is what you want. Maybe I'm just plain flawed, but I've done 3:2 pulldowns off of ripped DVD footage on Hollywood movies just to analyze the 24p movement in comparison with video at 24p, and I'm tellin' ya, that strobe IS film-like. Adding blur isn't the answer. 180 is the standard shutter speed (I believe), which is about 1/48th if my memory serves (again, I'm an HDV filmmaker, not a film filmmaker).

EDIT: I'm really not sure on that 180 comment. I just remember hearing that somewhere. I know that the equivalent (of whatever the standard shutter speed is) is 1/48th.

The video signal is doing nothing different in that regard. It's just that film has so many other characteristics that are different than 24p video. Shallow depth of field, good lighting, great dynamic range, etc.
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 07:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Bryan Poffenberger View Post
Hi Steve

I think Antoine was suggesting to change the mode from video to film cam in the scene file and dial the shutter open to 220 degrees.

I think I read somewhere that some DPs think this reduces the video look by slightly increasing blur(?), especially on lateral movement.

Yes, Greg, you are right. You can set the syncro scran on this to 1/48th if you wish.

If either of these work better for you, I'd love to hear about the results.


exactly Bryan,

I like the motion a lot better this way.

sorry for my bad english.
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 10:13 AM   #9
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Antoine: There's nothing wrong with your English - I realized that is what you meant immediately after signing off... My head was so immersed in thinking shutter SPEED that I didn't immediatly think shutter ANGLE..

I do always use film cam mode, and at that setting the shutter defaults to 180, which should produce a 1/48 shutter speed.. (it doesn't tell you in the finder, it just says "180").. But, the image looks blurry that way - and wrong - and in a test I did last week, the exposure is a stop more than when I manually set the shutter to 1/50 - that tells me that the default shutter speed is 1/24th.. and in film cam mode, you (apparently) can't manually set the shutter to 1/48th, just 1/50..

I will experiment with shutter angles -

As for the observation that we may be viewing under conditions different than when watching a film, I do think there's often some truth to that.. But in my case, I've made literally hundreds of films and commercials in 16, super16 and 35, most of which have been edited in video in the past 10 years, so my viewing situation is the same no matter what the source - and now I have been doing side by side comparisons of film I shot in similar a situation (ie, inside a moving car) with footage shot this week with the 500, so I do have a good "control group"...
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 10:26 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Greg Boston View Post
Keep in mind that part of the perceived smoothness of 24P even with 1/48th shutter requires a darkened viewing environment so that the human iris will open all the way and create a longer persistence of vision.

Nowadays, we tend to look at 24P in bright areas and wonder why it looks so stuttered in its motion cadence.
fascinatin'...just the kind of tidbit that keeps me reading this site...

steve, what were you primarily shooting prior to this camera? what are you switching over from? just curious.
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 11:12 AM   #11
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Meryem: I've been lucky (or unlucky, as the case may be) to be able to use a variety of cameras. I own a super16 Aaton with seven zoom and prime lenses, but I've been primarily shooting video since about 1996. In that time I've owned a DSR300, two DVX 100As, an XL2, an XL H1 and an A1 (I still have both, I'm selling the H1)... I started shooting video in the late '70s with an RCA TK76, a singularly horrible camera. I've shot with BetaCams and recently a friend's Sony 350 and a rental Varicam...

The Varicam had been set up by the owner (who's out of the country at the moment), and I'm trying to immulate the look... For some reason the footage from the Varicam (also at 720/24pN) doesn't seem to have as much noticeable judder... But at some point, after staring at a monitor for hours, you start mistrusting your own perception and judgement - And because I don't have a DVCPRO HD deck, I'm evaluating the Varicam footage from an SD anamorphic DVCAM dub.

Since I make documentaries, I prefer cameras that are intuitive and that rest nicely on the shoulder, like the Aaton.. the HPX500 fits both those needs.. I'm just having trouble getting the picture where I want it...
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 11:38 AM   #12
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Kaku

I finally had a chance to look at some of your video.. you're getting a nice look from the camera at night.. what are your settings? if you don't mind telling...

As a matter of habit I always dial the Master Ped down (-2 to -7).. maybe I'm just not used to DVCPRO HD, but my night stuff doesn't look as good as yours contrast wise.. could be the lens too, I suppose...
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 12:09 PM   #13
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Steve,

Thanks, I feel relieved to hear professional like you tell me that. I have to work on my manual focusing, because I'm spoiled with relying mostly on the autofocus on HVX200 (since my casts always move fast, mountainbikes).

I didn't want to do any injustice to the cam's ability to show everybody my footage.

The difference could be the lens, the lens is the real HDTV lens, HJ11ex4.7B IRSE.
http://www.canon.com/bctv/products/hj11ex47b.html

I pretty much had it on the stock scene file 6. I guess this lens is brighter?

Ah, also, the 1080/60i footage was probably shot with black stretch on.
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 12:35 PM   #14
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As for the observation that we may be viewing under conditions different than when watching a film, I do think there's often some truth to that.. But in my case, I've made literally hundreds of films and commercials in 16, super16 and 35, most of which have been edited in video in the past 10 years, so my viewing situation is the same no matter what the source - and now I have been doing side by side comparisons of film I shot in similar a situation (ie, inside a moving car) with footage shot this week with the 500, so I do have a good "control group"...
I'd have to agree that you have a good control group to reference from. Although in reading back over the thread, your concern wasn't so much the appearance of motion cadence, just that it looked different than what you would have expected from a video camera in a film emulation mode.

Your comment about the shutter defaulting to 1/24 is of course very true. As you know from prior full size ENG style cameras, when the shutter switch is off, the shutter speed is equal to your frame rate. But having owned the XL2 myself, they spoiled us by using 1/48 as a default when 24P was engaged. I'm really surprised to read that having a 180 degree shutter in film cam mode doesn't give the motion signature you were expecting. I would certainly not expect 1/50 to look right with a frame rate of 24.

If and when you hit upon the magic combo, I hope you'll share it.

-gb-
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Old June 23rd, 2007, 01:56 PM   #15
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Greg: I think my concern is that it doesn't look as much like film as the DVX did.. That little camera, out of the box, with a moderate amount of tweaking, really does immulate the holy grail of "film look" better than any other video camera I've seen.. no wonder so many serious filmmakers use it to this day, even with all the HDV and HD cameras available now...

I am taking this entire afternoon to tweak and re-tweak my camera until I get a good "daylight interior" look... Tomorrow an exterior... Then one night next week I will do the same in an evening setting... Because it looks like I am going to need a different Scene File for different settings...

Don't get me wrong, the picture I'm getting isn't bad, it's good - most people would be very happy with it.. I'm just picky...
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