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Old March 14th, 2010, 12:35 PM   #91
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You are right, it is an overall limiter for both the black and white levels, but if you back off the aperture setting (or turn it off) you can afford to use more detail correction. In a way what I am doing is using Detail as a substitute for aperture. Aperture on the 350 is more than just the high frequency boost that it is in the PWW and HDW cameras. On my PDW-700 I often run with quite a low detail level (or detail off) but with aperture at around +70 to give a crisp picture. This doesn't give the nasty black halos around highlights that the 350 gives. This is the look I'm trying to emulate, crisp, but without obvious edges on everything.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 01:21 PM   #92
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I understand you exactly.

I went outside and tried this, and my first impression is that it looked great, exceptionally clean, with full natural detail, really film like. Only problem, is flat light today.

But I was still able to observe that thin, unleaved tree branches against a white sky retained fine detail without white halos. Detail in the grass, the mortar, the bricks looks resolved, not grainy, and free of outlines. Distant geometric shapes, like roof tops, window frames, siding and fences had appropriate detail, a natural look, again film like.

I suspect this could be pushed farther, although I admit that on first glance I like the way it looks as is.

The question marks remaining for me, how will it work in strong daylight, will it work equally for progressive and interlace shots. No reason to doubt it from what I've seen, and moreover want to see how this looks on the 50 inch Elite 1080p plasma monitor, but for now I want to spend more time shooting with it while it is daylight, even if flat.

Definitely appreciate your further explorations.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 01:37 PM   #93
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Playing with it briefly today I think you could push up the detail level if you want to sharpen the image while halos and edges stay well controlled, I found +8 to be the limit of what I personally consider acceptable. I looked at the behavior with a waveform monitor and the +60 Limit setting is preventing over/undershoots almost completely.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 02:30 PM   #94
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I am currently using my PMW-350 on a shoot in Africa with a lots of challenging light situations. Here are a few observations...

- Latitude does not seem as good as F800. Filming highly contrasted scenes is more challenging than with the F800
- Here and there, I get some weird greenish flare issues when shooting with large bright contrasty areas in the background like windows. This is no typical lens flare (I wish it was...) but more like a geometrical pattern that could be based on the CMOS elements pattern. And that is showing whith F5.6-8 apreture range, so not really pushing it. So, PMW350 not as clean as F800 in those kind of situations.
- Depending of the ambient light (sunny or overcast), I have to play a lot with the black level adjustment to get properly saturated blacks.

One more thing, what about the HDW Gamma curve on that camera? It's good for flat and overcast ligths situation but seems to crush the blacks way to much in bright sunshine. Is it trying to emulate the HDW cameras gamma curves?

Best,

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Last edited by Thierry Humeau; March 14th, 2010 at 04:43 PM.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 11:41 PM   #95
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Alister,

I had the chance to try the new limiter setting, exactly as outlined. As sometimes happens when viewing the output on the larger 50 inch 1080p plasma, it changes my opinion somewhat. While the stated goal is to allow using more detail without becoming too electronic, and while it largely succeeds at that, on a subjective level it goes just a bit too far for my taste. Strange from me I know, since I usually advocate a little more and even inquired of you about pushing this setting a bit.

When viewing progressive material, it did not alias, so that was good, and it did not halo or put outlines on edges. I don't usually shoot 24p without a tripod, but this time I did. And when panning and with graceful movements, it did not show moire even on geometric patterns like diagonals, roofing tiles, or other problem areas which is good. But camera movements did reveal a slightly busy side, just a little crispy. The same observations about interlaced generally.

I think the positives to take from this, reducing the aperture and frequency settings, increasing the Limiter were effective. Increasing the detail to +5 is a little too far for my taste. Knowing your dislike for excessive enhancement, I suspect you may upon reflection prefer to go more conservative there as well. Again, your stated goal was to expand the frontier for those preferring a more detailed look while avoiding halos, and this extends that option to them.

What I would ask of you, is to make a comment about my current detail settings, which I think gives a cleaner, less electronic (if less crispy) look, with an eye toward adapting your findings.

Detail Level: -11 (where I am currently, my preferred.)
H/V Balance: +35 (I could be wrong, but I think this gave me a smoother MTF50 transfer curve, with no negative consequences that I could discern, so I have maintained it, looks good.)
Frequency: +50 (I have not discerned aliasing. It's possible I'm wrong, but if you consider an interactive relationship could exist between detail level and frequency, reducing detail could be mitigating aliasing otherwise caused by a higher frequency setting? In other words, +20 or +30 might be the max you could go before aliasing with a +5 detail setting, but at a lower detail level setting -11, perhaps it's possible to go higher on the frequency before the onset of aliasing?)
Black Limit: +75
White Limit: +75 (Since you confirmed the Limit setting of +60 on your waveform monitor, I'm thinking about incorporating that top level setting in lieu of my separate Blk/Wht limits which I would return to zero.)
Aperture: -20 (I see more negative than positive benefits from this adjustment, I was going to adopt the -50 setting).

So if I was going to blend the above factors into a new recipe, would you have a comment about a hypothetical setting as follows?

Detail: -8 or 9
H/V Balance: +35
Frequency: +35 to 45
Limit: +60
Aperture: -50

My current setting is already quite clean. The only reason for considering increasing detail to -8 or 9 would be to offset the loss of detail from dialing back aperture to -50.

Alternatively, I could just do that anyway, keep my exisiting settings except replace the Blk/Wht Limits with the top level Limit setting of +60, and just dial back aperture to -50.

Lot of thinking out loud here. Are you sure Frequency of +50 is too high, sure to cause aliasing, if the detail level were reduced to -11? Cause I don't see a problem with it.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 11:55 PM   #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thierry Humeau View Post
I am currently using my PMW-350 on a shoot in Africa with a lots of challenging light situations.
Thierry, I think the 350 overexposes in some situations. What has been working well for me, is from the menu to enable the Iris Override option. Thereafter the auto exposure can be dialed down a couple notches (-.5) using the little knob on the front, or otherwise reduce the exposure manually. I have also at times enabled the Black gamma, to a setting of +10 H.Mid to prevent the loss of shadow detail when underexposing as described.
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Old March 17th, 2010, 01:58 PM   #97
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Sony's Website - Standard Scene Files PDW-F350

Found a page on Sony's website for some standard scene files. Thought I would share the link since I found them very helpful. Not sure if anyone else posted these. If so, sorry in advance.

Sony | Micro Site - XDCAM
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Old March 20th, 2010, 04:11 PM   #98
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Latest Scene Files to download

Below is a full set of my latest PMW-350 scene files.

Mainly matrix tweaks.
neut2 is one I like that gives rich primary colours while still reasonably true to life.
Cine1 is a sudo filmic look (crushes blacks)
Film1 is meant to emulate well saturated film stock
DSC-1 is based on Chroma-Du-Monde chart for accurate daylight color
Neut is my first matrix tweak for a less green look and warmer skin tones.
Attached Files
File Type: zip alister 350 scene files1.zip (10.7 KB, 518 views)
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Old March 20th, 2010, 04:55 PM   #99
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Thank you Alister nice of you to share. I will check these out if my camera is still around.
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Old March 23rd, 2010, 01:50 PM   #100
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Notes on Exposure

There are some interesting settings that can help manage tough lighting situations.

Iris2 (in the maintenance menu):

Iris Window Ind - By default, the exposure indication window is off. The first thing to do is turn it on.

Iris Window: By default set to #1, this selects a metering window beginning about 1/3 down from the top, and the full width of the frame. An interesting thing to do is change this setting to "Var." This will permit resizing and relocating of the metering window.

Iris Var Width/Iris Var Height: These two settings permit changing the width and height of the metering window. You can have a window the size of the full frame, or reduce it to a very small box (spot meter).

Iris Var V/H Pos: These two settings permit repositioning the window anywhere within the frame.

Clip High Light: By default, this setting is off, but enabling will reduce the luminance range preventing blown out looking highlights.

Iris Level: This is a bit of a misnomer, since it is also capable of adjusting the shutter speed if in auto (and the iris is locked), to raise or lower the exposure. With a range of +/- 99, lowering the setting will reduce the exposure, raising it will increase the exposure.

Using a technique similar to a DSLR, you can lock the iris and shutter in manual mode. Put the spot meter over your talent's skin and press the manual exposure button. Recompose the frame before taking the shot.
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Old December 3rd, 2010, 09:02 AM   #101
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Wow...what an incredible thread. Thank you all for sharing your results.
I have my work cut out for me now!

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Old March 14th, 2011, 05:24 AM   #102
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Re: PMW-350 Developing Scene Files (Picture Profiles)

Silly question here...

I downloads Alister's set above but now am wondering how to get the files loaded in the camera. Off course I've read the manual and spitted out this topic but it still won't work. I did trie different ways but it keeps saying "No file" on all numbers at the SxS Scene Recall menu. What should the folder structure on the SxS card look like? The SONY folder just besides the CLPR and TAKR folders in the root?
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Old March 20th, 2011, 12:39 PM   #103
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Re: PMW-350 Developing Scene Files (Picture Profiles)

The Sony folder should be on the cards root, ie next to the BPAV folder, and NOT in the BPAV folder.
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Old March 20th, 2011, 12:56 PM   #104
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Re: PMW-350 Developing Scene Files (Picture Profiles)

Thanks Alister. I do hope that Neut2 file works pretty good for ENG stuff, otherwise I'll just try to adapt it a bit. I found the 350's colours out-of-the-box way too much saturated. For example, this is what I shot on it this morning:

YouTube - Zwaargewonden bij ongeval knooppunt Batadorp
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Old March 20th, 2011, 01:15 PM   #105
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Re: PMW-350 Developing Scene Files (Picture Profiles)

I have the same problem with the orange and lime-green safety vests here in the States. Alister, I've asked this elsehwhere, but are your scene files specifically for European gear or does it matter?

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