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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
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Old September 7th, 2006, 02:05 PM   #1
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G4 Challenge footage

The Sony G4 Challenge "Behind the Scenes" DVD arrived today and I must say I am a little disappointed with the quality. It looks underexposed, with faces difficult to distinguish in places and it also has a very "warm" look. Has anyone seen it who is familiar with XDCAM footage, is this typical or has the process of going from HD to MPEG2 effected the quality greatly.

I am not trying to take anything away from the effort involved in this very difficult project and I am assuming that not all of the footage on the DVD was shot on XDCAM. I also realise it was a demonstration of how the format behaves in difficult conditions but for someone who is considering moving away from the comfort of DVCAM this was a little concerning.
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Old September 7th, 2006, 09:09 PM   #2
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Does it look like the web movies?

They went real warm, and with a post vignette. I think it looks great.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 04:24 AM   #3
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I also like the look of it. It wasn't under exposed at all. Maybe it was your TV?

They did post grading to the picture.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 04:37 AM   #4
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Yes the footage looks very similar to that on the web. The look I do not like but I would be interested to know what process has been applied to achieve it. However its the lack of clarity which really concerns me. There is a comment on the DVD about the quality of the footage and being able to see "the beads of sweat on faces" I find it difficult to see faces clearly at times. With the 350 now less than 12000 in the UK XDCAM is very tempting but this DVD would not convince me.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 05:21 AM   #5
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Quote:
I find it difficult to see faces clearly at times.
I simply cannot see a problem on the DVD that I have. What do you mean that you cannot see faces clearly?
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Old September 8th, 2006, 06:19 AM   #6
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For example
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G4 Challenge footage-g4.jpg  
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Old September 8th, 2006, 06:49 AM   #7
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Yeah, the people in question are in shadow. Looks like a realistic portrayal of the lighting conditions at the time to me. In other words an artistic decision to get the overall look of the picture. The picture was graded afterwards, so the look that you see was the directors intention. I liked it.

For ungraded examples you might like to check out this;
http://bssc.sel.sony.com/Broadcastan..._jeldred.shtml
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Old September 8th, 2006, 08:50 AM   #8
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Simon,

Thanks for that link, the footage was impressive and what I expected to find on the G4 DVD. I do not like the G4 look but of course this is subjective. I like footage to be as realistic as possible and not have processes applied which detract from the image, which I think has happened in this case.

I really just wanted to be able to view XDCAM sourced footage and make a judgement on its quality in an environment similiar to what my clients will experience, that is, a standard DVD displayed on a standard TV. The G4 DVD did not come up to my expectations in that respect.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 08:59 AM   #9
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Hi William,

My website also has a number of XDCAM examples up. My reel is all done with XDCAM SD, however I also made a music video in a day with the F330 that can be viewed here;
http://www.simonwyndham.co.uk/project_valkyrie.htm

Again, the picture is graded so it isn't how it was untouched from the camera.

I also put up more links to XDCAM video in the General XDCAM links sticky thread.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=62598
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Old September 8th, 2006, 09:59 AM   #10
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Simon,

Many thanks, that should keep me busy for a while.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 10:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Wyndham
Yeah, the people in question are in shadow. Looks like a realistic portrayal of the lighting conditions at the time to me.
One of the tenets of "the film look" of course is to save your highlights, almost at any cost. That's no biggie in controlled circumstances, but in reportage it means you either need fill light, or to lift your dark bits in CC. Looks like they did neither here.

I would have done the same, but I'm guessing that they had so much material to create that they couldn't always do shot-by-shot CC work.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 11:12 AM   #12
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Hmm. I don't think fill light is really an option in a documentary circumstance on a wide shot on a street!

But as for lifting in CC, again, its the look that they wanted. If they wanted to lift those dark areas they would have done. Besides, what you are looking at is a still image, not moving. The shots on the DVD are the same as the ones in the video logs on the Sony websites. I never noticed a problem on the DVD that I have.

Quote:
One of the tenets of "the film look" of course is to save your highlights
Not always. Quite often it is desirable to blow them out. I think a lot of people (not that I am saying you are Nate) obsess over every single highlight in a picture.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 01:15 PM   #13
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I got the DVD today and I thought it looked really good, no probs with exposure that I could see. It looked 'warm' because they where in bleedin 45 degree heat lol! William, when the guy spoke of 'being able to see the beads of sweat on their faces' he meant watching footage on a HD display. Anyway, the dvd was free and it meant I had an excuse to interupt my son watching cartoons mwwahahahahaaaa! Poor sod.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 01:51 PM   #14
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One thing I noticed toady working on the Sony stand at IBC and viewiing the original HD rushes is that it appears that the edge enhancement was turned right down and it should also be noted that the material is progressive, which always has a tendancy to look softer than interlace. The HD rushes look very nice to me. When I get home I'll have to look at my camera as I have an ex G4 challenge cam and the setups are still in the memory.
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Old September 8th, 2006, 02:07 PM   #15
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which always has a tendancy to look softer than interlace.
Thats interesting. I've always thought the opposite :)
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