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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
Sony PDW-F800, PDW-700, PDW-850, PXW-X500 (XDCAM HD) and PMW-400, PMW-320 (XDCAM EX).


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Old December 27th, 2006, 10:01 AM   #1
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What Is The Most Impressive HD XDCAM 24p Footage?

What is the most impressive 24p footage shot from
the HD XDCAM? I always like to see just how far the right
person can take a decent camera. In this case I start this thread
in hopes XDCAM users will post links for impressive results
using the 330L or 350L XDCAM CAMERAS.....

Last edited by Rob Stiff; December 27th, 2006 at 10:59 AM.
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Old December 27th, 2006, 10:29 PM   #2
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Rob,
Great Idea!
What codec do you think should be used as a "Web Movie" to show off the footage in it's best light?

Quicktime Mpeg 4?
Windows Media Player?

Should it be 24fps.

Anybody no a good formula for this?

Or do you think the original mxf or converted quicktime? (Large Files)

Rich
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Old December 27th, 2006, 11:10 PM   #3
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What a great idea. As you probably know, we're doing a pilot with the 350s from Sony and couldn't be happier with the results to the point that we'll be doing the entire series, if it's picked up in either Spanish or English by NBC or Telemundo, with the cameras. We had a choice of any camera we wanted to use but after I saw the results of the 350 and the script, I took a chance on the 350s and never looked back. What you're doing is a great service and I hope people contribute to it. We posted 3 clips with 170-some views of them but no responses. i don't know if the clip sizes were too large (190MB) or what but i wish you better luck. The rack focus, depth of field and frame accumulation was second to none. Again, i hope people contribute to this thread.
Jonathan
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Old December 28th, 2006, 07:48 PM   #4
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no feedback - sorry missed it

I've been sort of passing by to see if any new post with 2nd unit, but must have missed it.
The Sony's are a great camera no doubt, just need to win lotto to pay for them. With Red on the way I imagine a lot of the major players will have to rethink their pricing strategy.
But do love the Sony, if the avi's are still up will view and pass on some feedback, keep up your excellent work to all the 2nd Unit team.

Cheers

Adam
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Old December 28th, 2006, 10:20 PM   #5
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Not to dampen a good idea, but I am satisfied with the DVD that Sony shot with the camera to promote it. The Iditarod footage is great, and it shows the frame accumulation mode and slo-mo fabulously. I will be joining the HD XD CAM ranks this January, and that DVD helped sell it. But surely more footage is always welcome.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 10:28 AM   #6
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Actually the Iditerod footage helped in our decision to go with the Sonys. I didn't view it as a be-all end-all though but rather as a crack in the door. I was anxiolus to see what the cameras could do when taken to their limits as WE defined them on our project and we were incredibly surprised. The effects were so stunning that we got an order for the new pilot we're shooting in Spanish as well as English and that, along with the long Christmas holiday is why new 2nd Unit postings have gone for naught over the past 3 weeks. We're back fisnishing up Season Two starting next week with interviews that as usual are wonderful. But to get back to the camera, if you think about it, and yes, we are sposored for 2007 by Sony BUT anyone who's been here and at DVUser.com for the last year knows that our comments are anything but the result of that sponsorship, the 350 isn't really a bank-buster for the serious filmmaker. We looked at every possible aspect of all of the cameras out there and when you consider the nominal cost of the box, $25000, for a variable frame rate, slow shutter speed, efx-laden, disk-based media, 35 MbS, 1/2" camera that can use 2/3" lenses with the snap of a ring with the only down side being a 1.37 multiplier and finally the fact that the camera will do virtually everything a $2000/day camera package will do for less than half that and you have a truly affortdable, professional package. Then you add to that that if you're shooting a feature, indepedent or otherwise, chances are you'll have the camera in use for 25 days, the $1000 a day you'll save between a camera package that goes way, way beyond what the average filmmaker, incuding yours truly, will use and the 350, at $1000 a day, will pay for the purchase of a 350 camera, you have a situation where the camera is afordable to buy and own and from then on you put your money into renting the heart and soul of any package, the glass. I almost feel silly singing the high praises of a company that sponsors us but I truly haven't been this excited about a camera and it's capabilties since we proved we could shoot an entire network sports series on a series of 1/3" cameras.

We're shooting a gangland, drive-by shooting in a Chatsworth neighborhood, a series with the LAPD and finally another, shorter street/walking shooting series with one of the characters all this coming Tuesday night in a Chatsworth neighborhood and, because of the camera's capabilities, every night's been like Christmas eve the last couple of weeks with the anticipation almost preventing sleep. How can I shoot this? What frame rate do I shoot that at? Is this a Steadicam or dolly shot? Now at 49, that's alot to say. I stopped believeing in Santa Claus a while ago...until I met Sony and their 350. In know, it really sopunds silly but the results speak for themselves. We've been shooting for 5 weeks and we're still coming up with new things these cameras can do and I don't known which is better; the wondering or the actual doing.
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Old December 30th, 2006, 01:00 AM   #7
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The time-lapse feature is proving totally awesome for us - like a rose-hued sunset on a snow-covered volcano in sub-zero temps last night, followed by a little gorgeous slow-shutter of the moonlit night....and a money-shot time-lapse sunrise.

And then a full day doing set-ups and art shots and interviews in the snow...over 70 clips in less than eight hours shooting....and every one a Rembrandt (because you can delete last clip:-)

We used a couple of wireless lav mics exclusively for the first time and although they're not as sweet sound-wise as our shotguns, we know we can tweak it in FCP...

The great advantage of the lavs was that it freed up the sound operator to handle the camera while the cameraman did the interviews....and the producer filled in as director...

This is a true story:-)

Now if only they'd build a selectable cross-fade into the F350 like I used to have in my Bauer Super 8 camera 25 years ago...just a thought that suddenly came to mind because when you find yourself with a camera that can apparently do everything, you just can't help wanting to help it do even more:-)

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Old December 30th, 2006, 10:29 AM   #8
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Don't feel badly. We use the state of the art wireless in Lectros and I'm constantly balancing hard-wired v. wireless using hard-wired whenever and wherever we can. And as to the Hat Dance your people are doing, there was a time when everyone was trained, to a certain degree, the same way and to this day, people with an understanding of all the jobs are better filmmakers than those who so concentrate on one job that they don't see whole picture and the whole picture makes the single job better. 2nd Unit is alot like that with everyone moving from one job to another. It's OK to love one thing but the better you understand the job of the guy next to you, the better the picture is.
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Old December 30th, 2006, 02:51 PM   #9
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I definitely agree that having a hands-on understanding of all aspects of filming certainly makes for better film-makers.

The young man I am working with/teaching is exceptionally focused and a very fast learner, so he can switch from sound to camera and get great results.

I also insisted that as sound man he has a very big responsibility to interrupt everything, and stop us all in our tracks, if he's not happy with what he's hearing. So he doesn't hesitate to to do that, and I am very happy knowing he's ensuring that we get the best possible sound on location.

He is also a whizz-kid on SoftImage and FCP...so I am learning as much from him as he from me....and I expect our finished docko to be a very high-class production because of his input and expertise.

But we won't be going the high-end lav mics any time soon:-)

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Old December 30th, 2006, 06:45 PM   #10
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Again, a smart, smart man. BVut that's what happens when you get to be our age with our experience.
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Old January 6th, 2007, 03:10 AM   #11
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good low

light, though I suppose its a given being bigger CCDs than the JVC's. A little videoish still. Though to be expectd and the price point. The push focus to Pablo from Juanito in the opening scene, was that some lens breathing? Was the gunshot scene with the mother done in camera? If so, good to see first hand the creative effect of variable framerates, saving extra post work.
It also seems at one or two points the zoom servo may be touchy; In the opening scene with the candle, just prior to the push focus from Juanito writing to Pablo (please forgive me, as I'm not overly familiar with latino speech, I may have written their names down wrong here.) That there was a bit of a speed ramp in whilst zooming out.
Good work guys, incidentally, as I confess I haven't strongly followed the El Papel production. Is the story pulled straight from a real life story?
Happy New Year to you all as well, may 2007 be a prosperous and joyous one for you all.

cheers
Adam
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Old January 7th, 2007, 03:06 PM   #12
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You have a keene eye. The sequenses are raw, directly from the camera. Post consists of butt-cutting the pieces together so the ramping issue, color, audio and the rest of the things that can only be done in final polish will be addressed in post. Yes, the VFR is all in-camera. It's all in-camera which is why we selected the 350. Remember, El Papel is still a 2nd Unit production which means we are emphasizing what can be done on stage teaching everyting from cinematography to camera to set decorating to you name it. El Papel is a real life story with the family representing more than 11 million undocumented aliens in the US today and the 44 million documented ones, all fighting the forces of gangs, drugs, crime and general hopelessness many of whom rise to become class valedictorian and college graduates. It's edutainment with each episode entertaining the viewer but also giving the viewer information that is accurate, honest and true. Thanks for the acolades. We and Sony are pretty proud of the way it's coming out for both American and Spanish television viewership but we're even more proud of the fact that we're showing the capabilities of the 350. There are defrinitely times whern you ned the power of the 950 but, IMHO, the 350 is so far beyond what the filmmaker needs in the vast majority of shot situations that, well, it's our camera of choice for everything we're shooting right now.
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