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Old July 20th, 2015, 03:31 PM   #1
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Client is supplying S-log scene files

For this shoot I have coming up using the F5 for the first time the client is supplying their own S-log scene file(s). I have a few questions...

Does the usage of these files preclude me from doing the normal things one would do for a given scene like setting the color balance filter, setting the auto white balance, checking black balance, etc?

Using S-log (what we used to call shooting flat) normally means shooting at less than full exposure...pulling your whites down from 100%. Same here or ?

Anything else I need to watch out for so I can concentrate on making nice pictures?

Thanks!
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Old July 20th, 2015, 04:11 PM   #2
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Are they sending you a monitor LUT? There are few adjustments available when you switch to LOG.
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Old July 20th, 2015, 11:17 PM   #3
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Odell View Post
For this shoot I have coming up using the F5 for the first time the client is supplying their own S-log scene file(s). I have a few questions...

Does the usage of these files preclude me from doing the normal things one would do for a given scene like setting the color balance filter, setting the auto white balance, checking black balance, etc?

Using S-log (what we used to call shooting flat) normally means shooting at less than full exposure...pulling your whites down from 100%. Same here or ?

Anything else I need to watch out for so I can concentrate on making nice pictures?

Thanks!
Strongly advise you to check put the F5 before this shoot.. Im sure you will anyway.. there are two distinctive shooting modes.. one is custom.. pretty much as any ENG camera.. scene files.. gamma.. hyper gamma .. black levels etc.. the second is Cine EI.. if you are shooting Slog.. you really need to be in Cine EI mode to get the most out of the 14 stop DR .. you can shoot Slog in custom .. but its really defeating the purpose..
I wonder what they mean by slog scene file..? as basically you don't have a scene file in Cine EI.. you can choose your LOG curve/colour space.. Slog3/s gamut3.cine .. is what I use.. its the easiest to deal with in grading .. as the primaries are in line with REC 709.. P3.. and the Arri ones.. it is complicated and really needs some time.. there is a good and clear explanation on Alister Chapmans web site.. "shooting in Cine EI"
But in its basic,s its very easy.. Cine EI closes off all the paint/matrix settings.. the camera has a built in REC 709.. MLUT.. monitor LUT.. for VF and monitor.. once you have this you have rec 709 in your VF.. your zebra,s and WFM are reading for REC 709.. and you can just shoot as you always have done.. its actually better to over expose Log in Cine EI than under.. its not like shooting hyper gamma,s.. one draw back is at the moment you are stuck only with preset WB.. this is to make grading easier in post.. anyway look at Alisters site all is explained .. I was totally freaked out about Slog and LUTS etc.. but actually its very easy in Cine EI mode with a REC 709 LUT..
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Old July 21st, 2015, 11:20 AM   #4
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Hey Robin and Chris:

Downloaded that article and will read it over. Thanks. It does specify the FS7 but same for the F5 is it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Probyn View Post
one draw back is at the moment you are stuck only with preset WB.
So this was what I was getting at. I cannot set white balance? I can only use the switch settings for indoor and outdoor?

Another issue now is the client is asking for version 5.0 firmware and the rental house is using current version 6. Not sure how this will affect settings.

I'll have the camera for a day to mess with it. If I can get them to email me the files can these be placed on an SxS card using my PC?

Thanks!
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Old July 21st, 2015, 12:59 PM   #5
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

You might also want to look at:

https://www.community.sony.com/t5/F5...55/td-p/506807

It gives some info on the v6 firmware release.

It also mentions: "All files which are created with Firmware V6.0 are not compatible with an earlier firmware version."
-- which would make me concerned that earlier firmware version setup files might not read properly??... may be worth more research...
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Old July 21st, 2015, 02:10 PM   #6
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Here is what I have from their tech notes.

29.97fps
CineEI
S Gamut/SLog 2
MPEG 1920x1080P, 16x9
HD422 50mbit
180 degree shutter
2000EI
High Latitude: 6.0E
LMUT: LC-709

So would there still be some type of "look" that is on the card that I need to read into the camera?
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Old July 21st, 2015, 06:50 PM   #7
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

I'm sorry to have to be the one to break the news to you, but your clients are fools. Why on earth would anyone shoot S-LOG and record with an 8-bit codec like MPEG? Dumb. Especially when you''re shooting with a camera than can record 10-bit XAVC just as easily. MPEG is just fine for WYSIWYG and minor grading, but for S-LOG, you've got to be an idiot not to use a 10-bit codec unless they want you to actually record the MLUT, which is something most people would never choose. Do you know if you are you supposed to record the LUT or just use it for monitoring?

Also, since you're shooting CINE EI there are no scene files that can be used, so I wonder what files they are sending you.

One more thing, one key part of the equation is how do they want you to expose the S-LOG? What level? There are several schools of thought on what looks best after grading.

And one final thing, any files that they send you must be loaded from an SD card, not an SxS card.

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/dou...1&ign-mpt=uo=4
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Old July 21st, 2015, 09:58 PM   #8
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Odell View Post
Here is what I have from their tech notes.

29.97fps
CineEI
S Gamut/SLog 2
MPEG 1920x1080P, 16x9
HD422 50mbit
180 degree shutter
2000EI
High Latitude: 6.0E
LMUT: LC-709

So would there still be some type of "look" that is on the card that I need to read into the camera?
Doug is right.. it is very much defeating the purpose to record Slog but in an 8 bit codec.. as the whole point is max data and flexibility in post grading .. but ok thats their call you could point it out to them .. or get paid up front in case you are then "blamed" for poor footage once they try to grade.. !
The good news is there are no scene files or things to set in the paint/matrix menu at all.. the firmware version shouldn't matter either.. the fact they request V5 is more than a bit odd too.. it does really look like they don't know about Slog.. or the other DP doesn't and has given them BS.. TBH.. In Cine EI it actually the easiest mode to shoot.. the ISO will stay at native 2000.. (you can change the EI value but thats another bit of a learning curve.. also dealt with in Alister's web article) but I would just not change the EI.. keep it at 2000 on the LCD screen setting on the side of the camera.. that also gives you the 6.0E.. meaning 6 stops over latitude from grey level.. so don't change from ISO 2000.. 180 degree shutter would be 1/60th.. if the camera is set to time rather than angle..
So far very easy to set .. MLUT is monitor LUT (look up table)..LC709 low contrast rec 709.. this is built into the camera I think its in the "look" section (not 100% sure from memory) or in the MLUT list.. anyway easy just find it already in camera.. the tricky bit is setting the MLUT..unless they want to burn it in.. i.e. record the LUT.. which might be a reason for MPEG recording.. you DONT want to set INTERNAL RECORD.. you just want to set for VF and SDI SUB out.. (there are 4 SDI outs. the top two will give you the NON LUT output.. the bottom two.. the Sub SDI ,s will give you the LUT applied out put).. I haven't used that LUT.. its 709.. but not quite the same as vanilla 709.. I believe the white levels are less than the normal REC 709.. but its a hell of a lot easier to work with than seeing the actual Slog out put.. which is very washed out and takes a lot of getting used to be comfortable with.. but once you can establish your white level /or grey for that LC709 LUT.. you can set your Zebra,and use the WFM and your away.. the good news being any exposure tools in the VF will now be reading off the LUT ed image .. to the under lying Slog.. which has very low white levels.. Cine EI basic procedure is the same with FS7 as F5.. or Alexa for that matter .. although I believe the FS7 has some difference in the Zebra,s WFM reading the Slog not the LUT.. which if true is not good..
There is also a Sony US based forum which has a lot of info.. I think someone else has put a link in another post.. so basically its very easy... I also had kittens first time I had to shoot Slog..!!
The WB isn't really a big problem.. you have 4,300 too.. plus what you see colour balance wise in the VF is not whats being recorded anyway.. and can be easily tweaked in post..
I think the main thing is you have to confirm if the MLUT LC709 is be be "burnt in" i.e. recorded.. and to let them know (if not burnt in) .. that to record Slog to XDCAM 8 bit is not advisable .. XAVC 422 10 bit is the way to go.. like putting a Ferrari
engine in a tractor..

PS The LC709 LUT's place middle grey at 41-42% but white at a lower level around 72%
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Old July 22nd, 2015, 12:37 AM   #9
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

I agree with Doug and Robin that recording s-log in 8-bit is a bit like shooting yourself in the foot when you have 10-bit XAVC available.
Personally, if I were starting from scratch I'd probably be going with s-log 3 rather than s-log2,
Ideally, just light the scene the way you would have for film. I personally would overexpose somewhat (2/3 to a full stop) as long as the whites are protected and still within range. It will make the overall image less noisy. Don't be afraid of looking at the s-log image directly to verify that nothing is burned out.
Of course maybe they're matching with another camera that only does s-log2 (an A7s?)?
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Old July 22nd, 2015, 01:41 AM   #10
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

George ..

If its all getting too complicated and they are not burning in the LUT..

Easiest way to go.. with 99% success.. set VF and monitor for LUT P1.. its the nearest to apples to vanilla 709.. which you have used for years in any ENG camera.. (make sure not internal to cards recording).. right side of VF halfway you should see slog2.. if you see anything else you are not recording to slog..)

Your zebra and MFM are now in Rec 709 mode.. even by eye if it looks ok your slog is ok.. personally i wouldn't tinker with the MLUTS ON/OFF on the first shoot.. as mistakes could be made..

Its that simple really ..
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Old July 22nd, 2015, 09:27 AM   #11
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Thanks guys.

All I can say is this is a network TV show that's been running for years. I'm not about to tell them how to shoot it. I'm on this for one day and that's all.

I do not see anything on the sheet about setting MLUT Internal to on or off. Perhaps that is one parameter to be supplied in their "file" but would be nice to know.

Kind of a big deal and one that can get me "not paid" if I get it wrong.

You know, I have worked on many TV shows as a freelancer. Day or two at most. They all have a DP and I have yet to have one contact me to give me the heads up about how the show is to be shot. Worked on several Home Makeover shows and the DP was on site and I never met him until the shoot was over and only one time.

Seems like an easy gig. How does one get one of those I wonder?
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Old July 22nd, 2015, 08:08 PM   #12
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Re the lack of contact.. they might be worried you,ll be better than them.. :).. also a lot of dp,s have their own little secret ways they don't want to give up even if being water boarded ...
Agreed Im like you.. a jobbing cameraman .. I wont tell flat out the prod co. they or their pet dp,s are idiots.. but you can "advise" backed up by actual technical fact.. getting the job.. either they are doing a really cheap deal for the series.. are good.. got in with the prod co early on.. or all of these..

Is the LMUT typo yours or theirs.. should be MLUT.. as in Monitor LUT.. implying its for monitoring not burnt in.. but yes I would confirm that for sure.. that could be a big screw up.. that you will be blamed for guaranteed

If it comes up.. no S&Q or time lapse in XDCAM.. put another card in for those shots you,ll have to switch to XAVC.. and remember to set it back.. the recording system and shutter is always shown on the side LCD.. I don't want all that junk in the VF.. but a quick check has saved my arse a few times !
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Old July 23rd, 2015, 12:09 PM   #13
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Sorry, meant to type MLUT.

By the way, Robin, thanks much for your very detailed and helpful replies and for that link to the article.

So, I guess my final question is this... not having had any contact from the client still at this late date, can I plan to input the settings I posted above and only worry about whether the LUT is being burned in or not?

Most likely, it is not, but need to confirm that in writing/email or expect it will be part of the mystery file on their SD card*.

Other than that, I shoot like I always do/did going by what I see in my viewfinder and using the WFM.

I only use the three Preset White Balance switch settings and no auto white.

Is this my plan?

*wonder if a setting like this can/will be on the card or if this is something that cannot be "saved" and has to be set the the operator?
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Old July 24th, 2015, 10:27 PM   #14
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

Hi George

No problem.. its basically because I have this camera that I know something about it !!! there is a lot of good info on Alister Chapmans site.. you can look things up too.. he has an f5 and recently FS7.. many things are the same.. but not all so take care there..

If in any doubt I would NOT record the LUT.. once its burnt in.. its there for good.. but can always be applied in post very easily.. the former you cant undo.. the only suspicion of burning in is they want to shoot MPEG.. which "normally" you wouldn't shooting LOG... because its only 8 bit rather than 10 bit XAVC..

Yes auto WB will be greyed out.. if you are burning in a LUT.. Ive found the Cine EI colour space is much better with dealing with florrie green spikes anyway..than Custom 709.. if your shooting actual LOG don't worry about what you see in the VF.. its not be recorded..

So yes engage the P1 (rec709) MLUT for VF and SDI sub..or the LC 709 in the LOOK listing .. but white level is around 70.. use the Zebra/WFM and your eye for exposure and if its ok then your under lying Slog is OK.. sometimes the WFM wont come up in the VF.. I cant remember exactly the combinations that prevent it.. but check that at the rental .. also you need to have that in one of the assigns buttons.. get them to help you set that up too.. I think I have 1 peaking 2 Zebra 3 exposure tools (or what they call it)..for the WFM,. there is a 4 but its on the dumb side and I usually don't use it.. you could have Ret or something..

I dont understand the SD card at all TBH.. there are no scene files in Cine EI.. it could be whats called an All file.. that is a lot of saved settings..tht might be why they requested V5.. as they wont work in V6 I believe.. maybe better not to go near it.. but in Cine EI all the paint/matrix/detail etc is all off.. so its very easy to set up yourself in the menu.. again I would do it at the rental just in case.. just keep the ISO at 2000.. your recording will always be 2000 ISO..(if not burning in the LUT) if you change it to 1000 ISO your VF will get darker and you would open up 1 stop.. but your recording would actually be 1 stop "over exposed".. a lot of people do this on purpose to get a better SNR.. but as your handing it off.. and they quite possibly are not really that together.. they will just think you have screwed up the exposure ! ..if burning in LUT ISO will function the same as in custom mode.. anyway 2000 is the native 0 db setting and will be fine..

Also watch the side buttons around the LCD on the camera body.. hot buttons or what they call them.. easy to get bumped and then settings changed.. happened to me a lot .. there is HOLD switch top left.. if you are running about a bit can be handy.. esp as the ISO button is one of the first to get knocked it seems !! but remember you have switched on and not get a massive panic attack when you see the LCD screen is greyed out and no buttons work ! done that too!!
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Old July 25th, 2015, 09:08 AM   #15
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Re: Client is supplying S-log scene files

One other word of caution - and this has more to do with the "TV show that's been running for years" comment than with the camera itself.

You often don't know where the tech spec sheet is coming from, especially for a show that's been around for a while. If possible, get the email or phone # of the DP and make contact to ask any critical questions. I've done shoots for companies where they've actually sent me tech sheets from a different show than the one I'd be shooting for! Or in another case I got a complete sheet with RED camera specs after I was told that I needed to shoot with an Alexa! Remember, at some point someone put together the specs sheet - but the person who compiled the info may have been a production coordinator and not in the camera department at all.

On the other hand, at least they're asking for a recent firmware version - which is a good sign, because it means that the specs were re-done in the past year. Sometimes shows will continue to use older setup standards to keep things consistent for post-production. Remember, with some company managements there may be an attitude of 'it's working - don't change anything' -- I've shot for companies that used (what I consider) ancient Avid systems which couldn't accommodate newer codecs - because they didn't want to spend the money to upgrade either their computers or software. They may have standardized on specs from when the show first started.

Sometimes it can be very informative to exchange a few words with the DP! I often get some very critical information the the show's producers have 'overlooked.' I know that when I've DP'd documentaries that couldn't afford to send me to certain shoots I always try to make contact with the cameraperson who will be doing the local shooting -- and a large portion of the time I find that they've already been told something only 'marginally' correct about the best way to match the look I'm trying to achieve. Just allow some time for the DP to get back to you, since not only is this not 'time on the clock' - but the DP may be on a different company's clock on the other side of the world!
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