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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old December 3rd, 2008, 09:03 AM   #1
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Using Warm Cards with your EX?

Anyone using Warm Cards from Vortex with their EXs?

Are you happy with the results?

I would be using them for interviews and outdoor/nature videography.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 10:11 AM   #2
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I shoot clean and edit in post. Optionally, filter the lens. Warm cards simply skew the already weak blue channel to be more weak, introducing more noise. I'd rather use BLUE cards, and warm the image in post.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 10:55 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Hancock View Post
Anyone using Warm Cards from Vortex with their EXs?

Are you happy with the results?

I would be using them for interviews and outdoor/nature videography.
I am using the Vortex version 2.0 Warm Cards and am very happy with the results. Make sure you set your exposure properly before setting White Balance. So far I have not had to readjust in post, so a great time saver. Your mileage may vary. Cheers!
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 11:11 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Perrone Ford View Post
I'd rather use BLUE cards, and warm the image in post.
Hmm...
Good idea Perrone.
It's well known that the blue channel with video cameras in general are noisy.
By white balancing on the blue card, this should bring the blue channel gain down minimizing blue channel noise. The real question is - will the blue channel noise floor be brought back up when white balancing in post?

We'd have to experiment and compare.

I've heard of some white balancing through magenta filters to minimize the blue channel's gain.

Also, of course shooting using CTB or using daylight balanced bulbs.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 11:16 AM   #5
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VortexMedia Warm cards ARE BLUE.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Perrone Ford View Post
I shoot clean and edit in post. Optionally, filter the lens. Warm cards simply skew the already weak blue channel to be more weak, introducing more noise. I'd rather use BLUE cards, and warm the image in post.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 11:58 AM   #6
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Yes they would be since white balancing on those cards would decrease the blue channel gain .
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 12:03 PM   #7
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I use them with the EX1 and a lot of Panasonic cameras- totally rock the house (to the point we started selling them on my web store.) You get consistency and when you want to warm things up or cool them down- especially outdoors you get a look you can expect in post. Highly recommend.

-Noah
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 02:02 PM   #8
 
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Originally Posted by Arthur Hancock View Post
Anyone using Warm Cards from Vortex with their EXs?

Are you happy with the results?

I would be using them for interviews and outdoor/nature videography.
Yes, I am very happy with the results. The less "tweaking" done in post the better! Works really well with warming skin tones in interviews!
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 02:16 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Steven Thomas View Post
Hmm...
It's well known that the blue channel with video cameras in general are noisy.
Are they noisy because of warmer white balances on 2700 or 3200K lights or do you know of another reason?
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 02:37 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Gints Klimanis View Post
Are they noisy because of warmer white balances on 2700 or 3200K lights or do you know of another reason?
Tungsten light doesn't have much "blue" in it, so when you white balance to tungsten, the camera must boost the blue (increase gain) to compensate. This increases noise in the blue channel.

By balancing to a card that is more blue, we effectively tell the camera to reduce the gain in the blue channel, thus shifting the image more red. Had I thought about this a bit before my first post, I would have not made it. It should have the effect of reducing noise in the image somewhat.
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 03:36 PM   #11
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Thanks for the feedback.

I'll order up!

I only hope the improvement isn't so dramatic that I can't use all the "Cold Card" footage I've shot to date!
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Old December 3rd, 2008, 03:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perrone Ford View Post
By balancing to a card that is more blue, we effectively tell the camera to reduce the gain in the blue channel, thus shifting the image more red. Had I thought about this a bit before my first post, I would have not made it. It should have the effect of reducing noise in the image somewhat.
We should be using a "UNIWB" with all three color channels weighted equally, then white balancing in post from a reference. I suppose this can only take off when white balance presets can be loaded into every camcorder as can be done on DSLRs. I wonder how far off the daylight WB preset is from UNIWB.
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Old December 5th, 2008, 11:12 PM   #13
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The warm cards sound like a lovely idea, but video cameraman having been using a more flexible and dirt cheap approach for many years.

You just get a gel sample book ( you need to get the big square one) and keep it in your pouch. It has 1/8 through full for CT blue, Orang as well as Green and Magenta .

Hold it over the lens and its all you'll ever need. The green is important for getting rid of green tint. I usually use 1/4 Blue + 1/8 Green or something like that. Everyone I know carries one.

Rosco used to make a"Jungle Book" that had only the colors you need. Now you have to get the full swatch book.

Lenny Levy
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Old December 8th, 2008, 01:35 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gints Klimanis View Post
We should be using a "UNIWB" with all three color channels weighted equally, then white balancing in post from a reference. I suppose this can only take off when white balance presets can be loaded into every camcorder as can be done on DSLRs. I wonder how far off the daylight WB preset is from UNIWB.
All of the vortex cards have a "UNIWB" on the back. Affectionately referred to as Video 100 IRE. That's what I use with my camera (my EX1 is tweaked to have a proper white balance). I'll never use another inkjet sheet of paper again.
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Old December 8th, 2008, 07:00 AM   #15
 
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Adam, you make a very import point, and that is the philosophy/methodology behind the Warm Cards... "consistency."
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