EX1 vs SI-2K vs upcoming Scarlet S35 at DVinfo.net

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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:04 AM   #1
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EX1 vs SI-2K vs upcoming Scarlet S35

I currently own Sony EX1, and I'd like to improve:

1. Dynamic range
2. Perceived resolution
3. Achieve shallow DOF without 35mm adapter
4. Use my Zeiss 100mm Macro with Nikon Mount directly on camera
5. Less compression, higher bit resolution of the recorded signal (preferably in Cineform codec that I'm comfortable with...)

What do you think can be achieved, realistically?
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:16 AM   #2
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1. You can't.
2. You can't.
3. You can't.
4. Get a custom adaptor made.
5. Get a Flash Nano device.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:22 AM   #3
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You can get the Convergent Design recorder. 100mbbs data rate and should give some image improvement -- maybe someone has some frame grabs. It'll probably handle motion capture better. It's real zoot.

Dunno what to tell you about DOF. 1/2" is pretty good, 2/3" is a good compromise even though it's only 3mm bigger than 1/2" on the diagonal.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:26 AM   #4
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I know you don't want to use a 35mm adapter but wanted to mention that I own the Letus Ultimate adapter and it works quite well with my EX1 and it's very easy to set up.

The images I get from it are beautiful and very sharp.

Scarlet is interesting, but my EX1 and Ultimate setup is in my hands now and I'm making money with it. My interviews are so much nicer with that shallow DOF.

I also have the Convergent Design nanoFlash box on order. Can't wait to shoot with that and my Ultimate. Should make a nice combo.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:33 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Brian Luce View Post
You can get the Convergent Design recorder.
Waiting for nanoFlash, I think 50Mb would be fine.

However I'm a fan of Cineform codec, so anything that records in Cineform natively (and SI-2K apparently does) would be preferable... not critical, but preferable.

nanoFlash does not though.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 11:34 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by James Huenergardt View Post
nanoFlash box on order.
Is it already available?
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 12:18 PM   #7
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Remember that at 50Mbps 4:2:2 the compression ratio is almost exactly the same as 35Mbps 4:2:0 so you will have the same amount of artifacts, the only advantage is the small increase in colour space. If you shoot progressive I doubt you will see much difference. Interlace the difference is bigger. To really see an improvement over the already excellent 35Mbps codec you need to go to at least 100Mbps or uncompressed.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 12:35 PM   #8
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With regard to #3 shallow DOF:

-Operate with a significant distance between camera and subject, and also between subject and background.
-Use telephoto end of zoom range
-Open the iris wide
-Apply ND filters

I think the EX1 does pretty well without a 35mm adapter, at least in certain situations (ie. interviews).
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 12:40 PM   #9
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I'm more excited ( scarlet ) about the ability to shoot RAW and have much more control in post.... that's the "it" deal for me. ( cause I'm a lazy sod )
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 01:27 PM   #10
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I'm more excited ( scarlet ) about the ability to shoot RAW and have much more control in post.... that's the "it" deal for me. ( cause I'm a lazy sod )
Shooting RAW is a double edged sword. Yes, you can do a LOT in post. The downside is that you HAVE to do a lot in post. Terrific if you're working with long timeframes to offer deliverables, but if you're trying to do same-day work or overnight work, it can be a bear turning that stuff around.

I've had a go at playing with some R3D files over the past year, and while it's awesome to have so much control, it's really work intensive getting a look that you want. Would be awesome to have some canned LUTs or equivalents to use to shape the video coming in. I think this is where I am going with my EX1 footage. Shoot somewhat flat, then have about 10 canned looks or so in the NLE I can just lay on when I want.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 01:38 PM   #11
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Yes, to me (theoretically) RED workflow is a turnoff at the moment.

On contrast, Cineform RAW, as I understand, is instantly compatible with Prospect, so there should be no problem with SI-2K workflow...
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 01:43 PM   #12
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Yes, needs a lot of CPU power also. And then the color correcting must be more intensive.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 09:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C.S. Michael View Post
With regard to #3 shallow DOF:

-Operate with a significant distance between camera and subject, and also between subject and background.
-Use telephoto end of zoom range
-Open the iris wide
-Apply ND filters

I think the EX1 does pretty well without a 35mm adapter, at least in certain situations (ie. interviews).
Agreed. You can get shallow depth of field without even resorting to ND filters. With the stock lens zoomed in most or all of the way, iris wide open. Works great for event or interview shooting. Also helps shooting in 1080/24p (or 1080/30p) with shutter at 180 degrees in lower light environments.
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 09:25 PM   #14
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"-Use telephoto end of zoom range
-Open the iris wide"

Aren't these two things leading to significant image softness?

I thought EX1's lens starts being soft if you open it more than about 5.6 aperture.

And of course it should get softer the more telephoto you go.

So if you open the iris all the way, and zoom in all the way, it appears that you are combining two factors each contributing to the image detail being lost?
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Old January 22nd, 2009, 09:53 PM   #15
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If you move back and zoom in to the same framing of the objective, you dof does not change. What it does is it narrows the field of view behind the objective, expanding a section of the original background view to fill the entire background in the zoomed view. The dof has not changed, but the lack of focus detail which was always present in the original view is magnified and becomes more apparent.

Opening the iris will decrease dof. Zooming will decrease dof, but if you also move the camera back, and zoom to the same objective framing, you end up with the same dof.
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