Multicam setup (Z1 & EX1) for dance production under tungsten stage lights at DVinfo.net

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Old March 16th, 2009, 04:48 PM   #1
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Multicam setup (Z1 & EX1) for dance production under tungsten stage lights

I am very quickly running out of time and have spent lots of time reading this forum.

I am recording a dance production this weekend and have done a test shoot last weekend to check camera settings etc. I am still working on a budget and there is plenty of high end tools that I know would help me but I cannot afford these yet. I am using my own EX1 and the Sony Z1. Although I prefer shooting 720p50 with my EX1, allowing me to either produce HD or SD DVD, I have found shooting in the same format as the Z1 (HDV 1080i) the easiest workflow. I am still open to suggestions here however.

Looking at the footage I have found it hard to match the colour profiles of the EX1 and Z1. Has anyone else managed to do this? I used Cine4 (Bill Ravens settings) on the EX1 and the default PP3 setting on the Z1 with Black stretch on. The colours on the Z1 are more saturated than the EX1 cine4 profile, especially the reds. I will try to have another experiment during the dress rehearsal.

I would really appreciate any picture profile advice for filming this production. I have only found one suggestion for settings under tungsten lighting:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas William Alexander View Post
Matrix = Cinema
Level -40
Phase +20
RG -30
RB +30
GR +75
GB -60
BR +99
BG +80

White = 2900
Skin tone = Off
Black -20
Black Gamma -30
Low Key Sat -30
I will see what this setting looks like and then try to get a similar colour from the Z1. My main problem is I do not have a reference monitor to compare the cameras at the time of recording, hence why I would like some advice!

I am also concerned that the dance show will have a wide range of lighting effects from dim midnight blues to very bright colourful scenes. I will try to white balance using the stage lighting on open white tungsten. I may just use the indoor present at 3200k to be safe.

My last question, I have noticed that there is definite IR interference and I realise I need a filter. Is the Z1 as prone to IR as the EX1, if I get a filter for the EX1 will I need to get one for the Z1 as well? I have no adapters on my camera yet, can someone recommend a IR filter I can buy quickly in the UK? Will I need to buy a frame or adapter for it to attach to the EX1.
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Old March 16th, 2009, 04:54 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Sykes View Post
I am very quickly running out of time and have spent lots of time reading this forum.

I am recording a dance production this weekend and have done a test shoot last weekend to check camera settings etc. I am still working on a budget and there is plenty of high end tools that I know would help me but I cannot afford these yet. I am using my own EX1 and the Sony Z1. Although I prefer shooting 720p50 with my EX1, allowing me to either produce HD or SD DVD, I have found shooting in the same format as the Z1 (HDV 1080i) the easiest workflow. I am still open to suggestions here however.

Looking at the footage I have found it hard to match the colour profiles of the EX1 and Z1. Has anyone else managed to do this? I used Cine4 (Bill Ravens settings) on the EX1 and the default PP3 setting on the Z1 with Black stretch on. The colours on the Z1 are more saturated than the EX1 cine4 profile, especially the reds. I will try to have another experiment during the dress rehearsal.

I would really appreciate any picture profile advice for filming this production. I have only found one suggestion for settings under tungsten lighting:



I will see what this setting looks like and then try to get a similar colour from the Z1. My main problem is I do not have a reference monitor to compare the cameras at the time of recording, hence why I would like some advice!

I am also concerned that the dance show will have a wide range of lighting effects from dim midnight blues to very bright colourful scenes. I will try to white balance using the stage lighting on open white tungsten. I may just use the indoor present at 3200k to be safe.

My last question, I have noticed that there is definite IR interference and I realise I need a filter. Is the Z1 as prone to IR as the EX1, if I get a filter for the EX1 will I need to get one for the Z1 as well? I have no adapters on my camera yet, can someone recommend a IR filter I can buy quickly in the UK? Will I need to buy a frame or adapter for it to attach to the EX1.
I would set the EX1 on auto everything except focus.

John
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Old March 16th, 2009, 05:03 PM   #3
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I had considered doing full auto but have read negative things about the auto white balance. I think I am going to try 3200k on both cameras. I will use the auto iris and spotlight mode on both. I am more concerned in trying to match the colours of the two camera without spending ages doing it in post.
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Old March 17th, 2009, 02:11 AM   #4
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I think the EX is very difficult to match for concerts or music videos.

I've tried both the FX 1 and FX 7, and ended up buying a 2nd EX 1 which was probably the best decision I ever made!

Still paying it off, but cheaper than renting it and saved many hours of post in colour matching.

Probably done over 30 2 x camera shoots on live dance concerts and music videos, virtually with no colour mis match between cameras. BLISS!

Cheers,

Vaughan
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Old March 17th, 2009, 07:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaughan Wood View Post
I think the EX is very difficult to match for concerts or music videos.

I've tried both the FX 1 and FX 7, and ended up buying a 2nd EX 1 which was probably the best decision I ever made!

Still paying it off, but cheaper than renting it and saved many hours of post in colour matching.

Probably done over 30 2 x camera shoots on live dance concerts and music videos, virtually with no colour mis match between cameras. BLISS!

Cheers,

Vaughan
So what settings do you use Vaughan?

John
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Old March 17th, 2009, 08:53 AM   #6
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I 2nd that! Vaughan, have you found a colour profile that works well. I think that the profile needs to be able to handle a huge contrast, some dances are brightly lit while others are dimly lit but then have a follow spot highlighting solos. I was wondering whether a HiSat profile might be better than a Cine one?

I have also ordered the W+B 486 IR / UV filter to help get rid of browny / red back clothes that are actually black! (I hope it arrives in time!)
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Old March 17th, 2009, 11:37 AM   #7
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Try this:

EX1:
STD1
Hi Sat
Gamma -6
Sharp 5

Z1:
PP3
Black stretch OFF
Sharp 13
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Old March 17th, 2009, 01:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronn Kilby View Post
Try this:

EX1:
STD1
Hi Sat
Gamma -6
Sharp 5

Z1:
PP3
Black stretch OFF
Sharp 13
Thanks for those settings Ronn, I'll give them a go. Can I confirm that you are using the default matrix settings other than the ones you have given?

Have you used both cameras in a similar environment? Were you happy with the result?

I would also like to confirm my understanding of the 'black stretch' setting on the Z1. The maual says this lifts the gamma curve higher in the darker end of the spectrum to give better graduation. I orginally thought this was a good idea to have on but now realise this setting will make the images more contrasty - not a good idea for this sort of contrasty production! I was hoping that there might be a setting to brighten up the lower of the spectrum - crush the blacks a bit. Would the AE shift setting do that or did you find that this was not necessary or better to fix in post production?
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Old March 20th, 2009, 08:18 PM   #9
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A compromise!

Well I have tried out many picture profiles and thought I'd let you know my findings so far.
Before I do so I would like to thank everyone for there advice and suggestions and still welcome more help!

Many of the profiles that had the cine gamma curves produced too saturated and contrastly images. The bright lights were often clipped using auto iris. If I used manual iris, reducing the aperature to stop the highlights clipping, this produced an overal too dark picture. I also had lots of problems with the colours not matching what I was seeing on stage. The CMOS sensors are definitely very sensative to red and clothes that appeared still green were appearing yellowy grey. I think I tried most of the different suggested colour matrixes that I have seen in the picture profile thread and none of them gave a true colour result under red lighting. The best profile setting for the EX1 was Ronn's suggestion using STD1, Hi Sat, Gamma -6. Unfortunately by using this profile the picture was noticable different to the Z1s picture. If I understood how the profile settings work in more detail, especially the colour matrix then with Ronn's suggestion above I think I use this if only I had two EX1s!

After trying many settings and comparing them when I returned home I found this result: The closest match of picture similarity when using the Z1 and the EX1 was when both the picture profiles were turned off! I had them both set to 3200k white balance. The colours match very well to what I am seeing on stage with both cameras until red filtered lights are used. Both cameras appear to be on the orangey side rather than red side, the EX1 is worse than the Z1 when this happens. I think that I can only fix this problem in post. If I had more time and more knowledge I would think that there must be a way to use the colour correction setting to alter the red spectrum or alter the colour matrix. I do remember reading that Bill Ravens had commented that he found it extremely hard to dull out and alter the red settings of the EX1.

If anyone has managed to get a true red colour (not soo orangey) whilst keeping the other colours as they appear under tungsten stage lighting please can you post some results! Basicly it would be great if what my eyes see on stage my camera could also replicate, I know it will never be perfect I would just like to know how close to realistic it can be!
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Old March 21st, 2009, 02:17 AM   #10
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I've never tried to do this but I wouldn't start out trying to match a cine gamma to a camera that doesn't have one. start off with standard gammas at least.
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Old March 21st, 2009, 07:14 AM   #11
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The orangy red is not something you are going to be able to change with a setting on the EX1 under filtered stage lighting if that bothers you. Maybe in post.
Did you try adjusting the Z1 to match the EX1 instead of the other way around?
These are some of the reasons I suggested leaving it on Auto and letting ATW handle this. Also, are you sure it was ALL tungsten lighting? Last show I did it was mixed. The follow spots were all LEDs.

John
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Old March 21st, 2009, 08:29 AM   #12
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I have also tried to match a Z1 and an EX3.

I can get pretty close with color by messing with settings in menus.

However the huge difference in dynamic range is my biggest problem. The Z1 blows out whites and loses detail in the shadows.

I do my final matches in Color, I can make them real close there but it means lowering the overall quality of the EX3 image.

I personally think it is really almost impossible to match the cameras, two very different animals.
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Old March 22nd, 2009, 06:49 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Peterson View Post
The orangy red is not something you are going to be able to change with a setting on the EX1 under filtered stage lighting if that bothers you. Maybe in post.
Did you try adjusting the Z1 to match the EX1 instead of the other way around?
These are some of the reasons I suggested leaving it on Auto and letting ATW handle this. Also, are you sure it was ALL tungsten lighting? Last show I did it was mixed. The follow spots were all LEDs.

John
Hi John, having no professional monitor I used the viewfinder to try to match the colours that I was seeing on stage to what the viewfinder was showing me. I did this independently on both cameras. I had several suggested settings for the EX1 and recorded using these profiles as well. Many profiles were ruled out pretty much straight away as I could see the colours were definitely not correct. After recording several profiles on boths cameras I went home to view my footage. The profiles that appeared to give the trueist colours on both profiles were when the picture profiles were off on both the cameras. This combination also happened to give very close match between the cameras. The EX1 does show more detail obviously in dark areas and I only set 3db gain compared to 9db on the Z1. I think the EX1 picture could definitely be improved with a different gamma curve. My histogram was showing a narrow range of contrast on the EX1 and I ran it in spotlight mode most of the time (occasionally the level appears too dark and I used the zebra at 65% to check light level on faces). The brights would blow out a little on a wide zoom using this profile is I was not careful as well.

Although the EX1 picture could have been improved (especially lighting dynamics) I stuck with the 'profile off' as it looked a closer match to the Z1, any more improvement would have made the mixing of cameras more noticeable, hence why I labelled my last post "a compromise".

Also all the lighting was tungsten, no LEDs in sight.

Another EX1 would definitely be the best option, unfortunately my budget won't stretch that far. I'm also surprised how hard it was to get an EX1 profile that works well under tungsten stage lighting, only one out of several that were suggested looked any good! Like I said before I'd love to compare results!
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