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Techniques for Independent Production
The challenges of creating Digital Cinema and other narrative forms.


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Old July 16th, 2003, 09:07 AM   #16
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I was merely making the point that if you donít use film, that level of detail didnít matter. Rob and Corey made similar comments, and I think weíre all saying the same thing. So letís not argue about my exaggerations.

The fact is, the images looked good enough. When you think of the cost difference, it does make you a little sick. I really didnít mean to change the subject, so letís move on.
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Old July 16th, 2003, 11:34 PM   #17
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GL2 VS DVX

Well, you usually can't teach an old dog new tricks....

Like I said, when you A / B the two cameras next to each other, looking at exactly the same thing--

The difference was night and day. I was quite surprised myself that it would be so noticable and dramatic.

Has anyone here expressing hard core opinions here for one camera or the other done what we did, actually took an afternoon to have two of these cameras at their disposal at the same time and compared as we did...

As to "the film look" versus video, if you can't tell the difference between film and video within 5 seconds, well, yes, it won't matter to you what camera you get.

Myth?

Good grief..... anybody with half an eye can tell in three blinks.

My point being, is that both myself, as an experienced 49 year old photographer, and an un-bias 17 year old non-photographer ,looking at the two cameras and their output in the same room at the same time-- the difference was striking and illuminating within a few brief moments.

***********

If you are NOT going to film, YES it still makes a difference.

Video shown on a TV looks substantially different than film shown on TV.
Example: Look at Monty Pytons shows. Half video/ half film. Quite obvious differences.

Example 2: The Avenger's TV series from the 60's. Started out as video, then they began shooting on film for season 4- at which point the show took on an entirely different look, for all the reasons that people use film. It looks different, it's classic. These shows were never shown on anything BUT TV.

Go to the library and compare the Diana Rigg film years with the Honor Blackman video years. It's like the show moved to another planet. Granted, the video cameras were not up to snuff back then, but the video/film difference, the basic difference is readily evident.

Really, this is rather elementary.

I really like Canon cameras, and have owned 3.
I do not like to throw money away.
I switched because the DVX offered something I was not getting with the GL2, - that yes, we found a substantial change with the DVX technology, and that it supplied the missing film parameters not built into the Canons. Not yet anyway, probably real soon is my guess.

Then its trade-in time again!

Again, not needed by everyone. That's fine, and good.

*****************

I had read some reviews by people having claimed to use all formats, 16mm, 35mm, pro-DV, min-DV, the Canons, and the DVXs. The posts I read said that they felt the DVX was the closest thing to 16mm and HD out there at any price- save the reel thing.

I was skeptical. Then I rented one for a day.

Yes, you can make good, good pictures with Canons, XL1s and GL2s, no doubt about it. Even theatrical releases transfered to film if done correctly. No argument.

We, however, are going directly to DVD, not film transfer. Much of the film like look coming from the Canons at the pro level is because it's then going TO FILM. Duh.

I've found, as many have, that the DVX gives us 24p frame rate, motion, and beautiful gamma right out of the box, wired right into the TV. Its marvelous. No need to spend $10K to get a film transfer for this effect, or do dozens of hours of post-effect rendering that comes close.

You may be in the market for one of these cameras, or considering your options if you have something else presently. Just thought I'd mention my experience.

Cheers.

My opinions are not paid for by Panasonic. (!)

Thanks,
Neil
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Old July 17th, 2003, 08:04 AM   #18
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"Example: Look at Monty Pytons shows. Half video/ half film. Quite obvious differences."

I'm not really opposing you but that's not a good example. It's not really fair to compare old analog studio tube cameras from the late '60s with modern day digital cameras. I'm quite sure that if you cut out the film segments (16mm) from that old show and intercut them with quality videofootage that is progressive and have been graded properly you'll redefine film vs. video.

BTW I do think ALL video must be graded. There is no video camera on the market that provides a film like experience out of the box. Not one. Even film doesn't provide that without color timing or correction in a telecine suite - so how would the video cameras do it? A film negative viewed clean at the lab looks like s*** if you ask me.
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Old July 17th, 2003, 10:05 AM   #19
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Of course you have a point-- - obviously, a $3.5K DVX100 going straight to your TV is not going to produce the same kind of results as Panavision run through 40 million dollars of effects and look like Lord of the Rings. Most of the time anyway.

I also think its wrong to assume that every camera in the $3K and under is going to produce similar, or similar like results that one should not bring up apparent differences between models. The JVC low budget DV, the Canons, and the Panasonic are all noticably different in many respects, and that's why the discussion board-

Just adding my 2 cents in what I observed have 2 of them in my hand at the same time.

And yes, PROGRESSIVE video is the key here. None of my Canons could do this.

Monty Python is actually a good example in my eyes for demonstrating 24 fps versus interlaced source material for the sake of that aspect. I don't know that inexpensive DV is producting better video than broadcast video from 1969-- I would bet it's in the same ballpark. The color Python video looks good, certainly a lot better than the early black and white Avengers video! Not saying video looks bad at any rate-- different, yes.

I do disagree about a film like experience out of the box and the DVX-- the comparison was for 16mm output, improvement in sharpness, frame rate matching, and gamma that more closely match filmover previous cameras I've owned that more closely match film.

I can't believe you've actually used this camera and would say "There is no video camera on the market that provides a film like experience out of the box." My experience was significant that I would purchase one AFTER renting one, and already having a very wonderful GL2.

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Old July 20th, 2003, 04:48 PM   #20
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I've met with one of the BBC DP's on Monty Python and Fawlty Towers. He's lecturing in HD video and how to make interlaced video appear as film. He's got an excellent reel to prove his theorys. Those old guys at BBC really know a lot about video engineering. According to him the video cameras of today - even the prosumer stuff - is not in the same universe as the old studio cameras. If you happened to let a strong light hit the lens in one of those cameras you would have a burn mark in the image for a couple of minutes. Eventually it would fade away but it made backlighting extremely risky. -"Coffe break everyone. That kicklight just hit the lens."
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Old July 8th, 2007, 01:15 AM   #21
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A couple years later with the DVX100

I've now shot several films with my original DVX100- the first is here (with a streaming preview and a large downloadable preview) at http://www.MirrorMovie.com

I cannot imagine using anything else, sub $50,000, save a newer version of the camera.

Recently we made Captain Sherlock Solves 9/11 and you can download it for free from www.911think.com
you will see just how startlingly wonderful the result can be with this camera (edited in Vegas 7.0e)

I also made a music video which I can't post right yet-- but will soon....


By the way, the DVX does BETTER in low light than the GL2, or many others-- the trick is to set the shutter speed at 24 fps--- VOILA, beautiful low light photography, no need for lights under many conditions.


One other note-- yes, many HD cameras out there-- but considering the RENDERING time of HD footage, and the number of people who will view your project on a regular DVD player-- please consider if it is worth all the extra trouble if your target audience is still people watching regular DVDs. For me, I'm not ready to switch to HD yet.
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