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


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Old December 4th, 2006, 01:19 AM   #1
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Shooting HD and SD cams together.

Would I get good results from shooting HD & SD cams for a movie?
I have a JVC GY-HD100 and a Pana DVX100 for the shoot.
I was thinking of using the HD cam for the master shots and the SD cam for med. & close-up shots.
Could they match using careful techniques?
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Old December 7th, 2006, 10:38 PM   #2
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Lorenzo,

I have never mixed SD and HD together, and I honestly wouldn't want to. Unless... I shot HD and down-rezzed to SD, and SD would be my final output. That would be fine.

But, the difference between SD and HD are way too noticeable to be used if your intended output is HD.

I'd know the difference instantaneously and it would really be distracting. It would also annoy the heck outta me.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 09:43 AM   #3
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It doesn't smack you in the eye quite as hard if you use the HDV cam for your wides (masters) and highly textured detail shots and use the SD for the close-ups or where there is no texture in the background.

In low light conditions when adding gain is unavoidable, the apparent resolution difference can become less evident. Agreed, mixing the formats for going down to SD and not up to HD seems the better option.
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Old December 8th, 2006, 11:25 AM   #4
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I'd reverse it and use the DVX for wides, the HD for meds and c.u.'s. If you have access to the JVC BR50 VTR deck, it can uprez your DVX footage nicely to 720p.

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Old December 27th, 2006, 02:53 AM   #5
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Thanks guys for your answers.
Heath, the DVX would shoot the c.u.'s sharper than the wide shots.
Why would you go with the HD for c.u.'s and not the wide shots?

Also I heard from other dp's that Red Gaint software's Instant HD is pretty decent looking with proper exposure and white balance. Bumping SD to HD.
Has anyone had experience with it?
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Old December 27th, 2006, 08:14 AM   #6
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Here's a link to a crudely assembled music video of a live performance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zgZaynJD3_I

By the time Youtube compression has finished with it, original image sharpness is no longer an issue.

Because of low available light, I used the HDV cam locked off for a master wide and used a MiniDV (DVCAM) camera as the roving camera because of its superior low-light ability.

I was also using a groundglass based adaptor and due to light and resolution loss through these devices, I chose the MiniDV cam to compensate for the light loss. I kept the 4:3 frame within the 16:9 letterbox frame to hang onto as much resolution as I could.

My personal preference is to use the lower resolution camera for the close-ups as the poorer resolution is disguised partially by the larger scale of the subject in close-up, its dominence and sometimes lesser textural complexity of the close-up image which can contain out-of-focus background areas.

Human subjects are also sometimes sensitised to their facial roadmaps becoming sharply evident for the world to see so a softer image helps on that front also.
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Old December 27th, 2006, 12:09 PM   #7
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Lorenzo,

If I'm going HD all the way, uprezzing DV in close ups looks worse than in wide shots. I've tried uprezzing DVX100a footage to HD, and it looks better in wide shots.

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