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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:28 AM   #61
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

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UV filters hurt nothing, I'm sure. The glass is so close to the lens it really can make little difference if it's a quality filter.
Hey Jeff, have you noticed reflections/ghosting when using a UV on your 20mm? This was a big problem for me, and the main reason I am not using the filters anymore.

And the only other lenses I'm using are the 14-42mm for outdoors shooting, and a Nikon 50mm f/1.8 -- very cheap lenses. Not worth the hassle of a UV to protect cheap glass, right?
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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:32 AM   #62
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Right Chris, I've had issues as you know!

George, I believe progressive DVDs play great. The problem I was having was with mixed footage from three cameras, and it was a nightmare. I had dinterlaced footage (1080i) and it looked really bad. I might have had other issues, it was complicated, I was doing all sorts of things wrong.

But anyway, DVD players, I have found, handle progressive DVDs just fine, very smooth, but I've only put out a few projects so far, so I'm not an expert, but this is what I've been told, and is working out.

I had some flicker recently on another project (is that what your referring to Chris) but already forget what fixed it. I've been SO busy.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:36 AM   #63
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Corey, I've suspected that I had issues, and removed the UV filters and found, in my cases, that the UV lens was not the issue, but that was just in my isolated cases. There well may be times they do cause issue. If you have especially cheap filters, it is much more likely that they will cause issues, this is widely known. Bu then we get into the argument of cheap vs expensive, a whole other discussion, as some people will swear the cheap and expensive are exactly the same. I don't believe that myself.


The way I see UV filters is they can always be removed, and I do remove them, sometimes. Most shooting conditions they just don't make any difference. If you think they are hurting, take them off. I do have a couple of lenses without UV filters, as I'm not rigid about it, but I think of them as a second lens cap.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:39 AM   #64
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

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The problem I was having was with mixed footage from three cameras, and it was a nightmare. I had dinterlaced footage (1080i) and it looked really bad.
I thought dvd is allways interlaced? I use Edius pro and always edit with Edius own hqavi codec and I often mix hdv (interlaced and progressive), avchd (interlaced) and dslr (progressive) mov files on the same timeline and my output always looks great.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:49 AM   #65
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Noa, we have like four discussions going on in one thread, it's crazy. Anyway, I'm not the one to ask, really, I don't know what I'm talking about, but my understanding is that progressive dvds play just fine.

I got into a couple of arguments over this, but I've sent out several projects to customers in progressive format on DVD and they were very happy!

With 24p, an NLE will add flags necessary for proper playback, but apparently 30p plays just fine. I used to yell at people who talked about 30p, only to find it works on DVD just fine.

Noa, you must remember, you use Edius. I seem to recall hearing it has among the best encoding engine of any NLE, so you are at a definite advantage from the start.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 06:51 AM   #66
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

My experience seems to be closer to Chris's and Noa's.
I build my DVDs in CS4 Encore and the default project setting is interlaced lower field. However there is the ability to use a progressive project with no fields, it's when I use a Progressive MPEG in these projects, or even let Encore encode a progressive MEPG from the Progressive file that I get the problem. When I do as Chris describes, use the default interlaced project, even with a Progressive file the result plays without problem. I know that the theory is that DVD players will recognise a Progressive VOB and work it's magic to play it but my experience does not match that. This is not just on one DVD player or one LCD screen but on all the ones I have and I've had them returned from customers. When re-made as an interlaced DVD the problem goes away.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 07:00 AM   #67
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Hey George

Final post on this as (as Jeff says, it's become multi-topic) When I get a chance I will play with different footage and different DVD's but as you know you cannot "give something a try" at a wedding...my shoot tomorrow will be a "safe mode" one 1080 50i ..at least I will have interlaced masters and I can always experiment later!!

As for the OP I guess I'm paranoid about new cameras, new workflows and new challenges ..I'm happy to use them outside a non-volatile environment but I don't think I would suddenly buy 2 GH2's and then shoot next weekends wedding with them...can't take the chance!!! and for me DSLR's fall into that category...I would be happy to buy a couple and play with them for 6 months..THEN decide!!!

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Old July 29th, 2011, 07:18 AM   #68
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

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but I don't think I would suddenly buy 2 GH2's and then shoot next weekends wedding with them...can't take the chance!!!
In that context I think Jeff is a dslr guru :) I"m still amazed that he manages to pull off a 4 dslr camerashoot by his own, I recently did a 3 camera shoot of a ceremony with one unmanned camera and a steadicam shooter that I hired but he had not that good camera experience. It was a partly cloudy day meaning the sun came through and went back behind the clouds all the time and we where shooting against a window meaning exposure was on manual on all camera's. I was constantly running around changing exposure on a sony xr520 and checking up on the steadicam guy to see if he was using the right exposure with a sony fx1000. The end result came out good enough but could have been better. Leaving 3 other dslr camera's unattended would make me very nervous. :)
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Old July 29th, 2011, 07:46 AM   #69
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Noa, while unintentional on your part, you have embarassed me. I know less about this whole DSLR thing than most people, I just like to spout off a lot. I also have lots of issues, so you will see my name pop up a lot.

People like Nigel, Jim S and Jim F , Corey, and Patrick and a host of others, have helped me to where I can even turn on the darned things.

Only recently I did not know what an FD mount was, can you imagine?

Anyway, Noa, I have had my share of disasters, so don't let me fool you into thinking I've got it figured, I don't. I wish I did.

Noa, I'm able to run so many cameras because there are two auto modes on the GH2 that work well for unattended cameras. Program mode does not allow shutter speed to be set, but by golly I don't care, it produces pretty darn good results. I only have to focus. I can use Exposure Compensation to brighten up or darken image if needed, and I'm good!

Or, in Shutter Priority, the best mode, you can get amazing results with the GH2, you don't have to adjust anything, but the iris changes in icrements, so outdoors it is not so good, unless you lock exposure, which can be done!

So in my case, I feel I have the right camera, and the key is to find a way to allow the camera to do as much of the work as possible.

Program mode will give crazy shutter speeds, etc, but shutter priority is great for indoors. I do not yet run manually (except focus of course) but as I get good I will I"m sure.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 12:44 PM   #70
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

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Noa, while unintentional on your part, you have embarassed me.
Sorry but that was never my intention, when I read why you changed to the DSLR route and sold your videocamera's to jump on the dslr wagon I must imagine it feels like crossing the highway blindfolded in the beginning but it shows you have a lot of guts and I have much respect for that kind of attitude.

I currently feel pretty safe that I'm still able to use my videocamera (a canon xh-a1) when I don't want to rely on my dslr, even if that will not give me a "nicer" image. My videocamera reminds me each time how poor manual control is on my dslr but I also often don't mind trading that control for those much nicer images. I only hate dragging all that extra stuff with me each time. :)

Usually from the beginning of the reception my videocamera stays in the bag (unless there is a speech) and even tough some say a ex1 etc will produce a cleaner footage in dark places, a dslr with a fast lens produces a look that a ex1 will never ever be able to reproduce. A trade-off is often the very narrow dof sometimes but if you use it right it looks sooo good and colorful. My favorite lens is my cheap samyang 85mm f1.8 and I get stunning footage from people because I can keep my distance and it lights up the dark.

I won't sell my videocamera ever on the other hand, it should be able to support me another 2 years and then I"ll see what's happening in cameraland, maybe I"m able then to sell everything, inlcuding my dslr's and get one big sensor (real video) camera instead, I don't know, I don't want to break my head to much over it yet as the competition in Belgium from other dslr users is not that tough compared to your area, the level of quality that is produced on the other side of the pond is higher then here. The only reason I"m loosing clients is because they find someone who's cheaper, not because they are all dslr. :) Currently I"m able to set myself apart with the addition of my blackbird and dslr's but maybe that changes in 2 years but currently I just look one day ahead.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 01:27 PM   #71
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Hey Noa...no worries!

Anyway, the phrase "crossing the highway blindfolded" really fit and was dead on.

Anyway, I completely agree with you on every count of your post, the EX1 is fantastic, would love to have one. But as great a camera as it is, 3 X 1/2" chips do not equal a 1" chip with a fast lens, I don't see how anyone could imagine it could.

All in all, the EX1 when taken for the sum total of what it is, would be plenty of camera for me and I would likely have been able to have avoided the DSLR thing altogether, or just have bought 1 DSLR for specific uses.

In my case, I'm just caught in a price range and market where I had to make the plunge against my will.

You are using your cameras as many other smart guys are, as a supplement where it can do the most good, and you're using your videocam for what it's best at. That's a good strategy, for sure.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 03:09 PM   #72
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

No one can deny that dslr's have transformed wedding video to another level, here in Belgium not so long ago, when everyone was using a normal videocamera you didn't see all the additions that has become normal like sliders/steadicam/cranes etc. Today I start to see companies using dslr only with all the goodies, also clients are starting to get spoiled by the level of quality that they can freely look at on vimeo/youtube. This year was the first time a bride asked me for "images with a blurry background" and referred to Joe Simon's videos which she found so beautiful and guess what he is using to film :D

dslr's have a certain look to them that appeals more to people then what a normal videocamera in the 4000-6000 euro range can produce and the dslr does it at a lower cost. As I see it it has a lot to do with the limited dof, the colorfull images and the ability to produce stunning images with bright color in dark areas which is a situation that is very common in weddings.

I see that I have to adapt as well to stay competitive as dslr weddings are slowly but steadily being done more but like I said before, there are just a few in my country that produce good looking dslr videos but you have many that are not even close to what you might consider normal.
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Old July 31st, 2011, 03:31 AM   #73
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

Hi Bill,

Shooting DSLR's will TOTALLY change the way you shoot. Especially if your into your zooms as it sounds like you are.

Think about this. When in a hollywood movie do you see them zoom? Generally never. The reason is the zoom is un-natural to the human eye. We cant do it, we need to move our feet to get closer and thats then a dolly shot. So when we see it we feel un-easy. Thats why hollywood doesnt zoom, they jump cut or dolly. Thats one reason to re-consider using zooms. If you went DSLR you cant zoom, as you say, no servo.

Audio is done hollywood style also, all external for the good stuff like the lav mic and readings but for general action like the bridal prep we use onboard with audio gain. Honestly dont have a problem with it.

The shallow DOF look can be achieved on regular cams using the likes of a Letus adaptor but they still then use photo lenses and your back to the same problems, manual focus, no servo zoom. All you then have is a bigger, bulkier camera.

DSLRs are not for everyone. Some tried and didnt like, others just call them them the work of the devil and flat out refuse to try. Were fully DSLR, not a single, regular camera in our ranks while others have gone for a 50/50 approach. Whatever works best for you.

Get yourself a 550D or a 60D with a 50mm f1.8 lens (about £100 for the lens over here) and have a play. See what you think. As some here have said, they tried it and were instantly won over. If it doesnt work out, eBay it.

But what are the benefits, I mean. The downsides are huge (12 minutes record limit, no audio control or monitoring etc etc.) The benefit is the footage 'feels' better to watch. Us techies will rip it to pieces and go on about compression, moire, aliasing and all that. But to the general public, they just like how the footage 'feels'.

A warning though, its not cheaper than a regular camera. Sure the bodies are cheap but you need lenses, good lenses if you want the shallow DOF. On our £1600 bodies is a £2000 lens and a load more of them in our bags to change to. Add on all the extras you need and its more than an EX1.
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Old July 31st, 2011, 04:10 AM   #74
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

I'm 27 and got in the business 2 years ago, my work was ok but it lacked something. I studied film at film school and learned the basics. I was going to get a 35mm adapter then the slr thing happened. Now it's amazing. I'm more creative, not with twisty camera movements and crap zooming but framing and composition. Since switching to the 5d Mark 2 my work has gone through the roof. The worlds best filmers like ray roman are all using the 5d. I want to become as good as them. To become as good as them and to get the picture quality like them I have to use the 5d. It has no rival. Quite frankly if competition where I live are too old fashioned and prefer to use video cameras then fine my work will stand out a mile from there's and more bookings for me. They are not hard to use infact I find them easier then a bulky camera. The recording limit is no issue at all , hell my films are only 15 -20 mins. If your still making 2 -3 hour wedding films still your living in the past. They are discreet and light weight. Look on the example section for one 5d one mono pod it's the best set up I've ever used.

Luke
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Old July 31st, 2011, 07:22 AM   #75
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Re: DSLRs: am I just being paranoid?

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Hi Bill,

Shooting DSLR's will TOTALLY change the way you shoot. Especially if your into your zooms as it sounds like you are.
Trust me, I'm not 'into' zooming. I teach a video class where the very first project doesn't allow zooming (or panning, for that matter). I only zoom out of necessity when I'm doing a one-camera wedding shoot.

Anyone using the Panasonic AG-AF100? It sounds like it has all the benefits of DSLR shooting without any of the audio hassles.
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