Thread: The goldilocks zone for image acquisition is 6K

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  1. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt W. View Post
    I take it you're not a big Alexa fan?

    What about S16 film?

    I agree in theory. I remember trying out the Sigma DP2. 15 megapixels feels like a lot more when it's oversampled that much. Shot with C200 and EVA1 recently and the 6k vs 4k acquisition makes a world of difference.

    But what are the benefits in practice beyond just "more pixels"?
    Most stuff we work on comes from Alexa LF at the moment. Its a nice camera so is the Mini and XT. DPs like em, mostly I think due to the Arri color sience, alexa is well colorbalanced out of the box and the DR is mapped in a way so things looks good on the onset screens without much fiddling and the fact that they are very user friendly. Or actually not so user friendly any more, since the minis came out Arri is more like red, hardly a single rental package is the same as the minis comes just as red with a lot of third part options and there is simply more ways to rig them than the studio alexas. But yes, there is less menu options than red has and most ACs feels more secure working around arri cameras. I fiddle with my monstro almost on a daily basis, and I understand their worry, red simply comes with more options that can cause confusion in a professional enviorment. Especially for ACs that work with rental cameras and have to pick up a different camera pretty much every other day.

    But as a owner and for my usage I find red to be a way better option. I csn simply sqeeze out a better image out of a monstro than a arri camera, Plus I have all those options of different compressions, HDRx etc. To me a monstro with a ultrabright touchscreen, EVF, revolva, 2tb mag and a Vlock module is a seriously tough package to beat. The LF lands far behind on so many disiplines in my book. But I dont dislike Arri I just find monstro better.

    16mm film has its estetics so does super8 and 70mm. To me Helium is the best 16mm camera as of now. Shoot it 4k and highest bit rate with Zeiss digiprimes and you got a 16mm capture that is tough to beat. But I see no reason to shoot 16mm or other small formsts exept for getting a deep dept of field. And the more pixels you use the less noise you get so I would rater shoot ff helium and stop down to match the DoF. But yes the bigger sensor you use the more light you need to create an image with the same estetics so at times a smaller sensor can be prefered, like when you are lacking light or cant stop down more.
    Björn Benckert
    Creative Lead & Founder Syndicate Entertainment AB
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  2. #12  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Most stuff we work on comes from Alexa LF at the moment. Its a nice camera so is the Mini and XT. DPs like em, mostly I think due to the Arri color sience, alexa is well colorbalanced out of the box and the DR is mapped in a way so things looks good on the onset screens without much fiddling and the fact that they are very user friendly. Or actually not so user friendly any more, since the minis came out Arri is more like red, hardly a single rental package is the same as the minis comes just as red with a lot of third part options and there is simply more ways to rig them than the studio alexas. But yes, there is less menu options than red has and most ACs feels more secure working around arri cameras. I fiddle with my monstro almost on a daily basis, and I understand their worry, red simply comes with more options that can cause confusion in a professional enviorment. Especially for ACs that work with rental cameras and have to pick up a different camera pretty much every other day.

    But as a owner and for my usage I find red to be a way better option. I csn simply sqeeze out a better image out of a monstro than a arri camera, Plus I have all those options of different compressions, HDRx etc. To me a monstro with a ultrabright touchscreen, EVF, revolva, 2tb mag and a Vlock module is a seriously tough package to beat. The LF lands far behind on so many disiplines in my book. But I dont dislike Arri I just find monstro better.

    16mm film has its estetics so does super8 and 70mm. To me Helium is the best 16mm camera as of now. Shoot it 4k and highest bit rate with Zeiss digiprimes and you got a 16mm capture that is tough to beat. But I see no reason to shoot 16mm or other small formsts exept for getting a deep dept of field. And the more pixels you use the less noise you get so I would rater shoot ff helium and stop down to match the DoF. But yes the bigger sensor you use the more light you need to create an image with the same estetics so at times a smaller sensor can be prefered, like when you are lacking light or cant stop down more.
    I agree with all of that, except I don't think digital looks like S16. Although a 1080p Alexa crop gets very close and Red cropped footage gets close, too, maybe I'm wrong.

    And I find the Arri color better out of the box, but I worked on a job Company 3 graded from Red and could not tell what camera it was shot on, only that it looked exceptionally good. So my preference for Arri color might simply be my inability as a colorist or my own laziness. But I find Arri footage holds up well in post regardless of the lower resolution. And I actually prefer the look of a softer deliverable, it looks more organic to me and better on skin.
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  3. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt W. View Post
    I agree with all of that, except I don't think digital looks like S16. Although a 1080p Alexa crop gets very close and Red cropped footage gets close, too, maybe I'm wrong.

    And I find the Arri color better out of the box, but I worked on a job Company 3 graded from Red and could not tell what camera it was shot on, only that it looked exceptionally good. So my preference for Arri color might simply be my inability as a colorist or my own laziness. But I find Arri footage holds up well in post regardless of the lower resolution. And I actually prefer the look of a softer deliverable, it looks more organic to me and better on skin.


    Digital and film looks different, But there is for sure ways to ”downgrade” a digital image to mach the low resolution, noise etc that 16mm film comes with. Doing the oposite on the other hand is pretty much impossible.

    Same with the ”softness” of a low resolution cameras, it can easily be matched in post or with filters. The sharpness of a high resolution camera on the other hand is seriously difficult to mach if you have less resolution at capture.

    To me resolution is far from only about sharpness. More resolution is less noise and in my world that is equal to more options. I can always ad noise in post or push the sensor to get more noise. But if there is a lot of noise at capture the image comes with less posibilities. Then sure if it looks good and everyone is happy then great. But in my world we need to pull keys, add CG elements, match heavily different exposed plates etc. Then a better camera is always prefered.

    We do tons of work where part of the frame is alexa and part of the frame is monstro. I never had a problem to match monstro to alexa. But I quite often had a problem to match alexa to monstro. If used right the monstro image simply have a bigger tolerance range.
    Björn Benckert
    Creative Lead & Founder Syndicate Entertainment AB
    +46855524900 www.syndicate.se/axis
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  4. #14  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Digital and film looks different, But there is for sure ways to ”downgrade” a digital image to mach the low resolution, noise etc that 16mm film comes with. Doing the oposite on the other hand is pretty much impossible.

    Same with the ”softnes of low resolution cameras, it can easily be matched in post or with filter. The sharpness of high a high resolution camera on the other hand is seriously difficult to mach if you had les resolution at capture.

    To me resolution is far from only about sharpness. More resolution is less noise and in my world that is equal to more options. I can always ad noise in post or push the sensor to get more noise. But if there is a lot of noise at capture the image comes with less posibilities. Then sure if it looks good and everyone is happy then great. But in my world we need to pull keys, add CG elements, match heavily different exposed plates etc. Then a better camera is always prefered.

    We do tons of work where part of the frame is alexa and part of the frame is monstro. I never had a problem to match monstro to alexa. But I quite often had a problem to match alexa to monstro. If used right the monstro image simply had a bigger tolerance range.
    Interesting.
    Last edited by Matt W.; 07-15-2020 at 10:39 PM.
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  5. #15  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    All the above means that your image quality per pixel level will improve from downsampling. And that goes far, basically the more you downsample the better the image you get.
    This is well understood. That's why I would, if I were given the go-ahead by the director (all of this is hypothetical) shoot 6K and compose in a 5K window to downsample to 4K. Very few shots would be cropped in to 4K, if any. More important is the 6K 'insurance' in case I composed too tightly, or if I need a little reframing. I can imagine a production where 100% of the shots are 5K, even if a few are reframed or stabilised.

    8K is better than 5K if you're downsampling to 4K. But you are talking about outright image quality. I am not. 8x10" film is way better than 120. Except that almost nobody would call 8x10" film the 'goldilocks zone' for image quality. A lot of people would rather shoot 4x5" and forego anything larger.

    If I were interested in outright image quality, I would have to shoot Monstro 8K for everything. And quite frankly I wouldn't want to, even if the budget allowed.

    A Monstro is a crop of a Super Monstro, and that is a crop of an Ultra Monstro, and that is a crop of a Master Monstro. If you believed in outright image quality, you would demand that Red make you a one-off Master Monstro.

    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    And simply put, downsampling 6k to 4k is far from “enough” It sure helps, but if you downsample the same image to HD you will see that a lot of the flaws in the image will disapear.
    You are suggesting that the Komodo's 6K output is only sufficient to project in HD? Surely not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    So the race for more resolution, as I see it is far from over. And it does not nesesary need to mean more bitrate and heavier files. Red is a perfect example. Not many people understand how it works with compression and resolution. But for a fact, if the bitrate is held constant the image will improve with resolution andit does so with imore than a 1:1 ratio. This means for example that monstro 8k shot with lower bitrate than the same camer, monstro shot at 4k The 8k file will still look alot better even though the file was lighter.
    I'm not disputing the numbers. I agree with them. But my point is kind of in a different direction. Whatever sensor I would be shooting, I'd prefer to shoot a window instead of FF. Let's not forget that cameras like the Pocket 6K and the Komodo are less expensive than any 8K camera (that actually works). You want to shoot Master Monstro for every production, hey, great, I will cheer you on. But I wouldn't do so myself.


    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Dease View Post
    By the way “ The Komodo can do 6K40 FF, ” perhaps should say s35 or something, since there are actual FF cameras and lenses out.
    FF is a relative term. Red uses it that way. FF is not always VV. E.g. the Leica S3 shoots 4K FF, and so does the Fuji GFX100.

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Tiemann View Post
    In a house in the woods, on a clean table, lay out a Raven (4.5k), Komodo (6K), and Monstro (8K). Invite a passing klepto named Goldilocks to enter the house, try all the camera's, and take for free the one that suits her best. That is the only way to measure the Goldilocks zone for image acquisition.

    If I put on the wig and claimed to be Goldilocks, I'd take Monstro every time.
    I wouldn't. I might take the Raven, but I'd more likely take the Komodo. You disagree? Try going through Jarred Land's inbox.

    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    I csn simply sqeeze out a better image out of a monstro than a arri camera,
    From what I am hearing about the Monstro, that is a serious understatement.
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  6. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by Karim D. Ghantous View Post
    [...][Michael Tiemann describes Goldilocks scenario]


    I wouldn't. I might take the Raven, but I'd more likely take the Komodo. You disagree? Try going through Jarred Land's inbox.
    Take care what you are really measuring. I think Jarred's inbox is so full because $6K is the goldilocks price for independent camera owners, not 6K horizontal resolution. But maybe I'm wrong. I've found it so valuable to shoot in 7K-8K to crop down to 5K-6K to finish at 4K, and to be able to do the 2:1 punch-in when necessary and not have to cry about it.
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  7. #17  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    I think Blackmagic completely demolished my argument. I think.
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  8. #18  
    Senior Member Joel Arvidsson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karim D. Ghantous View Post
    I think Blackmagic completely demolished my argument. I think.
    Yes, exactly my point in the "Blackmagic Camera Update July 2020" yesterday. Will people keep the pride and refuse this new camera or maby all the suddenly 12k is the new bar. I think it will be the later one.
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  9. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt W. View Post
    I agree with all of that, except I don't think digital looks like S16. Although a 1080p Alexa crop gets very close and Red cropped footage gets close, too, maybe I'm wrong.

    And I find the Arri color better out of the box, but I worked on a job Company 3 graded from Red and could not tell what camera it was shot on, only that it looked exceptionally good. So my preference for Arri color might simply be my inability as a colorist or my own laziness.
    Cameras are kinda like microphones.

    One mic (made by RED) may be technically "higher resolution" but the sound is colored in a mildy-unpleasant way (to my personal taste at least) and you have to fire up a bunch of EQs and compressors etc to make it sound amazing.

    If you're an owner-operator and control the whole post chain and you know how to get the best out of it, good for you. If you're handing footage over to a post house, better make sure you get a top-notch person on it.

    The other mic (made by Arri) sounds great out of the box, is the industry standard, and all of the expert mixers know how to make it sound even BETTER.

    Extending the metaphor: Arri make a range of microphones and they ALL have pretty much the same sound, and the same tricks that worked for 10 years still work on the new models, just with lower noise floor. Meanwhile Red has made a variety of microphones each with different characteristics, and even within those, they have different OLPFs, different firmware, software decode versions, etc. It's a bit difficult to keep track! Oh and any time you say their system is not the best, you get a bunch of rabid people on the internet telling you it's because you didn't blackshade right, had the wrong firmware, or there is a new fix coming next month you should have waited for. Like, WTF. That's part of the problem.

    Oh and the difference in cost to rent is only a couple hundred bucks, a tiny fraction of your shoot day.

    For that reason alone, the last 3x projects I directed were Alexa (either Mini or LF). Hmm... that reminds me I'd better update my website!

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  10. #20  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Allen View Post
    Cameras are kinda like microphones.

    One mic (made by RED) may be technically "higher resolution" but the sound is colored in a mildy-unpleasant way (to my personal taste at least) and you have to fire up a bunch of EQs and compressors etc to make it sound amazing.

    If you're an owner-operator and control the whole post chain and you know how to get the best out of it, good for you. If you're handing footage over to a post house, better make sure you get a top-notch person on it.

    The other mic (made by Arri) sounds great out of the box, is the industry standard, and all of the expert mixers know how to make it sound even BETTER.

    Extending the metaphor: Arri make a range of microphones and they ALL have pretty much the same sound, and the same tricks that worked for 10 years still work on the new models, just with lower noise floor. Meanwhile Red has made a variety of microphones each with different characteristics, and even within those, they have different OLPFs, different firmware, software decode versions, etc. It's a bit difficult to keep track! Oh and any time you say their system is not the best, you get a bunch of rabid people on the internet telling you it's because you didn't blackshade right, had the wrong firmware, or there is a new fix coming next month you should have waited for. Like, WTF. That's part of the problem.

    Oh and the difference in cost to rent is only a couple hundred bucks, a tiny fraction of your shoot day.

    For that reason alone, the last 3x projects I directed were Alexa (either Mini or LF). Hmm... that reminds me I'd better update my website!

    Bruce Allen
    www.bruceallen.tv
    Good metaphor. Well put, as usual.

    As someone who likes both Steve Albini's and SOPHIE's production I guess I will have to just trust my instincts and not even my ears/eyes...
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