Thread: Komodo Low-Light / ISO range

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  1. #1 Komodo Low-Light / ISO range 
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    Curious what the general experience with the komodo in low light has been, and what preferred ISOs folks have been working with. Thanks, Woodruff
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    preferred ISO? the sensor is stuck on a fixed gain that's close to 800 iso no matter what iso you setup, if you chose a different value does not change the gain on the sensor
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    Quote Originally Posted by Massimiliano_Serra View Post
    preferred ISO? the sensor is stuck on a fixed gain that's close to 800 iso no matter what iso you setup, if you chose a different value does not change the gain on the sensor
    Thanks for the response!
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    While it's true that you don't actually add gain to the sensor by changing the ISO, you can make different choices about how you expose the sensor relative your tolerance for noise. (Some people actually like the look you get by setting the ISO higher-- DP Brandon Trost, for example, talks about his preference for shooting at ISO 3200 on Red for the films like THE DISASTER ARTIST.)

    You might find this piece interesting-- it describes the way ISO works for all Red cameras:
    https://www.red.com/red-101/iso-speed-revisited

    In practice, I typically expose for ISO 800, but have no problem bumping it up to 1000 or 1280 in decent light. (That is, when there's some contrast, and it's not simply about shooting in general darkness. For example, when shooting slow motion.) But it's quite different than turning up the ISO on a Sony camera with built-in noise reduction.
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    Senior Member Christoffer Glans's Avatar
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    Best balance is ISO800 because that's closest to the RAW range that is fixed before any ISO gain is applied. So ISO800 correlates closest to what the camera "sees". Use the stop lights to be extra sure. But then you have the option to either go higher if you want better highlight protection or lower for less noise in low key scenes.
    "Using any digital cinema camera today is like sending your 35mm rolls to a standard lab. -Using a Red is like owning a dark room."
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  6. #6  
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    Question about this. Using Resolve I can set the ISO in post thanks to Red Raw. So if I set the camera to ISO 12800 on location and get a shot, than set it back to ISO 800 and get another shot, but now in post bump that up to 12800, will the results look identical?
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  7. #7  
    Moderator Phil Holland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lars Wikstrom View Post
    Question about this. Using Resolve I can set the ISO in post thanks to Red Raw. So if I set the camera to ISO 12800 on location and get a shot, than set it back to ISO 800 and get another shot, but now in post bump that up to 12800, will the results look identical?
    If you have changed none of the settings (iris, ND< shutter speed, etc) for that ISO 800 shot between the ISO 12800 one they will look idential.
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  8. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodruff Laputka View Post
    Curious what the general experience with the komodo in low light has been, and what preferred ISOs folks have been working with. Thanks, Woodruff
    Settings on camera and rating for which ISO you expose is different.
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Christoffer Glans's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lars Wikstrom View Post
    Question about this. Using Resolve I can set the ISO in post thanks to Red Raw. So if I set the camera to ISO 12800 on location and get a shot, than set it back to ISO 800 and get another shot, but now in post bump that up to 12800, will the results look identical?
    It should, but Iíve also seen tests that show a minor difference when exposing for a certain ISO, so generally get a good exposure on set and donít stray too far from the chosen ISO in post. Iím not sure why this is, maybe thereís more balancing done in-camera based chosen ISO. I mean, shots tint twords green a lot when trying adjust something many stops off the mark, but not when exposing correctly in the first place. I generally recommend that you expose not more than 1-2 steps of ISO off a good balance so not to risk any bad tint.
    "Using any digital cinema camera today is like sending your 35mm rolls to a standard lab. -Using a Red is like owning a dark room."
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  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Holland View Post
    If you have changed none of the settings (iris, ND< shutter speed, etc) for that ISO 800 shot between the ISO 12800 one they will look idential.
    True! But also a pedantic dodge of the subject of this thread. Yes, ISO is technically just metadata for RAW, but if you show up on set and everybody's dialed in to the idea that you're shooting at ISO 12800, you are going to get a wildly different amount of light hitting the sensor than if everybody's dialed in to ISO 800. The DoP who walks into the set proudly declaring "ISO doesn't matter because it's just metadata!" is a fool.

    A felicitous answer is 320-640 for STH and/or < 4000K lighting, 500-1600 for STD/LLO and >= 4000K lighting, informed by the helpful charts you have posted on phfx.com about mid-tone gray exposure, shadow details, highlight clipping, etc.

    Of course RAW makes it very easy to fine-tune ISO and WB metadata to balance clips for grading, which is wonderful. But if the question is "How should I set the ISO of a RED so that it meters what my f-ing meter says at ISO 800" the answer is "Use IPP2 and ISO 800". If the question is "what's the best starting point for both my camera, my meter, and my crew?" the answer is 800, but test and adjust to taste.
    Last edited by Michael Tiemann; 02-14-2021 at 08:33 AM. Reason: cleaned up typo and ambiguity
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