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View Full Version : My Frustrations with BMCC so far. You should also brace yourselves for a change



GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 01:59 AM
About me, I'm Adam and I've been shooting events/music vids/weddings on Canons for three years. I'm a PC user with Premiere. I've had my BMCC for about two weeks. I have never been so frustrated with video software (resolve and speedgrade) in all my life. It's such a new process verses what I've been doing for the past 5 years. By the way, do NOT use speedgrade, it's very broken for BMCC.

Partially copied and pasted from my for sale thread. The for sale thread was made because I threw in the towel, and wanted to stick to what I know. I simply could not get an image that was better enough to justify the massive workflow change. But, Darryl has talked me into delaying that for a bit.

And for those wondering, (and no one has accused, just preempting this) I didn't simply jump in with no prep. I have been a Canon shooter for a while, like probably most of you. Here's my reel. https://vimeo.com/45992314

The reason I have one of these is because I studied it quite a bit when first announced, and reserved it immediately. I was first on the list at Omega and they only got one, which went to me. During my wait, I read LaForet, Bloom, EOSHD, Brawley, and many more. I downloaded all released files from John B and others, and graded them in Camera raw etc, thought I'd be very comfortable with the grading process etc, since I have a background in grading RAW stills, raw timelapses etc. I do at least 4 RAW timelapses each week, and have been for two years. Grading in Resolve is very very different, and takes a lot of different steps to get the same result. I didn't just pick up the camera with no research. I've researched exactly what the rest of you have. I've gone through all the free tutorials I could find on both resolve and speed grade, I purchased the FXphd tutorials on resolve for $200 and went through them as well. I have spend a tremendous amount of time learning what I thought I needed to make the most of this camera. I have a good understanding of the features of each program, and went through all the Lynda tutorials of Speedgrade, but the fact that it really is so different to get the same result is what I'm having a big problem with. I repeat, do not think that because you can produce a good image in Camera RAW, that you'll be able to do the same with Resolve. You will probably be frustrated for the first month.

My problem is mainly getting muddy color and muddy highlights when attempting to properly tone. What I mean is, when trying to darken highlights, I get mud. For instance, I'm trying to bring a sky back to blue, instead of white, and I end up with gray added to the white, when what I expect is a blue sky, like I'd receive when bringing down exposure. I know the information is still there, because if I take exposure down in the file settings, it's still there. So, I'm not saying you can't do it, I'm saying it's very different to get the result.

I'm fairly sure most people will struggle quite a bit with this exact thing, especially if you're used to lightroom/cameraRAW. This isn't a camera thing, this is a learning curve thing, and it's massively steep. That being said, and encouragement from Darryl, I'll give it a few more goes to determine if for my business, it will be worth it.

So for God sakes, if you are still waiting for your camera, use resolve, resolve and resolve and become a master in compressed footage grading so you'll have less to worry about when you get into raw.

Kyle Presley
01-01-2013, 02:05 AM
Try an S-curve.

Darryl Gregory
01-01-2013, 02:20 AM
Try an S-curve.

Not sure if I mentioned that to Adam, But adding a s-curve node is a good suggestion but I feel it's not
the "Holy Grail" answer he was looking for:cool:

Frank Glencairn
01-01-2013, 06:24 AM
My problem is mainly getting muddy color and muddy highlights when attempting to properly tone. What I mean is, when trying to darken highlights, I get mud. For instance, I'm trying to bring a sky back to blue, instead of white, and I end up with gray added to the white, when what I expect is a blue sky, like I'd receive when bringing down exposure. I know the information is still there, because if I take exposure down in the file settings, it's still there. So, I'm not saying you can't do it, I'm saying it's very different to get the result.
.

Sounds like a combined exposure and Resolve workflow problem.

Since I get the best footy I ever shot (since I don't shoot film anymore) out of the BMC, you should absolutely be able to do the same.

markmwilliams
01-01-2013, 07:27 AM
Sounds like a combined exposure and Resolve workflow problem.

Since I get the best footy I ever shot (since I don't shoot film anymore) out of the BMC, you should absolutely be able to do the same.

Frank (or any other BMCC owner / Resolve user)

I'd be really interested in knowing what your workflow is for the BMCC as you've been getting some really impressive results from the footage through Resolve.

I know a lot of the grade is subjective but it would be good to get an idea of at least your 'one light' and how you set about getting a pleasing image in Resolve to work from in terms of highlight recovery and low noise shadow areas.

Perhaps a mini tutorial as a sticky post would be very helpful to many on here.

I appreciate you may not have the time to do this but if anyone could I think it would be invaluable to those starting out.

Thanks and Happy New Year!

yoclay
01-01-2013, 07:40 AM
An important piece of advice. Scopes.
Before you do any color correction at all, get the contrast right.
Watch your scopes and bring your blacks down to around 3%.
Next pull your highlights up to a reasonable level for a normally lit scene (at least 90%)
Only when you have your contrast in a decent place should you begin to correct.
Do a general color balance adjustment and when the overall look of the scene approaches where you want it to be, you can move the mids up or down a little.
After that, you will want to make any local adjustments through secondaries. That you can take the time to learn over a longer period.

A vectorscope will also indicate the color of your blacks, if you want them fairly neutral then they should be fairly equal across the bottom (rather than a visual stepladder).

Read Alex Van Hurkman's book for more specifics as to any particular challenges you might face.

Lastly, I would strongly advise getting a real color grading monitor to be calibrated to a standard, but we will leave that question for another day....

Kholi
01-01-2013, 11:07 AM
An important piece of advice. Scopes.
Before you do any color correction at all, get the contrast right.
Watch your scopes and bring your blacks down to around 3%.
Next pull your highlights up to a reasonable level for a normally lit scene (at least 90%)
Only when you have your contrast in a decent place should you begin to correct.
Do a general color balance adjustment and when the overall look of the scene approaches where you want it to be, you can move the mids up or down a little.
After that, you will want to make any local adjustments through secondaries. That you can take the time to learn over a longer period.

A vectorscope will also indicate the color of your blacks, if you want them fairly neutral then they should be fairly equal across the bottom (rather than a visual stepladder).

Read Alex Van Hurkman's book for more specifics as to any particular challenges you might face.

Lastly, I would strongly advise getting a real color grading monitor to be calibrated to a standard, but we will leave that question for another day....

Good advice, especially on the very last point. I need to start paying attention to scopes more myself.

The camera really has nothing to do with this issue, it's the learning curve that everyone was warned about repeatedly. In response to OP, I agree that many more will come to this same point and either jump ship or push through. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how one looks at it, if you want the best quality you can get out of a digital system, this is part of the process you've got to understand going forward I believe.

mhood
01-01-2013, 11:10 AM
A vectorscope will also indicate the color of your blacks, if you want them fairly neutral then they should be fairly equal across the bottom (rather than a visual stepladder).

You totally lost me there...are you sure you meant to say "vectorscope"? Not that it really matters much to me personally. I won't be able to run Scopes on my Lenovo laptop and a calibrated monitor is not what I would call carry on portable. I remain apprehensive about the Resolve learning curve ("cliff" may be more appropriate) and I'm wondering if the BMC is going to be workable in a portable shooting/editing system like mine.

Kholi
01-01-2013, 11:17 AM
He meant Vectorscope, it's located in resolve under "view > video scopes", which will give you histo, rgb parade, wave and vec.

mhood
01-01-2013, 11:41 AM
He meant Vectorscope, it's located in resolve under "view > video scopes", which will give you histo, rgb parade, wave and vec.

Where is the black color displayed? We did used to set white balance manually using a vectorscope but I don't know anything about a "visual stepladder" black display.

1885

Is he referring to a waveform monitor?

mbeck
01-01-2013, 12:19 PM
Is he referring to a waveform monitor?
Yes, people often say vector scope when they mean wwaveform.

Brad Ferrell
01-01-2013, 12:36 PM
I would focus my efforts on getting the right exposure with the camera before you dive into Resolve any further and to learn to use the scopes so you can get blacks, highlights and good skin tones and overall contrast. I use them now to color correct footage blind (not trusting a thing I see) and it works quite well. It may take a while for you to start thinking in luminance values but it's an electronic language all to itself. I'd be frustrated too after waiting so long to get one.

GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 12:57 PM
Yeah, I've been working on getting the scopes. Dunno how I can be sure about getting it right in camera, when there's no meters, scopes, aperture indications etc. I'm on the right track, I just need more practice with the software to get it to obey my commands. It's a ton of trial and error to get a hang on what each control really does.

mbeck
01-01-2013, 01:47 PM
I want to be clear about my intentions here. I am trying to explain how I see this situation, while being as helpful as I can. I am not attacking you our anyone else. So please don't take this wrong.

You said that your main problem was that you were not seeing huge gains in the picture quality over your DSLR.

This is not the fault of the camera. If you are new to systems like Resolve or Speedgrade, it is going to take time to get a feel for them. You should have been using a tool like that when you were using DSLRs as well. The process is not different with RAW.. it just gives you more flexibility.

I am not a pro colorist at all, but I am familiar with grading tools. I used Apple's Color quite a bit with my 7D. And even though I knew that system inside and out... it still took time to get the hang of Resolve. Don't beat yourself up over your struggle with the learning curve. I am still learning how to use it, but I already like it better than Color.

You will not get better results with a c300, c100, Red, or Alexa without understanding these tools.

Frank Glencairn
01-01-2013, 01:57 PM
Yeah, I've been working on getting the scopes. Dunno how I can be sure about getting it right in camera, when there's no meters, scopes, aperture indications etc. I'm on the right track, I just need more practice with the software to get it to obey my commands. It's a ton of trial and error to get a hang on what each control really does.

In a nutshell:

For starters, set your zebra to 100% and your recording LOG to FILM (you can set the monitor LUT to VIDEO though).

Begin with a daylight outdoor scene and open iris - than stop down, till your zebra just goes away.
Do some test shots that way.

Take it into Resolve - activate a clip in the timeline (click on it) and go to the DNG tab.
Set it to CLIP and BMC FILM also check RECOVER HIGHLIGHTS.
Than get your scopes up and dial down your EXPOSURE in the DNG tab till all you highlights are recovered.
Click on the first node and set it to 3D LUT - BMC to 709
Go to your color wheels and click the little AUTO button in the left lower corner.

There you have your starting point.

Frank

Tom
01-01-2013, 02:14 PM
This is not the fault of the camera....

You will not get better results with a c300, c100, Red, or Alexa without understanding these tools.


Exactly, this thread is titled "My Frustrations with BMCC so far", really it sounds like the OP's frustrations are with himself - not the camera.

70% of the footage ive seen from this camera posted online, is wonderful - and not just wonderful for a $3000 camera, but wonderful for any camera. Talented colourists and experts in post production are paid a lot of money because it is a real valuable skill, I fully expect to have to work harder with this camera in post, in fact its one of the reasons I want one so much.

Paint by numbers is easy, produces clean and pleasant results - but you are very limited creatively.
A blank canvas, hundreds of different paints and lots of brushes is hard, it requires a lot more work to produce something clean and pleasant - but the creative opportunities are mind blowing.


Post production advice and tips will be my main reason for staying with this forum once my camera arrives - there are some VERY talented people on here and I really hope the OP doesn't throw in the towel, but finds he starts to make progress with the camera, keep at it! :-)

mhood
01-01-2013, 03:02 PM
One thing I think you can acknowledge is that up until now most of the folks with BMCs are exceptionally skilled and talented people who are either very familiar with grading or have people they work with who are professionals. I think only now are we beginning to see some footage from "average Joes" who are tackling that RAW learning curve. I think it's about to get real for lots of folks who can afford this $3K camera.

Peter J. DeCrescenzo
01-01-2013, 03:17 PM
One thing I think you can acknowledge is that up until now most of the folks with BMCs are exceptionally skilled and talented people who are either very familiar with grading or have people they work with who are professionals. I think only now are we beginning to see some footage from "average Joes" who are tackling that RAW learning curve. I think it's about to get real for lots of folks who can afford this $3K camera.

Happy new year everyone.

Myself and many others mostly plan on using the BMCC to shoot ProRes & DNxHD, and maybe occasionally RAW CinemaDNG.

10-bit 1080p ProRes 422 HQ is a big step up in quality relative to what most video cameras & DSLRs are capable of recording.

I'm not in a big rush to beat myself up to tackle new software, new hardware, new workflows, and new budgets just so I can shoot RAW. In the meantime, shooting ProRes HQ will be a breath of fresh air.

(And, as others have suggested, transcoding BMCC RAW to CineForm RAW, ProRes 4444, etc. could be another approach.)

Cheers.

GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 03:46 PM
I want to be clear about my intentions here. I am trying to explain how I see this situation, while being as helpful as I can. I am not attacking you our anyone else. So please don't take this wrong.

You said that your main problem was that you were not seeing huge gains in the picture quality over your DSLR.

This is not the fault of the camera. If you are new to systems like Resolve or Speedgrade, it is going to take time to get a feel for them. You should have been using a tool like that when you were using DSLRs as well. The process is not different with RAW.. it just gives you more flexibility.

I am not a pro colorist at all, but I am familiar with grading tools. I used Apple's Color quite a bit with my 7D. And even though I knew that system inside and out... it still took time to get the hang of Resolve. Don't beat yourself up over your struggle with the learning curve. I am still learning how to use it, but I already like it better than Color.

You will not get better results with a c300, c100, Red, or Alexa without understanding these tools.



Exactly, you'll see that I posted in my original post "This isn't a camera thing, this is a learning curve thing, and it's massively steep."

And frank, so far, every time I've ever tried to use the Auto button in the color wheels, it has done noting in scopes or picture. Any idea what I might be missing? edit: with a quick google search, auto will only work with the qualifier tab selected.

iunknown
01-01-2013, 04:10 PM
Adam,
If your comfortable with lightroom, can't you just grade with that software? I'm also worried about learning resolve.

GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 04:26 PM
After about 2000 images, my Camera RAW loves to crash.... 15 Minutes of footage is about 20,000 images. crash and burn.

iunknown
01-01-2013, 04:37 PM
If you getting mud, maybe the highlights clipped? Maybe check out first light and try cineforms raw codec? First light is like lightroom for video.
http://cineform.com/products/gopro-cineform-studio-premium

nickjbedford
01-01-2013, 06:50 PM
I kinda have the belief that if the Lightroom (ACR) controls can be that straight forward to generate a completely final image, then why does it take that amount of fooling around in Resolve just to get a "starting point" that Frank described when I could load a DNG in Lightroom and have my final graded, moody image within about 20 seconds because all the controls are deliberately made for raw photograph development. Exposure/brightness, highlight/shadow recovery, contrast, toning, lens profile correction, sharpening/denoising is all there and very efficient to access.

I dunno, maybe I'm just used to a certain way of thinking in how intuitive raw photograph development should be and Resolve just seems nothing like most of the "photograph" development software (Capture One, ACR + Lightroom, Canon/Nikon software). Even the RED Cine-X software is all about developing your shot and not needing to go through multiple LUTs and curves and gammas just to produce your photographic video image.

More so is that the controls in these software programs work without muddying up the image. You can pull back highlights and shadows and the image doesn't turn to goop as I've found is unfortunately easy to achieve in Resolve.

My havent-got-my-camera-yet experience.

GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 07:04 PM
Nick, you just summed up my thoughts on this camera exactly. It's easier to keep the image from getting muddy in speedgrade, but the fact that it's so hard to get a good base from DNG in that program makes life miserable, as well as the really really crappy interface.

Good news is, I'm starting to get a hang of resolve, though I will not be comfortable with it for a few months minimum.

John Brawley
01-01-2013, 07:08 PM
I went though the same thing with the even more difficult to learn Resolve 8.

When I first started working with the camera DNG files, I had to use Resolve 8. It took me a long time, even with the BMD guys holding my hand.

V9 of Resolve is a ZILLION times easier as anyone coming from 8 will tell you, but it's still a very complex piece of software.

Even now, I still struggle to use it to get consistent results and it takes me a serious investment of time to get nice looking pictures. For 80% of shots Frank's approach can work and will get you pretty nice looking shots. But the eke the most out of them, you will have to get your hands dirty.

I would also say, most of the techniques specific to getting the best results from DNG's you probably won't find in tutorials, as they don't tend to cover the DNG side of things.

The most crucial step is to get the exposure slider in the right position for each shot. This is part of the DNG tab and rather frustratingly, you can't simple copy the grade because whilst it copies the grade to the next shot , it WONT copy the DNG settings of the grade. You can get DNG settings copied by saving the grade into the grade memory though. (as opposed to cmd-C) So I use that.

I guess i could say that you'll push though and the knowledge will come eventually but I don't think this step ever gets fast or easy.

jb

nickjbedford
01-01-2013, 07:46 PM
I think that's one of the fundamental reasons why I think a proper photographic raw interface is far more suitable than the typical video correction + raw tab combo. Raw stills are a different beast to colour grading video. Adobe takes almost all the thinking out of it. You can load up a "heavily exposed" BMCC DNG and simply pull down the exposure and 90% of the time, the image is basically done in a basic fashion, maybe not exactly what your shot needs to look like, but generally it's 90% there without you even doing anything. Raw in every other program is seamless and painless. It's just frustrating that Resolve makes it difficult to achieve results you can achieve without even blinking in other raw software.

I just wish I could get my damn camera so I can finally shoot and learn and make up my mind about all of this! 7 months and counting since I preordered.

Deggen
01-01-2013, 07:48 PM
The muddy highlights thing could be solved by using RGB rather than luma contrast controls. Resolve has LRGB controls and the default is luma (the L) so maybe try bring down the highlights with the RGB controls to retain saturation?

CaptainHook
01-01-2013, 08:55 PM
I started on Resolve 8 as well, and i've never really understood why people say Resolve is so hard to use. When i first tried it i seriously thought "wow, it so obvious this has years of history behind it with a lot of working pro's giving feedback to make this app so powerful for color grading". Have you guys tried learning Maya? Now that's a deep and complex app!! Haha. Maybe it helped that i had already spent time learning shake, nuke, and other node based workflows as well. I did watch a few tutorials by Warren/Alex/etc but i watch video tutorials every night (fall asleep to them) and find them par for the course for learning a new 'complex' app like this. Maybe that's the difference - i had watched a whole tutorial series before i even opened the app.

You guys gotta remember this software wasn't created for you to develop DNG raw files. Even though it CAN do that. But as far as i'm aware most shows from the US that are shot on Alexa are still shooting prores. Hollywood seems to deal in DPX etc. The raw development tab is in the right place at the moment IMHO but i think as RAW becomes the norm it may make sense to have a raw development PAGE similar to LR/C1/DxO/etc, or maybe when the BMCC starts to ship at full volume if BMD wants people to transition to resolve. The great thing is, if Resolve doesn't suit how you like to work you can use LR or anything else you prefer thanks to BMD going with DNG's. :)

iunknown
01-01-2013, 09:22 PM
The great thing is, if Resolve doesn't suit how you like to work you can use LR or anything else you prefer thanks to BMD going with DNG's. :)

But Adam is saying that lightroom isn't practical since it crashes with any clip of considerable size. So resolve's the only option?

nickjbedford
01-01-2013, 09:27 PM
Lightroom isn't designed to turn thousands of DNG frames into video, ultimately. What we need is ACR-like efficiency for turning the DNGs into a solid image, then using the rest of Resolve to tweak, track etc and output.

CaptainHook, Resolve in its own right is not that difficult, but we're talking about the difficulty in efficiently producing graded DNG shots, something which the photo apps have in spades, except that they're not designed for grading videos, they're only made at the moment to process groups of photos.

I tried grading one of Kholi's well lit and well exposed DNG shots in Resolve 9.0.4 last night and I had difficulty achieving the same level of quality I was achieving with ACR in a matter of seconds. It shouldn't take 5-6 steps just to have a starting point. When you open a DNG in ACR, it's essentially already ready with the basics.

ianim8
01-01-2013, 09:57 PM
One thing I think you can acknowledge is that up until now most of the folks with BMCs are exceptionally skilled and talented people who are either very familiar with grading or have people they work with who are professionals. I think only now are we beginning to see some footage from "average Joes" who are tackling that RAW learning curve. I think it's about to get real for lots of folks who can afford this $3K camera.

I learned this years ago when I had to deal with R3D in my 3D/Motion design workflow.

You can make great frames look better or same but cant for badly shot/lighting clips.

There is no button for fixing crap period.

Gonna have to pull up the shirt sleeves and develop a workflow that works for you.

You should post your DNGs for the pro colorists here to check your frames.

I feel for you bud, learning this craft and trying to make a living off it is hard.

GrumboFilms
01-01-2013, 10:38 PM
Here's a prime example of some of the frustrations you'll be encountering in Resolve until you're used to it. You'll have to relearn things you thought you already knew.


https://vimeo.com/56607352

http://vimeo.com/56607352

Kholi
01-02-2013, 12:00 AM
Some tips:

1. Stop messing with curves. Leave them alone for now.

2. See that thing that says 3 Way Color Corrector? Click it. See the option that says "LOG", click that.

http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/log.png

Try that if you're looking for a more LR workflow.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 12:11 AM
And check this out:

http://www.bmcuser.com/showthread.php?23-Bruce-Allen-s-RAW-finishing-corner-(resolve-after-effects-more)

Jake Vincent
01-02-2013, 12:17 AM
After about 2000 images, my Camera RAW loves to crash.... 15 Minutes of footage is about 20,000 images. crash and burn.
are you shooting to your 128's when this happens? are any 128gb drives on the approved ssd list for raw recording?

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 12:23 AM
Some tips:

1. Stop messing with curves. Leave them alone for now.

2. See that thing that says 3 Way Color Corrector? Click it. See the option that says "LOG", click that.

http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/log.png

Try that if you're looking for a more LR workflow.

Except that it didn't seem to respond anything like the LR/ACR controls.

Juan Melara
01-02-2013, 12:25 AM
Here's a prime example of some of the frustrations you'll be encountering in Resolve until you're used to it. You'll have to relearn things you thought you already knew.

http://vimeo.com/56607352

Yep switch your colour wheels over to Log mode. You don't really need to qualify anything unless you need to do some drastic highlight recovery.

Read this (http://bmcuser.com/showthread.php?2259-Any-tutorials-on-bringing-back-highlights) for more info on highlight recovery.

In general - Drop the High Range to 0.333 so the Highlight wheel has more of an effect, with its default setting of 0.666 its basically useless.

Use Offset as your main gamma control. I usually ignore the Midtone control (unless I'm using it to add colour). And only really use the Shadow control to darken, or to lighten by no more than 0.05 or so (or to add colour). Experiment with changing the Low Range as well.

And use the contrast (+pivot control) for quick major adjustments - it may save you using the wheels altogether.

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 12:27 AM
we're talking about the difficulty in efficiently producing graded DNG shots
I thought that's what i was talking about as well (in a roundabout kind of way apparently). :P


I tried grading one of Kholi's well lit and well exposed DNG shots in Resolve 9.0.4 last night and I had difficulty achieving the same level of quality I was achieving with ACR in a matter of seconds. It shouldn't take 5-6 steps just to have a starting point.

Are the extra steps (as you see it) changing it into BMDFilm and then working the log image back to a starting point?
If so it would seem obvious to suggest not using the log mode, then just adjust the exposure and contrast to taste.

This was done in roughly 5-6 seconds just using the standard 709 profile and adjusting exposure, wb/tint (and they were barely moved from the camera metadata):

http://f.cl.ly/items/0A33353A2M0n0g350b0X/Kholi_709_640.jpg

This i did in about 20-30 seconds by using the BMDFilm profile, and adjusting exposure, wb/tint, lift/gamma/gain levels and saturation.. then i did a quick and nasty skin key on a second node to get rid of some green (that and the wb/tint being the only 'color' work):

http://f.cl.ly/items/1w3g1F3N0g1X373Q2T1V/Kholi_BMDFilm_640.jpg

I'd be happy with either as a starting point, and the BMDFilm version i'd be happy to call 'done' (depending on the goal). Is 5-6 seconds too long? Is 20-30 seconds too long to grade a shot? I really think people are just complaining about learning a new tool that works differently to other tools (that are NOT designed to work with moving images anyway).

Kholi
01-02-2013, 12:31 AM
Edit: actually I like both Cap, slightly too crushed but I like them.

Also, Grumbo, don't forget to setup the project for BMD Film.

The very first things you should be doing's that, exposure, then tint (although you can set this at +13 and it should track until you get to a very odd white balance), then set white balance.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 12:33 AM
Except that it didn't seem to respond anything like the LR/ACR controls.

YOu have to define the range first, Juan beat me to it though.

It'll vary from setup to setup, but I stick to the .400 range generally because of how I light.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 12:35 AM
I think the op should give capture one a try

I think this will give a good concept of what you are actually shooting

Acr seems to do the first step in and auto manner that c1 does not

I bet files that look good in c1 will be easy in resolve?

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 01:11 AM
@morgan_moore - C1 will expose BMCC DNG's a few stops darker than LR or Resolve will by default. I'm not sure why, but it actually lends itself to the way John/Frank/etc expose (to the right).

Here's C1 at default:

http://f.cl.ly/items/2l3s102M3s3Y2S1i0h0O/Kholi_C1_Flat.jpg

And C1 with exposure pushed to 1.7 stops:

http://f.cl.ly/items/363k2L3Z452n3N3i3R1B/Kholi_C1_Plus1.7.jpg

I do love how C1 deals with color etc. Especially over LR.

@Kholi - yeah i've noticed you like things slightly flatter than me, either way that preference shouldn't add time to what i did. :)

Kholi
01-02-2013, 01:19 AM
Actually I looked at it again zoomed in and it's fine. THe small size makes it look crushed but that's where I would put my contrast as well. Good stuff.

Frank Glencairn
01-02-2013, 02:20 AM
I kinda have the belief that if the Lightroom (ACR) controls can be that straight forward to generate a completely final image, then why does it take that amount of fooling around in Resolve just to get a "starting point" that Frank described when I could load a DNG in Lightroom and have my final graded, moody image within about 20 seconds because all the controls are deliberately made for raw photograph development. Exposure/brightness, highlight/shadow recovery, contrast, toning, lens profile correction, sharpening/denoising is all there and very efficient to access.

You can skip many of the steps I described, by setting up your timeline/project for BMC DNGs in the first place.
So you are almost at the "good starting point" after loading the DNGs in the timeline.

I think the most crucial point here is, to think of the DNG tab as the first page of Photoshop's raw grading app.

You first HAVE to recover your highlights there, before you even touch the wheels.
It makes a huge difference. Pulling your highlights with the wheels at the first place, is a guarantee for muddy highlights.
Though it looks similar they are completely different functions under the hood.

Next thing, that a lot of guys ask me is. Why is there no Magenta/Green/Blue/Red temperature control in Resolve?.
It's there in the DNG tab.
Tint (Magenta/Green) and Temperature (Blue/Red).

Get that things straight before you go with the wheels.
It's like developing your film fist - and than comes printer lights.

And yeah, the price you have to pay for freedom and options, is convenience.
With raw, it's all your responsibility - no automatic does anything for you.
It's minimalist, it's sometimes cumbersome, but it's all there and it's powerful.
But it's not easy and not convenient.
That's the beauty of raw, but as I said before - it's not for everybody.
Some will be happier on the long run, to shoot ProRes/DnxHD or even with a different camera.

Frank

David
01-02-2013, 03:05 AM
I see I'm not the only one not digging Resolve as a way to get the base grade.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 04:55 AM
@morgan_moore - C1 will expose BMCC DNG's a few stops darker than LR or Resolve will by default. I'm not sure why

Because c1 is for pros and starts you with what you actually shot leaving you to do the work

The op is struggling and as I said he should probably check out a few of his shots in c1..

His exposures may be way off.. As is the shot of the girl as you demoed

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 06:35 AM
Because c1 is for pros and starts you with what you actually shot leaving you to do the work

The op is struggling and as I said he should probably check out a few of his shots in c1..

His exposures may be way off.. As is the shot of the girl as you demoed

"Because C1 is for pros". Right.

And Lightroom or Resolve are not?

Wuudi
01-02-2013, 07:15 AM
Well the new Lightroom is different then the old one. It pushes the image more I'd say. With LR3 I pushed sliders a long way often with raw stills, now in LR4 it seems to start with a stronger base image. Don't move contrast or whatever slider that much as in LR3 otherwise yikes :)

bowman
01-02-2013, 08:35 AM
This thread should read "My struggle to use editing software apart from Premiere"

The OP's problems have nothing to do with the camera. He doesn't even need to use Resolve and if he had wisely :) used a Mac then he could be working with ProRes seamlessly. I'm not sure feeding his concerns has much point apart from supporting his idea that the camera is too complex for the average joe to process.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 12:15 PM
"Because C1 is for pros". Right.

And Lightroom or Resolve are not?

I knew you would get me on that one :)

IMO C1 provides a purer file than ACR/LR which seems to add a stage of automation to the 'unstuffing' process

as for resolve I think we would agree that the DNG facilities are a little clunky compared to top line stills programs

I feel you really know where you are with C1, and considering the OP does not know where he is, that testing it might be of some use..

Im sure that if you use C1 as a reference (expose even more right) you will get the best image from the camera..

S

GrumboFilms
01-02-2013, 01:27 PM
Bowman, it's the grading software, and guess what, lots of people are going to run straight into this same wall once the camera ships in mass. And I know you came from the womb being an expert in Resolve, but this forum should be prepared for an influx of people who have never touched resolve before buying the camera. Anyways, I do appreciate the patience and generosity with information from the members. This camera is priced at the Canon DSLR user to upgrade to Raw, this isn't an Epic or a Scarlet. So when the noobs come, I think patience should be used, and not arrogance like certain other raw forums.

ranger9913
01-02-2013, 01:44 PM
Most noobs will figure out that this camera has a hidden secret, that it also shoots ProRes HQ/DNxHD! At which point they will also discover they can drop the original file into their NLE and edit away. I for one, purchased this camera to escape the DSLR codec, DR, and color. Most noobs that are jumping ship from the t2i, 5d's, 7d's, etc...are doing so for reasons mentioned above and not just for RAW. Don't get me wrong, I love having the option to shoot RAW and I am sure I will use it here and there when the situation calls for it.

mhood
01-02-2013, 01:56 PM
Most noobs will figure out that this camera has a hidden secret, that it also shoots ProRes HQ/DNxHD! At which point they will also discover they can drop the original file into their NLE and edit away.

About month 4 or 5, I began to wonder if there weren't better options if your goal was to bake it right in the camera instead of fixing it in post.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 02:16 PM
About month 4 or 5, I began to wonder if there weren't better options if your goal was to bake it right in the camera instead of fixing it in post.

Until we get some updated VIDEO luts, and the ability to port the look out to the Hyperdeck, there are likely better options for that kind of work. Not trying to unsell anyone, but truth is you're going to do a lot of extra work for something that you only need a standard look for.

I actually would like that as well, so it's not just for the newcomers. If BMD looks at the profiles of other cameras, mimics those and gives you a menu of "standard, nature, dynamic, rec709" I think people would be in great shape.

mhood
01-02-2013, 02:31 PM
If BMD looks at the profiles of other cameras, mimics those and gives you a menu of "standard, nature, dynamic, rec709" I think people would be in great shape.

They also need to address their audio support (i.e., VUs, phantom power, XLRs, etc.), their lack of custom white balance, auto focus and other lens control issues, and several other elements (basically the many things that come on a typical camcorder that are absent on the BMC). As you yourself have said many times (and early on from the beginning of this forum), this is a "RAW" "CINEMA" camera. BMD overreached with their Website marketing when they described the applications for the BMC. It comes bundled with Resolve for a reason...

Kholi
01-02-2013, 02:37 PM
They also need to address their audio support (i.e., VUs, phantom power, XLRs, etc.), their lack of custom white balance, auto focus and other lens control issues, and several other elements (basically the many things that come on a typical camcorder that are absent on the BMC). As you yourself have said many times (and early on from the beginning of this forum), this is a "RAW" "CINEMA" camera. BMD overreached with their Website marketing when they described the applications for the BMC. It comes bundled with Resolve for a reason...

Different thread conversation and confused on the point you're making...

However, I said it's a Cinema camera, not necessarily that it's a RAW cinema camera. It features ProRes, so it's not just a RAW Cinema camera.

Also don't think they overreached on anything... internal audio recording isn't an issue for a Cinema camera, that's what dedicated sound is for. Neither is custom white balance, nor auto focus. Lens control given the EF mount is a different story.

My suggestion is based on people like yourself, that may not be able to handle the learning curve and investment (time and money) that comes with owning this camera. If it never happened, I would be okay personally.

Anyway, sorry for the OT.

mhood
01-02-2013, 02:44 PM
Yep...still there:


Blackmagic Cinema Camera is both affordable and a complete solution because it includes a built-in recorder and monitoring, so it’s perfect for displacing video-only cameras for work such as sporting events, weddings, music videos and more!

Kholi
01-02-2013, 02:46 PM
Yep...still there:

Ah I see what you're referring to, I had your post backward. Thought you were saying that it doesn't need color profiles. Got it. Sorry about that.

yoclay
01-02-2013, 03:22 PM
Yes, people often say vector scope when they mean wwaveform.

Absoluely right, must have been up too late. I meant to say waveform.
However, even easier than that for newcomers, would be the RGB Parade.
Basically it seperates Red Green and Blue into 3 seperate waveforms allowing you to see what is happening in each channel and adjust accordingly.

1891

Right now for instance this is showing clipping in the RED and Green channel in the highlghts of this waveform.
The more you even out the three forms the more neutral the image will become.
Personally, I probably wouldn't even look at the image until I brought those two channels down.
I would also slightly raise the blue shadows because they are clipping on the bottom (indicating the image has a lot of yellow in it's shadows).
It also is therefore showing that whatever image this scope is referring to in it's current form as a "stepladder" is that the shadows are extremely RED and Green as well. (they are very elevated at the bottom of their forms)
So if I wanted to neutralize the blacks I would try to bring the bottom of each of these waveforms in line with each other and close to around 3%.
By lowering the Red and Green channels, you are bringing their opposites into the image, that is cyan and magenta.
The more you move the waveforms upwards, the more they become Red, Green and Blue. The more you move them downwards, the more they become Cyan, Magenta and Yellow.
By playing with these 6 colors for the high end on top (the highlights), the low end for the shadows, and the mids, you can control all of your colors without necessarily even looking at your image.
Keeping things "legal" (within the reasonable spectrum of say 3% to 97%) will take you a long ways towards having a well balanced image.
Once you have balanced an image out to a reasonable level in terms of it's contrast, then you can personalize it to whatever color dominants you want. That part of the process is known as "grading", (as opposed to color correction).
Of course once you have some experience with correcting images, you may not even balance your images out first, you might just take the image to where you would like to grade it from the beginning. However, I suggest trying to neutralize your images first as a newcomer, so that your subjective decisions which happen next have more subtlety and nuance as your choice making becomes more informed.

Hope that helps.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 03:29 PM
Absoluely right, must have been up too late. I meant to say waveform.
However, even easier than that for newcomers, would be the RGB Parade.
Basically it seperates Red Green and Blue into 3 seperate waveforms allowing you to see what is happening in each channel and adjust accordingly.

Parade and the actual Scope's a good way to figure out what you've got and what you do not have. Agreed.

Sicovanderplas
01-02-2013, 04:45 PM
This topic reminded me to this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4qL-x1wTl8&sns=em

jambredz
01-02-2013, 05:46 PM
following up on yoclays great post...here's a video that is very useful https://vimeo.com/55139561#

RobertJ
01-02-2013, 06:03 PM
@morgan_moore - C1 will expose BMCC DNG's a few stops darker than LR or Resolve will by default. I'm not sure why

If a program doesn't officially support the camera, but you can still technically open the file, then sometimes the exposure will be off. This has nothing to do with the camera or operator. Just the software reading the metadata wrong.

For example, if I open a file from a Phase One P40 40 megapixel digital back in ACR, it will almost ALWAYS be 1 stop underexposed. If I bring the same file into Capture One, it will be perfect. This happened with ALL Phase One Digital Backs. So just the opposite happens with BMC DNG files. :)

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 06:41 PM
If a program doesn't officially support the camera, but you can still technically open the file, then sometimes the exposure will be off.

Ive used a lot of digital cameras over the years since the nikon D1 in 1999, sinar, kodak proback, kodak SLRn, nikon, canon (also Red) whatever, and I know that the C1 rendering of the bmc file is the best that I have seen

People can choose to believe me or not but I promise that a BMC file exposed to look good in C1 will be the most noise free flexible file and deliver the best image quality

I dont think ACR supports the bmc either?

S

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 06:42 PM
It's interesting. I've tried Capture One a few times to see what the difference was with my Canon raw files and I've found that it feels a lot different to ACR and I haven't been able to wrangle a better result out of it. Granted that's likely because I haven't used it much.

Come on Blackmagic! I've gotta shoot something on this thing!

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 06:42 PM
Just the software reading the metadata wrong.
Yeah i figured it wasn't reading the metadata at all.. but by coincidence it starts you in a better place since it seems ETTR will be standard with this camera. :)

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 06:45 PM
Yeah i figured it wasn't reading the metadata at all.. but by coincidence it starts you in a better place since it seems ETTR will be standard with this camera. :)

The meta data is just meta data, C1 reads the files right so a nice clean ETTR file looks good.

It seems any meta data BMC add does the 'red trick' of taking a 200-400 ish sensor and placing it at 800 so that DOPs are given a little headroom in the highs and a more headline grabbing ISO(at the expense of noise in the shadows)

Ive tested the epic and can confirm that it is 320, not 800 whatever it says on the tin..

S

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 06:53 PM
It's interesting. I've tried Capture One a few times to see what the difference was with my Canon raw files and I've found that it feels a lot different to ACR

Remember that canon cameras have real ISO, an amplification loop before saving,

The BMC has, like my sinar, kodak proback and the Epic 'faux' ISO where the ISO value is just a meta tag

ACR and C1 doubtless process canon files at a similar quality, but faux ISO will lead you to mis expose.. C1 ignores that faux ISO reading

S

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 06:59 PM
It's interesting. I've tried Capture One a few times to see what the difference was with my Canon raw files and I've found that it feels a lot different to ACR and I haven't been able to wrangle a better result out of it. Granted that's likely because I haven't used it much.

Spend a few hours with it and play with the colour editor (advanced tab). I actually can still get better results with it's "keyer" than i can in Resolve. :(

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4l4WC4FGNeo
http://blog.phaseone.com/2010/12/23/more-power-to-the-color-editor-in-capture-one-pro-6/

(results from first page google search)

You can also build up a bunch of color edits and save it as an ICC profile to load which i've done with my 5Dmk3. :)
I was happy with using ACR in PS for a longtime, but i'm glad i dug into C1 and become 'converted' as i love the look it helps me produce.

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 07:20 PM
ACR and C1 doubtless process canon files at a similar quality

There's still a difference in the look and feel though, which once quality is at a similar level becomes more important to us. Maybe Nick would like C1 if he spent a week with it producing images he normally does, maybe he wouldn't. It's really preference though.. i wouldn't say C1 is better than LR, only that i like it more. :)

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 07:32 PM
I dont want a specific LR vs C1 battle. Its just that it seems to me that LR/ACR reads the ISO meta data whereas C1 does not, I feel the latter option is correct as the ISO data is just 'faux' anyway as the BMC does not have true ISO amplifiers in the way a canon cameras do, so the C1 interpretation is truer in the case of the BMC..

It would seem to me one is best to use the BMC at base 200, or maybe 400 to give a stop of headroom on set.

Or that would be the case if the BMC had LUTs in the same way as other cams, currently it seems to be a crapshoot, to get exposure, a crapshoot that is easily resolved with a little testing.

S

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 07:59 PM
In the end, either of these tools will produce a high quality result in the hands of someone who can use them effectively. You might be great at using C1 and I might be great at using Lr. Use what you know you can work with.

It's like saying you can't this or that in Premiere CS6 vs Final Cut Pro 7 or X or AVID when 95% of work can be cut in either depending on which one you know how to use.

Most of these tools are just as good as each other, they just have different workflows and different quirks.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:08 PM
In general that is the case indeed. But reference the BMC and its unsupported/lack of/odd (?) meta data you will need to somehow 'calibrate' it against a raw converter

Ie you need your exposures to conform to some sort of base standard that you can work from or build and save looks from in your chosen converter

Now if you build those base looks using the (very light) barebones ACR look I believe it will lead you to underexpose in camera and be boosting in post creating a noisier less flexible file

Its an exact process ive been through with my 'faux ISO' sinar digiback and Red Epic which I believe are best used at close to lowest ISO maybe leaving half a stop for headroom

Of course without doing my own bracket tests (or seeing others) of the BMC camera that is to some extent speculation, but speculation based on experience.

A bracket test would be to expose a grey card/grey scale/wedge etc at various Fstops and then equalise the image(s) in post and compare noise levels particularly in the darker zones.

S

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 08:14 PM
In general that is the case indeed. But reference the BMC and its unsupported/lack of/odd (?) meta data you will need to somehow 'calibrate' it against a raw converter

Ie you need your exposures to conform to some sort of base standard that you can work from or build and save looks from in your chosen converter

Now if you build those base looks using the barebones ACR look I believe it will lead you to underexpose in camera and be boosting in post creating a noisier less flexible file

Its an exact process ive been through with my 'faux ISO' sinar digiback and Red Epic which I believe are best used at close to lowest ISO maybe leaving half a stop for headroom

Of course without doing my own bracket tests (or seeing others) of the BMC camera that is to some extent speculation, but speculation based on experience.

A bracket test would be to expose a grey card at various Fstops and then equalise them in post and compare noise levels.

S

Where are you getting the idea that you'll be underexposing? That has nothing to do with the raw converter. When you're out in the field or on set, you should be exposing the way the camera demands (ETTR as far as John has recommended), not Resolve or ACR or C1. A properly exposed BMCC raw file is the same regardless of where it ends up in post...

If you find that you work better in a certain raw converter, it shouldn't change how you actually capture the footage beforehand.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 08:20 PM
I'm just as confused as Nick is.

And I'm curious as to why one would think that Resolve wasn't the primary workflow to get the best results out of a camera that was created and tuned to that program, by the people that created both?

It's just a matter of some people having little idea how to achieve solid results, heck myself included.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:25 PM
That is a fair comment, but in reality we have seen that many people are under exposing the footage - I guess mislead by their observations on the monitor, the lack of histo and their results in ACR

While Johns method of protecting the highlights is a good start point, I feel that when actually controlling light and building ratios it will become a little more complex

And to do that especially without the access to the lighting resource that John has the trade offs will become a little more complex for us mortals

There will be some scenes where highlights are not the issue - you will be asking yourself - how deep can I dig into the shadows here?

For example an INT to EXT shot - I doubt you can actually hold the windows with out at least some fill but how much

You may want to diffuse your light or move it further back, but not be able to as you are losing the darks

And on that basis better evaluation tools, on or off the camera will be needed.

S

RobertJ
01-02-2013, 08:33 PM
Ive used a lot of digital cameras over the years since the nikon D1 in 1999, sinar, kodak proback, kodak SLRn, nikon, canon (also Red) whatever, and I know that the C1 rendering of the bmc file is the best that I have seen

People can choose to believe me or not but I promise that a BMC file exposed to look good in C1 will be the most noise free flexible file and deliver the best image quality

I dont think ACR supports the bmc either?

Hi Morgan, I wasn't implying that C1 is bad in any way. Actually, from 2005-2008 I used nothing but Capture One for RAW editing. Then ACR changed the way it renders the image (remember when ACR used to make detail look like vectors, instead of fine grain and fine detail like C1? ACR was unacceptable.)

But now it's actually usable, and I really enjoyed working with BMC files in ACR, so it's an option.

Now, regarding Resolve, the only thing I'm concerned about is that its noise reduction (Chrominance, aka, color noise) is not up to par with ACR and C1. But I'm sure everyone has their own favorite noise reduction program.

Even a color noise reduction of 25 in ACR can reduce moire by little bit. Now that's pretty useful.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:34 PM
I'm just as confused as Nick is.

And I'm curious as to why one would think that Resolve wasn't the primary workflow to get the best results out of a camera that was created and tuned to that program, by the people that created both?

It's just a matter of some people having little idea how to achieve solid results, heck myself included.

Some consider resolve to be a bit clunky compared to other raw converters.

For example JB noted that one cannot easily copy a primary raw conversion to many clips, in a C V move that is a standard start point for many raw conversion operations

Im sure that Resolve will get there in a couple of FW updates of camera or ware..

S

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:36 PM
But now it's actually usable, and I really enjoyed working with BMC files in ACR, so it's an option.

Yep ACR/LR and C1 are both great in the bigger picture - we use both in the office here

My beef with ACR is only its default interpretation of BMC files

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 08:41 PM
Some consider resolve to be a bit clunky compared to other raw converters.

For example JB noted that one cannot easily copy a primary raw conversion to many clips, in a C V move that is a standard start point for many raw conversion operations

Im sure that Resolve will get there in a couple of FW updates of camera or ware..

S

No, this isn't what JOhn said. He said it's difficult to copy over RAW settings because it has its own tab per image. That's not copying over primaries.

I think you would have to spend a lot more time with the program, actually learning it, before you throw out definitives like that. It simply sounds like you don't understand the program, and because you understand C1 or LR they're better.

That's like saying because I understand how to turn the pages of a paper back book it's better than using an iPad.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:45 PM
And I'm curious as to why one would think that Resolve wasn't the primary workflow to get the best results out of a camera that was created and tuned to that program, by the people that created both?

Now heres another thing.. I quote you from another thread


Only thing I'm missing from Resolve is noise reduction, simply because I don't have the full version. I actually need a full version soon... Gotta finish my feature and want to see about mastering at 4K just incase any distro inquires about it.

My guess is if you exposed so that the Images looked good in capture one - (open up 1.5 stops) you would not be feeling the need to use any noise reduction at all.

The BMC/Resolve default is just a default, and the tendency is for manufacturers to set those defaults to acheive headline grabbing ISO values (as do Red) while C1 is pretty 'pure' and conservative in its default interpretation

If you want such conservatism is of course a matter of you personal choice..

But seeing as you are delving into noise reduction I guess that maybe you do.

S

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 08:47 PM
No, this isn't what JOhn said. He said it's difficult to copy over RAW settings because it has its own tab per image. That's not copying over primaries.

I think you would have to spend a lot more time with the program, actually learning it, before you throw out definitives like that. It simply sounds like you don't understand the program, and because you understand C1 or LR they're better.


I think there was a linguistic confusion 'primaries' / 'initial conversion' , but JB highlighted the weakness, I just parroted it, so any miss- understanding is his not mine. You wanted a reason why it would not be the default choice i gave one.

it will be my first choice due to its motion tracking which is not available in any stills software!

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 08:51 PM
I think there was a linguistic confusion 'primaries' / 'initial conversion' , but JB highlighted the weakness, I just parroted it, so any miss- understanding is his not mine. You wanted a reason why it would not be the default choice i gave one.

it will be my first choice due to its motion tracking which is not available in any stills software!

S

Yes, you did. My understanding right now is that the people saying that simply do not understand Resolve and because of that, automatically result to "ACR, LR, C1 is better."

That's kind of short sighted but I'd suppose to each their own! xD

Kholi
01-02-2013, 09:03 PM
I went though the same thing with the even more difficult to learn Resolve 8.

When I first started working with the camera DNG files, I had to use Resolve 8. It took me a long time, even with the BMD guys holding my hand.

V9 of Resolve is a ZILLION times easier as anyone coming from 8 will tell you, but it's still a very complex piece of software.

Even now, I still struggle to use it to get consistent results and it takes me a serious investment of time to get nice looking pictures. For 80% of shots Frank's approach can work and will get you pretty nice looking shots. But the eke the most out of them, you will have to get your hands dirty.

I would also say, most of the techniques specific to getting the best results from DNG's you probably won't find in tutorials, as they don't tend to cover the DNG side of things.

The most crucial step is to get the exposure slider in the right position for each shot. This is part of the DNG tab and rather frustratingly, you can't simple copy the grade because whilst it copies the grade to the next shot , it WONT copy the DNG settings of the grade. You can get DNG settings copied by saving the grade into the grade memory though. (as opposed to cmd-C) So I use that.

I guess i could say that you'll push though and the knowledge will come eventually but I don't think this step ever gets fast or easy.

jb


And here is John's post, for reprocessing.

I also just re-read it, and have a tip for JB and anyone looking to move exposure over:

Instead of copying your grade or putting it in the memory, save your stills in folders by scene. A still contains all of your nodes AND the settings for the DNG Tab, so no matter what it's set to, if your still has an adjusted DNG setting (Tint, WB, Exposure) it will override it and set it to what your still has.

To grab a still, the shortcut is: Command + Option + G in OSX, or go up to View, Grab Still. That's how I learned to organize all of my color work and often save different versions.

As well, the stills can be pulled for any project if you want to use them. All you have to do is load them up.

http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/grabstill1.png
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/grabstill2.png
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/dngpanel.png

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 09:03 PM
(cross post - Ill check the G key!)

And that does indeed highlight a "major" weakness as the exposure slider is usually a C-V process across a bunch of shots,

"The most crucial step is to get the exposure slider in the right position for each shot... (as opposed to cmd-C) So I use that.:"


========

As for learning your BMC I would suggest evaluating some files in C1, and some bracket tests, I think that process will educate you on exposure choices even if C1 is not your final medium for processing.

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 09:13 PM
(cross post - Ill check the G key!)

And that does indeed highlight a "major" weakness as the exposure slider is usually a C-V process across a bunch of shots,

"The most crucial step is to get the exposure slider in the right position for each shot... (as opposed to cmd-C) So I use that.:"


========

As for learning your BMC I would suggest evaluating some files in C1, and some bracket tests, I think that process will educate you on exposure choices even if C1 is not your final medium for processing.

S

Morgan, I absolutely understand that you've worked with stills. This isn't stills. Balancing shot to shot/cut to cut with motion picture involves more than just adjusting one slider for every shot. You aren't balancing one still, you're balancing an entire scene with various anomalies that may or may not crop up. You're overthinking it and, at the same time, applying a completely different working knowledge of raw to something that honestly isn't the same in practice. In theory, slightly, in practice, it is not.

The fact that you're talking about exposing grey cards etc... nobody does that in this field. You learn optimal conditions, exceptions, and do-nots, then you shoot...

I think you just need to actually work with RAW motion picture in an environment that demands results beyond simple curiosity to understand it. Which you will.

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 09:16 PM
For example JB noted that one cannot easily copy a primary raw conversion to many clips, in a C V move that is a standard start point for many raw conversion operations
That's true, but i personally don't use Copy/Paste much in Resolve as it's not intended as "grade management" in that way anyway (there are good systems for grade management in place which i actually wished existed in C1/LR etc). It's used to copy the adjustments in a SINGLE node to another node, not the entire node graph for a clip. Raw adjustments don't even exist in a node - they apply to the clip so it makes sense they won't copy over from a node since they don't occur in a node. I tend to grab stills constantly for grade management (even over making memories as John suggests as way to copy over the raw settings) and this copies over raw adjustments also. One aspect i do wish for though, is that when manually grouping clips so that adjustments from one clip (all nodes) are carried to other clips the raw adjustments were transferred also. Perhaps it's possible with the more advanced ripple settings, but they often confuse me and i have to 're-remember' how they work every time i try them. :P

//EDIT - oh man, Kholi totally beat me to it :P Except my point that raw settings don't exist in a node may help some digest why it doesn't work as they think.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 09:21 PM
Cap there's actually a way to group clips for a ripple, or at least I know it ripples for edits of the same clip. I don't know how to do it on purpose though. LoL. I've done it on accident several times.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 09:24 PM
Morgan, ... Which you will.

Ive processed a lot of raw (more than a decade) - magazine features, clothes catalogues, multi image shoots where consistency is king - and doing it fast to commercial deadlines - I find this translates well to motion picture editing

Im not saying one slider does it, im saying that it often gets you in the right ballpark

As for grey cards and using C1 - I think these are things that you should do as part of testing/learning the camera - so you can get the best from it. Heck its great out of the box but I think there is even more to be had

Im not saying that those things are to be done in the field once you are using it in anger

I mean you get any new digicam and try it out - surely that is professional practice - for example a DSLR may go to 64000 - but is it any good? - probably not - and you dont want to be finding that out after you have wrapped. So you test.

Im even old enough to know that sometimes you want to push or pull film to get your result rather than the one laid out by the manufactuer!

Simply we have not seen many objective tests of the camera at all

You are the one creating files that you perceive need noise reduction, mainly my files are so clean I add noise in post!

S

CaptainHook
01-02-2013, 09:30 PM
Cap there's actually a way to group clips for a ripple, or at least I know it ripples for edits of the same clip.
Ah yep, i do that a bit but what i meant is there's some more advanced ripple settings so that instead of copying over all adjustments automatically to other clips in the group, it will only 'add' to existing node graphs instead of replace them entirely etc etc. There's different options for how you want changes to ripple across clips and i forget how they work since i don't use them often enough. :(

But yeah i know that different clips belonging to the same remote file automatically carry over settings (unless you create a local version). :)

Kholi
01-02-2013, 09:46 PM
You are the one creating files that you perceive need noise reduction, mainly my files are so clean I add noise in post!

S

Oh, I didn't realize you had the camera. Or are you actually comparing your still cameras to Blackmagic? If so, why would you do that?

I'm becoming more and more confused with every post. xD But at least it's slightly interesting.

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 09:52 PM
Testing any device, technique or idea before using it in a professional job is an obvious one.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 10:02 PM
Oh, I didn't realize you had the camera. Or are you actually comparing your still cameras to Blackmagic? If so, why would you do that?

I dont have a BMC - wish I did! - I absolutely would test it against a still camera because stills cameras basically set the bar of what a decent file looks like

Ever since Ive been shooting video I have considered the image from all of them (that I could afford) pretty appalling - a file that can compete with a still camera file is what I want

And Ive used enough stills cams to recognise the BMC file as being a very good one, very similar to something like my hasselblad/sinar file and needing the same care - not up there with a modern still camera like a D3 for speed but up there with quality if fed enough light

Incedentally the Sinar also has faux ISO, no anti moiree filter, and ran on pretty basic software, given wonky settings by the maker .. Ive been here before.. a decade ago :) - film makers ignore that time served

Feed the BMC light and you will be adding noise in post - I promise you.

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:06 PM
Feed the BMC light and you will be adding noise in post - I promise you.

S

Isn't this kind of obvious? I feel like I'm just having a hard time understanding where you're going. Not intentionally at all.

This is pretty much why John's telling you to push your image until the zebras nearly pop up if you want maximum highlight retention, that incidentally also decreases noise if you're correcting with aperture or ND (ND is the more likely situation, not aperture).

Likewise, if you're cognizant at all of what you're shooting and you recognize that nearly everything important in the composition resides within your mids, and your high/head's actually are not important enough to salvage, you SoftFX Black, remove ND, shoot.

That's not... like, rocket science or anything.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 10:15 PM
Yes it is obvious. But this thread is actually started by someone 'frustrated' by the camera! (long moved on no doubt!)

And you are wanting noise reduction in your software

Its also not obvious to video shooters who are schooled (wisely with most cams) to get the look basically nailed in camera.

It is a real cultural shift to shoot to the histo and nothing you are seeing on set.

(and a directorial battle)

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:18 PM
And you are wanting noise reduction in your software

S

Noise reduction is a part of every single cinema workflow at this point in time. NOTHING you see ANYWHERE in regards to cinema, television, commercial gets finished without some sort of noise reduction. It isn't because they don't know as much as you, it's because noise happens for various reasons in various situations, and it's part of the balancing act.

Not even sure what the rest of your post reads at but I'll bow out here and likely read your revisitation on all of this when you get the camera and shoot something serious with it.

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 10:19 PM
If you shoot 2 stops over just under clipping point, then you are reducing the noise in post by 6dB when you bring the exposure back to normal. This is a Good Thing™.

If you expose a high DR scene for highlights then bring up the shadows, you'll obviously see noise. Pretty obvious once again.

If you shoot within a half a stop of the "correct" exposure, then that's ok, but you may not be maximising the image DR and noise, unless you can't go any brighter.

And to be obvious once again, if you underexpose, you'll see noise when correcting.

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:21 PM
If you shoot within a half a stop of the "correct" exposure, then that's ok, but you may not be maximising the image DR and noise, unless you can't go any brighter.

And to be obvious once again, if you underexpose, you'll see noise when correcting.

Realistic and often scenario, repeating more frequently as the budget declines.

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 10:27 PM
Realistic and often scenario, repeating more frequently as the budget declines.

Yep. In the end, 12-bit raw has far more breathing room than half a stop. I think there's another thing that could be said about exposing for cinema and that is to not be afraid of silhouetting or shadowing areas or subjects in your frame. The classic one is the sunset and characters walking along the horizon and exposing for the sky and dropping the characters into silhouette.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 10:30 PM
Noise reduction is a part of every single cinema workflow at this point in time. NOTHING you see ANYWHERE in regards to cinema, television, commercial gets finished without some sort of noise reduction. It isn't because they don't know as much as you, it's because noise happens for various reasons in various situations, and it's part of the balancing act.

Im sure they know more than me, especially the people who never shot a DNG until a month ago - Ive been shooting DNG since 2005, but they are fast learners.

Well I dont know, Im just seeing - and maybe you didnt have lights or a fast enough lens or whatever, and I dont know your final intention, but this is to me miles from ideal, and subsequently noisy when lifted...

1894

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:43 PM
No Im sure they know more than me, especially the people who never shot a DNG until a month ago - Ive been shooting DNG since 2005, but they are fast learners.

Well I dont know, Im just seeing - and maybe you didnt have lights or a fast enough lens or whatever, but this is miles from ideal, and subsequently noisy when lifted...

1894

Not sure what your C1's doing...

http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/osxviewer.png
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/lr4settings.png
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/r9settings.png

Not sure what or why you're trying to lift anything. It's exposed right where it needs to be to keep the window from clipping too harshly.

You should literally be adjusting by a quarter of a stop MAX to expose that properly, and then finishing it off with very simple primaries.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 10:49 PM
C1 is showing you what you actually shot!

I cant see at web res but I guess your corrected files are super noisy ?

Maybe Im wrong (and making an ass of myself therfore) , but I think you were two/three stops under here.

I think you should forget what the camera is telling you and try some brackets.

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:51 PM
C1 is showing you what you actually shot!

I cant see at web res but I guess your corrected files are super noisy ?

Maybe Im wrong (and making an ass of myself therfore) , but I think you were two/three stops under here.

I think you should forget what the camera is telling you and try some brackets.

S


Yeah, you're wrong. Not sure what C1 is up to but you might want to check that.

There's no more noise in the image than I would expect from a RAW camera.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 10:52 PM
C1 can easily lift the file but you enter a world of noise..


1895

nickjbedford
01-02-2013, 10:52 PM
I think morgan_moore is set on the idea that C1 is the right one. ACR, Mac OS X QuickLook and Resolve show roughly the correct exposure. Who ever said that CaptureOne is applying the right default transform for Blackmagic originated CinemaDNGs?

Kholi
01-02-2013, 10:57 PM
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/FullResColdt.jpg (http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/FullResCold.jpg)

Click for 1920x1080 JPG if you want. If you consider that noise unacceptable then I really would love to see what you think about the camera when you get it. =D



I think morgan_moore is set on the idea that C1 is the right one. ACR, Mac OS X QuickLook and Resolve show roughly the correct exposure. Who ever said that CaptureOne is applying the right default transform?


Yes, I think I am just now coming to understand what this conversation is about. Haha. Took me long enough. I guess you already knew >:T Should've told me earlier.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 11:00 PM
Im not set on that at all. Im just presenting observation.

The BMC is a good camera, close to alexa good, very good, but light hungry, and people are happy when they are getting results that are honeslty pretty crummy

Im just saying that exposing for C1 and getting noise free files seem to correlate 100%

And im not seeing any evidence to the contrary

S

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 11:01 PM
Her darker cheek is colour noise hell

Her neck cleavage is magenta blob central

The wooden wall look like a 5d at 3200

I could do better with my FS100 and certainly expect far far more from a DNG shooter.

S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 11:02 PM
Her darker cheek is colour noise hell - I could do better with my FS100

S

Got it. Based on that statement, I have a feeling you'll be selling your camera very quickly. Call it a hunch.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 11:10 PM
Mate, its a nice image and all but seriously Id try and see it objectively, and do some objective brackets shots.

Its simple fact, lightening in post creates noise.

I feel im antagonising you just for suggesting trying some other settings

What harm is there in that suggestion?

Kholi
01-02-2013, 11:13 PM
Mate, its a nice image and all but seriously Id try and see it objectively, and do some objective brackets shots.

I feel im antagonising you just for suggesting trying some other settings

What harm is there in that suggestion?

Oh, no I know you're not antagonizing, you're just speculating and projecting, which is normal. No big deal. I still hold to that you're going to sell your camera quietly and move on after a few weeks of trying to get what you think should be still-like results. Speaking of Alexa, have you ever seen a RAW frame or a ProRes frame from Alexa before in a situation that isn't broad daylight? Just curious. =P

All well and good, m'friend.

Just that you actually used the FS100 as a reference sort of solidifies the idea that you actually might not... really... well, yeah. xD But anyway! I hope some people've have gotten something out of the conversation.

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 11:22 PM
Well this is what my FS looks like, ungraded.. https://vimeo.com/55627118

No, ive not seen too many alexa frames, but plenty of Red - its noisy unless you have it a 320

I hope Im clear on what the BMC can do - lovely stuff when well (brightly) lit,


S

Kholi
01-02-2013, 11:24 PM
Well this is what my FS looks like, ungraded.. https://vimeo.com/55627118

No, ive not seen too many alexa frames, but plenty of Red - its noisy unless you have it a 320

I hope Im clear on what the BMC can do - lovely stuff when well (brightly) lit,


S

=] Okay.

Thanks for the conversation, MM. Hope you get your cam soon!

morgan_moore
01-02-2013, 11:25 PM
:)

Frank Glencairn
01-03-2013, 02:51 AM
Guys you make it way to complicated.

I had to re-learn a lot when I tried the BMC first - actually ignore everything, I know about exposure and accept the fact, that my mayor goal is to fill the buckets of the sensor with as much light as possible, thus reducing any noise (aka 100% zebras).
As long as you don't clip the sensor, it's all there and you loose nothing.

When I can't light - that's my best bet.
If I can light, I can lift some shadows with fill on set.

Everything else is taken easily care of in Resolve.

It's really as simple as that.

When I have the images in Resolve, I can recover higlights and set everything where I need it / want it with scopes.
I don't care whatever any metadata brings in, cause I never use the metadata function in Resolve.
I can't stress enough to use the "BMC Film" instead, cause it is the exact tailored reverse curve for the BMC DNGs.

And yes, there are several ways to copy grades and DNG settings to other (or all) clips.

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 07:48 AM
morgan your screenshots are always missing the window. In kholi's screenshot it's clearly visible that the window is clipped. I wonder how the window+histogram looks in C1. Clipped in the middle of the histo?

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 08:13 AM
Yep the shots (above) are crops that specifically exclude the window to show his actual exposure in the 'critical portion of the image'

Of course whithout knowing his artistic intent I cannot say for certain that the girl is indeed the 'critical portion of the image'

I think in this situation I would have let the window blow to white or ramped up my internal lighting

in C1 (with no process) the bottom half of the window is white with the top half holding detail.. the clipping is clearly at 100/255 not somewhere lower..

1899

S

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 08:23 AM
AFAIK Kholi lit this shot as part of a camera test, and was in control of the situation. If it was a grabbed interview of a prisoner in a journalistic situation (for example) then you would, of course, take the noise as part of the compromise of 'getting the shot'

His own processes of the image reveal his artistic intent to some extent.

I would suggest this situation shows the limits of just using zebras at 100 to asses exposure..

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 08:44 AM
Can you dial down the highlights and retain full detail? Dunno how Kholi shot it, was it not clipping in the zebras or was it clipping?

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 08:53 AM
Yes in C1 you can recover the highlights with no clip wall by taking a negative .61 on the exposure slider..

The whole image behaves exactly as I would expect if it were exposed to the 100 zebra at the window and the internal fill light was too low

1900

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 08:58 AM
So I guess Kholi shot it with Zebras at 100% and just not clipping? But imho this is exactly the scenario where the 100% not clipping exposure run's into problems. If it's that bright outside and you're not clipping the highlights you're going to have the "meat" of your image in the left side and therefore you gotta live with some noise. If you can live with the noise (I sure can) everything is fine, if you don't you gotta sacrifice some highlights and clip those...

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 09:02 AM
Absolutely

In this situation IMO the options were..

-Open up (fstop), live with a blown window (I would have done this in an RnG situation)

-Up the fill light (I would have done this in an drama situation)

-Not have meat in the main portion of the image and get a load of noise when lifting it

I would personally take either of the first two options over the third.. by a mile

And would certainly try them both before dimissing the camera as 'needing noise reduction' in all but the most extreme exposure situations.

Of course what I would choose is only my interpretation of the best route to an image - there is no 'correct' route to the final image only choices and trade offs

S

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 09:07 AM
After all the theoretical talk I had to open up the file myself in Photoshop. And I sure can live with the noise, some mild noise reduction applied in CameraRAW and it's totally fine imho.
To come back to the discussion about C1 vs. Adobe, I really think it IS the metadata. In your histo it shows "ISO 0", that's imho the reason for how it's rendered. DNG's that are shot in ISO 200 open up in Adobe overexposed, you have to adjust them to -2 stop to get it back to how it looked in camera, therefore Adobe handles the DNG's as if they are shot ISO800, base ISO in camera.
On this image the highlights are totally clipped and I have to pull back -2 to get your histogram, in other words C1 renders the DNG as if there was base ISO 100 (or 200?) and LR does it "right" ;)

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 09:11 AM
Indeed LR does it right if you believe the mumbo jumbo that the chip is anything but native 200-400

As for the noise, sure you could live with it - maybe a larger scene that was hard to light and the exterior was showing some action critical to the scene

I just dont feel that images where 80% of the image is sitting in the 0-20 region on the histo (at 200) represent fairly what the camera is capable of when used in controlled environments..

I think running off to noise reduction is for emergencies not daily use. As I said most of my stills work I have to add noise

S

Frank Glencairn
01-03-2013, 10:51 AM
C1 can easily lift the file but you enter a world of noise..


1895

For the sake of it, I gave it a try in Resolve, looks clean as a whistle to me.

1901

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 11:08 AM
Indeed LR does it right if you believe the mumbo jumbo that the chip is anything but native 200-400

S

Pardon my ignorance, but if the sensor is really ISO200 and pushed via software/firmware by 2 stops shouldn't there be some clipped darks / lost areas in the lower part of the histo??

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 11:53 AM
For the sake of it, I gave it a try in Resolve, looks clean as a whistle to me.

It depends on intent, Kholis process was much higher key - see his version on the other page.. http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/FullResCold.jpg

Again you say it is clean, could it be cleaner?

S

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 11:57 AM
Pardon my ignorance, but if the sensor is really ISO200 and pushed via software/firmware by 2 stops shouldn't there be some clipped darks / lost areas in the lower part of the histo??

I would suggest that manifests itself in files that you cannot really lighten without inducing noise. My nikon (stills mode) will easily handle one or two stops of under exposure.

Obviously this is all subjective, noise, final look, whatever

Id just say working with a fat file and a toe you can crush is, AFAIK, the normal procedure for dealing with raw images :)

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 12:04 PM
I'm not talking noise here but actual missing data, and I know the old Nikon saying that they can lift 2 stops but in Canon images you cannot without lots of noise :)

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 12:07 PM
My canons and nikons both work fine.

I think we are so far OT as for me to have nothing to further to add.

ETTR (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml), its been known for 10 years, its not, a radical concept, nor is testing or bracketing.

S

Kholi
01-03-2013, 12:29 PM
Okay then... I guess since you're still using my images... xD


AFAIK Kholi lit this shot as part of a camera test, and was in control of the situation.

Run n Gun Short film, as a test bed for me to examine how to work with the camera in a minimalist setup. Thus, results driven.



I would suggest this situation shows the limits of just using zebras at 100 to asses exposure..

I didn't use zebras to assess exposure, I used zebras as a reference point to where highlights were lost. At 100 percent, that's what I consider zebras. If I were using them for exposure I would've set them within the range of seventy to eighty percent for skin and judged by that.



Yes in C1 you can recover the highlights with no clip wall by taking a negative .61 on the exposure slider..

The whole image behaves exactly as I would expect if it were exposed to the 100 zebra at the window and the internal fill light was too low

1900

Why are you doing this? To me, you're working completely backward from any process I know of. Why aren't you simply setting exposure for subject first (quarter to a half a stop over or spot on depending on if you're in LR or R9) and then dropping highlights by whatever method C1 uses? That brings nearly the entire window back.

That's exactly how I shot it.


Absolutely

In this situation IMO the options were..

-Open up (fstop), live with a blown window (I would have done this in an RnG situation)

In this image, it may have been okay to expose by lens stop. In a cross coverage situation, sequence, etc. within a narrative situation... This is not okay.


-Up the fill light (I would have done this in an drama situation)

"Up the fill light" implies that you have a large unit hanging around somewhere, the power management, etc. We're not talking about a Kino, you're talking about a large source. I think most people in a narrative or commercial environment would consider "up the fill light" much easier said than done.

Realistically, either you keep the window and denoise (or if you're fine with it, keep it), let the window go, gel, or net it.




And would certainly try them both before dimissing the camera as 'needing noise reduction' in all but the most extreme exposure situations.

I didn't say that it would need it in every scenario. If you've got five thousand plus watts, the right units, in a ten by ten by fifteen space you're likely getting a clean image. If you shoot under the sun for most of your work, likely not an issue either.

If you're budgeted very low (or no), and shooting interiors, don't want to see things clipped too harshly, count on it.


After all the theoretical talk I had to open up the file myself in Photoshop. And I sure can live with the noise, some mild noise reduction applied in CameraRAW and it's totally fine imho.
To come back to the discussion about C1 vs. Adobe, I really think it IS the metadata. In your histo it shows "ISO 0", that's imho the reason for how it's rendered. DNG's that are shot in ISO 200 open up in Adobe overexposed, you have to adjust them to -2 stop to get it back to how it looked in camera, therefore Adobe handles the DNG's as if they are shot ISO800, base ISO in camera.
On this image the highlights are totally clipped and I have to pull back -2 to get your histogram, in other words C1 renders the DNG as if there was base ISO 100 (or 200?) and LR does it "right" ;)

They're overexposed, but not clipped. Just a highlight adjustment would do the work on the window.



Indeed LR does it right if you believe the mumbo jumbo that the chip is anything but native 200-400

I'm not sure why you keep saying the camera's native isn't 800. Do you have any evidence to support that it's not?



It depends on intent, Kholis process was much higher key - see his version on the other page.. http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/FullResCold.jpg

Again you say it is clean, could it be cleaner?

S

I don't consider a quarter to a half a stop much higher, but I guess?




Id just say working with a fat file and a toe you can crush is, AFAIK, the normal procedure for dealing with raw images :)

Not rocket science, again. But, what's consistent and obvious here is this...

I would suggest that manifests itself in files that you cannot really lighten without inducing noise. My nikon (stills mode) will easily handle one or two stops of under exposure.


I think running off to noise reduction is for emergencies not daily use. As I said most of my stills work I have to add noise

S

I know that your main experience is stills, with Video Cameras the next.

Neither of which you can completely, accurately compare to this camera or likely any other raw motion picture acquisition system. The FS100 is an AVCHD camera... of course you're getting cleaner results with it... it's doing noise reduction in camera and in compression... At every level, right out of camera, unless you have tons of light, the FS100 should be cleaner. Why are you comparing it to this?

Your stills practice shouldn't be compared to capturing a scene. There are a number of variables in practical shooting that do not apply.

Here's an example, a hypothetical setup: In a situation such as broad daylight, human subject, full body or wide--you can't get a large enough source/bounce to actually take care of things, not even a high contrast moment. Subject meters F11 @ 200 ISO but you want to shoot 2.8~4 split.

What do you do with your camera, as a stills shooter?

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 12:53 PM
K

Neither of us are dumb - you have highlighted a bunch of issues about how fitting and selecting tools and using them is very specific to each operator and their circumstances..

Thats what I found with the Red - such wild variance of opinion (most valid from a certain viewpoint) on the web that ultimately I could only choose if it was the camera for me (it wasnt) by renting it and conducting my own tests

S

Kholi
01-03-2013, 12:55 PM
K

Neither of us are dumb - you have highlighted a bunch of issues about how fitting and selecting tools and using them is very specific to each operator and their circumstances..

Thats what I found with the Red - such wild variance of opinion on the web that ultimately I could only choose if it was the camera for me (it wasnt) by renting it and conducting my own tests

S

Oh certainly, I know you're not dumb.

I setup the situation to illustrate a point. I'm not a photographer, but I think the first thing you would do is reach for the shutter and fix it that way. You can't do that with motion picture. You have to ND. And that's a decent amount of ND, which is going to do what?

Introduce more noise.

It's not the same practice.

As far as exposure:

As shot with a white balance adjustment in LR (cold):
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/lrhigh0.png
Highlight's dragged drastically, -100, no other adjustments:
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/lrhigh100.png

That's all you should have to do, same thing in Resolve, just define high range and drop it. Maybe desat it in Resolve.

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 01:04 PM
Yes photography is easy - no question!

We have the ability to reduce light with fast shutter and/or fill with $500 strobe units that make the power of a $5k HMI look like a torch with a flat battery

We also have 5k 16bit files and an hour to do post on each frame

It sets the bar high on what I want to get from my motion work - is that bad?

Im well aware of the realities of lo-budget video, with a few red heads pissing in the wind and a thin codec camera.. I hope and believe the BMC can take me a step or two closer to my vision than the FS100 -which is great

My opinion was that the Red would not have taken me enough steps for the money, not so the BMC

S

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 01:21 PM
As for the native iso, it is well publicised that changing the ISO in camera does not affect the file, just the meta data - that is very different from a Canikon, which have all sorts of fancy amplifiers that I dont understand, and identical to my Sinar (http://www.ddsiletisim.com.tr/sinar/PDF/Sinar%20eMotion%2054LV%20Digital%20Back.pdf), and Kodak (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/cameras/kodak-dcs.shtml) which everone here is too young to have owned/struggled with. Such cameras just use headroom/noise floor to present enough DR to be considered variable ISO (by the publicity department of the maker)

So the camera has no native ISO or has a variable ISO or whatever you want to call it

You might choose any phrase you want..
'its a noisy 1600 camera'
'its a crystal clean 200 camera'
'its a middling 800 camera'
'its a camera with a variable ISO and noise and headroom trade offs'

Id just take the crystal clean option whenever I had enough control to make that happen

S

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 01:32 PM
Of course it's crystal clean, because you take the native ISO 800 image and pull down two stops! That way you crush all the noise...
Just like ISO 160 and so on is cleaner in Canon's because it's a ISO 200 with 1/3 pulldown

Kholi
01-03-2013, 01:34 PM
Yes photography is easy - no question!

We have the ability to reduce light with fast shutter and/or fill with $500 strobe units that make the power of a $5k HMI look like a torch with a flat battery

We also have 5k 16bit files and an hour to do post on each frame

It sets the bar high on what I want to get from my motion work - is that bad?

Im well aware of the realities of lo-budget video, with a few red heads pissing in the wind and a thin codec camera.. I hope and believe the BMC can take me a step or two closer to my vision than the FS100 -which is great

My opinion was that the Red would not have taken me enough steps for the money, not so the BMC

S

Now we reach an agreement. I also don't think Photography is easy, it's easy to just take a photo but a good photo? I dunno. With movies you can hide a lot of upsetting and sometimes forced choices with audio, cutting, etc. Photos? All the time in the world to stare at it.

You may or may not find Blackmagic ideal, but you definitely set the bar pretty high for yourself. xD I don't think it's wrong to want that kind of fidelity and clarity in motion picture, just that I'm not sure if you're gonna get it from this camera. I do think it's miles better than most everything out there and I currently would rather shoot with this camera than Epic, personally.

Dragon might be the kind of still image but motion picture quality you're referring to, we'll see.

Here's another DNG, one that's more along the lines of a ton of light in a small composition:

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B8-f-XPnmOp6OHBfRGJRckkxQUE
http://www.campcomet.com/stills/rs/sk_1k_lr.png

That's 1K worth of Tungsten light less than two feet above her head, and I forgot the dimmer so had no choice but to use it as is. It's diffused by the chimera of course, so lose about a stop from that 1K, the rest of the work in the background's being done by a 4x4 4up 4ft. The shot's fixable, but not ideal because it's overlit IMO, but that's what happens when you just throw tons of light at a composition without the grip gear to back it up.

I would've rather have had the dimmer.

Wish there was always more light and more grip gear, but it's just not the case. =T

The FS100 would've killed most of the fine grain, mimic the noise reduction and you get similar results.

To me, though, the noise is fine and in motion it's pretty nice.



Of course it's crystal clean, because you take the native ISO 800 image and pull down two stops! That way you crush all the noise...
Just like ISO 160 and so on is cleaner in Canon's because it's a ISO 200 with 1/3 pulldown


AS well, if you're rating the camera at 200 and you're actually getting solid exposure of COURSE it'll be clean. You're throwing a ton of light at it at that point.

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 01:36 PM
Of course it's crystal clean, because you take the native ISO 800 image and pull down two stops! That way you crush all the noise...
Just like ISO 160 and so on is cleaner in Canon's because it's a ISO 200 with 1/3 pulldown

You do understand that an 800 canon file is different from a 200 canon file, whereas with the BMC there is no difference at all?

S

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 01:41 PM
You do understand that an 800 canon file is different from a 200 canon file, whereas with the BMC there is no difference at all?
S

Yes sure, I understand that after some learning and researching. The point is Blackmagic rates the sensor iso 800, so if you start with that as "the real setting" if you render it as if it is iso 200 you're bringing the exposure down 2 stops and clearing alot of noise, like Canon does in the iso 160 (but only 1/3rd).

But, you lose 2 stops of dynamic range! Because IF the sensor is best/rated at iso 800 (like Blackmagic claims) you'll get the full 13 stops dynamic range with iso 800 and lose 2 by going iso 200 or 1 by pushing to iso 1600

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 01:41 PM
I also don't think Photography is easy,

Of course all art in infinitely hard.

But last week I shot a job on a windy cliff a mile from power in a super backlit sunny situation.
It was a farily simple still with my Qflash (http://www.qtm.com/index.php/products/qflash) controlling contrast, but had it been a motion interview we would have struggled with everythign from wind noise, ND, fill light, image stability etc - it would have been a total horror of a job. On that basis I consider video to be less easy.

S

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 01:53 PM
But, you lose 2 stops of dynamic range! Because IF the sensor is best/rated at iso 800 (like Blackmagic claims) you'll get the full 13 stops dynamic range with iso 800 and lose 2 by going iso 200 or 1 by pushing to iso 1600

Yep, totally true, but DR is defined as the point at which the S/N ratio in the shadows becomes unacceptable to you the the user or your client. (or by more complex methodologies (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Film_speed))

My suggestion is that the factory 'spec' (driven by the marketing department) of the BMC (like the Red, like the Sinar, like the canons at 6400) maybe a little optimistic

S

Kholi
01-03-2013, 02:00 PM
That was the wrong DNG, Fixed.

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 02:07 PM
Seems about right :)

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 02:19 PM
jpg mush - the uncompressed originals look a pile better.
1902

nickjbedford
01-03-2013, 03:07 PM
Yes sure, I understand that after some learning and researching. The point is Blackmagic rates the sensor iso 800, so if you start with that as "the real setting" if you render it as if it is iso 200 you're bringing the exposure down 2 stops and clearing alot of noise, like Canon does in the iso 160 (but only 1/3rd).

But, you lose 2 stops of dynamic range! Because IF the sensor is best/rated at iso 800 (like Blackmagic claims) you'll get the full 13 stops dynamic range with iso 800 and lose 2 by going iso 200 or 1 by pushing to iso 1600

Actually if you still expose right up the clipping point using the zebras your file is exposed correctly and you're merely rating the DNG exposure as 2 stops under what the file has actually recorded. You can rate it as ASA 200 and still have a properly ETTR exposed file with no loss in dynamic range.

Kholi
01-03-2013, 03:09 PM
Actually if you still expose right up the clipping point using the zebras your file is exposed correctly and you're merely rating the DNG exposure as 2 stops under what the file has actually recorded. You can rate it as ASA 200 and still have a properly ETTR exposed file with no loss in dynamic range.

Exactly. You'd be shoving a ton of light into the frame if you rate at 200 and you've managed to overexpose or even expose properly.

I like the idea of rating it at 400 and nailing exposure across the board but I still need more time to work with the camera to decide. Soonish.

nickjbedford
01-03-2013, 03:24 PM
Kholi, I see no issue with the frame in question and I'm an OCD strobist photographer who understands the ins and outs of raw. I don't have any issue with a window going hot. It's a creative choice. Do we want the outside to appear bright? Do we want the outside to appear overcast and dark? If you want the former, then that exposure is how you would achieve it.

I shot a wedding recently and I used the bright outdoor source as my indoor light source and rarely used flash. It meant the windows were blown, but it looks bright and vibrant and acted as a back & key light to almost everyone in the room. Granted, this is photography, not cinematography, but I've seen this done in feature films many times.

Example...

http://img9.imageshack.us/img9/8964/20121208astracharleswed.jpg

Kholi
01-03-2013, 03:36 PM
Solid points, Nick.

A key should look like a key unless intended otherwise for mood. In fact, that's exactly why I didn't want that window to go, it's supposed to be a more gloomy/horrorish type deal. If it were actually gone then I would have had to resort to the grey/white highlight look.

The ms to the cameras range and knowing what look I needed, I've got a choice and the look I wanted pretty much in camera.

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 03:59 PM
Actually if you still expose right up the clipping point using the zebras your file is exposed correctly and you're merely rating the DNG exposure as 2 stops under what the file has actually recorded. You can rate it as ASA 200 and still have a properly ETTR exposed file with no loss in dynamic range.

Yes sure, your file is right, but lets say your meat-part of the image is overexposed now and you have to rate the dng to iso200 to have the right exposure on your subject. You bring it down 2 stops and so you crush 2 stops in the darks.

Or am i missing something? No camera means only theoretic talk :(((

morgan_moore
01-03-2013, 04:17 PM
even if you are at 200 you still have the exposure sliders..

S

nickjbedford
01-03-2013, 04:23 PM
Yes sure, your file is right, but lets say your meat-part of the image is overexposed now and you have to rate the dng to iso200 to have the right exposure on your subject. You bring it down 2 stops and so you crush 2 stops in the darks.

Or am i missing something? No camera means only theoretic talk :(((

Yes you are missing something. When you overexpose by a stop or 2 but your raw file is still not clipping then bringing back the exposure crushes the noise. This a Good Thing™. That's what John Brawley has been suggesting all along (and with great results under his belt).

If your noise floor is within the first 2 stops, then balancing the exposure by underexposing in post by 2 stops will almost entirely remove the noise.

You can either expose as you might on a video camera (+0 EV) or overexpose just under clipping point and clean your image up with less noise after crushing the exposure back to what it would be.

Wuudi
01-03-2013, 04:30 PM
Ok, yes what i've missed was that you can't display all stops in an 8bit delivery file anyway so crushing the noiseblacks sounds fine, right.

As said, no camera just theory sux

Deggen
01-03-2013, 04:42 PM
The blown out windows reminded me of the shining, in the main hall. I seem to remember them saying on the extra features that the effect was created with 1 million watts of lighting.

This is the best still of it I could find on the internet:

1905

nickjbedford
01-03-2013, 05:39 PM
Ok, yes what i've missed was that you can't display all stops in an 8bit delivery file anyway so crushing the noiseblacks sounds fine, right.

As said, no camera just theory sux

Yeah, I'm generally getting sick of only being able to theorise how the camera works based on other people's use. I want to shoot and practical..ise all this theory!

John Brawley
01-03-2013, 08:28 PM
To be sure we're using the 100% zebra idea to get the results we want....

We as DP's use the 100% zebra to indicate true sensor clipping where detail becomes unrecoverable.

We don't as DP's let the camera decide the exposure for us which is what happens when you hit the IRIS button. In FILM mode, it will drop the exposure so that nothing clips at all. Mostly this will give you underexposed images.

Just because an image loads into your favourite DNG workflow looking blown doesn't mean it's OVEREXPOSED. If you've shot it to protect the highlights using the "sensor clipping" indicator above, then your highlights will be there.

Think of it as a top down approach. Setting an ISO and using light meters and thinking in terms of ISO etc is a middle approach where you're setting your exposure in the middle of the scene's contrast so that it goes up and down from a mid point.

What 100% zebra does is pin the exposure to the top end...to highlights....and lets the rest of the scene exposure fall below that.

Now you need to be smart about it. You're a DP. That's what you're doing. Some highlights SHOULD clip. You'll also have to decide which highlights you'll "let go". So you're not slavishly following the zebra and not letting anything clip. You're deciding what's important and using the zebras to show you the point of no return in highlights.

jb

For just about every other camera this idea doesn't apply to exposure because very few cameras allow you to sail so close to the wind with exposure. Most cameras, even technically not overexposing at clipping would have a hard time recovering detail and colour information at near clipping. For example, on an Alexa in ProRes, even though it's nearly impossible to reach exposure clipping, I would never put skin tones up that high. The BMCC has a very "linear" response even though there is a curve applied there...

Babyak
01-04-2013, 12:18 AM
I used the above method on this shot and it worked well for me. First day with bmcc :) I think the bit about actually shooting with the camera vs theorizing how to shoot is the best advise. Although I know that is not possible for most. :/

https://vimeo.com/56736049

morgan_moore
01-04-2013, 06:17 PM
REF ISO values. I noticed this in another thread from someone who appears to really know what they are talking about.

Seems that C1 ignores that value, and is 'proof' that changing ISO in the camera does 'nothing'

As for my concept that rating the camera a 200/400 (where possible) will be cleanest and most flexible, well Ill leave that for people to work out.



Np. You should definitely try both Adobe Camera RAW and Ginger HDR, test for yourself, and decide which one's better. I'm biased, of course. (-:

But I'd keep in mind that most of what Adobe Camera RAW "recovers" from the highlight is good data that was previously thrown away. In the DNG files there is a tag (0xc62A) called "Baseline Exposure". In the Afterglow shot #1 it was set to 2.4. That means that when you open the file, Adobe Camera RAW is increasing the exposure by 2.4 stops, which throws away that highlight information. So when you drop the exposure or enable highlight recovery there isn't some magical technique that recovers those highlights. Rather, it's just giving you the data that was already there. And it seems to vary by ISO. So the 5th shot (with the sparklers) is set to 3.4.

I have a different approach. Rather then playing a little game of "guess the actual exposure of your image", Ginger HDR just gives you the full range, and always gives you the fully recovered highlights. Then you can tweak it with levels, curves, etc. If you really want me to apply that exposure to the image, that's possible if enough people ask for it.

BTW, there is nothing wrong with Adobe's approach. Technically, Adobe's approach is correct and my approach is wrong. The DNG file says "bump the exposure by 2.4 stops" and so Adobe Camera RAW does what it should do. But you guys are sophisticated enough to understand the value of recovering your highlights.

Kholi
01-04-2013, 06:24 PM
John Brawley's been saying this since the beginning... haha. Not sure what's different about what Hable's saying.

In Resolve, BMD FILM, it shows you exactly what you shot. There isn't an exposure bump or decrease, it's exactly what you saw on the LCD as long as you're using BMD FILM. That's how I would rather work with my material, and one of many reasons why I prefer Resolve 9 even though some steps take a few more clicks than LR, C1, ACR.

morgan_moore
01-04-2013, 06:32 PM
Out of interest do the zebras move when you change the ISO on the camera?

S

Kholi
01-04-2013, 06:37 PM
Out of interest do the zebras move when you change the ISO on the camera?

S

No. Another thing John's been saying for the last year almost. Haha.

The image on the screen is just a reference. It's good to have for many reasons, mostly rating the image.

Your comment about 400/200 will be the best to rate it for a clean image. Of course it will be... that means you're feeding it more light.

John Hable
01-04-2013, 07:42 PM
John Brawley's been saying this since the beginning... haha. Not sure what's different about what Hable's saying.

In Resolve, BMD FILM, it shows you exactly what you shot. There isn't an exposure bump or decrease, it's exactly what you saw on the LCD as long as you're using BMD FILM. That's how I would rather work with my material, and one of many reasons why I prefer Resolve 9 even though some steps take a few more clicks than LR, C1, ACR.

One question though since I don't have the camera. When you shoot with ProRes/DXnHD, does the pro-res file clip at the point displayed on the screen? In other words, if you shoot in ProRes at 800 ASA, are you throwing away 2.4 stops of highlight information?

Kholi
01-04-2013, 08:13 PM
One question though since I don't have the camera. When you shoot with ProRes/DXnHD, does the pro-res file clip at the point displayed on the screen? In other words, if you shoot in ProRes at 800 ASA, are you throwing away 2.4 stops of highlight information?

ProRes' recorded in a LOG space, if you're near-to-clipping in ProRes it'll be a different experience balancinghighlights. But what you have is what you get. It's up to you or your colorist to make that work, and ultimately up to you as the shooter to make that decision.

I think you may be using the wrong term "throw away". If it's not clipped, it's not thrown away, it's just exposed very brightly. With the DNGs, no matter where what program maps the highlights to, if you use the Zebras properly (highlights at the ragged edge of clipping) then no data has been thrown away no matter what the program is saying.

It's there, whatever program you're using is interpreting it one way or another. In C1's case, it ignores the algorithm that you've pointed out. IN Resolve's case, it looks exactly as shot, no over or underexposure (when using BMD Film), in Lightroom's case it appears to be over by two stops.

In all cases, as far as DNG goes, nothing has been lost or thrown away.

John Brawley
01-04-2013, 08:28 PM
The zebra always shows sensor clipping, no matter your ISO or record mode (film / video) or record codec.

The zebra also works in linear space so that's also why it behaves differently to other zebras which tend to work in 709 space or not at all properly (like RED)

The ISO settings only change the way the files is viewed on the back of the screen in DNG recording and if in ProRes, it changes the curve recorded.

Changing the ISO doesn't change your sensor exposure. If something is just clipping at 800 ISO, it will still be just clipping at ISO200. What will change in ProRes or DNx is that the bottom end will crush or lift.

The sensor always shoots at the same ISO. No matter if you agree with BMDs view that it's 800 or not is up to you. But changing the ISO won't change what is happening at the sensor level.

This is why I prefer to use in camera tools like this instead of a light meter at ISO 800 for exposure. I can tell immediately what's clipped and what's not. That's more important to me than where to position the meat of the exposure.

What I do now is look at what's clipping via zebra, then putting the display mode into VIDEO you'll get a good sens of what looks right. When it's super bright, like the recent beach footage I shot, I'll drop the ISO so that The on-camera DISPLAY looks better and is easier to judge by.


JB.

yoclay
01-04-2013, 08:36 PM
The zebra always shows sensor clipping, no matter your ISO or record mode (film / video) or record codec.
.

to be more clear, it only properly shows clipping if you put the Zebras at 100% (White). However, it also possible to set a zebra at an even lower level than clip, such as 70% for example.

John Brawley
01-04-2013, 08:49 PM
Well here's the thing.

My understanding is that because it's linear the Zebra levels don't relate to IRE.

In other words, 70% isn't 70% of your dynamic range.

So in linear, it's like the opposite of LOG. If there was a 50% value then it would be 1 stop less exposed than what it shows at 100%.

The reason they have chosen this idiosyncratic zebra behaviour is because it kind of overrides all view, monitoring, codec options and will always tell you where that value is no matter how your exposiing, rating and shooting. Which is kind of what the camera does.

Unlike a RED where you can change and influence the way a zebra performs depending on how you rate the ISO, even thoughts always shooting the same base ISO.

That's why I say it's a linear zebra. It's also really only good for showing you clipping or near clipping.

If they were to make it behave like normal zebras you expect, you might end up getting into trouble and judging exposure based of a curve LUT as opposed to what you're doing at the sensor level.

This is also why you can so accurately expose to right. Your absolutely can tell when the sensor is clipping or not.

It's kind of like a really fine highlight zebra.

The old TV rule was to put skin tones at 70% but you're actually putting them a lot higher if you use this rulewi is zebra on the BMCC.

JB.

morgan_moore
01-05-2013, 02:33 AM
Im just a little baffled why people (excluding you) keep getting the meat at 20 (in C1) and IMO 'noisy' files therfore

Kholis image that I took apart, I would have most likely let the window just blow (given a minimal or no lights budget) looking to some meat on her skin

Where would you put the zebras then (assuming they were set at 100)?

S

Kholi
01-05-2013, 02:43 AM
Im just a little baffled why people (excluding you) keep getting the meat at 20 (in C1) and IMO 'noisy' files therfore

Kholis image that I took apart, I would have most likely let the window just blow (given a minimal or no lights budget) looking to some meat on her skin

Where would you put the zebras then (assuming they were set at 100)?

S

Well, you should know that it's pretty easy to get a lot of light when you shoot exterior daylight. I dunno, it seems like a very easy concept to grasp... but, you're getting lost on that? I'm trying to figure out where the hang up is on this very basic principle.

I made a conscious decision to keep the window, for a very good reason. It fits the tone/mood to have it look gloomy versus lost and bright. Had you lost the information, the only thing you could do about it would be to mute the highlights, turning out a weird grey tone. So, well, basically your decision or choice is irrelevant because you didn't shoot it thus you have no context.

That's what it's about, what choice you make within your means/range. You can disagree with that choice, but you will always be wrong because you didn't shoot it, if that makes sense.

morgan_moore
01-05-2013, 02:57 AM
Ive said pages before that there are no rules, as long as the shot works for you or your client its a great shot.

(I only questioned the image as a 'camera test', which I would do in a situation where I could manipulate many variables - but that was obviously not the test you were doing)

I just asked where JB would have put the zebras in the situation where he was happy to blow the window

Blown windows happen to be my trademark! (apart from commercial jobs for hotels/real estate)

As for the total sensitivty of the camera.. I have no interest in the EF version, because I wont get the Tstops I think I will need, I think 2 will be the norm for INT/Shade, I think only the MFT version will work for me mixed with the 12 and 17 voigts, Im good at the longer end with 28/2 50/1.4 80/2 I could do with a 24 past 2.8 but im not made of money, I also have a few lights and am happy to compromise on the noise floor on occasion.

S

iunknown
01-05-2013, 03:13 AM
OK,
gave it a go with earlier advice in this thread. Can't get the image to look as good as lightroom (saving the highlight the way LR does). Does C1 handle 20,000 images without crashing? Right click, new window and flip between the two.

resolve
http://fiskephotography.smugmug.com/Other/resolve/27412483_BvDbML#!i=2305404333&k=FfH73W6&lb=1&s=A

lightroom
http://fiskephotography.smugmug.com/Other/resolve/27412483_BvDbML#!i=2305404318&k=svL9sPv&lb=1&s=A

morgan_moore,
if you let the windows blow, why shoot with the BMCC? Grab a 5d mark III and do it. The whole point of a raw video camera is to get more dynamic range. The noise is filmic and looks great, or can be eliminated with dark energy, etc.


To the original question, are the non-resolve raw photo processors better programs? Does anyone have the skill in resolve to match what one can do in LR (without using the qualifier)?

morgan_moore
01-05-2013, 03:23 AM
Id say C1 is pretty stable, but 20k images - I cannot comment.

I think Resolve is the way to go as its designed for the job.

Why a BMC? Well
- I have those real estate jobs where I really want to hold the view outside with the smallest light budget possible.
-Im interested in car and motion shooting where the exposure may change during a shot and need ramping in post.
-In general I cannot get on set colour within 5% of final, so im looking to bend colour in post and an H264 cam does not give me that
-I think all other (affordable) cameras are soft compressed blurro vision
-Ive been doing RAW for 10+ years and just cant get nice colour from 8bit cams (given my on set resources)
-I have some clothing/product clients where total colour accuracy is critical, I beleive raw will help this - we have established colour flows for stills
-I shoot nikon stills and on jobs where Im doing both need comparable DR
-My FS100 is too sensitive and a PITA on EXT shoots - I often work at the beach
-Its £1700 !
-Its light enough to rig unlike a scarlet/R1
-Its small for rigginh
-its got proper connectivity unlike DSLRs
-it will fly on my steadicam Pilot
-you can ramp exposure/c-balance on long steadicam shots
-it has enough DOF to work on a steadicam without a radio focus and puller
-I like the idea of giving canon/nikon/sony a poke in the eye for holding us to ransom with dumb cameras and incremental upgades
-its got enough 1/4 points for a solid mount, unlike a DSLR
-its got enough DOF to hold focus on moving shots
-its got little enough DOF to look 'cinematic'
-thin H264 (from other cams) footage will not have archival/stock value
-4k means I would have to re-computer -its too heavy for me right now
-2.5k gives a little wiggle room for 1080 delivery
-the files upscale well to 4k
-Red cameras have no cheap pro res option
-Sony cameras have no cheap raw option
-canon C500 is overpriced and has not cheap raw option
-canon cameras dont swap from PL to EF
-it will be a great Bcam for many years
-all my accessories are 100% compatible (unlike red)



S

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 03:53 AM
The zebra always shows sensor clipping, no matter your ISO or record mode (film / video) or record codec.


That's the reason why the talk about you rate the sensor only iso 200 in your shootings contradict with the 100% zebra exposure mode. Either you say it's iso 200 and expose
the middle part as it is iso 200 or you use the 100% clipping mode. That way you get no clipping but then it's not about iso200 rating-exposure mode but the get everything with no clipping.

It's up to you then balance the indoor light to the just-not-clipping window's. Imho this has nothing to do with how the sensor is rated but more with the lightning ratio window:inside.
And it was Kholi's choice to not throw that much light to the talent in that indoor scene...



Changing the ISO doesn't change your sensor exposure. If something is just clipping at 800 ISO, it will still be just clipping at ISO200. What will change in ProRes or DNx is that the bottom end will crush or lift.
The sensor always shoots at the same ISO. No matter if you agree with BMDs view that it's 800 or not is up to you. But changing the ISO won't change what is happening at the sensor level.*


The raw file will always be the raw file so in theory all the iso changes is wich part of the 12-bit raw file get's mapped into your screen. Comes back to what I said above when doing a indoor:window scene it's a matter of lightning ratio and well everybody for himself should judge what noise for him is an acceptable noise floor.

As for Prores I highly recommend David's posting about protune and linear/log-curve http://cineform.blogspot.it/2012/10/protune.html

Edit: Shouldn't there be some highlight clipping at ISO1600 tough John?

dcloud
01-05-2013, 04:43 AM
Cant wait to get ahold of this cam cuz i dont know who has the right answers here. Ill find it out myself

Frank Glencairn
01-05-2013, 04:58 AM
Normally I would say - stop talking theory and go out shooting.
But that would be cruel, regarding the delivery situation.

But really guys, as I said - you make it way to complicated.
Like it or not, you have to forget most of the stuff you learned about exposing.

Sensor, zebras, color science, curve (almost linear), post - that all behaves absolute different (in a good way) to any digital camera I ever used.
Just trust the camera and your Zebras and you are golden.

And as expected, if you have a situation with 25 stops of DR, of course you have to make decisions.
Raise the fill (if you can) or let some parts blow to hell - whereby the BMC blows in a nice way.
It was always like that on any camera in the universe. But now you have more room to play with.

Frank

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 06:30 AM
Yes I think all this iso200/iso800 talk in the end is personal preference. You have to test the camera and define for yourself what's the noisefloor you're comfortable with. That way you can then decide if the critical parts of the image are still in your good zone or if not you have to sacrifice some highlights....

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 06:36 AM
@Frank:
One more question regarding your workflow. You used Cineform at the beginning, are you still using Cineform Raw (maybe with that flat curve) or do you do everything in Resolve now directly with the DNG's?

Frank Glencairn
01-05-2013, 08:43 AM
I did a lot in Resolve recently, cause I want to learn it (still learning something new every day).

So yeah, Cineform was a bit on the side for now.

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 09:22 AM
But you could use Cineform in Resolve with the new hack and that log-curve tip from the forum, right?

Frank Glencairn
01-05-2013, 11:31 AM
Haven't tried, but as far as I can see, it should work.

Need to do some tests, when I have some time on my hands.

John Brawley
01-05-2013, 11:49 AM
That's the reason why the talk about you rate the sensor only iso 200 in your shootings contradict with the 100% zebra exposure mode. Either you say it's iso 200 and expose
the middle part as it is iso 200 or you use the 100% clipping mode. That way you get no clipping but then it's not about iso200 rating-exposure mode but the get everything with no clipping.

I'm sorry but I really don't really understand the point you're making.

I consider the camera's ISO to be a constant. I don't even think about changing it for exposure. I don't rate the camera at anything. I just leave the ISO at 800 and look at what the images and exposure tools tell me.

It's just what it is, whatever that number notionally is. That number doesn't really mean anything to me either because I don't use light meters to set exposure. They aren't relevant to the way digital cameras work. I get a far more accurate measure of exposure using other tools.

I know that If I like what I "see" on the back of the camera when using the VIDEO display LUT then I can grade it even better than that when I get the DNG's into Resolve. I know where clipping occurs. I'd ideally love a second black clipping zebra to tell me where unrecoverable black is but I can guess that for now.



Edit: Shouldn't there be some highlight clipping at ISO1600 tough John?

No. The highlights clip at the same point as ISO 800. The blacks and mids are greatly lifted though.

Think of ISO as a floating LUT for the RAW......

jb

jambredz
01-05-2013, 12:07 PM
John..what exposure tools do you primarily use (apart from zebras)

Abobakr
01-05-2013, 01:37 PM
John..what exposure tools do you primarily use (apart from zebras)

yeah, I second that. I would love to know too.

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 02:30 PM
I'm sorry but I really don't really understand the point you're making.
jb

My posting was totally only regarding morgan's rating of the sensor @ iso 200. I meant if he is going to treat it like it's only iso200 he's probably going to expose with traditional methods so that his meat is nicely on the right side of the histo with iso 200 in his head. If you do the 100% zebra clipping method of course it has nothing to do with what iso you believe the sensor is rated...

Isn't ISO1600 a linear 1 stop push? That should move something into clipping I meant but sure if it's a log adjustement it will compress the highligthts. I just thought it's linear...

Kholi
01-05-2013, 02:35 PM
Wuudi, I think in ProRes you're right but i"m not sure.

RAW, John has come up with the best blurb for it: think of the ISO as a floating LUT, or a viewing LUT, as it changes nothing about the DNGs.

So when I say "rate it at 400" I mean I'll likely look at the screen at 400 and light as if it's 400, but nothing really changes other than how much light I feed the camera. And what I see in Resolve 9 should be the way I shot it, which is the way I want to work with this footage.

Wuudi
01-05-2013, 03:54 PM
So when I say "rate it at 400" I mean I'll likely look at the screen at 400 and light as if it's 400, but nothing really changes other than how much light I feed the camera. And what I see in Resolve 9 should be the way I shot it, which is the way I want to work with this footage.

Yep I would say experience with the camera is the way to go. Trying it out and seeing for yourself how the material turns out in resolve. If the noise you're getting in the result is something you can live with you know how to shoot. If not, next time up that indoor light..

Too bad we can't do this any time soon :(((

dcloud
01-25-2013, 05:08 AM
After a while with the camera, i now understand how exposure works in the camera.

I always keep the display on video mode. Its the best guide you have for lowlight.
Zebra for daylight.

Jorge De Silva
01-25-2013, 05:24 AM
After a while with the camera, i now understand how exposure works in the camera.

I always keep the display on video mode. Its the best guide you have for lowlight.
Zebra for daylight.

Yup, best way for sure!

ianim8
01-26-2013, 03:30 AM
Not to derail the topic but anyone remember the days when videographers and colorists were two different worlds :)

Halsu
01-28-2013, 04:08 PM
Isn't ISO1600 a linear 1 stop push? That should move something into clipping I meant but sure if it's a log adjustement it will compress the highligthts. I just thought it's linear...

Hi folks, first post here...

Based on a few very quick tests (i don't have my own BMC yet, but i've had some hands-on time with a demo unit), changes from ISO 800 to ISO 400 and ISO 200 do not affect RAW, but ISO 1600 does. It thus looks like ISO 1600 actually physically ups the sensor gain by 6dB, in other words, is an analogue push up by one step. It brings out more recoverable detail in the shadows, but at the expense of clipping the highlights one stop sooner, plus more noise.

Kholi
01-28-2013, 04:56 PM
Hi folks, first post here...

Based on a few very quick tests (i don't have my own BMC yet, but i've had some hands-on time with a demo unit), changes from ISO 800 to ISO 400 and ISO 200 do not affect RAW, but ISO 1600 does. It thus looks like ISO 1600 actually physically ups the sensor gain by 6dB, in other words, is an analogue push up by one step. It brings out more recoverable detail in the shadows, but at the expense of clipping the highlights one stop sooner, plus more noise.


Really? That sounds kind of off. How did you confirm this? Any way you can relay/post your findings on the BMD official forum for investigation by the engineers?

Welcome ot the site.

Felix
01-28-2013, 05:28 PM
It´s not exactly true what Halsu says. ISO 1600 seems to be different. It opens up 1 stop brighter in ACR but once you put it back 1 stop or push a similar ISO 800 frame 1 stop they´re identical.
I tested this with adam roberts footage.
http://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4269&start=110 (See my post and download Adamys raw files to look for yourself)

It´s definitely just metadata

Halsu
02-15-2013, 03:22 PM
It´s not exactly true what Halsu says. ISO 1600 seems to be different. It opens up 1 stop brighter in ACR but once you put it back 1 stop or push a similar ISO 800 frame 1 stop they´re identical.
I tested this with adam roberts footage.
http://forum.blackmagicdesign.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=4269&start=110 (See my post and download Adamys raw files to look for yourself)

It´s definitely just metadata

Sorry for the long delay with my reply - been very busy...

I did a bit more testing - and what i came up with is that to me it seems that the ISO changes do in fact change the analogue sensor gain before digitizing, and also affect RAW. Starting from the top, ISO 1600 causes a noteworthy change: the highlights clip a bit earlier than with ISO 800 (assuming all other settings remain the same), and there's a bit more detail in the shadows. ISO 400 and ISO 200 seem to use a reduced gain setting, but this does pretty odd things with the highlights, giving worse highlight performance than even ISO 1600 (you'd think it would be the other way around).

ISO 800 seems to be the setting that makes the best use of available bits, spreading the range the widest without clipping or artifacts.

In the low end of the spectrum, the higher the ISO, the more bits are used for the darkest shadows. Reducing ISO pushes the shadows to the low bit zone causing trouble. I wouldn't really use the low ISOs much, if at all.

Here's screen grabs with a very high contrast scene (an out of focus lamp against black background), all shots otherwise exactly the same, but with different ISO, exported with an extremely low midtone contrast, so that neither blacks or whites clip on the export.. If you look at the RGB parade, you will see the clipping with ISO 1600 before pure white, and the odd behavior of the R and B channels with ISO 200 and 400.

All these things carry on to the Prores and DNxHD log files - the codects also add their own flavor to the mix. It appears that DNxHD is better with highlights, Prores with shadows. More on that a bit later...

2366

John Brawley
02-17-2013, 07:34 AM
There are four ISO settings in the BMCC.

What's happening, even in DNG, is that the camera takes the image from the sensor at GREATER than 16 bit, and converts it into a 16 bit linear file. Then for DNG encoding it converts it to 12 bit LOG. For each ISO, BMD have designed a CURVE that is embedded in the DNG header as a kind of reference to the application that opens it. A linearisation table. This tells the DNG application how to *display* the image.

BMD have designed each of the curves at 200, 400 and 800 to be close, but there are really small differences, as you would expect as you shift the exposure offset. There is the same DR, but each curve is going to have small subtle differences. Bear in mind, this is the CURVE that's applied, not what the actual linear 16 bit data is. This is a starting point for the imaging application. Using the application, if it accesses the source file, then you're basically starting from the same point. And yes, it's basically always ISO 800.

Now, with ISO 1600, there is a small difference in the DNG file. It does in fact clip a tiny little bit earlier, and I believe it does this because it puts more of the (log) bits in the shadows, presuming you want more precision in the bottom end. So you have the same DR, but it's now slightly biased towards shadows a bit more and a little more clipped in highlights

The zebras are still accurate, so 100% zebra clipping still represents the slightly reduced clipping point.

These are very small differences we're talking about.

And my understanding is that the 100% zebra is always showing sensor clipping, and that shouldn't change except that at ISO1600, there may be a little more zebra showing up

jb

Halsu
02-19-2013, 08:57 AM
John, is this information confirmed by Blackmagic? To me, based on the tests i have made, it really looks like the ISO changes are actual analogue gain changes, not just gamma adjustments.

John Brawley
02-19-2013, 04:09 PM
The camera doesn't have any amplification at the sensor level. BMD only change where the bits are allocated and to which part of the curve.

JB.

sen1177
02-20-2013, 03:08 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=B7DqtW7LB7g

mrholman
02-22-2013, 01:50 AM
The ISO settings only change the way the files is viewed on the back of the screen in DNG recording and if in ProRes, it changes the curve recorded.

I got everything but that part. Does that mean when we record RAW, we can adjust the iso in post?

That post just helped a ton man! Thanks.

Peter J. DeCrescenzo
02-22-2013, 02:22 PM
I got everything but that part. Does that mean when we record RAW, we can adjust the iso in post? ...

Yes.

Halsu
02-22-2013, 03:24 PM
The camera doesn't have any amplification at the sensor level. BMD only change where the bits are allocated and to which part of the curve.

I'd still like to know if this is officially confirmed to be true by Blackmagic staff? As said, based on my own testing, this really doesn't seem to be the case.

iamjohnsname
04-05-2013, 06:15 AM
I'd love to know how I can un-ruin the footage I have ruined by shooting at 1600.

Based on my tests, the ISO setting is absolutely burned into the image.

This is some of the worst footage I have ever shot because I was under the impression I was only changing the image on my display, not the encoding.

If someone can show me how to slide the ISO back down to 200 or 800 I will be a very happy man!

But all my photography experience should have kicked in and told me: even with RAW photography, an ISO choice is burned into the photo to a certain extent.

Frank Glencairn
04-05-2013, 08:23 AM
I'd still like to know if this is officially confirmed to be true by Blackmagic staff?

This doesn't needs to be conformed to be true by BM staff, cause it actually came from them.
I got the same information as John from the BM guys - straight from the horses mouth, so to say.

iamjohnsname
04-05-2013, 04:03 PM
This doesn't needs to be conformed to be true by BM staff, cause it actually came from them.
I got the same information as John from the BM guys - straight from the horses mouth, so to say.

Boy I hope you're right - but looking at my noisy footage I don't see how the ISO can be changed now. That noise is right there.

If there's a tool in DaVinci I can't find it.

John Brawley
04-06-2013, 12:36 AM
Boy I hope you're right - but looking at my noisy footage I don't see how the ISO can be changed now. That noise is right there.

If there's a tool in DaVinci I can't find it.

The ISO is not baked in.

Your (under)exposure is.

JB.

Ps. The exposure slider in the DNG tab in resolve works in 1stop increments. You can change your ISO there.

iamjohnsname
04-06-2013, 08:46 AM
So what image was displaying on my monitor when I clicked Record? Obviously not the what the sensor saw because that was not underexposed. Certainly not to the extent that this footage is.

iamjohnsname
04-09-2013, 09:48 PM
So is it ever advisable to go to 1600ASA? And likewise, when is it wise to go to 200 or 400ASA?

Halsu
04-15-2013, 01:12 AM
This doesn't needs to be conformed to be true by BM staff, cause it actually came from them.
I got the same information as John from the BM guys - straight from the horses mouth, so to say.

Missed this one ;-)

Based on my practical tests, i simply find it rather unplausible that the ISO change is only a digital gamma / levels adjustment. All the signs in the footage indicate that it's an analogue transformation, as far as i can tell: there are changes in sensor clipping, there changes in noise, all this while neither the highlights or the shadows hit the ends of the digital range. Those symptoms simply should not happen at all with a (properly done) digital adjustment.

Halsu
04-15-2013, 01:25 AM
So is it ever advisable to go to 1600ASA? And likewise, when is it wise to go to 200 or 400ASA?

I'll go 1600 when it's really, really dark, and blowing the highlights out a little earlier is not a problem. You can dig a bit more into the darkness with 1600.

200 or 400 never seem to improve the results as long as the exposure is based on sensor clipping, not the overall look of the image in the monitor (in other words, when shooting for post, not for pretty images on set).

I wish there was a separate ISO (or preview exposure / brightness) setting for monitoring, just like you can preview with video/film gamma without affecting the actual recorded data - proper Expose-To-The-Right film gamma exposure often looks pretty ugly and washed out on the monitor / LCD.

Shooting ISO 200 or 400 can help with this, giving you better looking monitoring, but it seems you lose some of the shadow and highlight headroom by lowering ISO from 800 - in other words, you have a lesser recorded dynamic range.

Frank Glencairn
04-15-2013, 03:15 AM
Yeah, they apply a slightly different curve to the DNGs when using 1600 ISO, to keep noise in the blacks down, that's why highlights react a bit different.

John Brawley
04-15-2013, 03:17 AM
Yeah, they apply a slightly different curve to the DNGs when using 1600 ISO, to keep noise in the blacks down, that's why highlights react a bit different.

Actually, it's a slightly different allocation of BITS, but similar end result.

jb

Halsu
04-15-2013, 03:57 AM
Actually, it's a slightly different allocation of BITS, but similar end result.

As said, practical experiment doesn't seem to support this view.

Neither does theory - re-allocating bits when downsampling the 16 bit sensor data shouldn't really affect visible noise much if at all, except for the very lowest stops in linear files due to quantization errors - each stop has twice as many bits as the previous one in LIN, and there's not many values per stop in the blacks. In any case, to me the blacks and the noise in BMCC seem to be limited by analog sensor noise, not by quantization, because there's not much banding even near blacks.

With LOG, quantization shouldn't be an issue at all, as all stops have the same number of values allocated to them, be they shadows or highlights. Theoretically changing the location of the information within LOG space shouldn't make any difference to the end result as you have just as many values in the low stops as in the high ones.

In highlights, allocation should make even less of a difference, as there are plenty of values between stops in linear (and as said, the same amount across the whole range in LOG).

Summa summarum, in LOG (film) mode, it theoretically doesn't matter at all where you put your blacks and whites, if A) the input range and scaling stays the same and B) if you do not exceed the boundaries of your color space (in other words, digital clip). Unless you run out of values (BMCC files do not seem to), reallocating values should not make any difference whatsoever. As far as i can tell the sensor clipping happens before running out of digital values in all ISO settings. It's not digital clipping but analog.

John Brawley
04-15-2013, 06:09 AM
As said, practical experiment doesn't seem to support this view.

.

There are more than 16b of sensor data that get mapped into 16b linear.

That then gets converted to 12 bit LOG.

I guess you know more than the BMD camera engineers who told me that they don't do analog gain.

jb

iamjohnsname
04-15-2013, 06:19 AM
I am and have been a camera operator for almost ten years. I don't consider myself an expert; especially since I've had to adapt to new cameras every couple of years. So I don't claim to know more than anyone. But I would like to learn as much as I can.

The first time I've ever done a bad enough job that a re-shoot was required was with this camera because I was shooting at 1600 thinking I was getting an acceptable image and it turned out I wasn't. I wasn't even close.

So John B, in the interests of learning, and since you know exactly as much as the BMD engineers who told you about not doing analog gain, is there ever a reason to shoot at anything other than 800ASA?

If there is a setting in Resolve to alter ISO, and if lowering and raising the ASA rating in camera is having a detrimental affect on the footage (whatever that affect may be), wouldn't we just be better off to only ever shoot at 800?

John Brawley
04-15-2013, 07:53 AM
So John B, in the interests of learning, and since you know exactly as much as the BMD engineers who told you about not doing analog gain, is there ever a reason to shoot at anything other than 800ASA?

If there is a setting in Resolve to alter ISO, and if lowering and raising the ASA rating in camera is having a detrimental affect on the footage (whatever that affect may be), wouldn't we just be better off to only ever shoot at 800?

There's so many things that could have affected your situation. Underexposure is something that has caught many people when they first use the camera.

ISO 800 is generally best, but there is a tiny improvement with ISO 1600 in-camera shooting when using RAW (Vs doing it in Resolve with a 1 stop lift).

So ISO 1600 is theoretically better.

Anyone that's shot RAW with RED will have gone through a similar learning curve to know and understand how to get the most out of the camera. The RAW workflow takes a lot to understand and so does GRADING the shot to get the most from it.

When I've seen this kind of underexposure happen before (there was another similar thread a little while ago on here) it's because the screen will tend to show you more than you can grade to and get an ACCEPTABLE image. You can grade it to match, but you won't like it. The blacks will be lifted and there will be noise.

So while you're looking at the image on the back and seeing detail that is there, if you were to grade it the same it will look crap in a proper monitoring environment. The LCD isn't going to give you a good black. That detail is there if you grade it in Resolve, but you won't like what it looks like.

It's also really small, so you're not seeing any of the noise that's there either.

So to answer your question (which I think I already answered in another thread) the ISO can be changed in Resolve. It's the slider labeled "exposure* in the DNG camera tab in the colour correction panel.

Each + or - 1.0 is a single stop So sliding it to the right lifts your exposure by 1 stop.

You can get away with lifting the exposure and with exposing at 1600, but you also have to judge what you're shooting. If there's no detail in the blacks, then you're not going to be able to recover them later without a hit to noise and contrast. This is not like the Canons and Sony's where they will appear to see in the dark.

The sensor likes light. The LCD on the back in low light shows lifted detail in the blacks that IS there, but only if you're happy with milky grey blacks and noise in the grade.

Does that make sense ?

So yes. Shoot ISO 1600. Monitor in VIDEO (not FILM)

jb

iamjohnsname
04-15-2013, 08:25 AM
Thanks John,

That does all make sense, and explains where I went wrong.


it's because the screen will tend to show you more than you can grade to and get an ACCEPTABLE image. You can grade it to match, but you won't like it. The blacks will be lifted and there will be noise.

So while you're looking at the image on the back and seeing detail that is there, if you were to grade it the same it will look crap in a proper monitoring environment. The LCD isn't going to give you a good black. That detail is there if you grade it in Resolve, but you won't like what it looks like....

I suppose that's where I was fooled. I trusted the LCD, which really does produce a nice image on it. I guess it's the push-up bra of LCDs.

In that respect, trusting the histogram and waveform in Ultrascope should be much more reliable? Presumably, the data you're referring to, the almost detail-less blacks, exist at 0% on the histogram? Or is it more severe than that? Is even the 10% level (or higher still?) going to look bad when lifted?


The LCD on the back in low light shows lifted detail in the blacks that IS there, but only if you're happy with milky grey blacks and noise in the grade.

Does that make sense ? It does; but is anyone really happy with milky grey blacks and noise? I think if I can know whereabouts on the histogram my blacks are going to start producing that milky grey noisiness, I'll be much more comfortable and will start to be able to recognise it even without connecting to Ultrascope.

Actually, speaking of Ultrascope, I do get frustrated by the fact that it sees the Focus Peaking as brightness! I was regularly fooled into believing my exposure was higher than it was because the white edges were giving a false reading! Surely that's something that could/should be changed? And perhaps more importantly, if Ultrascope is giving a histogram reading based on that LCD screen with peaking activated, does that mean my histogram reading is actually based on the potential image you described when you said:
the screen will tend to show you more than you can grade to and get an ACCEPTABLE image. You can grade it to match, but you won't like it.? If so, the histogram becomes a little unreliable, doesn't it?

Thanks again for your help,

-- John

John Brawley
04-15-2013, 08:02 PM
In that respect, trusting the histogram and waveform in Ultrascope should be much more reliable? Presumably, the data you're referring to, the almost detail-less blacks, exist at 0% on the histogram? Or is it more severe than that? Is even the 10% level (or higher still?) going to look bad when lifted?



It's more that the LCD screen display technology is what's misleading.

Ultrascope is a far more accurate tool if you're in a position to use it.

It's based on the same 10 BIT 4:2:2 output you get from the HD SDI, so in theory, there's a little more wriggle room with the RAW.

jb

iamjohnsname
04-15-2013, 08:16 PM
It's more that the LCD screen display technology is what's misleading.

Ultrascope is a far more accurate tool if you're in a position to use it.

It's based on the same 10 BIT 4:2:2 output you get from the HD SDI, so in theory, there's a little more wriggle room with the RAW.

jb

I think I understand, but what about the fact that the focus peaking travels over the HD-SDI signal to a monitor as well as through Thunderbolt to falsely influence the scopes? That suggests to me that the scopes are actually reflecting the LCD image rather than the recorded signal. But I am out of my depth here.

And as for the danger area for blacks, can you comment on how low on the histogram I need to be worried about?

Thanks again,

-- John

John Brawley
04-15-2013, 08:24 PM
I think I understand, but what about the fact that the focus peaking travels over the HD-SDI signal to a monitor as well as through Thunderbolt to falsely influence the scopes? That suggests to me that the scopes are actually reflecting the LCD image rather than the recorded signal. But I am out of my depth here.

And as for the danger area for blacks, can you comment on how low on the histogram I need to be worried about?

Thanks again,

-- John

So this is something that is to do with how the monitoring setup works. Focus peaking (and zebras etc) travel over the HD-SDI UNTILL you roll the camera. Then they are turned off. I'm not sure, but I suspect it's the same with thunderbolt. Thunderbolt is like a second HD-SDI output connection.

The point of critical difference though is that we're talking about your subjective assessment of the exposure based on simply LOOKING at the LCD and the inherent limitations of that display technology, Vs the LOG output of the camera with some overlays being displayed with some precision via Ultrascope.

You will have to determine the value you like the blacks to sit at for this camera. it's a very subjective thing and it's why once people have started shooting with the camera, their subsequent shoots tend to vastly improve.

You could set up a low key scene and try a set of bracketed exposures and monitor how the exposure tracks on ULTRASCOPE, the rear LCD and how they end up looking once they go through your post workflow.

Do it in a way so that you can return to the same setup. Once you've done your first set of bracketed exposures, pick the one you think works best in the grade, then return to set and re-asses thAT exposure. look at the LCD and register what you can see when shooting at your desired exposure.

The way the camera hardware is designed you can't simply unpack the focus peaking and Zebra form the output. That's something you'll have to workaround.

jb

Halsu
04-16-2013, 12:25 AM
I guess you know more than the BMD camera engineers who told me that they don't do analog gain.

So, now you're saying it is indeed confirmed by Blackmagic? Why didn't you just say so when i first asked?

I'll take your word for it, but this still leaves me wondering what exactly happens inside the camera - as said, to me the actual resulting images strongly appear as if they are a result of analog adjustments, not digital.

Something odd must be going on with the digital adjustment. The good news is, if this is the case, a future firmware can mend some of the problems seen in the footage (i.e. the highlights that now burn out when switching to ISO 1600 could be saved).

John Brawley
04-16-2013, 12:34 AM
You're obviously missing my sarcasm.

I've asked again.

The engineering team tell me they don't do any analog gain.

You're disagreeing and saying they do. I'm being sarcastic and saying you must know better than they do.

JB.

Halsu
04-16-2013, 12:48 AM
As said, i take your (and their) word for it.

But the behavior of the camera is indeed rather odd in the light of that information. I'm not claiming the camera does analog gain adjustments, i'm pointing out that the footage looks like what one would expect from analog instead of digital adjustments. And that's pretty weird.

Your sarcasm is misplaced - i'm not trying to be a smartass, i'm trying to understand how the tool works, and why i get the results i get.

Frank Glencairn
04-16-2013, 01:27 AM
I think your problem is, that you still caught up in traditional exposure thinking.
I had the same problem when I first got the camera back in September and it drove me nuts for a month,
till John pushed me in the right direction.

After I finally wrapped my brain around it, all is good.

A lot of folks think, oh it's raw and it's uncompressed, so I don't need much light,
cause I can push it around in post like a mad man, without any damage.

You can push it around like a mad man, but only what is there.
If you don't have captured it in the first place (i.e. too less light) - there is nothing to push around,
and you end up with a mess.

You don't "expose" the BMC in that traditional way, your only goal is,
to saturate the sensor as much as possible, cause this sensor wants and needs light.
This must be carved in a granite tablet, that should come with every BMC.

Forget the - what you see is what you get" thing regarding the BMC monitor.
Set your zebras to 100% and make sure they just go away. That's the only thing you can do.
If your shadows are still too low, bring in the lights.
I make sure my shadows don't go below - let's say - 10IRE.
Usually (depending on the material of course) I bring down the raw about one to two stops in Resolve as a starting point.

Hope that helps.

Frank

iamjohnsname
04-16-2013, 01:42 AM
You don't "expose" the BMC in that traditional way, your only goal is,
to saturate the sensor as much as possible, cause this sensor wants and needs light.
This must be carved in a granite tablet, that should come with every BMC.

Forget the - what you see is what you get" thing regarding the BMC monitor.
Set your zebras to 100% and make sure they just go away. That's the only thing you can do.
If your shadows are still too low, bring in the lights.
I make sure my shadows don't go below - let's say - 10IRE.

That all makes total sense, but it does require the connection to the laptop for the scopes, which is so cumbersome compared to a camera that has a histogram visible on its LCD screen (I'd love to know if BMD plans to integrate this feature in the future).

It seems strange that (without the scopes) the camera offers provision for letting you know when you're overexposing but none for when you're underexposing and, in fact, given what John said about the misleading LCD, it actually gives you the false impression that you are NOT underexposing. Likewise, it gives you the impression that you are overexposing the whites, which get very washed out long before the zebras appear, so I guess the LCD is just way off (even though I had it set to 50% brightness).

Kholi
04-16-2013, 01:52 AM
I don't disagree with the post above... it would be interesting to see more exposure tools pop up. Having attempted to make the TVLogic work, and the waveform there DOES help, it's still a rough calculation as far as I can tell.

Things that look okay coming out of the SDI port may not look as nice in post, as far as the noise goes (I know that noise reduction is needed, just pointing this out). IF we're in search of making the tool better, then this is all welcomed discussion as I've lost interest in other camera systems sub Alexa and now the F55 for image acquisition and would LOVE to see these offerings from BMD get better as time goes on, even if that's the next camera and not this one.

I've also sort of finally come to grips with the idea that the numbers are beginning to matter less, if at all. THe image is there, some small issues but, for the most part, it's prime time ready and stomps all over ninety percent of the options that surround it, high and low.

So, it's great to understand it, but at the end of the day numbers... ehhh...

I'm tired.

Frank Glencairn
04-16-2013, 01:59 AM
What Kholi says, the TVLogic with the build in waveform works pretty well for me - also solves the VU meter problem.

I agree, a under exposing feature (black zebra) would be nice to have, but after shooting quite a while with the BMC, you develop a feeling for it anyway, even if looking just at the BMC back monitor, you can tell what is going on.

iamjohnsname
04-16-2013, 02:07 AM
Things that look okay coming out of the SDI port may not look as nice in post, as far as the noise goes (I know that noise reduction is needed, just pointing this out).

That's another thing that stumped me on the exposure front. My whole shoot I was connected to a Sony PVM740 (http://pro.sony.com/bbsc/ssr/product-PVM740/), which looked consistently beautiful. So I'm wary even of the SDI output because of that!

Kholi
04-16-2013, 01:33 PM
What Kholi says, the TVLogic with the build in waveform works pretty well for me - also solves the VU meter problem.

I agree, a under exposing feature (black zebra) would be nice to have, but after shooting quite a while with the BMC, you develop a feeling for it anyway, even if looking just at the BMC back monitor, you can tell what is going on.


This is true. The problem with that is when it comes to rentals. It's hard to explain to people how to use the camera, and people aren't to blame for that. Noone is. It takes a while to adjust to the mentality and when you do, it's like "Oh! NOW I see why this camera is a big deal."

So right now I'm trying to devise a way to make this much easier in conjuction with the TVLogic.


That's another thing that stumped me on the exposure front. My whole shoot I was connected to a Sony PVM740 (http://pro.sony.com/bbsc/ssr/product-PVM740/), which looked consistently beautiful. So I'm wary even of the SDI output because of that!

Yeah, you definitely have to double check yourself, but that's like any medium I believe. I constantly go back and forth when shooting RED as well, and definitely when dealing with any DSLR.

Production Monitors are huge liars xP They make EVERYTHING look amazing.

CaptainHook
04-16-2013, 03:35 PM
If only we could add our own LUTs that would also show the image on your display at say a stop or so 'darker' than what's being recorded.. :D

Frank Glencairn
04-16-2013, 04:02 PM
Should be at lest possible to feed the LUT to a HDLink Extreme for a production monitor on set.
When Resolve 10 comes out it's all easier anyway with the life feature.

CaptainHook
04-16-2013, 04:23 PM
Yeah, but how many people are gonna be shooting on this camera (at this price) with a production monitor and some kind of LUT box? Or tethered to any kind of workstation?

Plus, unless you read a few of these forums, how will you even know you need to do that? (part of Kholi's point)

The idea is this cam is small and portable, and affordable by just about anyone. But for optimum exposure you need to ETTR, seems only reasonable that you can adjust the display (and SDI out) so you can get a sense of what you're shooting. Knowing what you've got is one of the advantages of shooting digital, it's a real bummer to not really have that!

morgan_moore
04-16-2013, 04:49 PM
Simply there should be a histo or WFM representing the Raw and ProRes files

Without one of those really the firmware remains a 'work in progress'

S

iamjohnsname
04-16-2013, 07:15 PM
Simply there should be a histo or WFM representing the Raw and ProRes files

Without one of those really the firmware remains a 'work in progress'

S

That's right. This is the first camera I've owned since my Z1 that doesn't have a histogram built in. Seems like such an obvious omission and to have one by attaching to a laptop really does undermine the portability, and to some extent, the affordability of the camera.

morgan_moore
04-17-2013, 12:18 AM
That's right. This is the first camera I've owned since my Z1 that doesn't have a histogram built in. Seems like such an obvious omission and to have one by attaching to a laptop really does undermine the portability, and to some extent, the affordability of the camera.

..and with raw the DR is beyond what you can represent on a monitor anyway (without a director scaring superflat LUT) so exposure tools are even more critical!

S

Halsu
04-17-2013, 12:42 AM
I think your problem is, that you still caught up in traditional exposure thinking.

No.

What attempted to do was a semi-scientific practical test of what the camera actually does. You can easily repeat it if you wish.

1. Set up an extremely high contrast scene. I used an out-of-focus fluorescent light pointed at the camera, surrounded by black fabric in the background.
2. Set zebra to 100%, ISO to the default 800 and adjust exposure so that only the brightest parts of the light bulb show zebra / clipping.
3. Record this in all the available formats.
4. Adjust ISO to 200, 400 and 1600, record these. Do not touch any other settings. Record in all available formats.
5. Import to your editing software of choice. Make sure you have the right color space (some software may clip blacks and highlights, assuming REC709 input (16-235 in 8 bit RGB terms - you´ll want the full 0-255 scale).
6. Examine the result with scopes for each format.
7. Adjust image contrast so that the blacks and midtones are crushed, and only the highlights are seen at high contrast. Examine the differences visually. Pay special attention to clipping, discoloration etc. on the extreme highlights (in my case, the lightbulb and lamp shade).
8. Same as before, but this thime crushing the highlights and examining the darkest shadows (in my case, black fabric) at high contrast. Pay attention to noise, revealed image detail in the darkest shadows, and banding.

Edit: i'm not exactly sure if Frank's reply was to me or someone else (there was no quote, but his post was directly below mine), so sorry if i replied out of topic.

CaptainHook
04-17-2013, 07:05 AM
Simply there should be a histo or WFM representing the Raw and ProRes files

Without one of those really the firmware remains a 'work in progress'

Sure that would be nice, but for me exposing the camera isn't so much an issue following the 'zebra's method'.. that works great and is simple/fast. I want to be able to see as close to my final while shooting. It's inspiring. Shooting with the thought "i'm pretty sure this will look good once i'm in resolve" is tough (hello shooting on film!). It's even worse shooting Prores where you can't just go down to iso 400 or 200 to get things better on screen.

morgan_moore
04-17-2013, 07:22 AM
It seems to me that the raw shooter without a set of controlled LUTs will never get a great onset experience, because they are 'shooting for post' but it also seems critical that they know the data they are capturing

S