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  • BMPCC and interviews

    I have a couple questions about the pocket camera I'm hoping someone can help me out with. I've tried searching through the threads but didn't seem to find the answers I'm looking for. So I'm in the market for a small camera package for a couple of shoots I have coming up this spring as well as a couple personal projects. The two mains shoots I'll be doing will be mostly talking head interviews in peoples homes, as well as a few out side location interviews. I really like the idea of the pocket camera, small size and powerful codec. I've downloaded some raw dng files and am really impressed with both sharpness and color. I know for interviews the raw recording is over kill. So this leads me to my first question about moire in interviews. How concerned should I be shooting the bmpcc in pro res for interviews? I've read conflicting reports, some say it shows up all the time and others not so much. I know they are developing a Olpf which looks promising but it's expensive and not out yet for the pocket? I really like the fuller look the pocket provides with the high dynamic range but I'm wondering if the trade off is worth it if I used it for interviews and outdoor b-roll of nature. I'm not really concerned with rigging a pocket, I have a sigma 18-35 and would buy a speed booster along with a new sound recorder etc. SO any input would be appreciated. Thanks!

  • #2
    I've just shot my first sit down interview with the pocket. I was a little concerned about moire but didn't end up having any issues. I was using a 5D III as a b-cam and the main issue that I had was that the pocket was so much sharper than the 5D III that I have to sharpen the 5D and soften the pocket a little. Anyway that is kind of beside the point.

    Two things I would suggest with regards to minimising moire and aliasing when shooting interviews.

    First locked off shots always help. I've shot with a monopod and the pocket before and those small movements really show up any moire or aliasing that might be there.

    Second point; shooting raw gives you more options in minimizing moire and aliasing, particularly when you combine it with flexible debayering. I like cineform raw for this reason, you can change the debayer with metadata, i.e. you don't have to re-encode the footage to get a different debayer option. I know that none of the debayer options are quite as good as adobe camera raw but the flexibility is a god send when it comes to moire. The 'advanced smooth' debayer option will get rid of a lot of moire and aliasing issues (at the cost of some sharpness).

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    • #3
      Ben,
      Thanks for the input. I'm curious if you shot raw for your interview? I'm thinking I need at least 1hr of record time, so i'm looking at the 256gig SanDisk Extreme PRO 95mb cards to be able to record an hour of raw footage?

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      • #4
        Watch your fabrics - especially if it's mostly talking heads. Certain textured fabrics will create an unwanted moire or similar noise pattern.
        Also make sure your lighting isn't too hot.
        I'd go pro res HQ for the talking heads. On 64-GB card you can get at least an hour of footage. Otherwise if they tend to go longer just get an external recorder.
        I've never been disappointed with my pocket camera. Hope this helps.

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        • #5
          I had to shoot a bit of ENG style stuff with my BMPCC a while ago. Here's a link. Honestly, ProRes LT is a fantastic codec for ENG so I think you're on the right track. While I've only had one instance of really unfortunate aliasing/moiré, that instance could very well mean re-shoots for you. The Mosaic OLPF ain't cheap but it looks like it's going to a be a really practical, essential piece of gear for me.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by amook View Post
            Ben,
            Thanks for the input. I'm curious if you shot raw for your interview? I'm thinking I need at least 1hr of record time, so i'm looking at the 256gig SanDisk Extreme PRO 95mb cards to be able to record an hour of raw footage?
            No, I shot prores (regular flavor, that gave me 1 hour on a 64 GB card). Here's a frame-

            jose frame.jpg

            I thought I might have trouble with that shirt but there were no issues. The reason I bring up the raw thing is that my understanding of the moire and aliasing issues on the pocket is that they are bayer pattern related (rather than the line skipping issues that you get with older DSLRs). I've been testing the cineform raw workflow. Conversion is fast, file sizes are around pro res HQ and the flexibility of the debayer gives you a chance to fix some of the moire issues that you might run into. I'm thinking this could make it a reasonable way to go for interview type material where I want to ensure the best quality and a reasonable workflow (adobe camera raw conversion takes way too long for this type of thing). But I need to get more recording media before going down this path.

            In the meantime I'll be taking my chances with prores.

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            • #7
              If you want to shoot raw, you could also consider renting a 512GB card: http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/vide...-uhs-1-u3-sdxc

              The 512 is on BM's approved list while for whatever reason the 128 and 256 are not. Though I know some people are using those.

              Just another option. I'm renting a couple of those 512's and a second pocket (surprisingly inexpensive) for a paid job doing a series of interviews next week.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Steve Wake View Post
                If you want to shoot raw, you could also consider renting a 512GB card: http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/vide...-uhs-1-u3-sdxc

                The 512 is on BM's approved list while for whatever reason the 128 and 256 are not. Though I know some people are using those.

                Just another option. I'm renting a couple of those 512's and a second pocket (surprisingly inexpensive) for a paid job doing a series of interviews next week.
                as someone is a similar position as the op, i look forward to any updated info you care to share.

                good luck on the gig.

                be well.

                rob
                smalltalk productions/nyc

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                • #9
                  The two projects I have coming up will be spaced out over a few months, so renting really isn't an option. Also I live in Alaska which makes everything a little more expensive. I'm thinking a 512gig card is the way to go. They're just really expensive and it seems like amazon is out of stock at $620. Think the price will drop or any new cards will be released soon? So from what i've found on the data rate I should expect to get about two hours of raw footage on the 512 cards? Appreciate the input guys, thanks.

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                  • #10
                    Shooting RAW on ENG head stuff seems a bit of an overkill. I just shot some stuff with just ProRes and honestly couldn't tell the difference from HQ. I did a few tests before hand and couldn't see any difference unless I zoomed in 200+ percent. Zero difference in DR and color. Unless you need an extra 1.5+ stop in the highlights, I'd use ProRes instead of raw. Save yourself a bunch of headache and 99.99% of the people that are watching it will never know.

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                    • #11
                      ok last question. You guys have been great. Will this card Transcend 128 GB High Speed 10 UHS-3 work for prores? Says it writes at 60mb. I used it on both my gh4 and nx1 in 4k which worked fine.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by amook View Post
                        ok last question. You guys have been great. Will this card Transcend 128 GB High Speed 10 UHS-3 work for prores? Says it writes at 60mb. I used it on both my gh4 and nx1 in 4k which worked fine.
                        What does the manual say?

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                        • #13
                          Green/Blue Screen BMPCC

                          I have a project to shoot some talking heads with my Pocket and marry them with existing DNxHD185x codex footage. I have to deliver footage with the following specs:
                          DNxHD185x or Apple ProRes HD 422 HQ
                          Video: 1920x1080, 25 fps, Progressive, RGB, 4:2:2, 10 bit, non-drop TC
                          Audio: Uncompressed (PCM or Aiff), 16 bit stereo, 48KZ

                          1. Do I need to shoot in Raw
                          2. Can I get the uncompressed final output?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by amook View Post
                            ok last question. You guys have been great. Will this card Transcend 128 GB High Speed 10 UHS-3 work for prores? Says it writes at 60mb. I used it on both my gh4 and nx1 in 4k which worked fine.
                            60mb/s should be plenty for Prores. I have a couple of Sandisk 45mb/s cards and they all work fine with Prores
                            Vimeo profile
                            VFX Showreel
                            IMDB

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                            • #15
                              Most of what I shoot on my pocket is interviews/talking heads. I have only once had an issue with moire, and it was very minor (my producer didn't even notice). I shoot all my interviews in ProRes for better file sizes, and much faster workflow. I've been extremely happy with the image quality, and the workflow is much faster than my Canon 60D. The only issue I have with the image coming from the pocket is that I have to soften the sharpness and blow out the contrast to match my Canon.

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