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Author Topic: Very interesting video  (Read 4642 times)
ErikKaffehr
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« on: March 28, 2010, 05:32:53 AM »
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Hi,

This comparison is great: http://www.zacuto.com/shootout

Best regards
Erik
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feppe
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« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2010, 06:42:59 AM »
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That was the most fascinating and insightul film vs digital comparisons I've seen, thanks! While my experience with motion is limited to being a film buff, it was good to see such a test emphasizing real world shooting rather than test charts.

The test compares cine film with dSLRs - so the test setup is very demanding on digital from the get-go. While the beatifully shot video is 35 minutes long, the first 10 minutes is intro and the last 10 minutes is a visual digression which has little to do with the test itself. But in the middle there are two very demanding real life test scenes, and a quick dynamic range chart comparison, all shot with Kodak and Fuji cine film stock, Canon 5DMkII, D7 and another Canon, a Nikon and Panasonic GH1.

Spoilers:

Film beats digital in almost every aspect, but many of the heavy hitting veterans on the clip are very surprised by how close dSLRs are already with film - and some say it's a matter of subjective preference. There are no comparisons between the size, weight and especially the price of the gear used, which would have brought even more weight to that conclusion. And let's not forget that film stock itself is notoriously expensive.

I was shocked to see just how much film outperformed all digital cameras. Dynamic range especially was much superior with both films than any digital camera, in both shadows and highlights, in both real world and test target. The smaller-sensor digital cameras had some pretty obvious compression artifacts and banding visible even on the web video.

I would have expected that the wider dynamic range of still digital would translate equally to motion. Why doesn't it? Is it because cine film is so much better than still film? Because of poor downsampling algorithms to get to 1080p/720p video from 20+ megapixels? Because of choice scene and lighting favors film? Something else?

The take-home message for me is that sensor size matters as does the compression algorithm, and that dSLRs win hands-down in price-to-performance ratio. I think this test will turn even more serious DOPs into digital with dSLRs. The next generation of cameras will be even better, and I keep hoping for added latitude in highlights and lower noise in shadows.
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Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2010, 06:47:58 AM »
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As they said, if the DSLR's were shooting RAW video methinks the gap would be far far closer. These videos are essentially the video equivelent of out of camera jpgs with all that implies.
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feppe
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« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2010, 06:50:54 AM »
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Quote from: Ben Rubinstein
As they said, if the DSLR's were shooting RAW video methinks the gap would be far far closer. These videos are essentially the video equivelent of out of camera jpgs with all that implies.

Good point. RAW video has been rumored for the next generation Canons. I haven't done the math on how much more demanding it would be to the in-camera bandwidth or transferring to card to see how viable such rumors are, though.
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N Walker
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« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2010, 07:05:20 AM »
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Quote from: ErikKaffehr
Hi,

This comparison is great: http://www.zacuto.com/shootout

Best regards
Erik


Also comments from Michael http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....mp;#entry356063
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michael
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« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2010, 07:18:03 AM »
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The bandwidth demands of raw video are huge, and that's even with very significant new compression algorithms.

RED, and other new systems from companies like Ariflex change the game. That's why there are now multi-million features being shot with them, in actual preference to film, by many top Hollywood producers.

Scarlet when it comes out (it's only a year late) will bring the same quality down hand-held size and less than $5,000, the price of a good DSLR.

But you won't have to wait very long. The NAB show in Vegas is now two weeks away. This is the annual show for the broadcast industry. You can count on some real surprises in this area.  

Michael

Ps: You may also find this interesting.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2010, 07:53:33 AM by michael » Logged
Ben Rubinstein
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« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2010, 10:40:39 AM »
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I wonder if the bandwidth requirements of shooting RAW AT 1080i (at the actual hi-def resolution) would be that incredible rather than the RED which I understand is a lot greater resolution. I know a 1D mkIII can shoot at its lowest setting pretty much indefinately (on a 30m/s card) and that is rather larger than 1080 though still jpg. Of course that is 10fps and not 24fps. Methinks it wouldn't be a huge stretch of imagination to assume that at 1080 resolution and with the newest ultra fast cards (tethered would make even more sense) RAW video would be that much of stretch for the near future. Doesn't RAW require less camera processing muscle than jpg?
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Chris Sanderson
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« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2010, 11:04:04 AM »
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To give you an idea of the various rates & sizes of HD video (not 2k or higher!) here are the bitrates and 1 hour sizes:

XDCAM EX: 5.2 MB/sec; 19GB  -  a good 'HD' recording format using GOP compression

ProRes 422:  18.1 MB/sec; 66GB - a good 'uncompressed' editing format

HDCAM 1080 60 fps:  237 MB/sec; 834 GB - a good full resolution 'uncompressed' recording format

Now when you get into the larger 2k, 3k & 4k sizes, the requirements go up from there...

(Thanks to Larry Jordan - THE guru to us video types)

Note: 'uncompressed' actually uses some JPEG-like compression within each frame...so RAW (if truly RAW) is much bigger. But this is where Graeme should chip in...
« Last Edit: March 28, 2010, 11:16:13 AM by Chris Sanderson » Logged

Christopher Sanderson
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Peter McLennan
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« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2010, 03:22:16 PM »
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Quote from: michael
Ps: You may also find this interesting.


"Mixed daylight and candlelight test"  

Gasp.
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bill t.
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« Reply #9 on: April 01, 2010, 12:18:58 AM »
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Look at the first image in that link Michael posted.  There would have been a significant element of risk in lighting that way for film.  Regardless of latitude, the instantaneous WYSIWIG feature of digital really opens up what you can do with lighting, without nightmares about squirming in dailies.

And you can compensate for latitude with lighting.  And even with tons of latitude you still have to fill on exteriors, so just fill a little more with digital.  Latitude is almost a non-issue when you can see exactly what you're getting while you're getting it.
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barryfitzgerald
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« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2010, 08:55:52 AM »
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Enjoyed looking at this video.
Digital has come on a fair bit..but nice to see the old stuff doing so well.
Not sure I agree with the poster above..looking at the way digital was handling the highlights in some of those scenarios it was obvious film was far more pleasing to the eye. (esp the light-bulb shoot)

And this echoes my thoughts with stills photography, the bane of digital is it's poor handling of highlights and sudden loss of detail. It has improved over the years and no doubt will continue to do so. But we're not there yet.

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Pete_G
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« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2010, 09:04:55 AM »
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Quote from: barryfitzgerald
Enjoyed looking at this video.
Digital has come on a fair bit..but nice to see the old stuff doing so well.
Not sure I agree with the poster above..looking at the way digital was handling the highlights in some of those scenarios it was obvious film was far more pleasing to the eye. (esp the light-bulb shoot)

And this echoes my thoughts with stills photography, the bane of digital is it's poor handling of highlights and sudden loss of detail. It has improved over the years and no doubt will continue to do so. But we're not there yet.


Agreed about the hightlights, I was surprised that some of the pros were so forgiving of the digital images. Just for the record though, I recently discovered that The Hurt Locker was shot on Super 16mm, it hadn't struck me at all when watching the film. There is indeed life left in "the old stuff".
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feppe
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« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2010, 04:35:37 AM »
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I noticed there's a follow-up 26-minute clip in the shootout, this time comparing sensitivity. Link.
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Nemo
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« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2010, 09:53:11 AM »
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Quote from: michael
The NAB show in Vegas is now two weeks away. This is the annual show for the broadcast industry. You can count on some real surprises in this area.  

Michael

... mmmm... so stay tuned !!!!!
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Graeme Nattress
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« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2010, 11:27:40 AM »
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Quote from: Chris Sanderson
To give you an idea of the various rates & sizes of HD video (not 2k or higher!) here are the bitrates and 1 hour sizes:

XDCAM EX: 5.2 MB/sec; 19GB  -  a good 'HD' recording format using GOP compression

ProRes 422:  18.1 MB/sec; 66GB - a good 'uncompressed' editing format

HDCAM 1080 60 fps:  237 MB/sec; 834 GB - a good full resolution 'uncompressed' recording format

Now when you get into the larger 2k, 3k & 4k sizes, the requirements go up from there...

(Thanks to Larry Jordan - THE guru to us video types)

Note: 'uncompressed' actually uses some JPEG-like compression within each frame...so RAW (if truly RAW) is much bigger. But this is where Graeme should chip in...

Current RED Ones used our REDCODE wavelet based codec which works directly on the raw sensor data. Data rates range from 28MB/s to 42MB/s. Recording uncompressed raw is relatively easy from an engineering point of view - you "just" need a fast data buss and some very very fast and large storage to record onto. This is the approach Dalsa took, and Aaton are taking for their Penelope-delta. The approach of doing good raw compression is actually very hard because doing good compression is hard. However, it makes for manageable file sizes and workflow. But because some people "want" uncompressed, we're offering a lossless compressed version of REDCODE in the new Epic cameras, but you'll still need a lot of pretty fast storage for that. Then, when you consider we can do 5k at 120fps on Epic, the storage requirements for even REDCODE lossless are enormous, and again the very god REDCODE compression at lower data rates makes complete sense.

ProRes is a JPEG-like codec that offers very good results on HD video in a post production environment, but you're getting similar file sizes at HD to REDCODE at 4K, and moving from RAW to a developed RGB image.

The key thing about compression is that it's not inherently bad, but actually useful and often liberating. That's why we put a lot of effort into REDCODE so to make the RED cameras practical. Now that we have the Epic running in a hand-held "DSLR-like" configuration, it's even more important to have practical recording on-board so that you don't ruin the size / weight advantage with outboard recording.

Graeme
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BJL
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« Reply #15 on: April 15, 2010, 06:09:51 PM »
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Quote from: michael
The bandwidth demands of raw video are huge, and that's even with very significant new compression algorithms.
...
But you won't have to wait very long. The NAB show in Vegas is now two weeks away. This is the annual show for the broadcast industry. You can count on some real surprises in this area.
And one of those NAB announcements illustrates your point about raw video bandwidth needs. The Panasonic 4/3" HD camcorder uses AVCHD format to keep bandwidth needs down, probably necessary for its SD cards to keep up. It also offers an uncompressed output socket, so a higher quality encoding like AVC-Intra could be done off-board, but that would require a higher-end storage system too, like Panasonic's P2 card system. According to Panasonic, including that capacity in the camera itself would be easy enough technically, but would push the price up significantly. Ugly realities like matching prices to what the target market will accept often get overlooked in forum discussions. (Or: there are reasons why some 2/3" formst cameras cost $100,00 or more!)
« Last Edit: April 15, 2010, 07:25:19 PM by BJL » Logged
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