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Any recommended settings for theatre theater stage light filming?

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Stephen Pickering
Any recommended settings for theatre theater stage light filming?
on May 19, 2010 at 3:29:53 pm

I have the HMC40 but I assume the settings will be very similar to the 150. If there is another forum more appropriate please advise.

I just picked up the HMC40 and have a dance recital this weekend to shoot. The lighting is typical theater lighting (but mostly lit from the sides as opposed to the front. We have to film from the back of the auditorium and because of the movement we have to keep manual focus on (to prevent auto focus from going crazy).

We need as deep depth of field as possible but of course the larger f-stop the darker the image. Any ideas of how much I can adjust the shutter speed to allow a higher f-stop? 1/30 looks to be the slowest without ghosting (with the dancers moving across the stage) but is this acceptable? I have recorded some test footage to decide for myself but I would still love professional advice!

Finally, video format. I have two HMC40s with each currently have 8gb cards. If I set the quality for HE1080 60i I get 2.5+ hours of recording. The final output will be standard definition DVD. Is this acceptable or should I pick up more cards and shoot at a higher quality to start with? I would rather not change cards during performance but I can certainly request a 30 second pause if needed.

I know there is a "Low noize" profile which I have not yet looked at but I would really appreciate any basics here! I'm used to be VX2000 which was a little different (and only one quality).

Thank you!
-Stephen


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Noah Kadner
Re: Any recommended settings for theatre theater stage light filming?
on May 19, 2010 at 4:20:01 pm

I'd go 24p that gives you more light per frame and shoot at 1/24 or 1/48. Kick in a little gain as well. With low lighting you either will underexpose or kick in some gain and get noise. If you can't control the lighting then there's not much you can do there. Not an ideal situation.

Noah

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Stephen Pickering
Re: Any recommended settings for theatre theater stage light filming?
on May 21, 2010 at 4:54:26 am

Thank you Noah,
Shooting anything progressive (at least with this camera) changes the file size allot. Instead of 3+ hours with HE1080 60i I get only 49 minutes with PH720 24p. If this is the case I should probably shoot it at 1080 24p for the best quality, right?

I was able to take a look at the test footage and it actually does not look too dark when shooting in the lowest quality (3+ hours) as the lights are pretty hot on the dancers. There is some more noise but it's not bad... should I still stick with 24p (and get more SD cards)? I'm guessing more cards and 24p would be the safest.

Also, there is a "spot light" setting. Is this actually any use? I just came across it but have not had a chance to try it. The low-noize seems to be a little help but not too much.



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