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Sachin Desai
need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 23, 2009 at 2:43:21 pm

hello everyone!

I need help for taking the right camera for the shooing.

the final output i need is on film for realising in theaters. so the shooting material we need to edit on FCP with blackmagic multibridge extreme.

we were planing to shoot on our exsiting Sony HVR Z1. but we have problems of focus when we shoot on Sony Z1. we do not want to spend a lot of money on camera. so which would be the best camera and in which format we should shoot. so in minimal cost we can reales the material on film,

thanks


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Rick Wise
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 23, 2009 at 7:30:10 pm

That's pretty much an impossible question to answer. Have you sent your Z1 in for focus check? I'd start there. As for recording formats, Panasonic has gone over entirely (?) to AVCHD, and many other cameras use that codec as well. This causes all kinds of problems in post unless you have a very, very powerful computer and the latest version of your NLE. Workarounds include converting your files to other formats. Do a GoogleSearch for AVCHD Problems and follow the threads and ideas. There's a very complete Wikipedia article on the subject.

If you cannot fix your Z1, then obvious choices include:
--Sony Z5
--Sony Z7
--Sony EX1
--Sony EX3
--Panasonic 200a
--Panasonic 170
--Canon equivalents

Go to the BHPHotoshop website and track down each one for prices and user comments. Do GoogleSearches for reviews.

It is never the camera that makes a great "film." It is the mind and eye behind the camera. You could get a Canon HV40 (tape-based, single chip) for $830 and make a great movie, or a pile of garbage. You could get a Sony EX3 for around $8,000 and make a pile of garbage, or a great movie.

Since you think you will have a film-out for theatrical release, contact the lab that you want to do the conversion and ask their advice. But first, do your homework. Work up your list of potential cameras with the good reasons you might want each, based on everything you can find out about each one. If you go on another fishing expedition with the lab, they will not pay you much attention.

Rick Wise
director of photography
San Francisco Bay Area
and part-time instructor lighting and camera
grad school, SF Academy of Art University/Film and Video
http://www.RickWiseDP.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/rwise
email: Rick@RickWiseDP.com


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Richard Herd
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 24, 2009 at 4:30:22 pm

The American Cinematographer Magazine
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/ac/ac0609/index.php#/66
&
http://www.theasc.com/magazine_dynamic/June2009/toc.php

They're doing a story on covering digital cinematography, especially those designed for film out. They claim the minimum requirements are:
-- 10 bit log
-- 1080p
-- 4:4:4


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Rick Wise
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 24, 2009 at 5:51:06 pm

I hate to disagree with one of my esteemed colleagues, but I am going to do that. You do not "need" 4:4:4 or anything else of that level to make a great movie that can be turned into 35mm film. Agnes Varda shot "The Gleaners" with a consumer SD camera (VX2000) and it came out just fine on film. Many others have put out brilliant looking films shot with similar cameras.

What you do need is the ability to make a great movie. Only way to get there: do it.

Now, if you want the best LOOKING movie possible, then you "need" 4:4:4 etc. But you also need the ability to light and shoot brilliantly.

Concentrating on the technical gear first is not the answer. The first thing to find is a really terrific director -- maybe it's you. The second thing to find is a really terrific DP -- maybe it's you. The third things to find are a terrific production designer, and a terrific wardrobe person. And then, a terrific editor. Etc. Getting key people on board your project is where your energy should go at this point. The choice of gear will follow.

Oh yes, and then there's that bothersome thing called a script. That's really the first thing of all.

Rick Wise
director of photography
San Francisco Bay Area
and part-time instructor lighting and camera
grad school, SF Academy of Art University/Film and Video
http://www.RickWiseDP.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/rwise
email: Rick@RickWiseDP.com


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Richard Herd
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 24, 2009 at 7:01:43 pm

Can you speak to 10 bit log?


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Andrew Evans
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 26, 2009 at 6:04:46 pm

They used canon xh a1's to film Crank 2. They tried out a bunch of cameras and picked that one because it looked the best transfered to 35mm.


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Richard Herd
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 27, 2009 at 6:53:56 pm

The American Cinematographer Magazine April 2009 has an article about Crank 2. One big deal is they picture went through a digital intermediate process, so, before we start believing that all things are equal, here's four quotes to ponder.

{1} "'I was never trying to make things look pretty,' says Trost. 'I was more concerned with getting the right level of contrast for the shot and keep it snappy and electric.'"

{2} "Up-rezzing the Canon's proprietary 60i/24f (the internal HDV pulldown) for the final transfer to 35mm proved to be a challenge at first.

{3} "CHV was shot much in the manner of a skateboarding video."

{4} "'Perfectionism limits video,' observes Trost. He did, however, test the A1s to determine their latitude, and he knew how to expose for them with a light meter. If he found the need for movie lights, he was able to provide the gaffer, Justin Duval, with the proper f-stop."

My opinion is simple: the story and the format need to work together.


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Andrew Evans
Re: need help for choosing right camera
on Jul 27, 2009 at 7:13:40 pm

I will agree with you on the one.


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