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Strange rolling effect when shooting at light

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Tom MackieStrange rolling effect when shooting at light
by on Mar 14, 2011 at 2:08:26 am

I shot a concert recently and when I aimed my Canon 7D at certain bright lights, an ugly, mechanical rolling effect would cross along my image. Why did this happen? I'm really hoping there's a trick in post-production or a plug-in available to erase this effect. Here is a short example video of the ugly effect in general:

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Dave LaRondeRe: Strange rolling effect when shooting at light
by on Mar 14, 2011 at 3:52:31 pm

Sorry, I could only see a still; the software at work isn't exactly up-to-date. But it's easy to deduce that you're a victim of the notorious rolling shutter used in DSLR's. It shows up a lot in horizontal motion, during a pan, etc., and it's especially apparent when the edges are high-contrast, like a bright light against a dark background.

Since one reason among many to use a DSLR is low purchase price, you will probably be dismayed to learn that the fix for this footage costs about as much as the camera does per minute of finished footage.

Not so much of a bargain any more, eh? You really have to pick and choose the spots where shooting on a DSLR makes sense.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA

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Kylee PeñaRe: Strange rolling effect when shooting at light
by on Mar 14, 2011 at 4:11:34 pm

The latest version of iMovie apparently has a filter that fixes rolling shutter. I've not used it (nor do I even have it), but that's the only "fix" I've heard about.

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Walter SoykaRe: Strange rolling effect when shooting at light
by on Mar 14, 2011 at 5:33:57 pm

The Foundry's ROLLINGSHUTTER [link] is designed to mitigate rolling shutter issues, especially in the context of 3D tracking.

It may help on the distortion on the lead singer as the camera moves in that shot, but it won't be effective at all on the strobing lights. I'd try AE's Color Stabilizer [link] plus a good amount of rotoscoping, or perhaps one of the GenArts Sapphire [link] FlickerRemove effects as a starting point. Even with these tools, I think fixing this shot will be a lot of work.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events

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