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Creating video for 16k screen

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Philip John
Creating video for 16k screen
on Jul 11, 2019 at 12:02:52 pm

Hi, I've been given the task of creating stills and videos for a screen that has the dimensions of 16640 x 1800 so I've been doing a lot of research and some testing recently and while I'm happy with the solution I've arrived at for creating stills, I'm still scratching my head about making video. Any advice or previous experience would be massively appreciated.

I'll briefly describe my thoughts:

1 - use a camera array banana shaped around the nodal point. The left shoots the right, the right shoots the left etc. Then stitch together in after effects. While I think this would work I'm concerned that creating a rig to support 5-7 DSLR cameras would be very heavy for a tripod and to transport up a mountain for example. I'm also concerned with calculating the nodal point when shooting a wide landscape panorama as I can't measure from the centre camera to my point of interest. Gopros are an option here as well.

2 - Use a 4k or 8k 360 camera rig to shoot, or 'overshoot' for standard widescreen. While I've read a lot about this I haven't tested it and am not convinced I'll be able to eliminate all lens warping when I 'unwrap' the video.

Some other things I'll mention just for extra info.

We don't have the budget to use an 8k digital cinematography camera or higher, so no Red, Panavision, etc etc.

The screen is going to be used in a broadcast TV setup. The studio cameras are HD so I know that I can get away with a fair amount of upscaling.

We're also doing some scaling/distance test this week and next week. Hopefully by then we'll have an idea of studio camera positions at the widest shot and at the closest. So I think between the HD camera and the distance they'd need to be to fit all of the screen in one shot would mean there's a lot of room for being 'creative' with the video resolution.
but...
One thing I know will happen from experience is that the people who approved this expensive screen setup will walk around once it's up and running stand 3 or 4 feet away from a video and complain 'it's a bit blocky' 'why have we spent all this money?' etc etc So ideally I'd like to have a couple of videos at or close to the 16640 x 1800 resolution just to show it off and then they can leave us alone to get on with the regular nuts and bolts of making content for the screen.

I think that's everything but I'm happy to answer questions etc as and when I can between shooting and testing.

Thanks - Phil


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Blaise Douros
Re: Creating video for 16k screen
on Jul 16, 2019 at 4:13:31 pm

Ultimately, you may need to involve the approvers in the testing setup, as well as setting realistic expectations for what resolution you'll deliver and what the expected viewing distance will be. "Well, there are several ways we can capture media for this, and here's what each will cost..."

I would guess that three 4K cameras and some wide or ultrawide lenses would be sufficient to scale to the resolution you need. Three UHD cameras gets you a resolution of 11520x2160 (minus a little for overlapping pixels). That could be as simple as three Sony A7 IIIs. I wouldn't use GoPros just because of the lack of control over the settings. Any local machine shop would probably be able to knock you up an aluminum plate for camera alignment that would only weigh a few pounds at most.

Something like this, only a horizontal mount: https://petapixel.com/2017/03/28/built-panoramic-photo-rig-made-6-nikon-dsl...

The other thing to look into would be anamorphic lens adapters--this would get you additional horizontal stretch without adding cameras. In fact, at UHD resolution of 3840x2160, two cameras with 2x anamorphic adapters would be enough to cover almost the entire native resolution: 2x anamorphic gets you 7680x2160, which means two cameras gets you an effective horizontal rez of 15630x2160. The edges tend to get soft in anamorphic, so that might be an issue for stitching in the center, but you see where I'm going, here. Three UHD cameras with 1.5x anamorphic adapters would be 17280x2160. That's cooking with gas!


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Philip John
Re: Creating video for 16k screen
on Jul 18, 2019 at 11:47:39 am

Hi Blaise, thanks for the reply.

Some of what you've mentioned we've subsequently talked about in terms of managing people's expectations.

I share the same concerns about using gopros but I might be forced into that method because of budget. I made a test shot using gopros and it turned out...okay.

I'm using that as the basis for pushing to use dslrs instead. A bit more money goes a long way etc The gopro test at least proved the banana array 'fixes' the nodal point parallax problem.

The horizontal mount link you've posted is the same one I included in my original project aims document. Great minds and all that.

One thing I'm confused about though is the anamorphic lenses that you mentioned. Forgive me if I'm missing something obvious here but if my camera only records 4k whatever lens I use means I'm still get 4k right? But with an anamorphic lens does it mean that I'm getting 4k of 'non-square' pixels which means when I pop the 'vertically stretched' image out in an edit I am in fact get that 2x or 1.5x width? My background is in post not shooting.

We have 2 GH5 cameras and I've found this article

https://www.engadget.com/2017/09/04/panasonic-gh5-6k-widescreen-intraframe/...

Which might be the right solution, I may even be able to loan a 3rd camera which means I'll have enough coverage for the ultrawide shot.

Thanks - Phil


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Blaise Douros
Re: Creating video for 16k screen
on Jul 22, 2019 at 10:35:59 pm

Hey Phil - in a nutshell, yeah, that's how anamorphic works. It's not "real" resolution, in the sense that the more desqueezing you do, you will get slightly softer results.

Your project resolution remains the same, and you set the pixel width; effectively the computer then multiplies the clip's width and maps it across your screen's pixels, to get your effective resolution.


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