Archive for June, 2010

30
Jun
10

silverado’s archiving for indies

Archiving for Indies: Creating Long-Term Archives for Independent Digital Cinema

You can download this in exchange for a tweet or by emailing infoatsilveradodotcc.  I’m always down for learning more about archiving projects.  The article starts off with a quote from a document called “The Digital Dilemma: Strategic Issues in Archiving and Accessing Digital Motion Picture Materials” which reads …the annual cost of preserving a 4K digital master is $12,514…

I’ve included a link to that PDF here or by clicking the above pic to conveniently satisfy your additional reading curiosity.  Effective project archiving is a necessary headache and when well done worth its weight in gold.  You prove your value immediately to a boss or client when 6 months after a project is finished you can pull it up, change a few slates and make a small edit or two, and then insert edit back to tape.  Plus it can be a good source of income for your business as a service.  I’ve seen lots of shops offer to archive projects at a cost of $1 per gig / month.

I won’t go into too much detail on what’s contained in the archive because I think it’s definitely worth downloading and reading for yourself.  Plus I admire the ingenuity of the Tweet-for-download marketing approach.  I might try implementing that for some online videos on TheSailingChannel.  That’s the business my family is working to build and effective archiving strategies are essential to our long term success.  Last summer we produced 20 x 30min broadcast episodes of Sailing Channel Theater for WLIW 21 in New York.  You can view all the episodes online by clicking here, then look for the episode list on the right hand column.  An effective near line archiving strategy is essential for us to efficiently move forward with re-versioning our existing shows as well including existing elements in new shows.

FYI, we’ve recently partnered with WPBT2 in Miami and have rebranded the series Adventures in Sailing.  We are currently looking for underwriting sponsorship so if you or your business may be interested in this opportunity to associate your brand with the eco-friendly, travel and adventure lifestyle of sailing, click here for the press release.

proactively • sailing the Chesapeake this weekend • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

28
Jun
10

dslr monitoring 24hr pharmacy style

My brother’s film school compatriot Garret O’Brien posted this nifty how-to video a week back or so.  You may know Garret as Philip Bloom’s camera assistant for Lucasfilm’s Red Tails shoot.

Very intuitive and DV Rebel of him to transform a $100 monitor from CVS into a workable indie filmmaking monitor.  I see good things for this guy, he’s a shooting star.

proactively • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

24
Jun
10

laugh of the day – winnebago man

Discovered this after seeing the trailer for the documentary.  If you’re at work, put on headphones.

In other news, I went ahead and ordered the Ballhead X for my Gorillapod Focus.  You don’t absolutely have to have it.  Only if you want to level your camera.

proactively • one more day til the weekend • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

19
Jun
10

gorillapod focus incoming

After seeing it featured in FXPHD’s DOP210 – DSLR Cinematography featuring Stu Maschwitz, and after returning from my first weekend doc shoot with the 5dmarkii, I’ve decided to plunk down for the Gorillapod Focus.

Joby Gorillapod Focus - Flexible Mini-Tripod

I’m most attracted to it’s discreet (ok, somewhat), portable and infinitely manipulatable nature.  It was so cool interviewing people with the 5dmarkii and getting the question Oh does that camera shoot video? I would answer Sometimes but I’m also taking a lot of stills.  And while I was mainly shooting video, this response put people at ease to a level I’ve never experienced while shooting with an HVX-200, XHA1, or even my super low profile HV-30.  I interpret the reason to be when people see a video camera they feel they have to always be on.  So when they see a HD SLR they feel that they will be photographed mostly.

Which is a long winded way to say I don’t want a traditional tripod to foul up the appearance of a low key camera shoot.  Find some good natural light at a park bench with the Canon 16-35 or 24-70 L series glass on the front, stabalize with the Gorillapod Focus, slap the Zoom H4n recorder on the table next to it (hopefully with a Sennheiser G3 wireless lav or the like) and get that casual, natural on camera interview footage that would otherwise require a crew of 2 -4 people, lights, and all the money and ceremony that accompanies those things.

Joby Ballhead X (Black)

I haven’t plunked down for the Ballhead X yet, trying to be as stingy as possible with the green I’m investing in my 5dmarkii kit, but I can definitely see it being a next month purchase.  Want to try using the new Gorillapod Focus on the bike and the sailboat first, see how it does in the wild on its own.

proactively • one hand for the camera, one hand for the boat • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

16
Jun
10

lumix hacktopia

This quote from the Vimeo description says it all: No noise, no banding, no compression. Higher bitrate than the Canon 5D Mark II.

I first saw this reported on Philip Bloom’s blog, then Prep Shoot Post, and now this morning on Engadget.  Engadget reports the main trouble now is that Tester 13′s firmware uncovers too many options: users are trying out different configurations to maximize quality without bumping into the camera’s buffer limitations. The current flavors of choice include 50Mbps MJPEG at 1080p (the stock camera caps out at 720p in MJPEG), to be augmented by 32Mbps AVCHD when the crazy high-end MJPEG causes the camera to buffer overflow.

So what does all this mean?  Firstly, it means you owe it to yourself to take a peak at all the hacking hubbub (and of course the Panasonic Lumix GH1).

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 Digital Camera (Black) with 14-140mm Lens

Secondly, it means that the cat is out of the bag, man.  If it’s possible to make a firmware upgrade to the GH1 of this magnitude, layman common sense tells this blogger at the very least the 5dmarkii should see a firmware update coming that increases the bit rate of the recording format substantially.  I’d take smooth gradient skylines in 422 color space over 720p60 any day of the week.  Then again, who’s to say we can’t have our low light cake and over crank it too?

proactively • loving the wonderful world of firmware hacks and all the possibilities they entail • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

07
Jun
10

fcp canon eos plugin vs. compressor vs. mb grinder

From where I stand, there are three methods to get your 5dmarkii h264 footage transcoded to ProRes for editing in FCP.  I’ll just say up fron that if the only update Apple makes for FCP 7 is native playback of h264 files then all the attention Adobe Premiere and Avid Media Craposer are getting would be immediately rendered moot.  But I digress.

Click on the above image for an explanation or click here to download.  The EOS plugin enables FCP to recognize a compact flash card with 5dmarkii footage as a mountable volume that shows up in the Log & Transfer window.  From there, you can transcode your native footage to the ProRes flavor of your choice.

The above is a nifty walkthru video showing how to setup a quick cluster in Apple Compressor.  If you have a laptop and just two cores this is no big deal, but if you have 4 or more cores this can really help things along.  And it’s how I’m currently converting my footage from this weekend as I write this post.

I haven’t used Magic Bullet Grinder but Scott Simmons and Oliver Peters have, so check out their reviews for more info.  The appeal to me and my friend James is that it appears that it would just work, unlike quick clusters in Compressor which can, at times, be wonky.

proactively • just make h264 play back natively in FCP please • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.

01
Jun
10

the foundry fixing rolling shutter

No matter how much you research a camera, there is no substitution for forking over several thousand dollars, unboxing and holding it in your hands, shooting with it, converting the footage to ProRes and then looking at the wobbly vertical lines and going WHAT THE HECK?!  And if wobbly vertical lines and WHAT THE HECK aren’t descriptive enough for you, let’s get a neat and tidy explanation from Oliver Peters over at digitalfilms:

Rolling shutter artifacts – the so-called “jello-o-cam” effect – have been the bane of CMOS-sensor cameras, most notably the HD-capable DSLR still cameras. The short answer for why this happens is that objects move in place during the time interval between the data being picked up from the top to the bottom of the sensor. The visual manifestation is skewing or a wobble to the image on fast horizontal motion or shaky handheld shots. CoreMelt’s Lock & Load X is designed to be used for both standard image stabilization, as well as reduction of these artifacts.

CoreMelt Lock & Load X

If you continue reading Oliver’s post, he has a very nice write up of CoreMelt Lock and Load X.

The Foundry RollingShutter

Yet there is a link to The Foundry’s RollingShutter plug-in for Nuke and After Effects a bit down the page, and this is what I’ve found to be the nearest thing to magic I’ve seen in some time.

Yes, it’s 500 bucks.  Yes, you need to have After Effects (who has Nuke outside of an FXPHD VPN license?). Yes, it takes a loooong time to render.  But it doesn’t zoom in on your image to correct for rolling shutter like Lock & Load X does.  If I’m doing something wrong, please someone let me know because I would love to not spend 500 bucks; however, the zooming in is a deal breaker for me.  Regardless, RollingShutter does and amazing job!  And there is a free 15-day fully functional trial which you can download here.  Here’s the settings to use according to The Foundry’s website:

Whilst we’ve been using this tool in house here, we’ve found that the following are good correction amounts for some of the cameras we’ve been shooting with:

  • RED One: 0.32
  • Canon 5DmkII: 0.56

So while I haven’t bought it yet I am playing around with the free trial.  And so far, looks like this will take the place of a new lens.

proactively • local motion estimating • peter

Disclosure, to comply with the FTC’s new rules

None of the manufacturers listed above are paying Peter Salvia to write this article and, so far, none have sent him any samples or demonstration items.  Peter is a B&H Sales Affiliate and receives a commission from items linked to B&H and purchased through this site.  Oh yeah, and he’s an Apple Certified Trainer so you can derive his bias for yourself.




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