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Sony A7R III announced with 4K HDR

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2 hours ago, DaveAltizer said:

If a9 had Picture Profiles I would consider it over the a7Riii. Has sony said they will enable that in the future? 

Not word on PP's yet, I still think they will be added, it just makes no sense not to have them. I do fast turnaround stuff so I try to get it as close as possible in cam to a finished product. I shot for years with the 5d2/3 and filmconvert, so for me its no PP's are no big deal, the a9 has more DR, far less RS and better IQ than pretty much any Canon DSLR. 

I currently shoot with the XT2 for a great in-cam look. I'd like the improved RS performance of the a7r3, but I I'm moving on from the a7r2, I'm going for a used a9 to get downscaled FF 4k. But I shoot stills and video at events and short docs, nothing scripted, so I don't have the same needs as a filmmaker. If I want PP's, I have the a7s2 as well, but I use Cine 4/2 to get the full ISO range since I can't see a difference in DR between Cine and Slog. As mentioned earlier, I'm good with my current kit until the next a7s, the Fuji IBIS cam (will be shifting one of my XT2's to get this one) and upcoming CaNikon mirrorless offerings bring to the table. At about $1600 used, the a7r2 is now an incredible bargain. YMMV.


Cheers

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@Matthew Hartman you are good with your NX1 bro. The thing about our cameras people are overlooking is that the single gets converted and compressed from a 12-14 bit source ! The camera then as you know changes it to the 8bit file we see. Most displays are 8 bit srgb and some dont even cover the full srgb color gamut. Most real world colors with the exception of neon light falls within the srgb color gamut. The 10 bit of data is for HEAVY grading like vfx work and stuff. 

 

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9 hours ago, kidzrevil said:

@Matthew Hartman you are good with your NX1 bro. The thing about our cameras people are overlooking is that the single gets converted and compressed from a 12-14 bit source ! The camera then as you know changes it to the 8bit file we see. Most displays are 8 bit srgb and some dont even cover the full srgb color gamut. Most real world colors with the exception of neon light falls within the srgb color gamut. The 10 bit of data is for HEAVY grading like vfx work and stuff. 

 

Thanks. I actually agree with your school of thought but we seem to be surrounded by many that do not agree and are heavily pushing a 10bit workflow as if this has suddenly been the standard for decades.  

Although, if you look at Netflix's content requirements they do not accept anything in 8bit (as far as shooting anything for their own productions) and as an aquisition format.

Also, their list of approved cameras is pretty short, the GH5 not being on that list. All Canon C"000" are on the list as well as the Ursa line.

Of course, you have your usual suspects, Arri, RED, (even the RED ONE) the Sony production cams, Vericam and I'm sure the EVA 1 is coming in an update soon.

There are no DSLR/DSLMs on the list. Interesting enough, no Kinefinity products either. 

That's not to say however they won't accept mastered 8bit content from outside their own productions. Anyone who streams Netflix knows not everything has pristine IQ.

As far as I know they don't stream/distribute anything in 10bit. Why would they when we still don't have wide adoption of consumer UHD 4k in 8bit?

I use the example of Netflix assuming other streaming productions, i.e. Hulu, HBO, Amazon would be similar in requirements. I also like to reference real world world stats as opposed to camera manufacturer's marketing material. 

And honestly, how many general audiences are really going to care anyway whether there's some slight banding in the sky or not? I believe if they're noticing those details then they're not properly engaged in the actual story or subject matter. I know I don't spend $20 at the theater, or $20/mo for online streaming to pixel peep. 

Thanks for the sanity check. I'm sure a rash of GH5 owners are going to troll you for posting this bit depth comparison video.

And for what I do I would never grade that aggressively. In fact, I lean more on the flatter side of things aesthetically speaking. 

I like the take away from the video which to me is work with what you have instead of always jumping to the next best thing. Some of us cant afford to be jumping from one product to another and its nice to get some type of validation that it's okay if you can't, you still have options. 

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I think netflix requirements is a quality control thing. They are future proofing all of their content. Besides would you really want to shoot something for netflix without something high end and a team of people for post production? I wouldn’t worry about these things if you shoot for youtube or vimeo like most of us do. Personally my focus right now is building my lens collection over focusing on new cameras and camera technology. In my opinion a lens makes a bigger difference. 10 bit from a crap lens is going to look worse than 8 bit from a lens with exceptional color and contrast. All cameras process their image from a 12-14 bit raw image processor. It’s best to have your cameras settings set to get as close to the final image as possible to take advantage of the 14 bit processing before compression @Matthew Hartman

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57 minutes ago, kidzrevil said:

I think netflix requirements is a quality control thing. They are future proofing all of their content. Besides would you really want to shoot something for netflix without something high end and a team of people for post production? I wouldn’t worry about these things if you shoot for youtube or vimeo like most of us do. Personally my focus right now is building my lens collection over focusing on new cameras and camera technology. In my opinion a lens makes a bigger difference. 10 bit from a crap lens is going to look worse than 8 bit from a lens with exceptional color and contrast. All cameras process their image from a 12-14 bit raw image processor. It’s best to have your cameras settings set to get as close to the final image as possible to take advantage of the 14 bit processing before compression @Matthew Hartman

Sounds like an excellent plan you have there. I'm looking at a few options myself, trying to wrap my head around anamorphic right now. I think ultimately I'm just trying to up my game and maximize the output if the tools I already have, while weighing out pros and cons of going various directions. I might be taking on too much at once and just need to cool my jets and scale back. 

Of course, regardless of whatever direction I go in it's going to punch me in my wallet as anything relating to filmmaking is expensive. I should probably switch my information channels as ingest a lot of gear review channels and it just makes me thirst for shit I can't really afford right now. 

I always had a knack for getting more out of less and I probably just need to return to that and not worry so much about keeping up with the Jones. Thank you for your voice of reason, it's been helpful.  

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@Matthew Hartman honestly bro thats the way to go. Scale back, trust me. It’s good that you are trying to future proof your content (so am I) but these gear reviews will make you think what you have is obsolete. A friend of mine told me “you really think what you have sucks because something new came out ?” that made me feel silly as hell ?

I have a LUT for this a LUT for that and it all becomes overwhelming. Now I shifted my focus to treating my camera like “film stock”. I use the picture profile that brings consistent results without tweaking and get as close to the final product as possible. Now when I grade I just need to make minor adjustments to an image and I get the same result with less steps in between. 

Scale back and focus on technique and watch how much better your work is going to look. Trust me

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On 27/12/2017 at 9:12 AM, DaveAltizer said:

If a9 had Picture Profiles I would consider it over the a7Riii. Has sony said they will enable that in the future? 

How's the AF in video mode on the A7R III?

Will be trying it out in January.

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4 hours ago, kidzrevil said:

I use the picture profile that brings consistent results without tweaking and get as close to the final product as possible.

3

Yep, and most generated  content is not even stylized that much to require extremely flat profiles. And in most cases with 8bit compressed codecs (or even many 10bit), you will get better results by getting natural colors in camera, and then using rec709 LUTs in post for stylization. 

The problem with the Sonys is that the default profiles (without the PP) are really only usable with daylight. At least for me, PP are NECESSARY to get the colors where I need to in any lighting condition. The control of the color with PP is so amazing that I find hard to use any camera that doesn't have them. Even a non-Sony. 

What all companies should implement is baking in LUTs both in video and in stills. Computationally it is trivial (they already do that), and it would add a tremendous amount of color control without the need of bandwidth-heavy codecs. 

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1 hour ago, Andrew Reid said:

How's the AF in video mode on the A7R III?

Will be trying it out in January.

Seems to be similar to A9 which means really good, probably the best after Canon DPAF. 
A7SIII will likely have the same AF which is really nice because the II was really shitty on that aspect. 

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@Don Kotlos that is a genius idea ! If we can load our own LUTs as the PP that is a pure 14bit to 8bit conversion. I wish a panasonic or sony rep stumbled upon this thread lol. As far as the Sony PP I agree, it adds a tremendous amount of control to the image. Right now I am using a custom itu709 matrix color with cine1,3 & 4 for highlight,midtone or shadow priority. The increase in color fidelity over shooting in SLOG is amazing and only requires a simple curve in post. This is another reason why I think 8 bit is more than sufficient if done right

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15 hours ago, kidzrevil said:

@Matthew Hartman honestly bro thats the way to go. Scale back, trust me. It’s good that you are trying to future proof your content (so am I) but these gear reviews will make you think what you have is obsolete. A friend of mine told me “you really think what you have sucks because something new came out ?” that made me feel silly as hell ?

I have a LUT for this a LUT for that and it all becomes overwhelming. Now I shifted my focus to treating my camera like “film stock”. I use the picture profile that brings consistent results without tweaking and get as close to the final product as possible. Now when I grade I just need to make minor adjustments to an image and I get the same result with less steps in between. 

Scale back and focus on technique and watch how much better your work is going to look. Trust me

Well said man. We need more guys/gals like you being the voice of reason. 

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Is the Sony a security risk for your Mac? Probably! According to Diglloyd:

There were/are issues with Sony’s updater for the A7R III with macOS High Sierra. Sony claims to have fixed these issues as of today:

If the System Software Updater does not support macOS 10.13 (High Sierra), you need to download "DriverLoader_1013" from this website and run it on your computer first. First, go back to the previous page to download the System Software Updater, then follow the below process to perform the update.

...

It’s a mess IMO. No user should have to jump through these hoops.

After 3 years, Sony persists in this awful policy of requiring administrator level access on the computer to update the camera. Given Sony’s checkered history and massive security breach not that long ago, one might be wise to always wait a week or two just in case malware slips in, since the Sony updater is a potential root kit exploit.

I dislike this risk so much that I go to the trouble of cloning the startup drive, booting off it on a spare laptop, then running the update, then wiping out (formatting) the temporary startup drive. It’s quite the nuisance, but worth the trouble for the day Sony is compromised again.

source

I kind of like the way my Fuji and Panasonic updates work: just copy the update to an SD card, insert in camera and run the update. It may be kind of old-fashioned, but it works.

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Some quality issues are starting the rear their ugly heads with the A7RIII.  Reports on other forums:

1) Lens mounts out of tolerance so lenses won't fit.

2) Stuck pixels in the EVF.

3) Random pixel noise in both EVF and LCD when using focus magnification.

4) Glue seeping out of LCD mount.

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On 12/29/2017 at 8:49 AM, Andrew Reid said:

How's the AF in video mode on the A7R III?

Will be trying it out in January.

It’s great! Been using it the last three weeks with the 24-105 on a gimbal and it works great. I wish Sony has a similar UI as canon with just the touch tracking AF. You can touch points but no tracking. For most stuff I leave it set to wide focus mode with face tracking enabled and it nails it 90% of the time 

 

another thing is the focus peaking has been greatly improved. It’s really useable now. Pair that with a screen that doesn’t dim, and ibis when shooting 4K and you got a great body for manual glass. I’ve been using my Contax Zeiss lenses and love it. For both photo and video. I’ve been able to nail manual focus more than ever with the new peaking and evf. 

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@DaveAltizer Have you tested focus for stills with non-native lenses? I've got way more EF lenses than E.

Regular Metabones for stills and speed boosting for video (no auto focus) could mean I don't need my 5D3 and A7S. 

Might still do it just for the speedboosted 16ms RS 5K-oversampled S35. Seems like a killer way to go. Tried this out?

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Maybe I should’ve done a YT search before asking, but... I had my doubts when Sony released a camera that supposedly shoots HLG high dynamic range video, but only in 8-bit, which every single authority without exception says is not acceptable for HDR. A few in the forums have responded by insisting that while Panasonic requires 10-bit, Sony does not. However, during my first attempts to upload an HLG video to YT last night shot with my GH5 from within FCP (which I soon learned is not possible), a warning appeared saying YT would not accept HDR video in 8-bit. It was only later that I learned that I first had to create a master file and upload it through YT’s website. So my question is - has anyone here uploaded Sony HLG HDR video from the a7riii to YouTube?

Edit: YouTube’s own support page does not even acknowledge 8-bit HDR.

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7 hours ago, jonpais said:

Maybe I should’ve done a YT search before asking, but... I had my doubts when Sony released a camera that supposedly shoots HLG high dynamic range video, but only in 8-bit, which every single authority without exception says is not acceptable for HDR. A few in the forums have responded by insisting that while Panasonic requires 10-bit, Sony does not. However, during my first attempts to upload an HLG video to YT last night shot with my GH5 from within FCP (which I soon learned is not possible), a warning appeared saying YT would not accept HDR video in 8-bit. It was only later that I learned that I first had to create a master file and upload it through YT’s website. So my question is - has anyone here uploaded Sony HLG HDR video from the a7riii to YouTube?

Edit: YouTube’s own support page does not even acknowledge 8-bit HDR.

Technically, you can have high dynamic range in 8bit because the two aren't exclusive. However, what you gain in more stops of dynamic range is nullified when the signal gets compressed to 8bit because the codec can't write all the color values that HDR provides. This is why 10bit should be coupled with it.

But don't drop your panties just yet, even in 10bit you still will get banding, (sorry GH5 users) just in smaller stepping patterns, which may be less visible to most ppl. You have to break into 12 bits (usually higher) to truly get ahead of the equation that HDR provides if we're all fansinated with pixel peeping.

Sony is an asshat company. They literally own the image sensor market and yet like Canon they cripple their consumers at the sub $3,000 range. Obviously to push consumers to pay more into their upper product tiers, which is an asinine value prop. And for fuck'sake, figure out those skin tones and GUI in 2018. It's really not that hard. 

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@Matthew Hartman Right - 10-bit is an absolute minimum figure, with most colorists with any knowledge at all preferring 12-bit and even higher. I am still curious whether anyone here has even tried uploading Sony HLG HDR to YouTube, because I have a suspicion it isn’t possible.

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13 minutes ago, jonpais said:

@Matthew Hartman Right - 10-bit is an absolute minimum figure, with most colorists with any knowledge at all preferring 12-bit and even higher. I am still curious whether anyone here has even tried uploading Sony HLG HDR to YouTube, because I have a suspicion it isn’t possible.

I seriously doubt YT's compression algorithms are scripted to even address this, let alone handle it.

YT cares more about streaming speeds and server storage rather than image quality. 

Even with all the recent buzzwords about 10bit and HDR, and 8k TVs, it's all 10bit at most, and 99% of distribution channels are all still 8bit.

We should stop demonizing 8bit because we all still have to largely work within it's limations for the time being. This goes for Netflix, Hulu and the rest of them. 

Just because Panasonic releaeses a mid budget mirrorless camera/s capable of internal 10bit, this doesn't mean all of a sudden 8bit is the new bogeyman. Even the new LG V30 (smartphone) records video in 4k 10bit. So? 

I hate the reactive nature of our kind. It's not one of our better qualities and camera manufacturers totally capitalize on this.  

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