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BIG NEWS - Hands on with CONTINUOUS raw recording on Canon 5D Mark III


Andrew Reid

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having downloaded some of the 5D raw files that have been posted this past 2 days from various people

I think the images look good very detailed , fine grain structure , good low light and blacks

BUT dropped frames and some wierd artifacts at random points plus this 49 sec record limit for me means it still has alot of testing and tweeking to do before we can use it for commercial jobs at all.

There is also a lot of 'confirmation bias' going on here as people are willing it to be the next best thing since sliced bread.....

be patient and use your eyes ....and not looking at vimeo or youtube as its compressed to hell on those channels - download the files to see properly.

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Posted this on Bloom's blogpost. Part of me thinks he realised he dropped the ball on this one and wants the whole thing to go away. Like Andrew said with great power comes great responsibility.    

The other day i put down a preorder on a Mexican wrap at a food stand in Soho.   If enough people put down a preorder I might get the wrap next year, so everyone do it!   I had my preorder on the

Somebody has to say it, so i'll go first.   2012: BMCC (Black Magic Cinema camera) 2013: MLCC (Magic Lantern Cracked camera)

No, definitely not.

 

It is incredibly, incredibly naive to base any assumption on shooting lengths based on final edit lengths.  

 

People are not robots.  They do not instantly come to ready at the same time.  They do not get their head into the game at the same time. The more people involved the more ramp-up time is needed.  40sec isn't enough time to slate in some cases.  If you're doing something difficult or emotionally charged, you may have been rolling a minute or more before a take actually begins.  

 

If ML does nothing more than where current development is at today, they have to get true continuous recording or this thing is a big toy.

 

 

A bad dancer will blame his balls for being in the way. Being able to work around limitations is exactly what low-budget indie filmmaking is all about and is the difference between having a film and not having a film. In the days of film actors had to wait between magazines being loaded, and that delay would often "get them out of the zone". I suppose this is a similar annoyance, but it would not stop a determined crew/talent.

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It's 49 not 40 seconds. And it's working out pretty marvelously as is for nature/scenic stuff for me already, but of course that stuff doesn't count because it merely some silly natural world video

 

Wouldn't you rather have the record limits removed? It's not a matter of snobbery, or about the genre of shooting.

 

Clearly people are shooting camera tests that look great, but that is not how professional nature/scenic stuff gets shot. You mentioned Wildlife in a previous post.....if ever there was a documentary style that needs long captures. It's one thing to point a camera and hope you get lucky with some signs of life, and another to go out shooting something intentionally and have to deal with the type of technical constraints video was meant to alleviate.

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indie filmmaking is all about and is the difference between having a film and not having a film. In the days of film actors had to wait between magazines being loaded

 

 

Sure, if you already have a 5D III, but under that philosophy you shouldn't be shooting raw or 4k at this time.

12 minutes beats 49 seconds any day.

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A bad dancer will blame his balls for being in the way. Being able to work around limitations is exactly what low-budget indie filmmaking is all about and is the difference between having a film and not having a film. In the days of film actors had to wait between magazines being loaded, and that delay would often "get them out of the zone". I suppose this is a similar annoyance, but it would not stop a determined crew/talent.

 

If you have a crew and you're shooting in 40sec or 49sec or even 1min bursts I feel really sorry for your crew and your talent and everyone else associated with being in that goat rodeo.  It's a waste and you should be ashamed of yourself for wasting all of those people's time and effort.  

 

And that's the last thing I'll say about such foolishness.  

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Totally agree.

Let's get one thing straight though, this is huge, this is amazing and the difference in quality is just unbelievable, and the way it's been going, I wouldn't be surprised if they sort out the 40 seconds limitation within the hour, but yeah, 40 seconds is a MASSIVE limitation for any kind of narrative, fiction or documentary, and anyone who claims otherwise can't know what they're talking about. You can find a million films without a single 40 second long shot, but probably none of those shots comes from takes shorter than a few minutes.

Tell an actor they have 40 seconds to get it right and good luck getting a good performance out of them...

I'm very excited at the possibilities this hack currently presents, I wouldn't be excited about using it as it stands.

Some things haven't been answered yet either, I keep hearing that the camera is also doing less work since the raw feed is always happening anyway, but CF recording alone is enough to heat up the camera, and some people did say the camera heats up much more than usual when recording raw video, would anyone care to compare?

Also, what about compressing that raw video to h264 in camera with decent h264 transcoding? Transcoding those raw files to h264 gives us much better results than the camera's own h264, so maybe they could override that and give us higher quality smaller files and longer recording times?

Obviously Prores would be awesome, but that would probably not be possible, whereas with h264, perhaps the camera already has some sort of hardware optimization.

Most of the footage I've seen also appears to stutter every now and then. Are we getting a steady 24fps or is it not accurate yet?

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This is not true, and even if it were, almost none of the content being screened is 4K. Even Skyfall, which Sony used to push 4K projection, was sourced from a 2K master.
And 1080p TVs are hugely more widespread, but that doesn't change the fact that all TV broadcasts are 720p.

TV broadcasts both satellite (DVB-S), cable (DVB-C) & terrestrial (DVB-T) here in the UK & most other countries are 1080i.
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If you have a crew and you're shooting in 40sec or 49sec or even 1min bursts I feel really sorry for your crew and your talent and everyone else associated with being in that goat rodeo.  It's a waste and you should be ashamed of yourself for wasting all of those people's time and effort.  

 

I agree. Now I believe that will be overcome with spanning but even a 5 minute clip limit can be debilitating while shooting dialogue and narrative scenes. Yes, I can do a fight scene with 40 second takes (will try that when ML is released or beta) or film landscape shots and the like, but working with actors...Nope, not gonna fly. Maybe something that has no dialogue but still...

 

People are saying that "Yeah, but you can work around those things." Yeah. You can. But that's not what shooting is about, atleast for me. For a fun afternoon with amateur actors, that could be cool as trying something new, but anything else... oh man.

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People said the same thing about 1080p ...

 

Hmm. No they didn't. The increase to 1080p was one of the biggest things ever especially coming from NTSC. 720x480 interlaced?

 

How can anyone say the difference was small? But now, moving from 1080p to 4k is not as big a deal. People's eyesight ain't that good. That's why many movietheater is content to play 2k. It doesn't matter.

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See my message above. And heck look out the window and then look at a blu-ray on a HDTV 1080p TV set. If you can't see a difference then you have bad vision. 4k sets they say start beginning to give you that looking out a window feeling.

 

Old CRT's actually give you that "window feeling" WAY better than LCD screens. Especially if that CRT is an HD model. They really look outstanding. No LCD I've ever seen has ever given that "out a window"-feeling and they won't until they are OLED. Nothing to do with resolution.

 

Resolution is a red herring. I'd much rather have an old 720p plasma than a new 1080p lcd. Contrast, blacks...That's where it's at.

 

At home I have one of the last plasmas Pioneer did before they sold the business to Panasonic And it's gorgeous. It really is. Man those blacks really do their stuff, especially when watching films in the dark. 

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Could someone resolve a contradiction in my thoughts please?

 

On one side, we all -- me totally included -- are excited about this pre-beta firmware release that is said to record RAW to a CF card. And as a result we are told that the processor is virtually idle in this process -- you can play Tetris or something even better during recording )

 

On the other hand -- several times I read in this thread that technically it is not RAW, it is some intermediary format and essentially is 14-bit YUV 422 video stream, which in my mind doesn't meet the RAW mark. More than that, the processor may be idle in this case only if the scan from the sensor comes natively in YUV 422 or something closer....

 

Here I stop to avoid writing some noobish stupid conclusions, if I haven't already.

 

Please help!! :huh:

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Could someone resolve a contradiction in my thoughts please?

 

On one side, we all -- me totally included -- are excited about this pre-beta firmware release that is said to record RAW to a CF card. And as a result we are told that the processor is virtually idle in this process -- you can play Tetris or something even better during recording )

 

On the other hand -- several times I read in this thread that technically it is not RAW, it is some intermediary format and essentially is 14-bit YUV 422 video stream, which in my mind doesn't meet the RAW mark. More than that, the processor may be idle in this case only if the scan from the sensor comes natively in YUV 422 or something closer....

 

Here I stop to avoid writing some noobish stupid conclusions, if I haven't already.

 

Please help!! :huh:

 

It is confusing, even looking through the ML thread.  Near as I can guess it was the earliest versions, perhaps, that were successfully writing using the YUV422 and raw wasn't working but at some point perhaps they switched to writing true raw.  Somewhere in that 30+page thread there might be the "eureka!" moment.  I didn't find it.

 

Confirmed though, what they're grabbing from, at least, is 14bit RGGB.  Stu didn't like the early mix of terminology either and wasn't going to stand for it so he got a direct response: prolost (http://prolost.blogspot.com/2005/05/log-is-new-lin.html)

 

 

Also something to keep in mind, that's been distorted some through some overzealous comparisons.  This is 14bit linear color.  The BMCC records 12bit logarithmic color.  It takes 14 linear bits to equal 12 logarithmic bits so they're essentially recording the same precision from a math standpoint (with theories over logarithmic sample steps being a better representation of some aspects of photography while linear steps offer advantages in others).  

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This isn't "perceived detail", or false detail.  This is blades of grass:

 

316th14.png

...that's unaltered 5D on top, BMCC on the bottom, 1:1 to each other @ 200%

 

You're not wrong, you are indeed seeing more detail.

 

But it is oversharpened.

 

When I do the same sharpening to the 5D raw image, I get more blades of grass too.

 

5d3-vs-bmcc.jpg

 

Now the BMCC looks mushy in comparison.

 

First, the whole C5D comparison video is mute for comparing resolution, because it isn't 2.5K. They have downscaled the BMCC footage rather than upscale (and sharpen) the 5D Mark III raw to 2.5K to match the BMCC. That would have been more interesting (for those capable of viewing 2.5K on their display at least).

 

Now the over-sharpening I applied above (horrible isn't it?) - I believe a similar thing is at work in the original Cinema5D workflow. 5D isn't sharpened enough and the BMCC is way over - or probably like that straight from the sensor. Unless the path is sprinkled with red blue and green fairy dust, the BMCC shot has a lot of false detail. You can't claim it has no false detail. Yes there's more real detail there too but it comes at a cost.

 

I hate to start pissing on Blackmagic, they don't deserve it. Their image is still amazing. I have no plans to cancel my MFT 2.5K cam order, or pocket camera order, or 4K production camera order.

 

I think the 5D raw is close to 1000 lines, the 2.5K BMCC is about 1100-1200 lines. The 4K Production Camera will be another matter!

 

5d-bmcc-sharpened.jpg

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So far how I see this is the canon is soft even in raw The canon has no pro res and working with raw on small cards with enormous amounts of data seems impractical It's bad enough having it all on one big hard drive but on cards like this.

I'm worried about reliability with the camera and the cards.

I think it will take someone brave to make a feature film with this camera Maybe a music video with a backup camera. Really though is it worth it for a pop video.

At this moment This is a long way to being a better choice than a BMC.

If you want a full size frame and love bokeh the canon looks to be promising.

Funny how this has come at a moment in time when the BMC is nearly out and should steal a lot of annoyed BMC waiters who haven't really thought it through.

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