Opinions

Alexei’s articles stating opinions about cinema, technology and cinematography.

Future Developments of Digital Cinema

February 11, 2013
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Future Developments of Digital Cinema

Preamble I’d watched a DVD screener of Skyfall, and this highly compressed facsimile was a mere 1/10th of the resolution of the 2k original. My wife wanted to see it in the theater, so after I’d already watched it on my computer I enjoyed it in the theater as well. But in the theater, I really started to notice things like the sets, the makeup, how craggy Daniel Craig is getting, and (uh-oh) chromatic aberration from the Master Primes the film was lensed with (citation needed). I almost enjoyed it more on my computer screen, because I was watching a story, whereas in the theater I became more conscious of the craft. Perhaps the lack of visual detail in the DVD screener forced my brain to actively fill in the gaps, engaging my subconscious in an exercise in imagination, whereas the 2k projection made everything very literal. Then, the other night, I was watching (and thoroughly enjoying) an episode of Strikeback from Cinemax, and realized that just about everything I...

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Canon’s Planned Takeover of Cinema, Part II

April 16, 2012
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graph comparing resolution, fidelity and cost of digital cinema cameras

Prerequisite Reading: Canon announces EOS-1D C 4K DSLR with 8-bit 4:2:2 1080p HDMI output over at DP Review, CANON ANNOUNCES DEVELOPMENT OF 4K DIGITAL CINEMA CAMERAS over at Canon Rumors, and straight from the horse’s mouth, Canon developing digital cinema camera for 4K video capture over at Canon Global press release. And, if you haven’t already read it, I hope you’ll take a look at my previous post, Canon — Too Big For it’s Britches? in which I speculate that Canon is getting ready to take on the PL mount and all other digital cinema camera manufacturers. Sometimes it hurts to be right Canon’s latest press release re: the C500 prototype seems to prove out my prediction about Canon’s corporate strategy. Canon will position itself as the new Sony; lots of camera choices, lots of proprietary accessories, a self-styled Player in Digital Cinema. Unfortunately, unlike Sony, Canon doesn’t yet have the industry experience in offering end-to-end image capture, image editing, image grading, and image delivery. Sony, at least, never introduces a camera without having...

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Canon – Too Big For It’s Britches?

April 11, 2012
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A Review* of Canon’s new C300 *Disclaimer: After testing the C300 in a few days’ time, some of the content of this article may change. Canon’s new motto is “Leave no Story Untold.” It gives the indie filmmaker in me goosebumps. But they should change that motto to: “leave no dreamer’s pocketbook unexploited.” Yes, get ready Canon DSLR shooters! Canon is about to reward us all for embracing the incredibly awkward and user-unfriendly 5D-MkII, for making it an icon of low-budget (and even high-budget) film production, spawning a new wave of indie filmmaking, the likes of which hasn’t been seen since the Canon XL-1 gave us progressive scan. The reward: Three years later, we now have a worthy successor. 1080p slow-motion, uncompressed video out for external recorders, global shutter, better pixel sub-sampling, higher bitrates and better compression internally, on-screen audio level monitoring with on-the-fly level adjustment, and… Oh wait. Wait a minute…you mean the Mark III doesn’t do any of those things? Nope, but the C300 does some of...

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Has Nikon Glass Become Irrelevant?

April 3, 2012
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Has Nikon Glass Become Irrelevant?

Dear RED: Where’s your Nikon F-mount for the Epic? Don’t you know when we were using the 5D-MkII because our clients demanded low-cost “cine-like” footage, we reached for our EOS-to-F-mount adapters so we could use the sharper, smoother, higher-contrast glass of the Nikon zooms? Don’t you know that the Red One wen’t out with Nikon glass to capture some great images? Dear Arri; Rumor has it that you’ve planned a Nikon mount for the Alexa. We’d be so happy if you did… Dear Nikon; Make us some PL mount glass, already!

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