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F900 Scene File Help

Published : 28th June 2004


Well, a short film I'm planning on shooting next week that was going to be shot using the Varicam is now going with the F900 since the rental house I was going to get the Panasonic from was totally out (there's a new television show or something like that using all of them from this rental facility). So, I'm now shooting on the F900, and I was wondering if anybody could give me some tips on how to set it up to get a nice "film look" from the camera.

Okay, that's a really general term, but frankly, I was just planning on running the Varicam in F.REC film gamma mode, and color correct in post. With the F900, what settings should I use that will give me enough latitude in post for saturation, highlight handling, and shadow management? I don't want to be painting on set, I'm planning on doing a color correct in post to get the look I want, so I basically want the best "digital negative" that I can possibly get out of this camera, and keep my creative options open afterwards. You can email me off-list if you'd like, but as of right now, I'm feeling kind of lost with the F900 as I was totally prepped for the Varicam, and now I'm worried that I'll have to be toying with the gamma, etc. on the set with the F900 on a scene-by-scene basis to avoid clipping, etc.

BTW, has anybody come up with a good gamma file using the CpvFile editor utility that has a nice, flat, film-like gamma curve?

Thanks for any help,

Jason Rodriguez
Post Production Artist
Virginia Beach, VA

>has anybody come up with a good gamma file using the CpvFile editor >utility that has a nice, flat, film-like gamma curve?

I've been trying to achieve any curve with the Cpv and, it's impossible to me!

I always generate a totally disaster curve. Anyone have a tip in order to do a curve? I've been playing with beziers curves in Photoshop since a lot of time ago, and I'm feeling useless with this tool

(In fact I'm worst with the Cpv than with the English language... and that's a lot!)

Pol Turrents
Spanish DP

Pol Turrents wrote :

>I always generate a totally disaster curve.

What do you mean by a disaster curve? I've yet to try out the app (I've applied for it on the Cinealta site), but it does seem fairly straight forward, although I have absolutely no idea what my gamma curve is going to look like once it's loaded into the camera.

By the way, for anyone that might know something, how does this sound :

0 -> 0
15 ->14.8
112 -> 58.1
300 -> 90
600 -> 108

The numbers on the left are percentage inputs, and the numbers on the right are percentage output.

If I'm trying to create a "flatter" look, have I crushed the blacks too much if an input of 15 is going to 14, and an input of 112 is going to 58? I was basically trying to look at the published graphs for the Panasonic F.REC film gamma option, and try to create an excel file and then a gamma table in the CvpFileEditor that emulated this-because that should give me plenty of room in post to play with exposure, etc.

Thanks again,

Jason Rodriguez
Post Production Artist
Virginia Beach, VA

I've finished a feature film on F-900/3 with film gamma of Cvpfile editor. I did some test to see latitude and I found that it is very similar to Varicam curve, you can use a contrast ratio of 250:1 ( more or less 8 stops of latitude) without problem, especially it is interesting the way on white details are photograph.

It's true you can't modificate the film look gamma as Varicam do on F-Rec. So, if you want to have a big control of latitude with F900/3, Film look gamma of Cvp file editor is the best for me, better than Itu, SMPTE modifications or a new one.

Best Regards

Alfonso Parra (a.e.c.)
Spain base

>What do you mean by a disaster curve?

The problem is in the shape of the curve... is very difficult to get what you want. But, to me, the best way to get the curve that I want, is using a waveform.

Use the test saw signal of the camera, you will see a curve on the WF, and then you can tweak the camera until you reach the desired curve.

Pol Turrents
Spanish DP

Hello Everybody,

I'd just like to thank everyone for the tips they gave me on looks, etc. for shooting with the F900. The shoot went very smoothly, and I was really impressed with the results, especially with the new gamma options available to me with the CvpFileEditor app from Sony.

Using a "film look" gamma really helped in controlling the highlights, and I was really amazed to be shooting windows that had information 3-4 stops above key and they still weren't "blowing" out in the harsh, traditional video sense, but had a nice, film-like response. A lot of people were wondering what I shot on because they knew I didn't have the money for 35mm, but there was hardly any grain (a little noise after color correction, but not much), so they knew it wasn't S16. I also really enjoyed the shooting style that HD afforded me, as I was more apt to experiment and let the camera roll even after the "shot" was over, getting some really great spontaneous performances from my actors that would not have occurred in any other way because they were true reactions to being in the moment, not pre-scripted details and marks to consciously hit.

So again, I'd like to thank you all with sharing your expertise and knowledge with me, and helping me to forward to the next time I can use HD for a project again.

Jason Rodriguez
Post Production Artist
Virginia Beach, VA