Sound Devices Steps Up During Pandemic

Doing well by doing good
Sound Devices Steps Up
In 2017, I purchased the Sound Devices Mix Pre 3, a small mixer/recorder that’s perfect for more video-oriented users who want to record better quality audio as well. First, a bit of history on my part. I’ve been using equipment from manufacturer Sound Devices for about 10 years. I’m not a full-time location sound mixer; I record sound on many... Read more

Remote Editing, Part 3

Did I need near-zero latency?
latency
Last time, I talked about streaming services’ understanding of low latency. Now it’s my turn. I usually edit with clients in my suite, so I’m accustomed to near-zero latency (yes near-zero, as there’s latency in displays). But as I thought about latency for a remote edit, I realized I had to be realistic about what I really need. I had to... Read more

Remote Editing, Part 2

Encoding and latency
Remote editing
Last time, I talked about the importance of handling all the connection details when you edit remotely. It’s up to you to decide if that was the easy part. The next step was to be able to stream my session to my clients who’d be in different locations with different connections and different levels of patience. Luckily, before this whole environment... Read more
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Mounting An Overhead Camera With The WALI Monitor Arm

An easy and inexpensive solution to overhead shooting
Mounting An Overheard Camera With The WALI Monitor Arm
Finding an inexpensive, small and light way to mount an overhead camera has been a challenge. The methods we’ve used work but are not small, light or inexpensive. Until now. One of my favorite types of production to light and shoot is tabletop. It’s rare as a DP to have complete lighting, art direction and stage control over a scene unless it’s... Read more

Remote Editing, Part 1

First step: getting the connection
remote editing
It was fortuitous that I attended the Hollywood Professional Alliance Tech Retreat in Palm Springs in February. Editing in the cloud and remote access were some of the key presentations. The demos were pretty impressive. But now reality has set in. A lot of the workflows in the cloud require planning, preparation and, in many cases, a Hollywood budget.... Read more

Dealing With HEVC/H.265 Footage

What do you know about the H.265 codec and how to most effectively use it in your production and post workflow?
Dealing With HEVC/H.265 Footage
The Panasonic Lumix DC-S1H is one of the newest generation mirrorless hybrids that utilizes the H.265 codec for internal recording. Does your current primary camera support H.265 recording? Other than a preset in your camera’s codec/recording options, what do you know about the H.265 codec and how to most effectively use it in your production and... Read more

HPA 2020 Tech Retreat, Part 5

Motion grading workflow
motion grading
Last time, I talked about the problem of judder—the stuttering or strobing that occurs when there’s fast movement in a scene. The movement may be caused by fast camera movement or by fast movement of objects in a scene—like vehicles. Judder is even more pronounced as we move to more HDR finishing. At the Hollywood Professional Association’s... Read more

Streaming Everywhere

The most immediate solution to our very human problem of isolating through quarantine seems to be streaming
Does this Zoom webcast interface look familiar to you, especially since quarantine started?  This is my first blog entry since we’ve been stuck in quarantine from the Covid-19 virus. Like all of you, I’ve been feeling the full range of the human experience—fear, uncertainty, boredom and frustration. We’re definitely in unprecedented... Read more

HPA 2020 Tech Retreat, Part 4

The problem with motion judder
As I wrap up my writing about the annual Hollywood Professional Association’s Tech Retreat, I’d like to touch on new technology that I hinted at last time. It deals with motion in cinema capture. The motion I refer to comes from either moving the camera—panning, tilting, dollying and handholding—or from objects that move within the scene.... Read more

HPA 2020 Tech Retreat, Part 3

A short film was shot on day two, and technologies like security and monitor calibration were discussed
On the second day of the Hollywood Professional Association Tech Retreat’s Supersession, several scenes were shot for a short film. It demonstrated several technologies now being used on set and in post-production. Last time, I wrote about in-camera effects, but there was a lot more. Maybe not as flashy but still important. Digital dailies and extensive... Read more

HPA 2020 Tech Retreat, Part 2

Instead of speaker after speaker, the day 2 Supersession featured live content creation
HPA 2020 Tech Retreat
Last time, I talked about an annual meeting in Palm Springs, California, where Hollywood minds discuss all things about content creation. The second day of the Hollywood Professional Association Tech Retreat is referred to as the Supersession. This year it certainly earned that title. Rather than scheduling speaker after speaker to talk about various... Read more

Neutral Density Is Changing

Why would we want to discuss something as boring as ND filters? Simple, because the times, they are a changin’.
This Tiffen Variable ND filter is one of the most commonly used ND filters for mirrorless hybrid and DSLR shooters.  Neutral-density filtration. Why would we want to discuss something as boring as ND filters? Simple, because the times, they are a changin’ and along with them, how we think about ND filters is also changing. Depending on which... Read more
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