I took a quick trip to Snoqualmie Falls this afternoon to continue my tests with the XLH1. The falls, in case you don't know, are featured in the opening sequence of David Lynch's Twin Peaks. In fact, the whole series was shot in this neck of the woods (Washington State).
Light was failing and rain was threatening but I said what the hell and shot some spectacular scenes anyway. I'm also working on a new Black and White setting although it's not perfected by a long shot yet. It's a little on the soft side (need to adjust the sharpness) and the tonality is not rich enough for me. It's interesting how black and white changes the atmosphere of a shot dramatically.
I'll post the black and white settings when I perfect them. The color shots utilize the settings I have already posted.
Some shots are dark because it was pretty dark when I shot them but I wanted to test the camera's performance in low light. What I saw was awesome, much, much better than my experience shooting low light with the DVX.
I also wanted to test the resolving power of the lens and took some long landscape shots that are really beautiful in my opinion.
WINDOWS USERS: You will need Media Player Classic (or equivalent) to play these files: http://www.afterdawn.com/software/vi...er_classic.cfm
MAC USERS: Use MPEG Streamclip: http://www.squared5.com/
Export 24F m2t's to QT DVCProHD at 23.976 fps, with a 1920x1080 frame size. (FCP will see it as 1280x1080 but set it for the larger frame upon export). Remember to uncheck all deinterlace or interlace options too. 24F is progressive material so there's no need for any deinterlace/interlace filtering at all.
Here are the clips, enjoy.
This is a wide shot of the falls. Many naysayers of HDV warned me about the problems of resolving a lot of motion, particularly in water. I have not encountered any motion rendering problems with this camera yet.
Same shot as above but with the camera tilting downwards to the bottom of the falls. This is a very complex shot in terms of detail and the camera has to work pretty hard to render everything accurately and, from what I can see, it was successful.
This is a pretty shot taken in fairly low light. Typically, in my experience with the DVX100a, I would be seeing quite a bit of camera noise in the background but the XLH1 rendered a very clean image under the same circumstances. This is a shallow depth of field closeup of some grass/plants swaying in the wind with the waterfall rushing down behind.
This is a wide shot of the one above. Again, there is much complex motion going on and it was fairly low light to boot. No problems that I can see.
Another motion test. Rushing water over rocks. Lots going on, no problem for Canon's HDV.
This is a low shot of a bridge in low light. I just like the receding quality of the composition. No movement to mention in this shot.
I liked the architecture of the bridge here and actually stopped down quite a bit to get a silhouette effect. I waited until some people walked over to add some motion and interest. There is some noise in the sky but it's a pleasing fast film grain feel rather than murky video noise.
I was very influenced by the cinematography in Capote for this shot. They chose to shoot Super35mm on that film and there is a particular shot where it's ultra wide and way off in the distance a train goes by. The train is so tiny in the frame but it demonstrates both the resolving power of Super35 and also the grand scale of the landscape in the shot. I wanted to shoot a landscape with lots of tiny detail to show off the camera's abilities at sharpness. The noise reduction filter I had on (NR2) produced some uneven softening. I've decided not to use that in the future. Buy hey, that's the whole purpose of testing.
A variation of the one above, different angle. All of these shots are purposefully a little underexposed to bring out the saturation more. Although, if I had to shoot everything over, I would open the iris more. The noise reduction's effect (NR2) is obvious to me in this shot. If you look at the trees on the left in the background, they are softer than the equidistant trees on the right of the frame. Pretty obvious on a large screen display. Although someone suggested it might simply be the way the lens is reacting in wide mode, I'll do further tests and report back.
This is another wide shot turning to the road with lots of detailed landscape in the background. In another test, I had shot some cars passing and noticed that there was some stuttering of motion. I later realized this was as a result of using the OIS. I had to then because I was shooting handheld. There is a significant difference in smooth motion rendering when the OIS is turned off. Never turn it on when you are tethered to a tripod.
BLACK AND WHITE:
I like the atmosphere in this shot. When appropriate, I try to include some movement in my shots so they don't look like photographs. Black and white has such a different feel to it that it's almost like I was in a different place than when I shot the color version. My 10 year old daughter thought the look of the black and white was "the coolest thing I've ever seen!" The settings were completely off for this and it was more spontaneous on my part to start shooting BW. Since then, I've created a much richer palette with a more luscious tonal range so I'll test that the next time I'm out. Also, the sharpening was turned down to -3 which gave the look much more softness than I like. Instead of a pleasing softness, it looks more like the camera's resolution was compromised.
The same shot as the color one above but with the BW settings. Because the shot is a silhouette shot against a grey cloudy sky, there is little difference between the color shot and this black and white version but the architecture of the bridge interested me.
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05-10-2006 11:59 AMFilms on Vimeo: http://www.vimeo.com/pinelakeflms/videos[/SIZE]
ExposureRoom page: http://exposureroom.com/members/disjecta.aspx/videos/
05-10-2006 12:01 PMnon-political thread version
LOL! Thanks D
05-10-2006 07:31 PM
Footage looks awesome. I did an after effects composition of your falls footage to see how well it holds up to some various effects. Looks, AWESOME!
I'm probably going to buy one of these for my Windows Setup.
http://www.tavproductions.net/test/falls_tilt_afxcc.wmv 8mb, 5MBPS WMV9 1920x1080 13 seconds.
05-10-2006 08:40 PM
Why, Disjecta....WHY THE .M2T FILES!??! WHY!??????Andrew Brinkhaus |director of photography
05-11-2006 01:44 PMOriginally Posted by InvisionProductions
05-11-2006 03:08 PM
- Join Date
- Apr 2006
Just use a VLC player. It's free and will play just about anything on either platform.
The HD footage is quality Disjecta. I live in Seattle and have shot at Snoqualmie Falls many times with my Panny. The weight and scope of your footage is a significantly better than what I have shot with my DVX. I think the 16/9 aspect ratio coupled with the clarity will truly add to the breadth of your projects.
How complex is your workflow with the XLH1? I shoot weddings and have been turned off by the HVX100 because I couldn't possibly be switching recording cards during an 80 minute ceremony.
Please keep posting your tests. They are very helpful for me.
05-11-2006 03:25 PM
Hey Disjecta a few queston asi am Inturged by the XLH1 lately....
How is the View finder?
and What is cutting M2t 24F files? is vegas up to the challenge?
How is the SD performance?
05-11-2006 03:30 PMOriginally Posted by Demistate