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5D3 + polarizer = sharper?

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    5D3 + polarizer = sharper?

    I shot a bunch of footage today outside using a 1st generation FaderND on the 24-105 F4L, shutter 50, various ISOs, various F-stops (4-11). Watching the clips I am surprised how much sharper they are straight out of the camera (Cinestyle, sharpen 0). A church in the distance even produced moire. Perhaps there's something going on with the linear & circular polarizers affecting light before the OLPFs? Anyone else shot with polarizers/Faders on the 5D3 and noticed improved sharpness?

    #2
    if its that sharp then just take off that fader and see it sing even more. those faders are straight up crap for your image. I had one and didn't use it once on a paid shoot because it softened the image 2 much...just sold it off. Now i use the heliopan. MUCH better...huge difference. Sorry I couldn't contribute more. No 5d3 here
    http://vimeo.com/jambredzvisions
    http://www.youtube.com/user/jambred

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      #3
      Good to hear about the Heliopan. Going to pick up my 5DMK3 today and kind of deciding on "must haves" again. Been so long since I've used my 7D primarily for video, I knew there'd be some technological advancements. Good to hear about the Heliopan fader as that was always my issue with the FaderND.

      Kegan
      "I dream for a living" - Steven Spielberg

      IMDb Page

      www.kegansant.com

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        #4
        The FaderND gen 1 works OK on the 24-105 (has issues with the 70-200, etc.). It appears the OLPFs are some kind of polarizers (horizontal and vertical). My understanding is the variable NDs are a circular and linear polarizer. Normally, when I watch footage straight from the camera, it looks soft and I remind myself it will look great after I sharpen in post. This time it's looking pretty good straight from the camera. Will test with a resolution chart when I have time.

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          #5
          Church footage which shows moire:


          Footage is not sharp, but may be sharper than without the polarizers (didn't expect this result- didn't test without polarizers). When editing in post, it appears polarizer-on footage needs about 1/2 the sharpening. Anyone care to try to repro?

          Original from-camera MOV available for download on vimeo.

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            #6
            Originally posted by jcs View Post
            Church footage which shows moire:


            Footage is not sharp, but may be sharper than without the polarizers (didn't expect this result- didn't test without polarizers). When editing in post, it appears polarizer-on footage needs about 1/2 the sharpening. Anyone care to try to repro?

            Original from-camera MOV available for download on vimeo.
            I see aliasing and banding in the sky. Interesting.

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              #7
              Originally posted by HansSteinert View Post
              I see aliasing and banding in the sky. Interesting.
              Banding might be due to CineStyle profile (and shot was over-exposed). Since the FaderND gen 1 is considered soft, curious how a later gen Fader, Heliopan, or clear polarizers might work (both linear and circular).
              If I was going to use this shot, I could fix the banding somewhat with noise in post, or with a bit more work, masking and selective blurring (After Effects or DaVinci Resolve, etc.).

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                #8
                FaderND is good at low focal lengths (up to 50mm?) but absolutely horrible on long lenses; check my tests with the faderND mk2: http://www.similaar.com/foto/lenstests/lenstestsn.html

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                  #9
                  Thanks Samuel- nice to see the limits of the FaderND in pictures. Guess that's why the Heliopan is ~$500 vs. $130.

                  Testing a linear polarizer (in addition to circular), at different angles would also be interesting. Check this out: nikonusa.com/en_US/IMG/Images/Learn-And-Explore/2012/Camera-Technology/D-SLR-Series/Moire-D800-D800E/Media/OLPF_schematic.pdf
                  A polarizer might stop/reduce/change the last diffusion stage (if the 5D3 works similarly). A collimator might also have interesting properties: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collimator (check out the Söller collimator drawing):
                  Collimator.jpg

                  Ah, interesting, another clue from the Nikon link:
                  By converting polarized light into circularly polarized light with the wave plate, two points are divided into four points at low-pass filter 2.
                  Since a circular polarizer is a linear polarizer with a 1/4 wave retarder (phase shifter, "wave plate"), curious if this might explain a real effect when a circular polarizer is placed in front of this optical assembly. Intuitively, based on testing, it could be a circular polarizer reduces the effect of the OLPF by 1/2 to 1/4. If the OLPF works by providing two light paths, perhaps pre-polarizing produces one light path (or narrows the net separation).
                  Last edited by jcs; 04-11-2012, 12:08 PM.

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                    #10
                    Graded, sharpened, grain (high bitrate MPEG 422 version available for download):

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