Thursday, January 03, 2008

HD vendor has high-end doodads

Because I know you like high-end HD – I mean, what self-respecting blog reader doesn't? – I offer these.

Pictured are the Sony F23 CineAlta digital cinema camera system (top) and the Vision Research Phantom HD (bottom). Pretty neat pieces of gear, really. The latter can shoot at 1,000 frames per second. Talk about super slow-mo!

Your semi-intrepid reporter visited with Michael Ciancio of 4:4:4 Camera this morning. He opened the rental shop in downtown Shreveport and hopes to add HD equipment and expertise to the local market. Read my Times story here. Good info for those DPs out there.

I asked Michael some reasonably interesting questions about choosing HD over 35 mm film. He said lower budget features, which are this market's bread and butter, are more inclined to consider using high-end HD than big budget features. Why? Here are a few concise reasons:

Generally speaking, "The more you shoot, the cheaper HD is."

While shooting, "There is more clarity in what the image is going to look like."

"In editorial, the access to the image is immediate."

In some respects, these snippets suggest that you can accelerate the production process – or at the very least, streamline it – by shooting on HD. For penny-pinching producers and studios, this can translate into saving some coin.

P.S. I shot these photos. Aren't they special? There's nothing more awkward than shooting a picture of a director of photography, which Michael is. Oh, well. At least he didn't have the power to fire me.


shanebevel said...

Nice.... but where is the RED cam?

TKLA said...

There are only about 15 RED CAMS out there and many are still in beta mode. You'll start seeing them in a more widespread manner in about 6-10 months. Accessories and post workflows are still being sorted out, too. It will be an amazing tool for HD cinema very soon, not to mention incredibly affordable.

The Sony F23 that 444 markets is on par with the Panavision Genesis, and the Phantom should get some play in HD visual effects work. The Arri D20 which we market at TK|LA is also another options for true HD cinema. Along with the Sony F900, all are available through local suppliers.

Best of luck to Michael, Bailey and 444. They are a great additional to the film community in this region. I hope that everyone realizes their commitment to help build an indigenous business.

Chris Lyon said...

Now that some time has passed, I feel it necessary to say that there are now over 1000 RED cameras on the market. 6 of them just finished shooting Beyond a Reasonable doubt. Red is no longer in beta. I've seen the work of red in everything from small music videos, super bowl commercials and even major motion pictures on the screen (parts of Jumper were Red). It is certainly the revolution of D-Cinema and HD alternatives. I'm told to look for more Red action in Shreveport before the summer is up.