The 3D Dilema and TV production squeeze !

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Is it such a surprise to anyone that broadcasters like ESPN are reviewing the cost of producing 3D HD sports over 2D HD.

To get the quality needed for 3D HD in a broadcast environment you need two cameras, two lenses an expensive rig, all cameras have to be converged…it’s a technical expensive nightmare and all for what…a few hundred people watching 10-30 minutes of 3D coverage, it’s a joke.

3D is an expensive gimmick and the truth was exposed earlier on this year when Nintendo brought out their 3DS a hand held 3D games machine that did not need glasses to watch 3D and what did all the kids do…switch off the 3D because it was too hard to concentrate on the game with 3D activated.

That spoke volumes and as much as I am a 3D fan it’s not yet come of age and why broadcasters like ESPN are now questioning the extra cost to produce 3D HD sports programmes is like questioning the surgeons need for his anaesthetist during an operation.

Is’s not just the pictures that double…the cost must double as least or even triple due to it’s cutting edge production workflow, but we all know who is really behind this dilemma, the bean counters…who are the sole owners of the broadcasting implosion in the UK and beyond.

We are now dictated by saving money at all costs and sadly this is at the cost of many productions across the UK alone like Scottish Televisions Taggart, one of the most successful Scottish dramas to be axed due to “falling numbers”.

Bean counters don’t like the words “falling” and “numbers” it equates to less pennies…the BBC alone have lost BBC Broadcasting House in London thanks to “cuts”, that decision will come back to haunt them in my opinion.

I was just reading the NHK annual 2011 report last night in bed to discover NHK in Japan have FOURTEEN helicopters stationed across Japan on 24 hour standby with pilot and camera person.

I can’t think of any UK broadcaster who owns any helicopters let alone 14 of them, Japan puts all of us to shame and its obvious their so called bean counters are not given the same priorities as we do in this country.

In the UK it’s all down to cutting costs which means cutting corners in productions or worse axing programmes completely  all in the name of what…so the share holders are happy at the top of the tree but once you fillet out the flesh of good television you are left with the bones are you surprised people are turning away from watching television.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Panasonics AVC Ultra

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AVC Ultra, the collective name given to Panasonic’s group of professional AVC based codecs, represents a single workflow destination for professional users working at many levels in the production cycle. As a unified, seamless group of codecs based on the H.264 standard, AVC Ultra offers enhanced flexibility for both high-end and mainstream production through its support for a wide range of data-rates from low to high quality.
The AVC Intra 100 and 50 is enhancing  up to 1080p by maintaining  existing workflows and infrastructure. Ideal for where quality consciousness sits alongside the need for a flexible, cost-efficient house format.
Intra capability is expanding up to 4:4:4, 12 bit, Master quality with a range of up to 4K resolution. The advantage is  visually lossless, file based mastering means flexibility and sustainability, and far smaller file size than with currently available technologies.
In this IBC, we announce extending  to the cost conscious segment where  speed and flexibility are required  with AVC Long Gop which is twice efficiency of current MPEG2-GOP.
AVCUltra  is covering a full range of industry applications while also delivering an improved workflow experience  ranging from 400M at one end to 800K at the other. This makes AVC Ultra a good choice for professional applications including filming in 3D.  AVC Ultra  is an entirely unified codec family  based on H.264. The AVC Ultra family also includes an AVCProxy codec designed specifically for quick breaking news applications and fast off-line editing.

The latest enhancements to the codec line-up mean that the AVC Ultra family can ensure consistent results for a full range of industry applications while also delivering an improved workflow experience. The AVC Ultra family also includes an AVC Proxy codec designed specifically for quick breaking news applications and fast off-line editing.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Day TWO IBC 2011

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Day two was more hectic than day one, first stop was to ATOMOS…

I was shown a fantastic HD converter which converts HDMI to HD SDI and fits in your top pocket, runs off a Sony 7.4V battery which is why you now have two choices when it comes to the HDMI Ninja or the HDSDI Samuri.

This is a reader from Israel, Nissan Lahat Kunz who tells his cameramen to look at my tutorials if they need a refresher in using his Sony PMW-350 camcorder.

This was a great bit of marketing a German web streaming company showing off the new very portable mini CASTER a live streaming encoder that connects to the internet via LAN, cellular or WiFi and converts video signals from prosumer camcorders to live HD web streaming.

My old friend Ron Tarrent from Panasonic was on hand to explain the new codecs from Panasonic that will rock the video industry to its core and also informed me that the new 22x lenses on the 250 and 160 were 28mm on the wide end.

We have taken a lot of footage over the last 2 days at IBC so look out for my reports coming soon.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Sony show 2 new lenses for the F3 camcorder

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Today Sony introduced 2 new heavy weights in the form of zoom lenses. The 11-16mm wide zoom lens with a list cost of 6,000 Euros and a 14x zoom lens for the F3.

 

The 14x zoom lens works off the rocker control on the F3 and has a range from 18mm to 252mm with an image stabiliser built in for good measure. The lens in a f3.8 but as Alister Chapman pointed out this is a lens for ENG work so shallow depth of field would be less important in this field.

The 18-252mm f3.8 zoom lens is dedicated to the Sony F3 camcorder and will retail for about 9000 Euros.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

IBC Day ONE NEWS (Exclusive)

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Today was day one of IBC 2011 and it was only at 4.30 pm we got an exclusive from Mike Tapa of MTF Services.

Today we got to see the first electronic Canon EF adapter for the Sony F3, Sony FS100 and Panasonic AF101…yes you heard correctly an electronic iris adapter for the three major large sensor camcorders.

Here is the man himself Mike Tapa showing us his exclusive Canon EF iris control plus adapter, this I may add is a working prototype, working on all three large sensor camcorders from Sony (2) and Panasonic (1).

Here is the control box of the MTF electronic adapter which controls the iris in 1/8th of a stop increments seen here with a Sony F3 in the background.

Mike has indeed brought a cat out of the bag with this product as Birger Engineering don’t seem the be at the show nor are their Canon EF adapters to be seen, promised as far back as June 2011.

If you have Canon EF glass and own any of the three large sensor camcorders then this combination from MTF Services is a number one Christmas list product as MTF hope to be into full production by November 2011, price to be announced.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Arriving in Amsterdam 9.15am

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This is me arriving at Amsterdam this morning, I have had a text from my friend from FCP.CO telling me that he is waiting to go into a Sony conference so I will let you know later on today if we have any new camcorders etc.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

H Preston Media …Open Day, see the new Panasonic cameras

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For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

IBC 2011…One day to go

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We are heading to Amsterdam today arriving Friday morning so I won’t be able to give you any info till Friday evening with pictures and a written report of day one at IBC.

As usual we are filming and this year I have the Sony FS100 and the Sony NX70, the video will not be edited till late next week so please be patient.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

How to go Viral

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Today in Glasgow my nephew became big news because of one person…Taylor Swift. During a You Tube interview Taylor happened to mention Douglas’s You Tube video (4m 30s in) and how it was cute watching him being licked by baby lion cubs. The roof lifted off Dougies life and everyone wanted to know the “Scottish lion man”.

As you can see Taylor Swift is mega and has an enormous following especially in the USA, today our local independant TV station interviewed Dougie.

Our camera crew from Scottish Television, Fraser Clelland and Karen Greenshields (Reporter) who are old friends of mine as I used to freelance for STV many moons ago.

So here is that very internet sensation followed by Dougies own music video filmed by myself on the new Sony FS100.

[xr_video id=”1728c884c58643878a46fa9f50b80fdb” size=”md”]

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Harking back to the past to educate the future

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Everyone thinks that shallow depth of field is part and parcel of the film world but not everyone was happy with SDoF.  When one of Hollywood’s biggest directors Orson Welles filmed Citizen Kane a film made in 1941 which was not only directed by Orson Welles but stared the very man himself, director Welles insisted on having a large depth of field for many of his shots.

This gave the crew a nightmare as they had to bring in far more lighting when Orson decided his next shot was to be filmed at T11 or f11 to you and me. T11 in those days ment blasting the set with light in order to allow the iris to stop down to f11, if nothing else things must have got very hot indeed.

If on the occasion enough light was not the answer they would use a split lens to give them two seperate depths of focus now this was tricky as you had to make sure your foreground actors and background actors never crossed the “invisible” line.

As an example you would use the edge of the door as an invisible line then pop on the split lens giving you two separate focusing fields.

As you can see the actors could not move from that position or the effect would be ruined. So you see it’s a savvy director who decides not to follow the rest of the field and give the viewer a visual experiance that in those days was new and different to the norm.

Think out of the box like Orson Welles did seventy years ago, the internet is a great tool but many of you are trying to emulate and be influanced by what you see on YouTube, Vimeo etc. The best films or videos today are fresh, free of influances from what others do and say, it does not have to be the “Film Look” for everything you do, video and its larger depth of field still has a place, it’s the power of your story that matters the tool to do the job is secondary to that.

My thanks to Norrie for the background info.

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