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» Film-Tech Forum   » Community   » Film-Yak   » The "Star Wars Camera" gets an upgrade

Author Topic: The "Star Wars Camera" gets an upgrade
Mark J. Marshall
Film God

Posts: 3184
From: New Castle, DE, USA
Registered: Aug 2002

 - posted 05-27-2003 11:19 AM      Profile for Mark J. Marshall     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Some of you may have heard, and the rest could probably guess, that the HD digital camera that will be used to shoot Episode III will be an improvement over the original one. Here's a link to that talks about the new camera.

In case the link moves in the future, the story is called "Defining High-Definition" and was originally linked off the "Episode II" page.

Click Here

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David Stambaugh
Film God

Posts: 4016
From: Eugene, Oregon
Registered: Jan 2002

 - posted 05-27-2003 11:32 AM      Profile for David Stambaugh   Author's Homepage   Email David Stambaugh   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Gee, now they admit the Ep2 image was actually not really 1920x1080, even before it was transferred to film. I'm shocked!

Thanks for posting that link. Interesting reading.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16227
From: Bountiful, Utah
Registered: Jun 99

 - posted 05-29-2003 02:21 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Of course it needs an upgrade.....Its A Sony!
Mark @ CLACO

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John Pytlak
Film God

Posts: 9987
From: Rochester, NY 14650-1922
Registered: Jan 2000

 - posted 05-29-2003 02:32 PM      Profile for John Pytlak   Author's Homepage   Email John Pytlak   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Even though the upgraded camera uses less compression in the recording system, it still has much less resolution than 35mm film. Fixed raster sensors usually require an anti-aliasing filter to minimize aliasing artifacts or moire in the image. At a minimum, the resolution is more than halved from the nominal pixel count on the sensor. Here is what John Galt of Panavision had to say on a posting on the Cinematography Mailing List (CML):

CML Posting About CCD Resolution

A 1920 x 1080 pixel 2/3" CCD has pixels which are 5 x 5 microns in size. If we are not going to upset Mr. Nyquist (create aliased images or moire patterns on fine detail) then the minimum circle of confusion is 10 microns. In practice, because optical low pass filters have slope, just like electronic filters, the real circle of confusion is more like 2.3 pixels or 12 microns. Please remember depth of field is a convenient construct, a rule of thumb. When you focus a lens only a small point in space is truly in focus. Depth of field implies that a certain amount of defocus will be acceptable. Whether this is true or not depends on many factors. Do your own tests for your particular application.

John Galt, Senior Vice President, Advanced Digital Imaging Panavision 6219 De Soto Avenue Woodland Hills CA 91367-2602

So with needed anti-alias filtering, 1920 x 1080 pixel sensors produce less than 960 x 540 lines of resolution, or less than 480 x 270 line pairs (cycles).

Of course, there are many other advantages of film origination:

There's More to the Story

Data Comparing Film and Digital Camera Resolution

35mm Film Resolution Requires at Least 4K Scanning

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Michael Schaffer
"Where is the
Boardwalk Hotel?"

Posts: 4143
From: Boston, MA
Registered: Apr 2002

 - posted 05-30-2003 12:56 AM      Profile for Michael Schaffer   Author's Homepage   Email Michael Schaffer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I doubt Episode III will be worth watching, updated camera or not.

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John Walsh
Film God

Posts: 2490
From: Connecticut, USA, Earth, Milky Way
Registered: Oct 1999

 - posted 05-30-2003 08:29 AM      Profile for John Walsh   Email John Walsh   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I agree with Michael. Unless the upgrade makes the camera 'smart' ie; refusing to operate when pointed at Jar-Jar, or other bad acting....

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Joe Redifer
You need a beating today

Posts: 12859
From: Denver, Colorado
Registered: May 99

 - posted 05-30-2003 12:02 PM      Profile for Joe Redifer   Author's Homepage   Email Joe Redifer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
John, if the camera refuses to operate when it sees bad acting, then Episode 3 will NEVER get made! It would be easier if it wouldn't operate due to bad directing... Sony could just send a camera shell with no guts inside because it would never be able to power up anyway.

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