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Your kit queries sorted by CVP’s experts

Posted on Apr 19, 2024 by Pro Moviemaker

Making the right gear choices is easy thanks to Britain’s number one filmmaking retailer 

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Q. I’m a Sony shooter but none of the mirrorless cameras shoot internal Raw – where Canon, Nikon and Blackmagic all offer some versions of it. Should I jump ship for the benefits of Raw capture, and how much of a difference could I expect?

A. Raw video formats are becoming increasingly accessible to end users and offer great benefits to video workflows. Not only does it provide greater image quality, but you get more flexibility over your images’ colour, tonality and exposure correction in your post workflow.

However, there are still many benefits to RGB codecs such as smaller file sizes, reduced power consumption and lighter demands with post-processing.

Q. What is the best affordable camera to buy for shooting fast frame rates, such as over 240fps? Is there a crop factor to worry about?

A. We are at a place now where most mirrorless cameras by default are offering at least 4K/120p as a standard, with some offering 240p when shooting in 1080p – such as Fujifilm’s X-H2S or Sony’s A1 and A7S III.

If you are wanting to shoot higher than 240p, you would need to start looking at something like Red’s V-Raptor, which starts at 8K/120p but can reach frame rates higher than 240p when you start cropping beyond 4K.

Alternatively, a dedicated high-speed camera like the Freefly Ember can give you frame rates above 800fps in 4K or 600fps in 5K. It weighs 800g and has a Super 35 sensor.

Q. I see 32-bit float audio seems to be a great solution to capture sound from loud to quiet. But surely, it depends on the dynamic range of your mic? What sort of mic would work best?

A. The dynamic range of your mic will definitely play a part in the effective range of audio you can capture.

Higher-quality mics will typically offer a better range, but will also offer a better sensitivity to audio too.

It’s hard to say which sort of mic works best as it depends on the application. Microphones vary in sensitivity and profiles tailored to specific applications.

Q. I have seen the new Kodak Super 8 camera has been launched, which looks like an interesting concept for retro-style footage. But can’t I just shoot on my regular camera and approximate the image in post and save a lot of cash?

A. Many resources are available to assist in giving your digital footage that film-like feel. Film emulation LUTs – coupled with a plethora of grain and film effects within DaVinci Resolve – offer a pathway to simulating the colour, tone and texture you would organically get with celluloid film.

But the best and most effective way to get the look of film is to simply shoot on film.

Even the most experienced colourist can spend a lot of time trying to get close to that authentic look.

Q. Have you tried the new Cooke compact lenses for mirrorless cameras? How do they compare to ‘real’ Cooke Speed Panchros for image quality and the look?

A. The optical design of Cooke’s new SP3 primes are based on the Speed Panchro series, and they share a very similar look.

We did a first look and test video of these when they first launched last summer, which you can watch below.

This advertisement feature was first published in the May/June 2024 issue of Pro Moviemaker.

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