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NOW HDR, was 8K Samsung TVs


John Brawley
 

Bringing this over from CML General….


On Oct 10, 2019, at 4:32 PM, Art Adams <aadams@...> wrote:

I think it’s safe to assume that every show that has any sort of intended lifespan is going to go through an HDR finish. The problem, of course, is that no one is monitoring HDR on set. If this were the case, I’d be curious as to what kind of changes this would force.

Yeah.  Doing my first HDR (and Dolby vision) mandated show right now and realised there really isn’t a good way to look at HDR on set.

Like nothing at all, sort of a full suite with a Sony 300, which no-one wants to do.

I did see some lovely Canon HDR monitors the other day that had eye watering price tags….Again for studio suite, not for the field though. 

Michael C from Panavision before he left told me they were working on a monitoring solution for set but I never got to try it out.  HDR Link I think they call it.

I was wondering about getting one of the consumer TV panels but I didn’t get far down that path.




If HDR takes off, and it likely will, it’s probably going to force some changes in production in the areas of lighting and optics. I’m curious as to whether anyone else agrees.



Well, the show I’m doing right now is a period (1760’s) and on stage, all the lighting is either pracs candles, in frame everywhere, or hot windows with sheers for daylight.

Hot candles in foreground.  Hot candles in background.  

It’s a nightmare.  

One thing I realised in my tests is that we have a lot of DR with modern cameras, so I’ve been exposing “to the left” or rather underexposing the middle a bit, and trying to protect the highlights more.  Almost exposing for the highlights really.

This means in HDR the candle flames, instead of clipping out and going white hot crazy, retain a little more colour, and therefore don’t look as naturally clipped.  I then drag up the midtowns though the grade, or trying to light them up a little.

It looks so much nicer and natural in HDR to have a little of that detail in the highlights.

For windows, I let them sit as clipped, but the clip level is dropped to say 500 nits (1000 being the clipping standard in the grade suite I’m in) so they may burn, but not as bright hopefully. But I used to get away with lights in shot and crappy day white textiles outside of windows.  Not any more.  You can see it all.

So perversely, I’m now doing the opposite of what a lot of previous exposure doctrine lead me to do, that is to underexposure or expose for highlights, to try and protect them more, unless they’re windows, in which case I try and make them visually cleaner and that there’s nothing embarrassing out there that would have been hidden away in SDR.

It seems the other approach is to also give up the extra DR and stretch everything out as well, but set a lower clipping point but that does seem less satisfying a result, basically scaling a SDR grade into HDR.

One other way to go would be to abandon lighting  and using pracs so much, treat it like we used to in the film days where pracs lights are justification for “real” lights and bring the levels up.  Seems perverse to work that way, that HDR needs you to raise the levels, to effectively LOWER the DR so that it all fits in a narrow exposure band.

I will say I LOVE the look of HDR.  It’s subtle, nuanced, colour perception is more discrete.  I think it’s a great step forward, much more so that adding more resolution.  But it’s a tricky one to come to terms with and I’m finding it challenging to work with, especially as you can’t really know what it’s going to look like till the grade….err…just like film :-)

JB


John Brawley
Cinematographer
Los Angeles 
Currently London on The Great Season 1






Video Assist Hungary
 

John Brawley wrote:
I’ve been exposing “to the left”
That got me thinking.
I bought my first camera, a Canon Rebel, in 2005 from my first film job (as a boom op). It’s bad DR was complimented by terrible black rolloff. There, I learned to ‘expose to the right’ with the explanation that the more exposed parts got more bit depth in the raw files. It really helped, but I never got (or rather researched) the underlying math.

Does it hold true for modern cinema cameras? It should, really...

Balázs Rozgonyi
CEO Video Assist Hungary


Art Adams
 

>So perversely, I’m now doing the opposite of what a lot of previous exposure doctrine lead me to do, that is to underexposure or expose for highlights, to try and protect them more, unless they’re windows, in which case I try and make them visually cleaner and that there’s nothing embarrassing out there that would have been hidden away in SDR.

 

The trick is that noise plays a bigger role now, as it’s more easily seen. Also, colorists tend to say that rich blacks are disturbing in HDR so they try to avoid them and leave a little bit of detail way down at the bottom of the curve, which is where noise lie.

 

The rule of thumb I’ve heard is to divide the EI by 2 to keep the noise down, but of course that robs your highlights.

 

>One other way to go would be to abandon lighting  and using pracs so much, treat it like we used to in the film days where pracs lights are justification for “real” lights and bring the levels up.  Seems perverse to work that way, that HDR needs you to raise the levels, to effectively LOWER the DR so that it all fits in a narrow exposure band.

 

This is what I’ve suspected for a while. Bright practicals in the frame are distracting, so making them less distracting means making them dimmer. A practical in Rec 709 is never going to be brighter than middle gray plus two stops because that’s all the standard will allow, but in the real world and HDR that’s just a white lamp shade exposed to be flat white. Any brighter than that and it starts to look like an actual lit lamp, but it also becomes distracting.

 

In the real world we tune that stuff out. Put a frame around the real world, though, and the distraction level increases. It seems that as we focus our attention, the things that surround that area of focus can get in the way of what we’re focusing on.

 

I’ve been waiting to see what happens to trends in lighting and lenses due to HDR, and I’m surprised we haven’t seen a shift in photographic styles yet. I do think it’s coming.

 

The big question is… it’s fairly easy to be abstract in Rec 709, in the same way that one could get away with quite a lot in NTSC and PAL. Limited dynamic range and resolution means one can use a broader brush, or a lighter hammer, to craft artistic and compelling looks. That becomes more difficult as the image approaches what we see in reality.

 

>I will say I LOVE the look of HDR.  It’s subtle, nuanced, colour perception is more discrete.  I think it’s a great step forward, much more so that adding more resolution.  But it’s a tricky one to come to terms with and I’m finding it challenging to work with, especially as you can’t really know what it’s going to look like till the grade….err…just like film :-)

 

It's a big leap forward, but such leaps come with learning curves. They also lead to massive opportunities in the long run.

 

 

Art Adams

Cinema Lens Specialist

 

 

ARRI Inc.
3700 Vanowen Street
Burbank, CA 91505
Phone:  (818) 841-7070
Fax:     (818) 848-4028

Get all the latest information from www.arri.com, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

 

 


This message is confidential. It may also be privileged or otherwise protected by work product immunity or other legal rules. If you have received it by mistake, please let us know by e-mail reply and delete it from your system; you may not copy this message or disclose its contents to anyone. Please send us by fax any message containing deadlines as incoming e-mails are not screened for response deadlines. The integrity and security of this message cannot be guaranteed on the Internet.




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Geoff Boyle
 

/rant on

 

I think that barely competent cinematographers have been getting away with murder recently and HDR is showing who they are.

There is a series on Amazon that has really distracting highlights in nearly every shot and the day interiors have windows so bright that you can’t help but look at them rather than the actors. This is going to be far far worse in HDR.

Of course, as has been said, if people looked at the brightness of lamps and windows and balanced the shot, isn’t that part of our job?, there wouldn’t be a problem.

What’s the issue with putting ND gel inside shades on the side that face camera?

We’ve always known that the way to focus attention on a particular actor is to make them slightly brighter than everyone else. Your eye goes straight to the brightest one.

It’s just a case of doing your job. As for monitoring, well there isn’t an affordable solution at the moment and anyway you will need a controlled environment and time to adjust to it. The simple solution is eyes, experience and a meter.

 

 

cheers
Geoff Boyle NSC FBKS
EU based cinematographer
+31 637155076

www.gboyle.nl

www.cinematography.net

 

 

From: cml-raw-log-hdr@... <cml-raw-log-hdr@...> On Behalf Of Art Adams
Sent: 11 October 2019 19:22
To: cml-raw-log-hdr@...
Subject: [cml-raw-log-hdr] NOW HDR, was 8K Samsung TVs

 

>So perversely, I’m now doing the opposite of what a lot of previous exposure doctrine lead me to do, that is to underexposure or expose for highlights, to try and protect them more, unless they’re windows, in which case I try and make them visually cleaner and that there’s nothing embarrassing out there that would have been hidden away in SDR.

 

The trick is that noise plays a bigger role now, as it’s more easily seen. Also, colorists tend to say that rich blacks are disturbing in HDR so they try to avoid them and leave a little bit of detail way down at the bottom of the curve, which is where noise lie.

 

The rule of thumb I’ve heard is to divide the EI by 2 to keep the noise down, but of course that robs your highlights.

 

>One other way to go would be to abandon lighting  and using pracs so much, treat it like we used to in the film days where pracs lights are justification for “real” lights and bring the levels up.  Seems perverse to work that way, that HDR needs you to raise the levels, to effectively LOWER the DR so that it all fits in a narrow exposure band.

 

This is what I’ve suspected for a while. Bright practicals in the frame are distracting, so making them less distracting means making them dimmer. A practical in Rec 709 is never going to be brighter than middle gray plus two stops because that’s all the standard will allow, but in the real world and HDR that’s just a white lamp shade exposed to be flat white. Any brighter than that and it starts to look like an actual lit lamp, but it also becomes distracting.

 

In the real world we tune that stuff out. Put a frame around the real world, though, and the distraction level increases. It seems that as we focus our attention, the things that surround that area of focus can get in the way of what we’re focusing on.

 

I’ve been waiting to see what happens to trends in lighting and lenses due to HDR, and I’m surprised we haven’t seen a shift in photographic styles yet. I do think it’s coming.

 

The big question is… it’s fairly easy to be abstract in Rec 709, in the same way that one could get away with quite a lot in NTSC and PAL. Limited dynamic range and resolution means one can use a broader brush, or a lighter hammer, to craft artistic and compelling looks. That becomes more difficult as the image approaches what we see in reality.

 

>I will say I LOVE the look of HDR.  It’s subtle, nuanced, colour perception is more discrete.  I think it’s a great step forward, much more so that adding more resolution.  But it’s a tricky one to come to terms with and I’m finding it challenging to work with, especially as you can’t really know what it’s going to look like till the grade….err…just like film :-)

 

It's a big leap forward, but such leaps come with learning curves. They also lead to massive opportunities in the long run.

 

 

Art Adams

Cinema Lens Specialist

 

 

ARRI Inc.
3700 Vanowen Street
Burbank, CA 91505
Phone:  (818) 841-7070
Fax:     (818) 848-4028

Get all the latest information from www.arri.com, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

 

 

 

This message is confidential. It may also be privileged or otherwise protected by work product immunity or other legal rules. If you have received it by mistake, please let us know by e-mail reply and delete it from your system; you may not copy this message or disclose its contents to anyone. Please send us by fax any message containing deadlines as incoming e-mails are not screened for response deadlines. The integrity and security of this message cannot be guaranteed on the Internet.

 


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Mark Kenfield
 

I think there’s a very simple solution for the problematic highlights in HDR. “Default White”.

By default highlights are mapped to something comparable in brightness to 100 IRE in Rec709 (i.e. the same comfortable level of brightness we (and more importantly audiences) are used to. 

Then expanding highlights into the dazzling brightness levels of HDR becomes a purely selective process. For example, if you want to dazzle the audience as a character breaks out of a house into the searing sun, then you boost the levels just in that sequence, the audience gets to feel that glare, and then you can fade the brightness back down to a comfortable level as the character’s eyes adapt.

The storytelling possibilities of HDR are fantastic. But digging into them (especially with how distracting the highlights can become) needs to be a purely selective process. The defaults should all be at more conventional levels.

Cheers,

Mark Kenfield 
Cinematographer 

0400 044 500

On 12 Oct 2019, at 4:20 pm, Geoff Boyle <geoff@...> wrote:

/rant on

 

I think that barely competent cinematographers have been getting away with murder recently and HDR is showing who they are.

There is a series on Amazon that has really distracting highlights in nearly every shot and the day interiors have windows so bright that you can’t help but look at them rather than the actors. This is going to be far far worse in HDR.

Of course, as has been said, if people looked at the brightness of lamps and windows and balanced the shot, isn’t that part of our job?, there wouldn’t be a problem.

What’s the issue with putting ND gel inside shades on the side that face camera?

We’ve always known that the way to focus attention on a particular actor is to make them slightly brighter than everyone else. Your eye goes straight to the brightest one.

It’s just a case of doing your job. As for monitoring, well there isn’t an affordable solution at the moment and anyway you will need a controlled environment and time to adjust to it. The simple solution is eyes, experience and a meter.

 

 

cheers
Geoff Boyle NSC FBKS
EU based cinematographer
+31 637155076

www.gboyle.nl

www.cinematography.net

 

 

From: cml-raw-log-hdr@... <cml-raw-log-hdr@...> On Behalf Of Art Adams
Sent: 11 October 2019 19:22
To: cml-raw-log-hdr@...
Subject: [cml-raw-log-hdr] NOW HDR, was 8K Samsung TVs

 

>So perversely, I’m now doing the opposite of what a lot of previous exposure doctrine lead me to do, that is to underexposure or expose for highlights, to try and protect them more, unless they’re windows, in which case I try and make them visually cleaner and that there’s nothing embarrassing out there that would have been hidden away in SDR.

 

The trick is that noise plays a bigger role now, as it’s more easily seen. Also, colorists tend to say that rich blacks are disturbing in HDR so they try to avoid them and leave a little bit of detail way down at the bottom of the curve, which is where noise lie.

 

The rule of thumb I’ve heard is to divide the EI by 2 to keep the noise down, but of course that robs your highlights.

 

>One other way to go would be to abandon lighting  and using pracs so much, treat it like we used to in the film days where pracs lights are justification for “real” lights and bring the levels up.  Seems perverse to work that way, that HDR needs you to raise the levels, to effectively LOWER the DR so that it all fits in a narrow exposure band.

 

This is what I’ve suspected for a while. Bright practicals in the frame are distracting, so making them less distracting means making them dimmer. A practical in Rec 709 is never going to be brighter than middle gray plus two stops because that’s all the standard will allow, but in the real world and HDR that’s just a white lamp shade exposed to be flat white. Any brighter than that and it starts to look like an actual lit lamp, but it also becomes distracting.

 

In the real world we tune that stuff out. Put a frame around the real world, though, and the distraction level increases. It seems that as we focus our attention, the things that surround that area of focus can get in the way of what we’re focusing on.

 

I’ve been waiting to see what happens to trends in lighting and lenses due to HDR, and I’m surprised we haven’t seen a shift in photographic styles yet. I do think it’s coming.

 

The big question is… it’s fairly easy to be abstract in Rec 709, in the same way that one could get away with quite a lot in NTSC and PAL. Limited dynamic range and resolution means one can use a broader brush, or a lighter hammer, to craft artistic and compelling looks. That becomes more difficult as the image approaches what we see in reality.

 

>I will say I LOVE the look of HDR.  It’s subtle, nuanced, colour perception is more discrete.  I think it’s a great step forward, much more so that adding more resolution.  But it’s a tricky one to come to terms with and I’m finding it challenging to work with, especially as you can’t really know what it’s going to look like till the grade….err…just like film :-)

 

It's a big leap forward, but such leaps come with learning curves. They also lead to massive opportunities in the long run.

 

 

Art Adams

Cinema Lens Specialist

 

 

ARRI Inc.
3700 Vanowen Street
Burbank, CA 91505
Phone:  (818) 841-7070
Fax:     (818) 848-4028

Get all the latest information from www.arri.com, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

 

 

 

This message is confidential. It may also be privileged or otherwise protected by work product immunity or other legal rules. If you have received it by mistake, please let us know by e-mail reply and delete it from your system; you may not copy this message or disclose its contents to anyone. Please send us by fax any message containing deadlines as incoming e-mails are not screened for response deadlines. The integrity and security of this message cannot be guaranteed on the Internet.

 


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Art Adams
 

>I think there’s a very simple solution for the problematic highlights in HDR. “Default White”.

 

In linear terms, this is basically 2-2.5 stops brighter than middle gray. Beyond that, you’re in HDR territory.

 

And below about 3-4 stops under middle gray, the same applies.

 

The material is still going to vary depending on the max nit value of the TV, the HDR processing (Dolby vs. HDR10 vs. HLG vs. whatever else catches on), but +2/-3 is already what we perceive by eye as matte white and matte black, so that’s the “safe zone.” That’s Rec 709 territory. That’s the meat. Beyond that is the seasoning.

 

 

Art Adams

Cinema Lens Specialist

 

 

ARRI Inc.
3700 Vanowen Street
Burbank, CA 91505
Phone:  (818) 841-7070
Fax:     (818) 848-4028

Get all the latest information from www.arri.com, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

 

 


This message is confidential. It may also be privileged or otherwise protected by work product immunity or other legal rules. If you have received it by mistake, please let us know by e-mail reply and delete it from your system; you may not copy this message or disclose its contents to anyone. Please send us by fax any message containing deadlines as incoming e-mails are not screened for response deadlines. The integrity and security of this message cannot be guaranteed on the Internet.




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Noel Sterrett
 

On 10/12/19 11:13 AM, Art Adams wrote:
Beyond that is the seasoning.

Which a good chef applies vary sparingly.

Noel Sterrett
Admit One Pictures


Kevin Shaw
 

By default highlights are mapped to something comparable in brightness to 100 IRE in Rec709

A lot of people are working that way, but in my opinion it is a terrible idea.

HDR is full of unknown possibilities, but making it look like 709/ gamma and trimming up some highlights does not make good HDR in my opinion. It os a safe compromise to shoot for SDR and get an HDR master but it does not exploit the potential benefits of HDR - images that are more real, bright colors under or from bright lights, increased contrast and therefore sharpness, emotional DR shifts etc etc.

Certainly SDR images can be mastered in an HDR wrapper, just like black and white images can be mastered in a color wrapper and yes there will be times when that is appropriate. But why not use HDR for what it is - there are so many good creative possibilities why deny them. 

Just my opinion as a colorist

Kevin
Kevin Shaw, CSI :
colorist, instructor and consultant
t +44 7921. 677  369 
e
 kevs@...

finalcolor: www.finalcolor.com  ICA:          www.icolorist.com      
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