sujewa films nyc

Thursday, March 05, 2009

HDV vs. 24p/dvx100 article link & thoughts related to it

So I spent a few hours today researching, talking & arguing a little about, also calling up my own visual memories/reactions to seeing the two formats used in well made indie features, and in the end I am leaning towards using the DVX100B/24p SD for the new fiction feature vs. using an HDV camera or using a true HD camera w/ P2 cards for a couple of reasons:

- the narrative feature that was shot on the dvx100 cam using dv tape felt more like a narrative feature for the most part than the cinematography award winning, & excellent looking, HD w/ P2 cards shot narrative feature - which reminded me of a really well made high quality television show in its look & my resulting emotional reaction to it.

- also, i feel like (and this could be just an amount of $s available at the moment thing, and if money was no obstacle i may not even be having this discussion) the great access-to-poor-filmmakers equalizing breakthrough that happened with MiniDV tapes (less than $10 for 1 hour of footage) is being undone by P2 cards ($600, $800 & up for less than 1 hour of footage, and needing to possibly re-work/upgrade existing digital video editing systems). P2 cards seem like an attempt to make digital filmmaking expensive & difficult the way 16MM & 35MM was expensive - expensive & exclusive & for, really, "rich people" (i know that's a highly relative term since billions of people live on less than $2 or so a day on this planet (so i hear) & they would think i am a spoiled rich dude for thinking about using a camera that costs a couple of thousand $s instead of using the money to feeding the poor/hungry - but anyway, i digress :). i am all about keeping filmmaking costs - equipment costs - down so that more regular people (in this context it's regular people in the west/"first" world - w/ jobs) can have access to filmmaking - so the price of true HD probably colors my reaction to it. But, for a non-ultra-low-budget-DIY/investor backed/slightly higher budgeted (over the $10K level lets say) indie feature true HD would be a good option - if the director liked the way it looks/felt it was appropriate for the story.

(and there is also the third possibility - other elements of the two movies compared - music, the story, acting, the writing/conceiving were more to my liking in the 24p movie - & that highly affects how i am making my choice)

so, for the moment, for the new fiction feature, i think it'll have to be 24p/the dvx100b. mostly because the 24p recorded fiction feature that i am thinking about/how it looked - felt more cinematic to me compared to what i saw & felt when i saw the HD filmed narrative feature (both flicks were shot by experienced/skilled DPs btw, & well made by most objective/classical standards of filmed image excellence). and the story i am telling has a lot to do with a certain amount of financial desperation - i think 24p from a dvx100b would work better for it.

More on the HDV vs. 24p debate at Josh Oakhurst's site. My choices were really between 24p and HDV, with true HD being a distant possibility. I see HDV as HD-lite, so, since I seem to prefer 24p/dvx100b images to true HD images for the current project, I am thinking I won't be that impressed with HDV images for this fiction feature.

Do share your thoughts in comments on this video formats for indie filmmaking item, if you've used some or all of the ones mentioned above & have certain preferences.

and perhaps a related thought - painters prefer certain colors & photographers prefer certain film stocks - will choice of digital video image capture system become such a creative preference when money is not an issue? perhaps, in some cases, perhaps.

- Sujewa

2 comments:

Aaron said...

In terms of getting a quality image at a relatively inexpensive price, it's hard to beat the DVX100B in 24p mode.

1Way or Another said...

I agree with Aaron. i think you made a great choice. its easy to use, mobile and looks great in 24p mode especially in close ups where u can actually focus manually in a way that give u a high depth of field. we used dvx-100 for uptown and cookies, and hdv for carter.

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