Choosing the make of the lenses you use on a project is one of many ways to create a look. The quality and characteristics of a lens add to the flavor of the image, and is one of the many ways to impart your look as a DP. It’s one of my favorite choices a DP can make on a project: which make of lenses will I use for this specific project?
One of the elements that adds to the characteristics of this choice is the contrast and color rendition in a lens, so I wanted to take a deeper look at ARRI/ZEISS primes. Both Master Primes and Ultra Primes have been a staple in our industry for a long time and complement each other extremely well. While there are differences between them that I’ll discuss, the lenses can in fact be interwoven.
…continue reading A Closer Look: ARRI/ZEISS Master Primes and Ultra Primes
As the year officially draws to a close, it’s time for our annual round-up of the most popular CineTechnica blog posts over the last 12 months. It’s been a busy 2016, and as usual a wide range of topics was represented – including new product announcements, comparison charts, workflow how-tos, custom scene files, and more.
Our Top 15 blogs are listed below in no particular order. Make sure to check them out, and let us know in the comments what you’d like to see us cover in 2017!
…continue reading Top Blogs of 2016
The ARRI SkyPanel is an LED soft light that is packed with features. The SkyPanel comes in two different configurations and three sizes. In this blog, I will take a closer look at the S-60C model. C-model SkyPanels have adjustable color temperatures from 2,800K – 10,000K. In addition, the units have what ARRI describes as Vibrant Color Selection. This means that color hue and saturation can be adjusted. The light can also be programmed to display the color quality of both Lee and Rosco color gels.
…continue reading At the Bench: ARRI SkyPanel S60-C
In my latest video, I talk about the new Beachtek DXA-ALEXA for the ALEXA Mini. As you may know, audio input to the ALEXA Mini is via a Mini 5-pin connector on the front housing, while audio into the camera is line level only. This presents operators with a challenge getting their mic level signals into the camera. The Beachtek DXA-ALEXA converts mic level signals to line level for recording audio direct to the C-Fast cards used by the ALEXA Mini.
The Beachtek DXA-ALEXA is a preamp that supports powered mics, as well as those requiring phantom 48 power. The unit supports channels of audio input via XLR 3 connectors with independent gain switches. Tracks can be recorded separately or as a mix. Each channel input adjustment knob has a detent, so range of adjustment can be made by feel if or when line of sight is not possible. Each channel has a diode for record level that is color coded, and levels can be quickly and easily evaluated for record level.
The kit for the ALEXA Mini comes with the preamp and mounting bracket; cables are ordered separately as the preamp will work with other cameras, such as RED. In my video above, I go through what is included in the kit, set up, and usage, as well as a microphone test.
ARRI has now started shipping the ALEXA SXT camera, and we were lucky enough to have one in house for a short time. The ALEXA SXT is the latest evolution of the ALEXA camera line, with several new features and the horsepower of the ALEXA 65 camera. The SXT has a Swiss Army knife of recording options, giving you many ProRes and raw formats, and a wide variety of frame sizes to support anamorphic and aspherical acquisition. All of these can be recorded to the new Codex SXR capture drives, which give the highest frame rate options. Other recording options include CFast 2.0, SxS, or the ALEXA XT’s Codex capture drive with an adapter.
The camera now has the same powerful look management features found in the AMIRA and ALEXA Mini. It takes this concept further with four independently addressable outputs and remote color grading options via Pomfort LiveGrade or other applications. Any color adjustments performed on set can be saved as metadata to the camera clips. These can be easily applied directly from the clips in most NLEs and color grading applications. The SXT also has some image processing improvements and noise reduction options, and with the ALEXA 65 hardware inside, there are many possibilities for future improvements via firmware updates. Check out the video above to learn more.
On Saturday, October 8, AbelCine held its first Fall Tech Expo. Taking place in our Chicago location on the Cinespace Studios lot, the expo featured a number of manufacturers displaying new gear for attendees to get their hands on. In addition, throughout the day, multiple raffles were held, along with presentations from manufacturer experts and our technical specialists on the showroom stage. Thank you again to all the manufacturers that participated as well to everyone who attended – we had a record turnout!
…continue reading Chicago Fall Tech Expo Recap
ARRI has announced their new Master Grips, a set of flexible, ergonomic handgrips with a rich feature set for camera and lens control. First and foremost, they serve the primary function of stabilizing the camera for shoulder-mounted handheld operation. Using a design more than a little reminiscent of handgrips for classic ARRIFLEX film cameras (such as those used with the 16SR, 235 and 435), the Master Grips look to keep the same great feel in the hand while putting both camera and lens control at your fingertips.
…continue reading Introducing the ARRI Master Grips