Wednesday, April 19, 2006

CineForm RAW™ in action.

I thought a picture would help explain some of the benefits to the new CineForm RAW work-flow. The image on the top right is a clip from the sample footage posted over at the Silicon Imaging gallery. As I've have access to some the originals for this project, I can tell you these aren't color corrected images. They do however have a simple color matrix applied (not the default for this sensor), but as part of the CineForm RAW metadata, the color matrix can be turned off or tweaked in post before any color correction begins. So the base look of the top right clip is directors choice, before any primary or secondary color correction. Remember this camera allows much of the base camera look to be processed in post, color matrices are not "cooked-in" to the compressed image.

When I turn the color matrix off, you can see the image doesn't have a green tint, and is flatter and less saturated (image in the lower right.) All sensors natively produce this flatter image, which are much more suitable for obtaining the highest dynamic range of the image. Prosumer HD cameras pump up the image to make it look cool straight out of the box, this limits the dynamic range the degree the image can be corrected in post. Raw senor image data, like that of Viper Filmstream, Dalsa Origin or even Reel-Streems Andromeda also use this knownledge to create more filmic looking images.

The left most image shows one of the new control panels within Prospect HD at support the new work-flow for the SI camera, and hopefully more cameras soon. The color matrix is completely flexible, in addition there is a user controllable defect pixel map. All sensor can have pixels that deviate from the norm, and the SI camera, just like most cameras, will map these out before the image is encoded. Yet we all know that bad pixels can appear later in a shoot, or as the camera warms, so this control allow the editor to map them, just as the camera would have. Another benefit of RAW processing.

P.S. Some of the text is reproduced from my comments over on

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