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April 11, 2010 / nicotvandenberg

We have to Stay Focused

In the earlier days of film men and women went to the theaters already knowing ahead of time that the image quality of film would be of poor quality. So with that in mind the audience would rely heavily on the sound to pick up some of the slack with telling the story. Poor sound became very unforgivable at the time because if the picture was of low quality and the sound was the same, it was a major turn off and disconnect for the entire audience.

Now moving to modern day cinema, we have come along way regarding our picture and sound quality. So much so that our audience members have been spoiled with special effects, CG and now with the explosion of Digital 3D. We have reached a pivotal point in cinema where now, poor image quality is completely unforgivable. The average movie goer can often spot poor “CG” or bad blue/green screen. They may not know technically what is wrong, but they are able to determine something was not done properly.

With the invasion of HD (High Definition), “focus” is where it is at. Previously with SD (standard definition), if the camera’s focus was soft it was very forgiving because the resolution of the video was so low that soft focus would not be as noticeable. But now with picture nearly three times the resolution at 1920 x 1080 the camera is very unforgiving when it comes to focus. If the star actor in frame is in soft focus it will be extremely jarring to the audience when shooting in HD, causing a disconnect and disinterest in the film. The beauty with HD cameras today is that most come standard with a feature referred to as “focus assist” or “expanded focus,” which allows the camera operator to “zoom in” or “expand the pixels” to make sure they have crisp focus on the their subject.


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