Nikon D4 – Field report of a work in progress.

March 25th, 2012 Jump to Comment Section
Many thanks to my dedicated crew: Co director-Tobias Federsal Sound man-Franz Moritz Gaffer- Ewald Grabenbauer Camera assistant- Claudia Würtl Camera Work: Johnnie Behiri

It’s the time of the new generation of HDSLR cameras. Nikon and Canon are in battle, the 5D mark III and the Nikon D800 are coming, the Nikon D4 is here and shortly the Canon 1DX will follow.

Guest post by: Johnnie Behiri

For the last 3 weeks I’ve been producing/directing/filming an image video for one of the finest universities in the world. The university of music and preforming arts situated in Vienna, Austria (link)

When writing the concept to the image video together with my co-director Tobias federsel, we decided to put the teachers and students at the heart of the film. There is nothing like convincing statements from dedicated teachers and satisfied students to pass the unique massage this university brings.

As a second layer to illustrate how unique this university is, me and my crew joined some of the unique “one on one lessons” the university is offering its students.

Last but not least, Vienna is famous and reworded for its cultural tradition. It was clear to us that the city must come out in a way to fully support our “dynamic tradition” concept.

It is not easy sharing “work in progress” footage, but since the tools I chose for the job might be in some interest for the community I’ve decided to do so.

Camera choice decision:
There are lots of fine filming tools out there, but I chose to use the change in the VDSLR generation as an opportunity to explore and learn more about the up coming new tools.

Nikon was the first to support my wish with a D4 pre production model. For the last 3 weeks I’ve been running with this camera and learned to like what comes out of it. (Canon 5d mark III footage and Nikon D800 might follow)…

The D4 pre production model I had could not record to an external device like the Ninja. Also, there was something kind of wrong with the picture I got in full frame mode. It was too soft and the overall quality was not satisfying. In a way I was now forced to work in 2.7 crop mode, the one Nikon recommends most for best results.
Stay tune to learn more in the next part if this problem was fixed in the production model.

The first part is dedicated to some footage I took during interviews. Mind you, non of the footage is graded.
A decision Tobias and me took was that when ever it’s possible to use a wide angle shot during an interview we will do so.
Challenging as it is since we all know how “normal” classes looks like, I am happy with our decision. In the overall product it will connect us better to what the university has to offer, a feeling I could not express in “tight shots”.

Audio is recorded separately. Only a guide track audio is wirelessly fed into the camera.
Note: now that I have the production model with me, I’m investigating if the recorded audio is noisy as the pre production model was.

Most interviews were done with Litepanels 1×1 LED light and Viso kinoflow type light (link)
Additional lights: Arri tungsten 300-650w

Additional equipment list for the shown footage:

Sachtler system 18 S1 ENG 2 CF tripod
Vocas base plate
Cineroid Metal HDSDI EVF
TvLogic VFM-056W monitor
Kata FlyBY 76

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