Friday, April 29, 2011

News From Here & There

Panasonic AG-AF100 Review
Jay Holben reviews the Panasonic AG-AF100 for He praises the image quality and sharpness, as well as the HDMI and SDI ports, though he finds a few drawbacks:
Micro 4/3” is the smallest entry in the “large-sensor” category. At 17.8 mm x 10.0 mm, it is 53% smaller than the Canon EOS 5DmkII sensor, 28% smaller than a 1.78:1 extraction from Super35mm film, 27% smaller than the RED One’s sensor and 24% smaller than Canon’s APS-C HDSLR sensor (EOS 7D, Rebel T2i, Rebel T3i).
and he's disturbed by the use of AVCHD as a compression format. He also doesn't like the ergonomics of the body; falls in a frustratingly odd middle ground where it’s not a palm-style camcorder and it’s not a shoulder-style design
He concludes by saying that at $5,000 it's not an HDSLR killer, but that it really strikes at the higher-end large sensor cameras. In Review: Panasonic AG-AF100

A Time And A Place
Evan Luzi at The Black and Blue blog recounts the one time a practical joke went wrong on-set:
A lot of filmmaking is common sense and you’d be surprised at the amount of people who fail at the most basic sensibilities, including myself.

Most people call this making mistakes and say they’re happy to learn from them.

But let’s not sugar coat it — sometimes it’s just being damn stupid.
The Black and Blue: The Stupidest Thing I've Ever Done On Set

Production Internships
Michael Essany, author of Reality Check: The Business and Art of Producing Reality TVsuggests that getting a job as a production intern can be a great way to gain experience:
The downside, of course, is that production internships are typically unpaid positions. Yet the experience gleaned and the opportunity to meet the movers and shakers who could end up hiring you one day are well worth the gratis servitude.
He also offers suggestions about how to find internships.
MasteringFilm: Become a Production Intern

The end of the F/X business?
David Cohen at Variety notes problems in the F/X business, with tightening budgets and schedules, and work moving overseas:
Hollywood isn't a single buyer with monopsoly power, like Walmart, but the studios are constantly pressing vfx companies to cut prices and schedules while demanding ever more complex effects, in larger quantities. And we're seeing the same result: California's vfx industry is contracting, and work is shifting abroad to regions with major tax incentives or to lower-cost regions such as India and Southeast Asia.
Variety: F/x biz in throes of the Walmart effect

The future of TV
Ron Frankel is the CEO of Synacor, and he's written an article about the future of TV. Are things as bad as everyone thinks for network TV?
The way we interact with content continues to evolve, and technological innovation is at the center of the transformation. The next few years will probably see consumers adapt to a hybrid of these viewing options. While some consumers may “cut the cord” and continue to gravitate towards Netflix and Hulu, there are compelling reasons any mass movement is unlikely. A broad TV Everywhere initiative will give consumers a complement to their viewing experience that brings all of their favorite content to multiple devices without increasing their existing cable bill or require them to pay incremental fees to Netflix or iTunes.
He goes on to say that:
Industry [have] have been working together on a simple way to authenticate consumers so they can view the TV content they are entitled to at any time and on almost any device. Promising authentication tech is already in use, and improving all the time.
Of course, Synacor happens to be "a leading provider of authentication technology to cable, telecommunication and satellite providers," but the article is worth a read.
Mashable: The Future of TV: Why Broadcast Needs to Adapt


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