My favorite author on digital cinema is Kurt Lancaster (http://kurtlancaster.com) and he recently released the book RAW CINEMA.  This book really delves into the differences of shooting raw video versus shooting compressed video.  It also delves into a subject that I think is somewhat controversial – 4k.  I just finished a blog post on 4k which may bring some insight into the technology but to keep it simple, 4k is 4 times the resolution of HD.  It has been an acquisition format for several years but now we are seeing more companies releasing 4k products including consumer televisions.  I’m not sure whether or not it will take off for consumers but it’s exciting to see the technology develop so fast. The reason I bring it up is that there are many film professionals who feel that resolutions such as 4k (and now even 5k and some Japanese companies are doing tests on 8k) are not as important as dynamic range – which brings us back to Raw Cinema.  Raw essentially means that you are seeing what was actually recorded by the camera’s sensor versus viewing the compressed recording we see with most camera codecs.  Kurt Lancaster describes it as a digital negative.  If you’ve ever shot raw photos with your stills camera then you are familiar with how dynamic, beautiful, and challenging shooting, color grading, and outputting raw media can be.  However, I’m not convinced it’s something that is appropriate for every project but like all media production it holds a very important place in the production world and the future of content creation.


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