PMW-F3 Picture Profiles. First Batch.

OK here we go. Here are some notes from testing my PMW-F3. First thing is… aliasing… a zone plate looks pretty bad with a fair amount of aliasing. I had heard rumours of this from others with pre-production units, but in the field I had not seen anything that would worry me. While the zone plate is not pretty, real world aliasing looks acceptable. I usually use brickwork and roof tiles to test for moire and these look clean on my F3. I think a fine patterned shirt could cause concern and I need to look into this further. I am surprised that there is not more about this on the web!

Excessive detail correction does increase the aliasing, however turning detail and aperture off does not reduce the aliasing significantly. Keep the detail level below -15 to avoid increasing the strength of the aliases. Above -15 the aliasing artefacts are more noticeable. Detail “Off” appears to be the same as Detail -25. Below -25 the image softens, below -45 very noticeably and there are some strange increases in aliasing below -50. For the moment I will be using detail at -17 or off.

The aperture setting can be used to add a little sharpness to the image to compensate for not using detail or a low detail setting. Aperture does not increase the appearance of the aliasing artefacts as strongly as the detail correction. I like the added crispness I can get with Aperture set to +30 combined with detail at -17. I would strongly recommend against using a raised aperture setting if you have detail higher than -15 as this will add sharpness to any detail corrected aliases and lead to twittering edges on horizontal and vertical lines.

Colours have that usual Sony look. Not bad and pretty natural looking, but for me a little on the green side. For a more natural 1:1 look I quite like these Matrix settings:
R-G +10, R-B +4, G-R 0, G-B +14, B-R +3, B-G -3, Std Matrix.

For a more Canon like look with Rec-709 Matrix I came up with these:
R-G -2, R-B +9, G-R -11, G-B +2, B-R -16, B-G -10, Std Matrix, level +14, Blk Gamma -20

For use with Cinegamma 1 I use the above with Matrix Level +25, Blk Gamma -36. Highlights are a little washy, but as with any Cinegamma the best results are obtained by grading in post production.

460x150_xdcam_150dpi PMW-F3 Picture Profiles. First Batch.

2 thoughts on “PMW-F3 Picture Profiles. First Batch.”

  1. At a Sony event I attended, Hugo Gaggioni of Sony said that the PMW-F3 sensor has a resolution of 3.43 Megapixels, but that they aren’t disclosing the number of pixels across the vertical; yet. It seemed implied that it’s not a one sensor-pixel to one image-pixel mapping. He also said that it has a “very interesting” color filter array; i.e. it is not a standard Bayer pattern filter.

    This may be the cause of the aliasing, and would also effect the accuracy of the color sampling mentioned in your other post.

  2. Hi Alister!

    I’ll be shooting all magic hour/low light/very low light documentary setups with f1.4/2 lenses and possible your AC-LOG PP!…

    Which detail/aperture combination would you use for that kind of scenario? (with different dB gain applied depending on light situations)… I will do pre-production camera tests, but any tip to start with would be very helpful!

    We’ll be doing color grading on a Scratch but would like to start grading with the cleanest picture possible.

    Thank you!

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