The Truth About RAW and Log (Camera Lesson 11)

Summary: Ryan reveals the truth behind RAW and log camera settings and how they can benefit your film production.

Length: 10:14 minutes

Video Lesson

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Transcript

Introduction

Chances are you’ve heard the terms RAW and log thrown around when it comes to recording formats. Often times these terms are used incorrectly or they can just be confusing to understand in the first place. In this video I’m going to help you sort through those terms so that you can know what they mean, and how your production could potentially benefit from them.

RAW

RAW is a recording format that stores the photosite information that comes off of your cameras sensor. Photosites are the light sensitive parts of the sensor that collect and record photons of light. RAW records the individual red, blue, and green values from the photosites in the sensor. On a single sensor camera, each photosite represents only one color. So it only records red, blue, or green. This data is preserved in the file so that later during post production, a computer system can take that information and turn it into a useable image. This process is called debayering. When an image is debayered the information from each photosite is combined into one picture element or into one pixel. And that is how you get your usable image from the RAW data that is recorded by the camera.

There are four benefits to this approach...

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Depth of Field, Part 1: How Aperture and ISO Affect Focus
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 6: Five Tips For A Successful Shoot
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 5: Lighting Six High Speed Sets
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 4: Common Lighting Problems
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 3: Camera Operation & Workflow
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 2: Frame Rate
Your Guide To High Speed, Part 1: Introduction
12 Crucial Questions Before Lighting Your Set (Cinematic Lighting Lesson 15)
Negative Fill: The Best Kept Secret (Cinematic Lighting Lesson 08)
8 replies
    • Ryan E. Walters
      Ryan E. Walters says:

      What about it? If you have a specific question, I’d be glad to answer it. 🙂 Raw and Log are not specific to any one manufacture. The examples I gave are just a sample of the raw and log options out there…

      Reply
  1. ollicollins
    ollicollins says:

    So when i shoot on my epic in raw and red gamma3 should i shoot log to get better shadow information more as there are more bits? or is it irrelevant as it is still raw

    Cheers

    Olli

    Reply
    • Ryan E. Walters
      Ryan E. Walters says:

      While you are shooting on set with the Epic, you’re recording in raw, so it technically doesn’t matter. The options you choose to view are more like LUTs- or a way to preview what the footage could look like after you grade it.

      When you go to grade the footage, choosing RedLogFilm will give you the flattest image possible from which to start your grade. (It’s what I personally choose to start my grades from.)

      Reply
  2. dcchavez
    dcchavez says:

    The Panasonic Gh4 will possibly be getting a VLOG L firmware update in the very near future. (Fingers crossed) , my head hurts. I will be coming back to this video. Although I have already seen it many many times. Thanks I love your videos!

    Reply
    • Tim
      Tim says:

      Maximum black is the point where the camera sensor can no longer detect a decrease in light levels. Anything below this point is considered “crushed black.”

      Maximum white is the point where the camera sensor can not detect an increase in light levels. Adding more light above this point is called “clipping the whites.”

      Reply

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