Prevent Cfast Card Errors with Alexa Mini

I did a shoot where we lost a roll of shooting on the alexa mini.  And I have heard a lot of people with similar tales.

Well no more (kind of) - using a program  for mac os x - drivedx - - let's you quickly see the reliability of a cfast cards.

Most solid state media either fails at the beginning of it's life or at the end - there is a significant white paper on this - so if you do a checkout from a gear rental house and you see some history of failure or that the card has been reformatted and seen a lot of use - maybe send that card back.  What's it worth, right?



Alexa vs Red Dragon vs Blackmagic Micro/Pocket

Thank the world for CML This great website/resource from Geoff Boyle really helps cinematographers the world over!

And now redwidegamut with log3g10 - the dragon sensor low light olph - matches pretty darn well with the alexa - well not perfectly - I would most likely in all situations choose the alexa over the red dragon sensor (and personally over the helium sensor) in terms of skintone - but still gives a smoother highlight roll off which is pleasant.    

And that blackmagic micro - not a perfect camera, but sooo cheap and match the skintones of alexa pretty well!

With the red dragon dropping in price - it's a nice sensor - not best past 1600 ISO - but still a good sensor in a tiny package.

Next to test the c300 mark ii with raw to the odyssey 7q vs the internal codec.  



Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve1465.jpg
Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve1467.jpg
Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve1464.jpg

Jack of all trades, master of none?

I read a post recently saying that a DP also being a steadicam op, or movi operator, or editor, or director, is the death of them. 

I kind of disagree.

I think from the directing I do, the more I learn the needs of the director when I am DPing.  Also the value of good directing, seeing how difficult it really is.  How to communicate, how to understand this.

And by having a DP know how to do other things, like sound, you understand what the sound mixer needs.  And of gaffing and gripping, same thing, you understand the emotional and physical weight of saying to someone "can you move that 18k please over there."

It's also good to speak in everyone's familiar terms, and to understand what each crew position does and needs.  

I agree though you can waste your hours a day being focused on too many things, but at the end of the day, how much of our free time is wasted on facebook or instagram or god knows what else.  There is plenty of time in the day to learn as much as you want.  

Learning itself, and breaking yourself free of one's specific focus can regenerate the brain I feel, and make it more exciting when you bring what you learn to what you are doing.  

Milk crates and Teradek Screws

It's no secret that everything in film is expensive. Milk crates...super useful for storing gear and bringing on jobs are kind of pricey.

So I just get them from dairy outlets.

Here's one on ebay:

Also Teradek screws go for $20 - for a 1.5' 1/4-20 screw you can get it from a pool supply store for $10 - 2008 Thumbscrew 1/4 - 20 x 1.75 inch - from

Fun to get deals like that.

Sony A7S Settings I like

I spent some time working on the Sony A7S to make the most natural skintones I can. For me, I'm realizing I really enjoy natural feeling blue skies as well as healthy skintones with a good amount of red in the face. I use it combined with Filmconvert Kodak profile for the A7S cine4 profile.  I'll mess with it and double check soon.

Black level 0

Gamma CINE4

Black gamma - range wide level +1

knee - auto - max point 100%.  sensitivity mid

color mode - s-gamut3.cine

saturation +7

color phase minus 2

color depth - all zeroed out

detail level -5  adjust - type3

That's about it.  

I think it's nice.


 nice blue skies

nice blue skies

 nice horses

nice horses