View Full Version : Ligthing DV

02-08-2006, 06:50 AM
Hello, time to show how little I know.

I've been experimenting with shooting on a Canon XM1 MiniDV camera.

I've been extremely impressed with the outdoors results. I even shot a sunrise which came out superbly, without any grainyness (if such a word exists). The dark areas came out fine and the light areas sharp.

However, I'm having a bit of trouble lighting interiors. I can throw up to 1500 watts at the image (using backlights, deflectors and defusers) and if I go for bright lighting it's not to bad, the image is still a little grainy in comparison to outdoors.

However I need to shoot some darker scenes and would like to get rid of the grainyness, especially in the black areas. For example if someone was light by a shaft of light.

The camera has some very good manual options allowing me to set the shutterspeed, iris and gain, but I'm not sure which of these is reponsible for causing the grainy feel to the image.

Sorry for showing my ignorance. My experience is with directing still photography and I only have a limited understanding of the technicallities required in that (relying on professional photographers).

My gut says slow shutter speed (1/50), small iris (F11) and light to suit? But what does gain do?


02-08-2006, 07:29 AM
The gain setting boosts the image electronically and that is what is causing the grainy feeling. You should avoid using it. Therefore, set it to "0" (zero) or "-3".

You are right in choosing a shutter speed of 1/50 sec (which is also to most 'cinematic,' closest to film shutter speed)

As for the iris, F11 is quite small, requiring a lot of light. The only option you have is to open it (smaller number) or add more light.

This is somewhat silly, but also make sure you don't accidentaly have the built in ND filter enabled (when you rush from outdoor to indoor, it's quite possible to forget).

Hope that is of some help.

02-08-2006, 07:50 AM
Cheers DirectorX,
that's a good place to start.

Back to laboratory to experiment.

02-08-2006, 10:43 AM
make sure you turn down the sharpness slightly as well as this will stop the camera from trying to crisp up whatever edges it finds. Gain down is the biggest thing here though. is the XM2 the pal version of the GL series or the XL series?

02-08-2006, 11:15 AM
I believe that the XM1 is called the GL1 in the U.S.