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Sony PMW-F3

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On 7/18/2020 at 4:32 AM, Matthew Allard ACS said:

Ask away. I’ve owned one since early 2011.

Hey Matthew, also new to the F3 club. Ive recently purchased the F3 with the RGB 444 upgrade and a Black Magic Video Assist.

Setting up the camera, should I record 1.5G RGB444 & SLOG or 3G RGB444 & SLOG?

and as for the external recorder, what codec should I be recording in? Pro Res LT? Pro Res HQ?

 

Appreciate any help or useful tips!

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On 6/3/2020 at 12:43 AM, Mark K said:

Ergonomically it's not great, but if you setup your preset white balances with a bit of forethought, you can make it pretty painless to switch between a range of WBs (not just Daylight and Tungsten), and if you can find one with the Element Technica Body Armour and the RGB 4:4:4 upgrade - it gets much better to use.

As a sensor in a box it's pretty terrific. Here are a few shorts I shot on the F3:

 

 

 Mark these are great! Love the look of the Zeiss CZ.2 lenses on The Hunt! What was color grading like with the F3 footage? I hear that the camera loves low light and to be under exposed about a stop or two. Then pulling it into Davinci, its best to work with it at full data levels. I'm excited to do my own tests soon!

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4 hours ago, Shaun Crawford said:

Hey Matthew, also new to the F3 club. Ive recently purchased the F3 with the RGB 444 upgrade and a Black Magic Video Assist.

Setting up the camera, should I record 1.5G RGB444 & SLOG or 3G RGB444 & SLOG?

and as for the external recorder, what codec should I be recording in? Pro Res LT? Pro Res HQ?

 

Appreciate any help or useful tips!

I don’t believe the Blackmagic Video Assist has dual SDI inputs or can support the dual SDI 444 RGB out out of the F3. 

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On 8/6/2020 at 11:10 AM, Shaun Crawford said:

 Mark these are great! Love the look of the Zeiss CZ.2 lenses on The Hunt! What was color grading like with the F3 footage? I hear that the camera loves low light and to be under exposed about a stop or two. Then pulling it into Davinci, its best to work with it at full data levels. I'm excited to do my own tests soon!

Love the shorts too! Which lenses are used on the first 2?

my pmw-f3 should arrive in 1 week -:)

still need to decide on my lenses, I was thinking of Slr magic apo microprimes.

love to hear about the grading: over or underexposing.

grtz, Joeri

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18 hours ago, Joeri said:

Love the shorts too! Which lenses are used on the first 2?

my pmw-f3 should arrive in 1 week -:)

still need to decide on my lenses, I was thinking of Slr magic apo microprimes.

love to hear about the grading: over or underexposing.

grtz, Joeri

Thanks for the kind words guys 👍 

Joeri, Colony we shot on a Sigma 18-35mm T/2 and the Red 50-150mm T/3. And The Good Wild Man was shot on the Zeiss CP.2s. 

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On 5/1/2020 at 8:41 AM, Matthew Allard ACS said:

I still have my F3. It is serial number 2, the second one ever made. It is still a good camera if you only need HD. Some of the best stuff I ever shot was using that camera. 
 

I still use it occasionally. If anyone is interested in the FZ Mount 18-252mm servo zoom lens I have one.

Do you still have the FZ Mount 18-252mm servo zoom lens?

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I LOVED my F3! The only reason I left it behind was 4k--which 3 years later, almost no client has ever actually finished in. (Feels like wasted money.)  

I have never loved a SONY menu, but the F3 was somewhat sensible. And the 4:4:4 color. But the thing I miss most was the highlight rolloff, it always looked right--really filmic. I'm kind of a Canon fan-boy now, but I struggle to make C200 raw lite fall off quite the same way.

I'm hoping the new Sony sensors regain some of this highlight love, but I haven't seen it yet.

LONG LIVE the F3!

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Evening all,

Came across this page by chance and thought I would chirp up as a new PMW-F3 user. I'm a long time staff and then freelancer working in the UK for 41 years on broadcast news, on XDCam EX since about 2012. My son's followed me into the game and as I do less for TV and more and more web stuff, I gave him my kit and looked for something a bit more er, compact.

Initially I was using a C300 for the occasional regional BBC day and sailing features and web adverts (I'm refitting a 45 yr old yacht for retirement). I had a couple of Nikkors converted to EF mount and de-clicked, a 16-35/2.8 and 70-200/2.8, and I used an EF 24-105 for run-n-gun. All okay, but I hate the C300 form factor and all those buttons just got on my man-boobs!

Looked for something more viable and stumbled across the F3. Managed to grab one for 800 quid off eekBay and got very lucky: the thing was unmarked and had only 147 hours on the clock. Had it a few months now and it really has grown on me. The menus I'm familiar with obviously and don't mind their foibles. I shot a sailing doc in S-log for the first time recently, and it's due out in December so I'll put a link up in due course.

I've perfected my setup (see pics) and what I like about this is that I can do all the things a proper shoulder camera can do, and then break it down into the simplest, lightest, setup for stumbling about a foredeck with one hand on the camera only. I'm a bit of a fettler, so you might notice a few things. Viz: built-in viewfinderectomy. Custom mount for the Alphatron 035 VF (which I love using). Power via a Hawk-Woods V-Lock adapter plate meant for an FS5 - only needed the output lead swapping for a 4-pin XLR to go into the F3 - that Alphatron is a power-grabber. Custom extension bracket from the Tilta baseplate to the Movcam wooden grip (another eBay bargain for 50 quid) although the record button is non-functional as of yet with no LAN port on the F3. Custom bracket to get the right height off the baseplate for the Vocas matte box and rails. I think I spend more time building this stuff than actual filming these days!

Very pleased with it all and giving 35M/bit in the camera, still fine for local BBC, not that anyone asks. I gave my Black Magic Video Assist to the lad, but I'm highly unlikely to get called on for high end broadcast. No 444 key installed but no biggy. For quality web production and some news squirting, the camera is great, and I will be playing with this for hopefully a few years yet.

FX6? FX9? Nah, sod that for a lark. Happy as Larry here 😉

Cheers, Cotty (Steve Cottrell)

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Hi folks,

I have little camera knowledge, so bear with me.

I have a couple of F3's that have damaged monitors, after a director filmed in a cave.

Can an external recorder upscale from 402 to 422 without S-Log? As was thinking that would be minimum requirement for working with green screen? And I know the S-Log Card is impossible to get now.

Both Cameras have few hours on them and would be great to use. 

Had initially thought would be good to connect with an Atomos Sumo.

Cheers, Peter

 

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6 hours ago, Peter Cosgrove said:

Hi folks,

I have little camera knowledge, so bear with me.

I have a couple of F3's that have damaged monitors, after a director filmed in a cave.

Can an external recorder upscale from 402 to 422 without S-Log? As was thinking that would be minimum requirement for working with green screen? And I know the S-Log Card is impossible to get now.

Both Cameras have few hours on them and would be great to use. 

Had initially thought would be good to connect with an Atomos Sumo.

Cheers, Peter

You can output 4:2:2 10-bit straight from the camera. If you record ProRes 422HQ it should still work pretty well for green screen. 

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On 5/15/2020 at 4:47 AM, Ctaylor said:

I am wanting to build this out slowly and replace the camera and/or add an A cam with an f5 or f55 in a year or two. Is that a bad idea? If it seems feasible and an ok idea, what external recorder would be somewhat future proof and get a good image out of the F3 at the same time? It seems like most people don't use atomos or video devices with the f5 or f55.

Almost nobody ever uses an external recorder with Sony F5/F55 (except for the Sony R5/R7, which is "technically" an external recorder, kinda. But it just bolts onto the body directly), because unlike the F3/FS700 which are very popular with external recorders, the F5/F55 are not restricted to 8bit only internal!

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In case anyone wants to see, I shot this 30 minute web documentary on the F3 with a Canon 24-105 a few months ago, along with some Gopro shots from my old Hero2! The F3 recorded 35Mbit internally onto SD card in S-Log. Mics were a mixture of camera top mic and wireless Sennheiser 416 and G3 lapel. The shots out in the lumpy seas were from someone else on a 5D (I think). Cheers all and happy holidays. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZzyGJeQg7bc

Edited by Cottycam
Updated info

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On 12/10/2020 at 11:04 PM, Matthew Allard ACS said:
On 12/10/2020 at 4:04 PM, Peter Cosgrove said:

Hi folks,

I have little camera knowledge, so bear with me.

I have a couple of F3's that have damaged monitors, after a director filmed in a cave.

Can an external recorder upscale from 402 to 422 without S-Log? As was thinking that would be minimum requirement for working with green screen? And I know the S-Log Card is impossible to get now.

Both Cameras have few hours on them and would be great to use. 

Had initially thought would be good to connect with an Atomos Sumo.

Cheers, Peter

You can output 4:2:2 10-bit straight from the camera. If you record ProRes 422HQ it should still work pretty well for green screen. 

Peter - When you say the monitors were damaged - do you mean the fold-out monitor on the side? Or the small viewfinder on the rear? If so I have a spare small viewfinder complete I'd be happy to sell to you? If interested, get in touch, I've got it advertised on eBay at 69GBP, ebay Uk item number 233817185285. It's a UK only sale but would be happy to pull it off there sell direct to you in USA i presume? Cheers

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I tried my luck with the F3 and an Atomos recorder but it seems that Atomos could not handle the "camera shy" way the F3 sends data to external recorders. It was misinterpreted as interlaced. Also in anamorphic mode the Atomos loses its ability to show vector scopes and lacks center crop. So you end up with a very, very wide but narrow sliver of an image. Impossible to pull focus on. I advise against using Atomos products with the F3. Or did they fix those issues?

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