In this guest post, Stewart Addison explains what shooting raw really means, the different kinds of raw, and when and how to implement a raw workflow.
In case you missed it, Canon recently announced the Canon C200, their first sub-$10,000 cinema camera to shoot raw. As with every announcement for a camera with this capability, folks on the Internet have been quick to point out how simply untenable raw file sizes and workflows are for a large swathe of filmmakers. While it is true that it can be more costly, time consuming and hard drive-filling, the benefits absolutely outweigh the costs. Even for quick-turnaround shooters, the precision, image richness, and future-proofing raw shooting options provide make it a must-have feature for anyone buying a cinema camera today.
What is “raw”, really?
Put simply, raw footage is the plain, unprocessed, data from your camera sensor. To edit raw footage as a moving image, it has to be processed in post with programs like Blackmagic’s DaVinci Resolve, RED Cine-X Pro, ARRIRAW and also, in a limited capacity, Adobe Premiere Pro. When shooting in other formats, the camera or external recorder will process what the sensor ingests into said format, losing sensor data in the process, while with raw, all of the data collected in the sensor is available to use in post. Shooting in H.264 on a Canon 5D Mk III, for instance, compresses the file size to 1/18th of its uncompressed stream by only fully recording one full frame per half second, and taking in only visible changes to cover the other 13 frames (in 24fps) that aren’t being fully captured. Pair this with the baked-in picture profiles you recorded with and you’re left with very little data to play → continue…
From:: Cinema 5d