Thread: Movie Theater Projector Resolution

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  1. #1 Movie Theater Projector Resolution 
    Member Jose Mojica's Avatar
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    Hello all,

    This is my first post...

    We will be getting our first RED camera this year (hopefully), to film our first feature film. We're looking at a RED Raven or Scarlet-W. We may be able to stretch our budget to purchase a RED Weapon Mg. We know sometimes it makes more sense to rent, but for us, it makes more sense financially to own the camera. We have a lot of projects throughout the year. Of course, we hope our movies will be shown in movie theaters and so my question is about future-proofing...

    A long time ago people were saying that most movie theaters in the USA had 2K projectors and only a few had 4K projectors. I imagine that has changed by now, but I can't find anywhere on the web figures for the resolution of projectors in USA movie theaters.

    Do most theaters in the USA have 4K projectors now? (I'm interested in knowing this for other countries as well.)

    Thanks!
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  2. #2  
    Quite a few more now have 4K projectors though many end up showing 2K DCP's if that's all the studios are sending out for that title.
    David Mullen, ASC
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  3. #3  
    Member Jose Mojica's Avatar
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    Thanks, David. It's interesting how quickly resolution is increasing in RED cameras. We have 4.5K, 5K, 6K, and now 8K. But Arri I believe is still 3.2K upscaled to 4K and theaters are still a mix of 4K and 2K. I know more pixels can be beneficial for acquisition, but in terms of delivery, would you say even the Raven is a good 3-5 year investment if the goal is theatrical release? (Resolution speaking, because there are other things to consider between the cameras like low light sensitivity, mounts, OLPF, etc.)
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  4. #4  
    Senior Member Elsie N's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jose Mojica View Post
    Thanks, David. It's interesting how quickly resolution is increasing in RED cameras. We have 4.5K, 5K, 6K, and now 8K. But Arri I believe is still 3.2K upscaled to 4K and theaters are still a mix of 4K and 2K. I know more pixels can be beneficial for acquisition, but in terms of delivery, would you say even the Raven is a good 3-5 year investment if the goal is theatrical release? (Resolution speaking, because there are other things to consider between the cameras like low light sensitivity, mounts, OLPF, etc.)
    We're talking personal opinion here, but I agree with your question/statement. If you or your camera person nails the shot, you've got the data you need to finish in 4k... if not now, then later as a re-release.

    And having dual recording capability means if the movie doesn't capture the imagination of a distributor, you've got the ability to meet the requirements for a quick alternative release.
    One camera is a shoot...but four (or more'-) Hydrogens is a prohhhh-duction... Elsie the Wraith
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  5. #5  
    The Raven does 4K, so you're covered for the 2K/4K market.
    David Mullen, ASC
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  6. #6  
    RED TEAM Stacey Spears's Avatar
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    UHD Blu-ray is also a way to distribute content. Many of the current releases are 2K scaled to UHD, which is a shame.
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member Elsie N's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stacey Spears View Post
    UHD Blu-ray is also a way to distribute content. Many of the current releases are 2K scaled to UHD, which is a shame.
    Curios how 4k eventually upscaled to 8k will look. '-)
    One camera is a shoot...but four (or more'-) Hydrogens is a prohhhh-duction... Elsie the Wraith
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  8. #8  
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    4K delivery is a smart move. Netflix, Amazon and other new channels require it and a producer would be wise to finish their projects in 4K if possible. We're delivering a reality TV show in HD now, but our source and finish are in 4K for downstream use.
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  9. #9  
    Theaters can pretty much do what they want, but there is a voluntary standard that the DCI publishes here: http://dcimovies.com/specification/index.html
    ~ Jay Friesen, CSI
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  10. #10  
    RED TEAM Stacey Spears's Avatar
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    Amazon does not require 4K.
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