Thread: Cinematography of 2030s: Ultra HFR! I have witnessed realtime 1000fps on real 1000Hz.

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  1. #21  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcus Friedlander View Post
    The ASC article on Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk (Dec. 2016 issue) may have some interesting information for you.

    Something that caught my attention was the fact that they were starting to experiment with dynamically changing the displayed frame rate in shot.

    Since they were starting with a HFR source, they could start a shot at "24FPS" but then when a bomb goes off, they could change to "120FPS", to give a heightened sense of realism, all without cutting.

    Damn that would be very cool! Frame rates changing within the same shot (Sound Recordist based in Auckland, NZ. Happy to travel too)
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  2. #22  
    Senior Member Eric Z's Avatar
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    Thanks for your info on Ultra-HFR.
    I'm still waiting for a 32" UHD 10bit HDR 180Hz monitor to come out.
    With that said, 1000Hz (1ms) is the holy-grail.
    And like you said, that's at least 10 years from now.
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  3. #23  
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    Fascinating stuff Mark, thanks for sharing.
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  4. #24  
    You're welcome!

    I'm glad reading about the future is helpful (especially as it is already beginning to affect a number of engineering careers today, and is liable to filter down to videographers for specific-applications in the years/decades to come).

    Today, this thread is literally reading the equivalent of 1980s Japanese MUSE HDTV experiments -- whoosh -- four decades before 1080p becomes extinct from Best Buy (that almost exclusively sells 4K today).

    The Hertz race to successfully leap the uncanny valley will be a monumentally difficult one taking years/decades to successfully complete.
    Last edited by Mark Rejhon; 02-06-2018 at 09:59 AM.
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  5. #25  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Lubensky View Post
    The thing is - any film or a movie should be projected at the speed it was shot, otherways you're changing the way you precieve the basics of the motion in the film. There is absolutely no need in "BLURLESS" image, more to say - I personally find a blurless or a HFR image distracting and repulsive. Speaking of the thing's I've tested - 60 fps/hz look awful, 120 fps/hz look even more distracting. It literally thows you away from the story into the rushing image.
    I agree 100%. I'm totally opposed to any kind of "blurless motion" that takes you out of the story. To me, 24fps is so ingrained as the look of dramatic scripted motion pictures, any deviation at this point is going to be weird. I think it's embedded in human DNA.

    However I don't have a problem at all with high frame rates used for Theme Park Rides, documentaries, travelogues, special venues, live events, concerts, news, and so on. In fact, I think it's a fantastic idea, very much along the lines of what Doug Trumbull has proposed since 1980 or so for Showscan. But I found the HFR used in Blly Lynn's Long Halftime Walk to be very off-putting. It just reminded me that I was watching a projected image -- it never let me get fully "immersed" in the experience. It was an interesting image and I think all the technical work on it was terrific, but I just don't think it added to the story-telling.

    And I'm also very opposed to processing existing films to artificially frame-double or otherwise use motion-smoothing to eliminate the characteristics of 24fps film or digital. To me, that's F'ing with the image too much.
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  6. #26  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
    To me, 24fps is so ingrained as the look of dramatic scripted motion pictures, any deviation at this point is going to be weird. I think it's embedded in human DNA.
    We all grew up exposed to both interlace and 24fps, and, without prejudice, we always preferred 24fps. I don't have to appeal to history, I just have to appeal to aesthetics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
    However I don't have a problem at all with high frame rates used for Theme Park Rides, documentaries, travelogues, special venues, live events, concerts, news, and so on.
    Absolutely. I would argue that it actually is preferable for live sport to have (genuine) HFR.

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
    I'm also very opposed to processing existing films to artificially frame-double or otherwise use motion-smoothing to eliminate the characteristics of 24fps film or digital. To me, that's F'ing with the image too much.
    You say it more politely than I can.
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  7. #27  
    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
    And I'm also very opposed to processing existing films to artificially frame-double or otherwise use motion-smoothing to eliminate the characteristics of 24fps film or digital. To me, that's F'ing with the image too much.
    As the director intended!
    I often turn off stuff like "Motionflow Interpolation" on my TV, since I prefer to watch movies as cinematographers intended. 24fps for traditional films for me.
    (That said, sometimes cinematographer intent is to eliminate blur, for various special applications).

    We rarely intentionally degrade our resolution to VHS for movies (Except for niches like Blair Witch Project or Apollo 13), so when Ultra HFR becomes freebie in the whole chain (storagewise-camerawise-displaywise-distributionwise).

    New director intents will be invented by Ultra HFR that we don't even dream of yet.

    Instead of limiting our video file format resolution, we can use camera blur to degrade resolution by choice for specific scenes. Likewise, for Ultra HFR, we can intentionally to degrade temporal resolution by choice, like sticking to plain 60fps most of the time, using 1000fps only for specific fast sequences wherever motion blur may produce more more nausea in current prevailing population. Ultra HFR gives us that full choice and flexibility to use whatever temporal resolution we want, and intentionally degrade it accordingly.

    For example -- most of the time, initially, Ultra HFR might be played with mainly 24fps, 48fps, 60fps, 120fps sequences, with 1000fps sequences only for specific sections. If it's a fully VRR-compliant Ultra HFR, the framerate can even gradually ramp up (24fps->25fps->28fps->40fps->60fps->80fps->100fps->200fps->300fps->600fps->1000fps realtime) for a less-jarring framerate-transition effect that is not sudden, and does not require a scene change. This effect can be quite dramatic, and I've actually partially simulated this effect in a motion animation:

    Want to see over 100 different framerates changing in the SAME shot, in a fully seamless manner?
    See Variable Refresh Rate Simulation

    (Recommended: NVIDIA or AMD GPU on the Chrome web browser: You need a stutterless web browser)

    This animation simulates a variable refresh rate display demonstrating a stutterless smooth framerate ramping, simulated via interpolation (requires a modern GPU-accelerated web browser to play this specific TestUFO animation without artificially added web browser stuttering). If you're using a newer iPad or iPhone, it'll even work on those too!

    NOTE: Yes, there's some minor interpolation-blend artifacts. Please forgive the interpolation artifacts (because browsers do not support variable refresh rates). A real VRR displaly (and one without defective overdrive) does this framerate-ramping much better than my interpolation simulation, but this animation demonstrates that framerate-changes can be fully seamless with zero jarring effects!

    This web based animation is best seen in Chrome on a 240Hz, 144Hz or 120Hz computer monitor, where you actually see the motion blur successfully thin from 1/30sec blurring slowly down to 1/240sec blurring, unbottlenecked by a display limitation. It's still useful animation to witness on any 60Hz display although if you test this animation only on a 60Hz display, your range is limited from 30fps to 60fps). This is all theoretical of course -- but applicable to future possible cinematographer intents.

    There are thousands of possible tricks that can be done with Ultra HFR, not just neat "seamless gradual framerate-acceleration/deceleration" effects.

    The venn diagram of Ultra HFR lets it play traditional 24p too, or pretty much any useful framerate, and sometimes in ways that the framerate transitions are not even jarring (as seen, for example, in the gradual framerate-blending animation above). Many things people haven't yet imagined as cinematographers.

    Given proper technique, it is scientifically possible to have 1000fps sequences will be inserted in 24fps films, without the audience immediately noticing where the transition occured because it was so seamlessly done; the motion blur and stutter simply "fades away". Much like a panning shot decelerating -- except the decreasing-motion-blur effect is occuring while the camera is still panning the same speed! (as demonstrated in the animation above!). Figuratively; imagine this: One second you see 24p-like blur. Scene still panning, the scene is 48p-like blur. Scene still panning at same velocity, half a second later it is 120fps-like blur..... scene is still panning, now it's CRT-crystal-sharp (zero blur, zero stroboscopics) while the scene is still panning. One nonstop pan at constant velocity, but the blur gradually decreased seamlessly from 24mm film look to perfect CRT look in a 2 or 3 second gradual blendover. It's a magical effect, not too different from the Wizard of Oz effect where the black and white turns color, and vice versa.

    Also, even if you don't have a VRR display, 1ms frame-blending techniques are so extremely fine-grained -- so you can theoretically simulate any low framerate in Ultra HFR via multiple kinds of framerate-antialiasing algorithms not too different from the one in the link above that I developed to try to simulate VRR on a non-VRR display. (Mine is a crude algorithm too, yet it works so well).

    (This post makes a lot more sense if you play the above TestUFO VRR simulator animation on a fast GPU-acclerated (chrome://gpu all green) web browser on a 120Hz display. If you have a HFR display, test the animation, and try Slow Framerate Ramp, Fast Framerate Ramp, Random Framerate, Struggle At Max -- you will better understand fully seamless & stutterless gradual framerate changes (even for random: It's surprising how a 10% randomization of framerates look visually stutterless).


    The moral of the story: All kinds of magical future cinematography techniques is made possible via Ultra HFR, too.
    Not just what I write about in this post, it's just one of many theoretical examples (And already demonstrated in experimental motion tests).
    Last edited by Mark Rejhon; 02-09-2018 at 11:55 AM.
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  8. #28  
    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Wielage View Post
    I think it's embedded in human DNA.
    More the "Grew up with" factor than the "DNA" factor, I think.

    I have observed many millenials preferring HFR because that is now what they grew up with their TVs in their default Motionflow/interpolated modes, and they don't like the classic 24fps look. The first TVs that had the interpolation came out 15 years ago, and there are now adults today who has rarely had to spend long times with unretouched 24fps content.

    Quote Originally Posted by Karim D. Ghantous View Post
    we always preferred 24fps.
    I grew up with 24fps, and I prefer 24fps for movies, even if I appreciate HFR for other content. important observation: Talk to people who almost exclusively grew up with interpolation (people who spent 10 years never watching 24fps or sub-HFR motion)....and....most of those people say 24fps is junk.

    Interpolation invented almost 20 years ago. Now we have budding cinematographers no longer preferring 24p. Some are niche and indies, but they're climbing the ladder. If you grew up with a specific frame rate, you're used to it, and 24fps looked junk to them. It's funny how civilization works this way. But the bottom line -- the new generation (on average) is less 24fps-hardcore than I am. This may be a early-canary HFR signal too. Or it may not be.

    It's easy to assume 24fps is DNA related, but the pattern shows it is not.

    Grandkids Career Key Info: People who grew up childhood never being conditioned to 24fps tend to no longer prefer 24fps. (e.g. Spent childhood sitting in front of permanent-interpolation TVs, over one decade of exposure).

    So it appears, from this observation, 24fps is not in human DNA, but more from long-term human conditioning.

    Bet it's very annoying and hairpulling for cinematographers -- kids today who has never seen original director intent -- because of permanent-default interpolation in a Walmart HDTV.

    Related conditioning factors
    --> If you've spent a lifetime staring at flickerfree LCD displays, you're likely statistically more likely to get nausea/headaches from suddenly having to watch a CRT tube (than one conditioned to CRT).
    --> If you've spent a lifetime staring at HFR content, you're likely statistically far less likely to get nausea like a 24fps cinemaophile suddenly watching HFR content (than one conditioned to 24p).
    --> Etc.

    Never before in humankind, we have had kids growing up with exclusively-HFR-like content (e.g. permanent interpolation TVs).
    It's unfortunately happening, whether we like it or not.

    Such kids and young adults now find HFR more comfortable than 24fps on displays larger than a smartphone's. We see more and more reports. I've met literally hundreds of people like this already and we shouldn't dismiss these kids as "lesser cinemaphiles" -- some are intelligent and some are actually beginning to work for places like Apple or Facebook or Disney. So, from a "portent-of-the-future" perspective -- infuriating and so goddamned maddening as it may be to cinematographers. We'll stick with 24fps for probably a hundred years, but it might not be humankind's permanent dominant framerate in the decades or centuries to come. At least, smarter-and-smarter interpolation is finally making interpolation more and more true-HFR-like, but that's still not director's intent. I agree!

    Possibly in fifty years from now, you can simply just tell a Holodeck algorithm to intelligently convert and build a 3D environment from a single movie (for virtual reality), THEN export it back to a virtual camera angle back to a perfect different framerate (and completely new, exact amount of preferred source blur) with no Motionflow or SOE artifacts with perfect identicalness to as if the film was actually mastered that way. You want to convert 1000fps to 24p sufficiently visually perfectly? Sure. You want to convert 24p to 1000fps HFR sufficiently visually perfectly? Sure. Who knows? The wondrous inventions of the future cannot be predicted, but SOE/Motionflow artifacts will at least eventually and gradually disappear. For better or for worse...

    At first, more than 50% hated HFR-look. Now that's rapidly falling (to 25%). Still big enough to produce big negative HFR reviews. But at some point, a critical mass may be hit in a future decade where the benefits of HFR outweighs the bad of HFR, for an increasingly HFR-inoculated population. HFR is still faddish. But it may not be forever, if humankind eventually suddenly (by majority) prefers HFR when all the HFR problems are five-sigma'd out (e.g. Ultra HFR) and such. Who knows?

    At least, to understand, that it is a conditioning factor (Not assuming it is a DNA factor) -- it is to be forearmed with the info, in a multi-decades-timescale evolutionary moves in cinematographer intents, including theoretical migrations away from a 24fps-standard in a far-future decade or century.

    The Good News: Your 24fps career is (probably) safe for now!

    The good news is that the framerate progress is slow, and framerate flexibility gives director choice. But these kids and young adults, tomorrow's cinematographers, creating tomorrow's films, may not be sticking to 24fps forever.

    Many of us will have happy 24p careers lifelong, even 20 or 30 years from now. But our grand-grandkids may now be facing a world where 24p is not the most popular/profitable framerate to use cinematography techniques with. Mark these words, time-capsule this, and visit this thread in year 2068...

    But, what this means, is your great-grandkids almost definitely may not make as much profit with 24p as with other framerates. Initially Ultra HFR will probably niche applications, the feature is built in for free in TVs/projectors of the distant future. Feature available for free in cameras. Temptation by cinematographers. More demand from a HFR-conditioned public, etc. All dominoes in place to not bother with 24p. Just like 4K has become much easier today than even just 5 years ago. 10 years ago Apollo mission, today pocket phone. The same is now happening to slo-mo cameras (smartphones with 240fps, 480fps and 1000fps highspeed cameras), and now we've got 120Hz iPads.

    Today, us 24p-loving cinematographers.... We try to keep teaching the new Motionflow Generation to do 24p, but some cinematographers are resisting. But they'll have kids too, and they won't be as 24p religious, and Motionflow Generation Mommies/Daddies (who were reluctantly convinced by *todays* cinematograph in 24p) will no longer indoctrinate mandatory 24p cinematography to their own next generation kids into that. The great-grandkids generation are, thus, free of 24p encumberance. Bigger percentage of HFR content shown to bigger-percentage used-to-HFR audiences. By that future, only the 70 year old grumpies complain about it not being 24fps. Eventually, herd HFR immunity kicks in. See?

    Pick your timescale -- I only use two human generations as an estimate -- ~50 years -- but you might prefer to imagine 100 years as the 24fps-deprecation timescale. In twenty years, niche purposes. In one hundred years, ultra HFR becomes the mainstream default format. Or by then, a future H.269 or H.270 or H.271 video compression format is a framerateless 3D geometry format that can be played at any frame rate with flawless legacy 2D-plane 24fps film look but also maps to 2D 1000fps or to fully 3D Holodeck/VR/holograph/etc too. Imagine that being the great-great-great-grandkids director intent as the cinematographic technique then! Who knows?

    Fully consistent industry-wide de-coupling from 24p standard may not happen in my lifetime, but may be in great grandkids lifetimes because of circumstantially widespread Ultra HFR because of a True-Hz Moore's Law that finally got ignited only ten years ago in gaming monitors (Hertz doubling in gaming monitors every 5-8 years; now 240Hz market and 480Hz experimental) that eventually infects lots of other displays.

    Freebie-ized features
    High speed video is now almost a freebie feature in cameras (at 120fps & 240fps scales) and will be a freebie feature at 1000fps scales in every single billion smartphone within 5-10 years.
    4K is now reaching freebie feature status, and excess fps/Hz may also be too -- all the pieces of chain are going to fall in place for Ultra HFR within one or two human generations.
    Now combine that with the Motionflow Generation, huger population inoculated to to prefer HFR over 24p, and when the HFR curve goes up sharply it finally leaps some uncanny-valley factors, and become much more useful than today's HFR once the cost of 1000fps realtime HFR is sufficiently low by then, like 4K is today. So, who knows? A multi-decades-log Rube Goldberg journey, of domino effect, if you will. As mentioned -- bookmark this thread and have your surviving kids come back here in year 2068 via Internet Archive if this text survives. I'll probably have (mostly) been more prophetic than you've thought.

    It's probably is a losing battle by 50 years, mark my words. We probably should not make the mistake of assuming 24p is the predominant new cinematographer framerate, given all of these observed trends.
    24p will still be used in fifty through a hundred from years ago, but 24p may be the niche format then. Who knows?

    Meanwhile, I'm old enough. I enjoy my damn movies in original-director-intended 24fps format.
    Last edited by Mark Rejhon; 02-07-2018 at 03:33 PM.
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  9. #29  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rejhon View Post
    (e.g. Spent childhood sitting in front of permanent-interpolation TVs, over one decade of exposure).
    Making kids watch vision which has been motion-interpolated is child abuse.
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  10. #30  
    Quote Originally Posted by Karim D. Ghantous View Post
    Making kids watch vision which has been motion-interpolated is child abuse.
    Ah, yes: Interpolation may be evil today....

    ....but let's not forget that H.264 and H.265 video formats (E-Cinema! 4K Blu-Ray! Netflix!) are very heavily interpolation-mathematics based, because it is the mathematical basis of video compression. For example, H.264 is formed of I-Frames, B-Frames, and P-Frames, using predictive interpolation techniques, motion vectors. Including nearly flawlessly jiggling-around parts of previous frames on different parts of a new frame.

    As long as you don't compress too much, throwing away more than 99% of picture information brilliantly succeeds with the interpolation math embedded in modern video file compression formats. Otherwise we'd be blasting a stone's throw of 10 gigabits per second just do 4K 24fps cinema at full color depth. Even E-Cinema isn't delivered uncompressed.

    In an "Understand the devil, know the devil" fashion...

    Correct: we don't consider H.264/265/EVC video compression as being interpolation technology. But it is.
    The mathematic concepts are similar, in motion vector handling and many related concepts.

    That said, the name of the "interpolation-is-good" game is fully-source-aware interpolation (e.g. H.EVC compression, or geometry/parallax-aware 3D framerate-increasing algorithms) is often desirable, while black box heavier-guesswork interpolation forced into the chain (e.g. Sony Motionflow) is often undesirable.

    One day into the future, when we have framerateless 3D-geometry-based video file formats (imagine a H.269 or H.270 or H.271 video file format) that can be reprojected to any frame rate, in a fully-geometry aware manner (no parallax problems, no unwanted framerate-change problems, no edge artifacts, etc) -- this argument will be pretty moot when the evil "Soap Opera Effect" is no longer artificial and reprojected framerate is fully natural and source-aware; i.e. it properly looks like an original-mastered framerate. As one thoeretical possible progression path for a future ultra-advanced video file format several generations ahead of today's H.264 and H.265.

    Graphics rendering can finally do that now (you can play the exact same videogame virtually flawlessly at a higher or lower framerate, with more or less powerful GPUs, and many games compensate visually flawlessly and stutterlessly -- at least on a variable refresh rate display like G-SYNC and FreeSync. But within our grandkid's lifetime, the same thing may happen to video if a framerateless method of recording & video file format occurs. It'll probably be a long time (possibly decades) before such a video file format appears in humankind, but the discussion exists now at least theoretically.

    Mathematically, a framerateless video file format is possible!

    Theoretical timecoded photon cameras (and certain camera concepts) are framerateless too. Playback is then, thusly, judder-free and flawless at any framerate you so desire. A video file is framerateless when it is stored essentially as analog-motion-vectors or as accurately timecoded individual photons. For a theoretical framerateless video file format, then what is interpolation? Projecting further out in the future: One thus ponders the meaning of the word "interpolation" in the concept of a framerateless cinematography world. A theoretical video file format that plays back perfectly at any your preferred/desired frame rate (no divisors needed, can play the exact same file to 24fps, 55.31245fps, 59.94fps, 89.123124fps or whatever, no divisor worry, infinite choice of framerates are all perfect. When considering theoretical analog-motion-video-encoding or theoretical timecoded-photon file formats).

    This may not happen, nor within our lifetimes, but the theoretical talk exists now. The word "interpolation" may not be part of the vocabulary for a framerateless video file,

    In the interim, virtual reality researchers are doing some amazing research in lagless frame rate increasing algorithms that skips scene-rerenders, but still uses original geometry/positional information and multilayered-awareness (e.g. knowledge of what's behind objects), to produce the necessary intermediate frames. Much like what you now have to do on E-Cinema, Blu-Rays, and Netflix with today's interpolation-math-based video codecs.
    Last edited by Mark Rejhon; 02-09-2018 at 12:01 PM.
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