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'Apocalypse Now' Experimental Series 1 Thread - BOOM, Intravenus - cbrandin/driftwood AN Soft/Cinema
  • Introduction

    Welcome to Apocalypse Now and two new matrices researched & supplied by Chris Brandin - adjusted by Nick Driftwood & bkmcwd and incorporated into a new selection of top quality settings - each tested by our 'Apocalypse Now' Beta team.

    The theory behind the 444 matrix is an attempt to simulate a process that turns the codec into the equivalent of 4:4:4 encoding.

    Many people complain about the “video” look. In part, this is caused by excessive sharpness and rather “crunchy” rendering of gradations.

    These matrices are designed to soften the image and improve gradation rendering (smoothness). The softening was specifically targeted toward Panasonic lenses (or other, modern 4/3 lenses) – which are very sharp. Many people use soft lenses wide open to get a more “organic” look. The '444 Soft' and soon to be released 'Cinema Smooth' matrices were designed to provide some of that effect with the sharper Panasonic glass.

    So, if you are using only soft lenses with the '444 Soft' matrix settings that amounts to double softening - and that may be too much in some cases.

    In this scenario we will be providing a series of sharpened 444 matrices to offer a bit more balance between soft and sharp lenses (the first of which can be found in the Cluster v7 444 Sharp settings).

    The factory matrices render detail rectilinearly, which results in more detail along diagonals than at right angles. Film renders detail the same at all angles. These matrices were designed to more closely render detail the way film does.

    The ‘444 Soft’ versions of the matrices render color and luma detail with the same resolution. The effect is that detail, although softer, is rendered in a way that is similar to a 4:4:4 color space. This is accomplished by lowering the luma detail and raising the color detail. It’s not exactly the same as 4:4:4 – but its close.

    The best way to test these is with sharp lenses because the entire design goal was to be able to produce a more filmic, organic look with standard optics instead of having to use soft lenses.

    Older lenses designed before the digital era will nearly always be somewhat soft with digital sensors. This is because of the way the image is presented to the sensor. Film era lenses supply the image to the film/sensor at all angles. This worked because film is relatively flat compared to digital sensors so it doesn't matter at what angle light is presented. Newer lenses are designed to present the image to the sensor at a right angle - which is necessary for optimal sharpness with digital sensors.

    The ‘444 Sharp’ versions of the matrix render color and luma detail with, of course, sharper detail. This is accomplished by lifting the luma detail from the softer 444 variation whilst retaining the color detail of the 444 matrix.

    The best way to test the sharper 444 setting is with manual lenses because it slightly compensates for the somewhat softer matrix without overloading it and looking video-ish. This setting may need further adapting so look out for more adjusted matrices soon – and please give us feedback.

    The 444 matrix set could also be good for green screen work – assuming, of course, that it still results in QP values of 16-18. Although this matrix is mainly directed at longer GOP's even the Intra based settings at mid to tight scene shots should produce exceptional results (as far as our tests go). The only problem we foresee with the Intra setting with these '444 matrices' is if there is a lot of detail and not enough light the range of Q values will vary greatly - beyond +-4 (the bitrate required to make Intra fully utilise this matrix would be greater than 250M). With Cluster's Long GOP implementation, prediction sampling affords us to use lower bitrate to achieve the same quality as top-end Intra.

    The initial design of the Chris Brandin's matrices were intended for 1080p24 modes only but we've provided similar matrix versions in HBR/FSH and 720p patches anyway to see how people receive / perceive them. You will see that the encoder settings of all the 'Apocalypse Now' releases have been fine-tuned or rewritten from the ground up - including detailed analysis of data rate bandwidth, Rate Control, GOP weighting, etc - to bring even better performance.

    The Cluster v7 '444 Sharp' releases have been tested under iA and iDynamic on their top settings - if you are of the consensus that you DO NOT require intelligent modes iA/iDynamic, we have decided to offer you additional 'AN' settings that make use of this bandwidth in the basic encoding patches and provide stronger GOP weighting - at the risk of failure in Intelligent modes.

    The second Chris Brandin defined matrix, 'cbrandin Cinema Smooth' will be incorporated inside forthcoming Apocalypse Now settings. Details and info TBA.

    We hope that you like these settings, a great deal of time and effort has gone into making what could be the last in the line of GH2 hacks with the announcement of the GH3 in the pipeline. Finally, a HUGE thanks to our team of Apocalypse Now beta testers for putting in the hours and testing dutifully.

    Thank you guys,

    cbrandin, driftwood & bkmcwd


    These settings are dedicated to VK @Vitaliy_Kiselev and to all GH2 hack users. Long Live the GH2!



  • 1089 Replies sorted by

  • Our entry into a 24 Hour film race using Driftwoods latest:

    The required elements for the Competition were:

    1. Location: Bus Stop

    2. Dialog: "This is not going to have a happy ending"

    3. Prop: Keys

    4. Theme: 'Catch 22'

  • @driftwood

    Nick, please make new topic, as this is very large one already.

    I'll close this one later.

  • @bikepope: for me it also works with lower numbers, as long as its above the original firmware.

    @getmezzy:different settings different bitrates. I recommend not using the EOSHD settings, i had some stability issues with them and others reported the same to me. The most popular settings outthere are by driftwood, lpowell, bkmcwd and ralph_b. They all have their strong sides.

    By the way, all AN settings by driftwood work fine on my 45MBs extreme.

  • hoe come the bitrate on this driftwood patch is lower than the old 88MB EOSHD UNIFIED?

  • Hmm.... I tried this, but it only worked when I increase the number. Thanks

  • @bikepope you can keep it at V19 if you want. You don't have to increase this every time. As long as the number is above the original firmware you should be fine.

  • @thepalalias I was referring to this one "Driftwood Cluster v7 'Apocalypse Now' - 6 GOP Nebula '444 Soft' matrix" and I read now that it has 720 etc.. but why are their three different patches under the description? I just want to make sure I do this right hahah. Also will this patch work with the extreme 45mbps? Thanks again. I really appreciate it.

  • @bikepope. You can go up to 99 if you want to.

  • Hi I am not very skilled and have a question about the hack. I loaded the Valkyrie 444 TYPE-ZERO1 onzo the camera and get grey strips in manual mode! Is this something known? Also I wonder how to proceed if you reached GH2__V19 and want to test more versions. Can I rename to GH2__V20?

  • I tried BOOM v2 with panny 14-140, and it worked perfectly (cam did not freez at any of my shoots). 24p was otstanding, and eaven HBR was quite good. But tehere was one thing, blue chanel was actually in every cobinations quite weak. I try tweak white balans and different movie modes, mostly standard and dynamic, but same effect every time. Is there reason for that ? Do anyone else have same isue?

  • I used the soft variation of Drewnet tonight for a dance performance and am amazed at how much softer and pleasing to skin tones the patch produced coupled with my Samyang 35mm. To my eyes it now looks close to a Nikkor in it's IQ and would say I could mix the footage with my vintage lenses. I did quick takes of -2 to +2 sharpness and the patch overides those settings and makes them appear negligible.

  • how does Apocalypse Now - boom and Intravenus compare to Sedna (best for detail) or Canis Majoris Night (amazing film grain)?

    Can anyone advise which settings are the best for the widest shooting scenarios?

  • @getmezzy You don't mention which version of Apocalypse Now you are referring to, each of which is actually described in some amount in the descriptions preceding the download link. That would let you know what settings have been specified and optimized.

    Each setting is self-contained. If you open up PTool and load that setting, it will either write new values or the Factory defaults (depending on whether there is a checkbox next to each setting in the menu).

    So if you load a setting fresh like that, it makes no difference at all what setting you had on your camera before. Even if no new value is specified in PTool, the factory default will be written. So the old settings do not count.

  • nvm! it worked!

    But, does Apocolypse Now only effect 1080p 24fps? Will my other settings (720/ 60fps/ etc..) from previous Hacks stay in tact or revert to factory? Also, anyone know how the file size is with this hack? How much could you fit on a 64 GB 45mps SD card?

    thanks so much

  • I really hate to be "that guy," but the files won't download when I click the paper icons. what gives??


  • i shoot this using boom v1. profile standard -2-2-2-2, iso:12800, lens nikkor 135mm 2.8. using neatvideo to remove most of the noise at high iso and cc using premier pro

  • @driftwood Cluster v8 is going to be intra? i own fds and the cluster drewnet sharp 2 is the one im using... clusterv8 is going to have a sharp version? many thanks!!

  • Boom v2 looking werry promising

  • @driftwood superb sir! sir canis series 176mbit intravenus peaks 146mbit. intravenus is better than canis or a reliable one like cluster??

  • @peternap It's "intra, except 720p"

  • @driftwood I have a question Nick. I just installed Intravenus Ver 1 and on the zip title it says "Except 720". That doesn't jive with your writeup. Is 720P supported?

  • @cbrandin: gotcha...thank you @nick...looking forward to this one!!

  • @thepalalias we had a little time at work and we made it....hehehe

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