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Canon C300 Mark II: Canon Log2 explained

Sunday, September 13, 2015 10:30 AM

In the latest of our Canon C300 Mark II blogs, we look at some tips for shooting footage in Canon Log2, with WTS production specialist and freelance cameraman Patrick van Weeren and Blue 2.0 colourist Damion Katwaroo.

Canon Log 2 has been designed to improve the results of the C300 Mark II's new sensor, giving the cinematographer the tools to minimise noise and emphasise the parts of its dynamic range that are most important for the specific scene photographed.

Codec considerations when using C-Log2

Canon C300 Mark II C-Log2

Take into consideration that codecs might effect certain Log footage, as increasing detail with a Log can be in juxtaposition with a codec which tries to compress an image as much as possible and as non-destructively as possible.

There seems to be a sweet-spot with most ‘harder’ codecs - a point of no return. When working with a codec and Log, always test and try. A good general rule of thumb is to try the best codec you can afford to work with, both financially and workflow-wise.

Canon _C300_Mark II_codec _skin _tones

The ‘old’ Canon Log is still available as well. Canon has made a graphic representation that can help you with exposing the Log.

Canon C300 Mark II C-Log 2 schematic 2

The best way to learn about exposing Log is to just go out and do it. Over- and under-expose and you’ll notice that the better signal-to-noise ratio will be in the camera’s native ISO and up to two stops overexposed. (There’s more detail in the highlights and the noise in the dark will be smoother).

Canon  C300 Mark II C-Log 2 schematic 1

Testing saturation and using test charts

The next step would be to test which saturation level you prefer. Whenever you grade Log footage (especially when using a codec) the saturation is an important part of balancing. Every camera manufacturer has its own colour reproduction due to different sensors, de-bayering and colour compression.

Canon C300 Mark II colour test

Using a Macbeth (X-rite) or other colour-test chart can help with testing and controlling your grade. Shooting the test chart and a grey scale can help balance different light sources and give the colourist a basic starting point of what the cinematographer is trying to achieve.

Canon  C300 Mark II C-Log 2 colour gamut schematic

Remember, too, that the expanded colour space which the Canon C300 Mark II offers can help grading enormously, especially in RAW recording.

Don't forget to look out for the other blogs in this Canon C300 Mark II blog series

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