If we all agree (for the sake of this article) that 24p (23.976fps) delivers the most beautiful cinematic look (and i personally agree), then we set SYSTEM FREQ from the OTHER FUNCTIONS menu to 59.94 herz – so that we can select 1080 24P from the SCENE FILE menu – and dial in the 180 degree shutter from the SYNCRO SCAN menu, and Bob’s your uncle..! We now have a real film camera; only things lacking are a $600 roll of celluloid, some extra kilos, a soothing clicking-sound (every click’ll cost you 3.5 cents) and at least 8 extra stops of dynamic range…
Well, that was easy! Let’s start shooting that indie blockbuster!
If you’re in a 50hz country (e.g. all European countries), you’re in for a nasty surprise when your encounter TL fluorescent tubes, cheap LED panels or a TV-set anywhere in the picture. TVs will show rolling black bars and spiky white lines. The TLs really mess up your picture, if the light is bounced off walls, floors or your subject. Your picture will show a pulsating gray bar, creeping along the screen. It may not be directly visible on your EVF, but it will surely ruin your shot. This is caused by the 180 degree shutter; it’s flicker (at roughly 48hz) interferes with the 50hz net frequency.
In order to solve this problem, and being able to shoot in 50hz countries without worrying about interference, the AF101 is one of the very few cameras that let us fine-tune the SYNCHRO SCAN shutter speed!
Do as follows. Go to the SCENE FILE menu and make sure that you have selected FILM CAM and set REC FORMAT to “1080p24”. Now go to SYNCRO SCAN and dial-in 172.8d as new shutter angle, instead of the default 180d. This will eliminate any flicker and strobing in the picture, because now the camera’s shutter is in sync with the 50hz net frequency.
Try this setting out on a 50hz TV set, or TL fixture.
The maths behind this: (23.976 x 2) / (25 x 2) = 47.952 / 50 = 0.95904 ==> 180 x 0.95904 = 172.63 ==> Do some rounding off down the line and we’ll end up with 172.8 as new shutter angle.