Technology consultant Mark Schubin says that in the quest for the best HD video quality, broadcasters’ money might be better spent on lighting and lenses than on cameras with the most pixels.
With HD cameras costing as much as $250,000, broadcasters would be smart to spend less on cameras and more on lenses and lighting, which actually have a bigger affect on image quality.
That, at least, is the word from Mark Schubin, the technology consultant who addressed issues relating to HD equipment acquisition Wednesday at the HD World conference in New York.
“Capturing the sharpness, that’s the most important thing,” Schubin said, adding that the most vital pieces of equipment are lenses, lighting and cameras — in that order.
“What happens in the camera — I’m not going to say it doesn’t matter; it does matter — but it’s not the most critical thing,” Schubin said.
Although there are a range of variables when it comes to HD systems — pixels, filtering, equipment stability, to name a few — none has the ability to truly change image quality the way core equipment like lenses, lighting and even basic camera holders do, he said.
“The idea that you’re going to affect your image by buying someone’s camera because it has a couple more pixels than someone else’s … really doesn’t make much sense,” Schubin said. “Just having a tripod could affect the quality of your image.”
Although improved technology, such as HD, flat-screen televisions, are making differences in image detail increasingly visible to a viewers’ eye, there is still no hard and fast rule when it comes to a deciding which caliber of equipment, like a camera, is good enough. Schubin said.
It’s also important to remember that in video, quality isn’t everything regardless of how it is achieved, he added.
Schubin noted that the images of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy — filmed with an 8mm camera — is one of the most viewed pieces of footage of all time.
“Content rules everything,” he said.