January 14, 2019

Watch: Why You STILL Don’t Need to be Shooting 4K Video

4K Video Resolution
One daring filmmaking Youtuber takes on the 4K (and the coming 8K) revolution.

There has been a lot of high resolution video recording news lately. 8K is quickly becoming the buzzword of 2019 as we’ve seen the unveiling of the Sharp 8K world’s first prosumer video camera, reports of an upcoming 8K Canon EOS R and news of NVIDIA and RED teaming up to make 8K raw post affordable.

And don’t even get us started on 16K and what that could (theoretically) begin to look like on the horizon.

However, when you begin sifting through the feedback and comments on a lot of these new high resolution recording updates, most people seem to be of one of two camps.

  1. Either all for chasing the latest technology and pushing their camera and gear setups, or
  2. Pointing out that your resolution or gear doesn’t matter, it’s the stories and filmmaking that’s important

We’ll chalk up Youtuber Brannigan Carter as being in the latter category. So much so that in this new video essay, he argues that not only is 8K (or 16K) superfluous, but even 4K shooting should be considered unnecessary.

Do You Need High Resolution Video?

Carter lays out his points as an update to his original take on 4K video resolution which he posted almost four years ago (video below). It’s interesting to see how the discussion is still largely much the same. Whether its 4K, 8K or eventually whatever-K, filmmaking isn’t about the technology but about the craft of the story.

Here’s the original video from four years ago...

That being said, it is important to keep an eye on the industry and the technology is a big part of it. Whether they understand it or not, clients and audiences follow many of these advances as well and can often clamour for it. However, it's equally important to have enough of an understanding of both sides to be able to make quality films and projects that look good, but without getting too lost in the latest buzz.

Curious to know everyone else’s thoughts on the subject.     

Your Comment

11 Comments

I mean, this video doesn't cover the topic at all! It just talks about the basic elements of filmmaking. I understand the tounge-in-cheek nature of the video, but this is clickbait.

If you want to know about Resolution and why you don't need 4k or 8k, this has been covered definitively by Steve Yedlin, ASC.

http://yedlin.net/ResDemo/

January 14, 2019 at 4:01PM

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Yes, thanks for sharing that link. That is someone who actually knows what he is talking about. Ridiculous to see those video's in this article, it's not even good clickbait.

January 15, 2019 at 10:21AM

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Gerbert Floor
DP / Director / Camera / Editor
290

Yedlin's demo is totally worth the time, and I think it's been covered here before. My own two cents: I have not been asked if we're shooting in 4K or whatever for at least two years. Now, I'm sure most of them assume we're shooting in at least 4K, so one's mileage will vary.

January 15, 2019 at 11:36AM

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Patrick Ortman
I tell stories. Sometimes for money. Sometimes, not.

Putting 4K into small cameras is really dumb, because it makes the pixels smaller. Imagine how much better something like the Osmo Pocket would be if it had the same size sensor but only 1080p resolution - you'd have far better low light performance and dynamic range. Or they could have squeezed in DPAF for better focusing.

January 15, 2019 at 6:44AM

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Tom Barrance
Film educator
196

The technical superiority of 4k is actually irrelevant, the fact is that folks like Netflix favour it and that's plenty reason to shoot in it

January 15, 2019 at 10:10AM, Edited January 15, 10:10AM

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robert
1

Or we can make fun of Netflix for making stupid production rules and that for the longest time their number one used camera wasn't even a true 4K image just a 2K up res.

January 15, 2019 at 11:13AM

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Alex Alva
637

3.2K uprez, right?

January 15, 2019 at 11:31AM

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Patrick Ortman
I tell stories. Sometimes for money. Sometimes, not.

The first video is excellent! Thanks for making it!

January 15, 2019 at 2:24PM

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William Scherer
Writer/Director/Producer/Fine Art Aerial Photography
349

I don't think i'll be getting outta 1080p anytime soon... you see, Brazillian television and content distributors only require 60fps as a major project outline. sometimes 4K, but only sometimes - nad that's generaly just a plus that production studios put to get the deal. anyways..

January 16, 2019 at 11:38AM

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David Huxiley
Director
201

So what's this got to do with 4K? I kept waiting for him to get to his point - instead it was a cliched procession of opinionated statements delivered with all the grace and finesse of a dog taking a dump. "You need a story.". Perleeease.
That's eleven minutes of my life I won't be getting back.

January 18, 2019 at 12:42PM

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Steve Grant
Director
162

It's not the resolution that ever matters. It's the data rate that matters a LOT.

January 18, 2019 at 5:30PM

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JKP
8