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How 4K video can help your production

By - Richard - 13th November 2015

If you happen to be wandering through the aisles of your local electrical shop or perusing Apple’s website for the purchase of the new iPhone 6S, you will have noticed that 4K video is everywhere. This relatively new format refers to a display device having horizontal resolution in the order of 4000 pixels. 4K video has over 8 million pixels compared to High Definition’s 2 million. It’s 4 times the resolution of HD and the results are stunning.

However, currently not many people are able to take advantage of viewing 4K images. Until broadcasters start uniformly screening programmes in this higher resolution format, 4K remains something of an enigma for the general public. Netflix have started to embrace the 4K revolution and things will change, especially as broadband speeds increase and there is more of a thirst for consuming media in the highest possible resolution.

A lot of the work we produce ends up online where images are compressed. Quite frankly there is currently no need for your website to be showcasing video in 4K. However, 4K video production does open up a world of opportunities to us as producers. The short film below is taken from a film we produced for Heriot Watt University and features an interview with Dr Bill Lumsden, the head of distilling and whisky at Glenmorangie. The interview was filmed with three cameras, but we have ended up using just one. Filmed on the Redrock Micro One Man Crew (the motorised slider which enables the camera to slowly track back and forth), the 4K camera allows us to crop into the image in post production without sacrificing the quality of the image.

So now, by shooting in 4K we have the flexibility of being able to film a wide shot and crop the image as we see fit to get closer footage. This is especially useful for filming interviews and for live production.

Written by Richard Nicholls

About the Author

Richard Nicholls - Managing Director

Before launching Swift Films, Richard worked as a broadcast TV director and editor, working on programmes for the BBC, ITV and Sky.

A multi-skilled and technically-minded filmmaker, Richard is equally at home coming up with creative concepts as he is on location filming or pulling footage together in the edit suite.

Richard is a member of Independent Producers Scotland and has a love of cats, football, chocolate and Film Noir (in that order).