Raw Vs. Compressed
Up till about a couple of years ago, Raw was nonexistent and only could be used on really expensive equipment, but now with the new Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, at $1000, Raw video can be used by anyone. So when would you want to use raw and more importantly why.
Pros of Raw
The Advantage to Raw is that you have lots of information to work with when you go to color correct, so you can get rid of noise, and get exactly the look you want. When used right, raw is generous. But it comes with some major side effects that will weigh down your production.
Cons of Raw
While Raw may look beautiful, it does come with some major side effects. It's harder to predict what the final picture will look like on the screen because it's so desaturated and low contrast. Also typically raw cameras cost more. Also you need faster computers for post production, color correcting and editing. It often requires large amounts of time and manpower in post production to reach it's full potential. Raw video also required more skill and knowledge than typical compressed video. You need to make proxies and know how to color correct a lot better than even with Cinestyle on a DSLR.
So who is raw for? Raw is for any production looking to fine tune their image to get exactly the colors you want. This is more of something you'd use on a project you have more time for like a feature film or maybe a larger production short film. But typically you wouldn't want raw for TV or web content. Often people couldn't tell the difference in these mediums and the turn around need to be much quicker and would slow down your production. Just as with any filmmaking gear, it's just another tool, what really matters is what you do with it.
Zachary Will is an Award-Winning Filmmaker creating short films and content for the Internet as the owner of Riverside Studios. He has a Bachelor's in Film from Full Sail University. He has worked on productions for companies like Webmd, Sears, Home Depot, Six Flags and more!
"the trick is to never give up... I think the secret of success is not how little you get knocked down but how often you get back up." - Gareth Edwards