Originally Posted by jmaccool
This is an audio/video forum which I always assumed would be after cutting edge technology and the best manufactured products. I realize that there are some issues with digital film but that was the case for digital photos which is now the standard. This is a natural evolution and I am shocked it did not happen right along with photography. Film and photo are the same things; the difference is one shot seen at a time instead of hundreds and thousands strung together to make photos move. I realize the reason for this taking longer is the cost associated with it, apparently only consumers can afford to adapt to this new technology (digital cameras) and not corporations, LOL. It was a money game plain and simple. Once the tech is perfected (which won’t take long) digital film will look as good as digital photos do and will make the manipulation much easier for post production add ons and mods, e.g. CGI and other effects. I am genuinely surprised to hear all this hemming and hawing from a bunch of A/V tech nerds like myself. JMHO
I would submit, it's not really the same thing.
For one thing, the conversion to digital photography didn't require anyone to lay out 10's of thousands of dollars to replace working equipment to show movies that don't actually make the theaters any money. In the case of digital photography, most people just bought a digital camera when they needed a new camera - or, later on - simply got one for free with a phone.
Further, digital photography makes far more sense for individuals. 1) It saves them money when shooting a lot of pictures. One picture or 10, it's all the same price. 2) It's less wasteful. People would develop and print a whole roll of film, sometimes only getting a few "keepers" out of 24-36 exposures. Digital lets you keep and print only the ones that are worth keeping. 3) Digital photos can be carried around on devices we already carry with us. You don't need the wallet with a bunch of photo holders to show off you family anymore.
Quality wise, it's a different story, too. With still photos, most people never blew up their photos to anything larger than 5x7. 8x10 and larger were only for professional portraits for most people. Now, people look at photos on screens that are often no more than a megapixel or two - if even that.
With digital movies, the resolution at many theaters (especial those that made the switch early or are now buying the cheapest projectors) is not much better than what you see at home - and it's being blown up to 10 or even 20 times larger than your screen at home. It's like watching Youtube videos on a smart phone vs. your big screen TV. What looks great on the phone, doesn't look as great super-sized.
Look, if the whole process had been 4K through and through to actually improve on what we got with 4th and 5th generation distribution prints, then I'd be on board. Instead, what we're getting is TV resolution at a premium price and all the annoying people sitting around you to boot.
My worry is, we're going to have a generation gap in movies from the early 2000's to 2015 or so the way we had in TV from the mis\d 80's to the early 2000's when so much quality was lost to SD video formats being used in the production chain to edit or create special effects. We literally have thousands of movies now that can never look any better, even if we actually get real 4K quality in the home. Even worse will be if the studios simply never bother upgrading their workflow (most still edit and master only in 2K, even when shooting on film or 4K digital) because they know the theaters can't support it and won't pony up to upgrade.
On the other hand, movies from earlier eras can be scanned from master film copies that still have plenty of resolution in them for the next home video format. That is, if they decide it's worth it when everything new would look worse by comparison.