Carlo Macchiavello

All is possible

The disease of sharpness

Perception is the art that should be mastered when facing creations by image, from illustration, painting to photography and “motion picture”; I use the English term also in the italian post because the closer it gets to the concept of what they are, that is, moving images.

Before home recording systems and the ability to review images, people’s taste was linked to concepts and content, while as home viewing systems spread over the past 40 years, there were gradually false needs of higher quality and sharpness created by marketing than by the real demands of the average viewer. , who watches a movie in the theater screened in Imax, or poorly streamed on the 4-inch cell phone, and forgets both with the same speed.

The obsession with sharpness faced several stages, in the 80s there was no means to have real sharpness due to the limitations of the video media that captured the images, and the film was often too expensive for video makers (at the time they could not be categorized as a filmaker precisely because the video, the tape, were the main working tool for those who narrated for low-cost images).

In the video the sharpness did not really exist, both because the amount of information that can be recorded even on betacam tape (cameras from a hundred million of the old lire) were really few (according to today’s reasoning), both because the lenses were calibrated on that type of sensors and recording capabilities, and because the dynamic range of those sensors ccd, although good , it did not allow to side with information that generated a certain level of contrast without losing intermediate information (flatten the whole thing).

With the introduction of Digital Video, several digital image “improvement” systems have been introduced, including sharpness, a digital contrast mask that increases the incisiveness of some details, but in a flat way… that is, since they are simple systems of image manipulation, sharpness increases the local detail of neighboring and farnt objects, and therefore the effect becomes annoying and artificial, see the article on the effect of telenovelas.

With the improvement of technology and resolution, video images grew a lot, but the obsession with sharpness (of technicians) always involved this video effect (sharpness) that always made the filmakers turn their noses up until… cameras came.

The very recent introduction (2008) of dslr videos made a remarkable leap on the rendering of images, precisely because it was referred to as pasta, a less clear (not blurred) but natural image of the cameras that offered even in a compressed signal of the most cinematic images, but with the advantage of dynamic range of photographic sensors and often with interchangeable lenses less “wide like” which were the two achilles heels of the cameras.

With the spread of digital cameras all these elements have become available and disseminated at all levels of purchase, but there is always this obsession with sharpness on the part of the Pixel Peeper, who look at every frame enlarged 300%, looking for all kinds of defects as if they were those who were the real responsible for the quality of the product.

Sharpness seems never to be enough … too bad that too much sharpness CAUSI a number of not negligible problems:

  1. more strobe images because they fix for longer on the retina
  2. request for more dated for details that will disappear during the delivery
  3. excess sharpness can create moires
  4. the depth of an image is also given by the “aerial perspective” described by Leonardo in his “painting treat” a perfectly sharp image tends to be even flatter.
  5. requires more and more accurate lighting to divide floors and identify different areas
  6. it often leads the brain to get distracted by looking too much at the detail and less about the content.

Many filmakers confuse static photography with moving image and insisting too much with detail risks diverting attention and content. The dslrs exploded thanks to a greater softness of image while remaining detailed.

Of course, on the one hand there are physiological laws where a perceived image in a way has a rendering, on the other the personal taste where the viewer wants more “what I like”.

If you increase the sharpness of the images you have to increase the framerate captured and reproduced, it is a physiological law, otherwise the images will have a thousand problems, because our brains and our eyes work in this way, and as far as the detractors, the technicians speak, have not yet upgraded these two devices 😀

ProresRaw for Windows

Two years after the presentation of the ProresRaw, an interesting and Raw implementation in Apple's famous Prores facility is now presented the novelty: ProresRaq beta for Windows and support for Adobe video applications.

Implementing such a codec is expensive for developers, Adobe itself does not directly support it, but it was Apple that developed its support.

We can find the support of dentri pro applications such as Nuke and Scratch. Now we're waiting for Apple to make its next move, which is to release a raw-x conversion tool to Prores Raw.

I already hear the echoes of people say, but the raw can't be converted.
There is no uncompressed raw due to the simple fact that the data of a 16-bit sensor is encoded in a 12bit logarithmic signal, but as long as the Bayer array is separate, it remains raw.

Cineform had a tool that allows you to convert to raw X video format in cineformRaw as early as 2005 and over time support for Red, Arri and black magic raw was added in raw cineform.
If Apple wants to develop such a tool it definitely has the means, the people, the funds and it would be the turning point for the implementation of prores Raw on a large scale.


For almost a month now we have been locked in the house for covid19, there were too many dead and it is now clear that we leave the house less as possible.

I see mass hysteria because people do not know what to do, they are not able to be alone or organize their time, because for too much time they used the excuse of not having time to waste it in organizing to use time.

Far be it from me to judge the lives of others, everyone has their own problems, their own points of view, I prefer to go in my direction, constructiveness and transform this moment into a moment of recharging, updating and organizing one’s life, before and after Covid19.
We turn this disaster into an opportunity to improve ourselves or simply do those things we always said we would do as soon as there was time.


Most people had a routine that included going out, shopping, time spent outside and at home with friends, something we can’t do right now, and the sooner it gets into people’s heads, the sooner we can relegate this period to history…

The first thing that most people lose is the perception and use of time.

Going out for personal routines, from going to work, to the studio, buying the newspaper, going to the bar for a coffee with friends, were all elements that served to scan the time. Now obviously all the procedures must be revolutionized and therefore it becomes more complicated to manage “all this time” or maybe not -D.

  • Create a timeline / routine with the rites of the day
    • wake up and breakfast
    • exercise
    • working hours
    • lunch
    • working hours
    • exercise
    • dinner
    • leisure and personal growth
  • Create a production list to have a series of jobs to focus on if there are no deliveries on the horizon.
    • management and verification of your work backups
    • update your backups and your documents
    • update the demoreel
    • check the softwares and their work tools
    • catalog your equipment for management and any theft
    • clean all your hardware equipment
    • optimize and clean their operating systems and softwares
    • optimize equipment, wiring and everything else
    • organize and storage of audio and video libraries, photos (and maybe upload them to the sites where they can be sold)
  • Create a list of alternative activities
    • study new softwares
    • study new books
    • study new techniques
    • study new topics other than work
    • Create a set of goals
    • personal growth
    • work organization
    • checks and improvements of workflow
    • optimization of one’s work
    • experiment with new tools or build new rigs
  • Build a series of parallel activities when you are “bored” or need a diversion
    • List of movies to watch online paid and free streaming sites during this period
    • List of videos to watch on Youtube and Vimeo
    • TV series to be rediscovered
    • Free books to read
    • new games to discover on mobile and online
    • communication systems to stay connected with friends

Well today the work is done, we will see in the next few days to update the post, with other posts that help and complete all these tasks.

ps the main blog is in italian, during translation i add and link other posts to this post, if you need you can check the blog by google translate

Covid19 – 3 – Computer Cleaning

In this period everyone is urged to exercise and do cleaning, also applies to the computers and equipment we use every day.

Trivial but important procedures are often overlooked. In several articles I have talked about the importance of backups and their organization, so I refer to those for backing up work data, personal, email and all the rest.

Today we talk about the physical cleaning of computers, many neglect the internal and external cleaning of computers, but ironically in a period like this it is essential to clean from the mouse, tablet to something that everyone DOES NOT clean, that is, the keyboard, one of the most infected objects along with the mobile phone in the world.

It’s amazing how no one or almost cleans the keyboards properly, and as they are (badly) designed, it’s often difficult to actually clean them without disassembling them.

From many years keyboards have been created with aesthetic design in mind, often not functional design, in fact they are linear and not arched, only a couple of Logitech products of the past were developed at an arc 90 degrees to avoid damage to the wrist and forearm, aligning the position of the wrist with the key line to press, but they were too intelligent and were abandoned, now they only pretend with small aesthetic folds, which by bending the wrists increase the turnover of surgeons specialized in wrist and carpal tunnel.
No one thinks to favor cleaning, indeed, compared to the keyboards of a few years ago that literally you could remove 4/6 screws, extract the electronic card, and all the plastic parts could be soaked and cleaned and sanitized properly, today they are not removable, full of folds and corners and undercuts ready to collect dirt, bacteria, and many other things.
Even the declared anti-dirty waterproof keyboards have undercuts in which bacteria can accumulate.

The only way to try to clean the keyboards are the keyboard cleaning pastes like the one I insert in the link to the side, which resting on the keyboards stick to the dirt and take it away (they incorporate it), which means that after a while they become useless, because if they contain bacteria and dirt… We can’t reuse it at the risk that we put the bacteria back on the keyboard we cleaned last week…

There are cans of compressed air, which spray away the lightest dirt, but not the bacteria etc, and if like me, you are allergic to dust and mites is not the best solution.

Computers having multiple cooling fans carry air inside them and with it dust and lint of various kinds, if you have animals like me, two cats and a host dog 345 days a year (some days is also at his house), inside the computer despite there are air filters, you will find a lot of garbage that needs to be taken away from every 2 weeks to once a month.

The reason many computers have problems is related to overheating, often caused by obstructions of air ducts and/or accumulation of garbage in front of fans causing actual slowdowns or blocks of air circulation.

Cleaning a classic computer is not difficult, you take away some lives, vacuum cleaner and take off the extra dirt. The greater the investment in the houses the easier the cleaning will be.


In my case I have a small refrigerator, a Thermatake X9, a “small” server case where a computer has no problem having 4 video cards located under the motherboard, 18 cooling fans, a dozen hard drives, and all the air you need.
This wonderful case opens without tools, because the screws are meant to be removed by hand, and each slit has a filter attached with magnets.

In a couple of minutes it opens, you remove the filters, I can pass them under the water to clean them, and the time they dry I can put them back in place without effort or complication.

The investment (not too demanding compared to any other good house) is rewarded by the simplicity in doing maintenance and especially in the protection of my investments, that is, video cards that remain well aired and vertical, not horizontal compressed on top of each other as in any other case, avoid overheating while working hours and hours for renderings, allowing a longer and more efficient life.

Covid19-3 – Computer Cleaning

During this period everyone is urged to exercise and do cleaning and also applies to the computers and equipment we use every day.

Trivial but important steps are often overlooked.In some articles we talked about the importance of backup and its organization, so I see things that work to back up data, personal, email, and all the rest.

Today, we talk about physical cleaning of computers and ignore many computer internal and external cleaning, but ironically, in such a period, it is essential to clean the keyboard from the mouse and tablet to one of the most infected objects in the world, namely the keyboard, which does not clean anyone.It is surprising that no one nor cleans the keyboard very much, and because it is designed (badly), it is often difficult to actually clean them without actually disassembling them.

Over the years, keyboards have been created with aesthetic design in mind and are often not functional designs, but in fact linear and arched, but to avoid wrist and forearm damage, only a couple of past Logitech products were developed at arc 90 degrees and aligned with key lines that pressed wrist positions, but were abandoned too intelligent.Now, they pretend only now with small aesthetic folds, which increase the rotation of surgeons specializing in wrists and carpal canals by bending their wrists.
I don't think anyone would prefer cleaning compared to a few years ago keyboard, which can literally remove 4/6 screws, extract electronic cards and clean and disinfect all plastic parts properly.
Even the declared dirty waterproof keyboard has an undercut that bacteria can accumulate.

The only way to try to clean the keyboard is a keyboard cleaning paste like i insert into a link to the side, and what's placed on the keyboard sticks to the stain and gets rid of it (they incorporate it), which means it will be useless because it contains bacteria and dirt after a while.It cannot be reused at the risk of returning bacteria to the keyboard that was cleaned last week.

There is a can of compressed air that blows away the lightest stains, but being allergic to dust and ticks like me, not bacteria, is not the best solution.If a c
omputer with multiple cooling fans carries air in it and has various kinds of dust and lint, animals like me, 345 days and two cats and host dogs (some days are also his home), you can find plenty of garbage within the computer that needs to be removed once a month every two weeks, even though there is an air filter.The reason many computers have problems is often associated with overheating caused by air duct obstacles and the accumulation of garbage in front of fans that cause actual deceleration or air circulation blocks.

Cleaning a classic computer is not hard, you take some life, get rid of vacuum cleaners and get rid of excess stains.The more investment you invest in your home, the easier it is to clean.


In my case, I have a small fridge, Thermatake X9, a "small" server case where the computer has four video cards under the mother plate, 18 cooling fans, a dozen hard drives, and all the air you need.
The screws are intended to be removed by hand, and each slit has a filter fitted with a magnet, so this wonderful case opens without tools.

In a few minutes it opens, you can get rid of the filters and pass them under water to clean them, and the time they dry, I can undo them without effort or complications.

Investment (not too severe compared to other good homes) is rewarded with simplicity in doing maintenance, especially the protection of my investment, i.e., the protection of my investment, i.e., well-aired and vertical, rewarded by uncompressed video cards horizontally on top of each other like other houses, avoiding overheating of working hours and hours for rendering, and allowing for a longer, more efficient life.

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