Friday, 22 May 2015

Three Facebook Updates : Canon 5D Mark IV, Arijit Singh, Malupu

Some of my Facebook updates are like blog posts.

At what point do you say, hey this does not look like just a FB update, it ought to be on my blog? I don't know, I don't have any objective criteria.

Periodically, I review my FB updates, combine a few of them at random without applying any objective criteria and put them here. This is one such post. It is the collection of three updates on the Canon 5D Mark-IV, Arijit Singh and Malupu.

Canon 5D Mark IV
Facebook update, 21-May-2015
There have been rumours on the web that Canon will be releasing its DSLR, the 5D Mark IV. Whoa, there is even a site called One of the pages on the site speculates: “We’re told the following specifications are for a camera that may turn out to be the EOS 5D Mark IV, but for the moment it is just a test camera that may never get to market in this form. We’re expecting a replacement to the EOS 5D Mark III some time in the final quarter of 2015.”

There are lots of other pages also that talk about the Mark IV. What is interesting in all of them is the guess of the 4K resolution.

Now, what exactly is resolution? The unit of a digital image is the pixel which represents brightness and colour. Resolution tells us how many pixels are there in an image. It tells us in terms of lines x pixels.

Full HD has 1920 x 1080 resolution meaning the image is formed by 1920 horizontal lines each having 1080 pixels. 4K has a resolution of 4090 x 2160.

Apparently, we don’t have that many theatres in India that have 4K projection. However, there is a distinct advantage in recording at 4K resolution. As is explained in Wikipedia, “If the final video quality is reduced to 2K from a 4K recording more detail is apparent than would have been achieved from a 2K recording.”

All this has relevance to our current times. In the context of big budget films bombing and smaller budget films having to delivery higher quality, cost efficiency becomes important.

Let’s say Canon sells the Mark IV also at the same price point as Mark II or Mark III. One can rent these currently at around 3000 rupees per day. So we can presume that Mark IV rentals will also be the same.

If today you want to record at 4K resolution with a RED camera, the rentals are anywhere in the 15 - 25 thousand rupees per day range depending on the model. With Canon 5D Mark IV you can simply record at 4K resolution with 3000 rupees per day rental.

Not sure when Canon 5D Mark IV with 4K resolution will be available in the market. I asked around, even posted a facebook message, but haven’t got any proper information so far. As and when it is released, the event will be a good milestone of technology helping an industry in cost reduction.

Arijit Singh
Facebook Update, 28-Feb-2015
This morning I have been continuously playing Arijit Singh songs, and that's why it rained today. How else would you explain a pre-summer drizzle? Just joking.

But seriously, when I am in the flow on the computer, I am connected to Arijit Singh. When people do coding or writing, they are connected to a VPN or a svn/git repository, or /, but I am connected to Arijit Singh. Keeps me going.

In the gushing flow of time, I barely register the arrival of new singers. I was still thinking Sonu Nigam rules the Bollywood sound landscape. Of course there is Atif Aslam, who seems to be enormously more talented, but it is Arijit who has just slithered up.

If you draw a horizontal line with Mohd. Rafi at one end representing a sweet, almost mushy chocolaty loverboy, and Kishore Kumar at the other end with a dynamic baritome representing a flashy loverboy, then you got to have some one at a point, not exactly at the middle, but somewhere slightly on the right. I think Sonu Nigam goes right at the centre, and slightly to the left, but Arijit gets it right. He doesn't go after the Kishore Kumar chords, but neither does he shift it towards Mohd. Rafi. And what a phenomenon that has created.

The no. 1 song I play constantly is "Mohabbat Barsa Dena Tu, Saawan Aaya Hai" from creature 3D. How many hundreds of times, I have played it in the background in the last few weeks!!! Not only the song, but the visuals are just a treat. Here's the link --> watch it for yourself. I think it's not the original song but edited and put together by a certain Saif Zohan for T-Series perhaps. Just rain water, umbrellas, slow motion, and throw in glazed looks. And the magnet of Arijit Singh. You don't have to spend money like Sankar with AR Rahman to create a romantic visual delight of falling in love.

My second favorite is the remix "Aaj Phir Tum Pe Pyar Aaya Hai" from Hate Story 2, which is a good example of what I stated above - he gets the chords at a higher bass but does not reach Kishore Kumar.

Outlook magazine, in its issue dated 22-Dec-2014 carried an article on the singer titled "Indian Indol". It listed Outlook's Essential Arijit:
-- Raabta. Agent Vinod, 2012
-- Phir Lee Aaya Dil (Reprise) & Saawali Si Raat. Barfi, 2012.
-- Tum Hi Ho. Aashiqui 2, 2013
-- Kabira and Ilahi. Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, 2013.
-- Main Rang Sharbaton Ka. Phata Poster Nikla Hero, 2013.
-- Har Kisi Ko. Boss, 2013.
-- Beparwah. Shahid, 2014.
-- Laal Ishq. Galiyon Ki Rasleela Ramleela, 2013.
-- Kabhi Jo Baadal Barse. Jackpot, 2013.
-- Main Dhoondhne Ko Zamaane Mein. Heartless, 2014.
-- Jiya. Gunday, 2014.
-- Hungama Ho Gaya. Queen, 2014.
-- Suno Na Sangemarmar. Youngistan, 2014.
-- Palat-Tera Hero Idhar Hi. Main Tera Hero, 2014.
-- Mast Magan. 2 States, 2014.
-- Muskurane. Citylights, 2014.
-- Hamdard. Ek Villain, 2014.
-- Samjhawan. Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhani, 2014.
-- Gulon Mein Rang Bhare. Haider, 2014.
-- Manwa Laage. Happy New Year, 2014.

I hope your favorites are in this list, if not please let me know. When you want to unwind, head on to and play his songs non-stop.

Facebook Update, 15-Feb-2015
What is life without nail-biting finishes? Had one such epiphany just this weekend. And no, it's not about Valentine's day which is not my cuppa love, at least for this year. The last date to submit short films for the Sakshi - Puri Jagannadh Director Hunt was 14th Feb.

Having started post production on Tuesday (10th Feb), we planned to complete it and do the submission on the 13th itself. But then, any thing that could get delayed got delayed. There was a mad last-minute rush by numerous short film makers to submit their work. The edit suites of studios were fully booked, so were the sound recording rooms. Our final edit round could be started only at around 8 pm on Friday evening and was completed late, after 10 p.m.

So we planned to start the re-recording early morning on Saturday. The studio is an upcoming one in Madhapur. Though it started in the morning, the actual work started only around 3 p.m. or so. Once again, numerous film makers getting their background music and sound effects done, choked the time availability of the sound engineers. Ours was completed by about 7 p.m.

And back to the edit suite at Banjara Hills for the final output - video, titles, and rr. Aw shucks, we got our slot at about 9 p.m. I thought we missed the deadline. But then probably there was a Valentine angel with just that little peck of love wishing us luck.

Final Cut Pro export takes soooo much time. We got the .mov version at 11:10 p.m., and the damned thing was 20 GB size. One friend who lives in Panjagutta was on the standby to zoom on his bike with the file and upload it from his room where he has a 15 Mbps internet connection. And the clock was ticking.

When the .mp4 version came, we realized it was only 230 MB. The time was 11: 35 p.m. Dilip so graciously agreed to do the upload from the studio itself. This was the turning point, no need to break traffic signals and have a Hyderabad version of Fast and Furious.

On to Google Drive!! As the slider that shows upload progress elongated, so was the time on the machine ticking ahead. And when google said the upload was complete, the clock showed 11:57 p.m. Keep going, keep going. At 11:58 p.m., we finished the email subject and body, just two lines, and we clicked on send and waited for the confirmation. When we saw that the mail was sent, the system time was 11:59 p.m. Just one minute left and we made it. High fives all around.

As I said in a previous update, I wouldn't have done this alone or for Puri Jagannadh, but for Prabhakar Ellu, whose passion for films and film making is just mind blowing. Seldom would you see a programmer who is as passionate about his coding. Rarely would you encounter a teacher who is as engrossed about her teaching. Enthusiasm and energy are infectious, so I went ahead with Prabhakar with this one. I kept my project 10, the big short film on hold. I put the release of my project 8 and 9 on the back burner. Project # 11 steamed ahead during the last few weeks.

It's not about winning a prize or impressing a Mr. Jagannadh. It was all about -- do the passion and planning fructify into a personally meaningful outcome? As Yandamoori garu said, Playing is fun, winning the bonus. The product may have flaws, we may not even getting a passing mention, forget a prize. But discerning eyes and connoisseurs would correlate what they see, with an aspiring, struggling youngster (Prabhakar) and a senior I.T. professional (me) and understand the whole package from our learning / evolution standpoint. That's our hope and conviction.

So three cheers to the whole team - Laxvil Studios (Dilip, John, Solomon), lead actor Sailesh, lead actress Anusha, Suresh Sharma, and Prabhakar Ellu. Ladies and Gentlemen, Ray Mahruwi Productions Malupu is out there, somewhere on the cloud.

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