Re: [Frameworks] Quo Vadis Celluloid

From: Pip Chodorov <>
Date: Sat, 20 Aug 2011 17:44:56 +0200


there are many physical, physiological and percpetual differences
between film projection and digital projection, at the current state
of technology. Here are two:

Perception of motion:
Film: phi phenomenon (brain bridges gap during flicker)
Digital: beta movement (no flicker)
Human eye: Phototransduction in rods and cones can occur as fast as
80 msec but need refresh time, one could say photoreceptors flicker
at 1/1000 sec but dispersed organically across retina

Dynamic range (sensitivity curves):
Film: logarythmic (9-16 f-stops of information captured &
projected, mid-range of S-curve is straight)
Digital: linear (5 stops projected regardless of capture, no curve)
Human eye: (10-14 stops)

Pizlo, Filip J. (2000). "Phi is not Beta"
Munday, Rod. The Moving Image


At 12:38 +0000 20/08/11, Raymond Salvatore Harmon wrote:
>While I am not disagreeing with you I would be interested in seeing
>what sources you would site as proof of what you are saying here.
>You are claiming scientific knowledge of the physiological
>difference between watching projected film and projected video
>(analog vs digital). You even use the term "scientific fact." That
>takes it far from conjecture or personal theory. Any peer reviewed
>papers, articles or thesis you can call our attention to that backs
>up this "scientific fact"?
>As much as a certain amount of logic can be had in saying there are
>differences in the way we view film vs video in the end we are
>seeing projected light on a screen. Both input paths (light
>reflecting off a surface into our eyes) are analog. (for the sake of
>this discussion I am ignoring video screens/monitors,etc). Much like
>sound there is no such thing as "digital" once it has been converted
>into sensory input. All sensory input is analog.
>--Forwarded Message Attachment--
>Date: Fri, 19 Aug 2011 22:07:52 -0700
>Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Quo Vadis Celluloid?
>There is a significant difference in the physiological (and
>consequent psychological) responses to viewing projected film as
>opposed to viewing digital projection. The variances in individual
>photochemical frames of projected film require significantly
>different types of bodily and cognitive functions to process. Simply
>put, the human body and mind respond much differently to analog and
>digital information.
>This is not mysticism, nor fetishism. It is scientific fact and
>identifying it is part of a desire to preserve a unique type of
>human experience. This is why I get so upset with people who talk
>only of preserving analog film as a capture medium. An equally
>tragic transformation is occuring in the theaters with the
>conversion over to digital projection--even if it is shot on film,
>digital projection of that film material ends up empty and lifeless.
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Received on Sat Aug 20 2011 - 08:46:26 CDT