How a Universal Sensor Size Could Revolutionize the Industry

How a Universal Sensor Size Could Revolutionize the Industry


This is the latest entry of our video presentations from NAB 2019. If you would like instant access to all of the sessions, enter your email on the video, or sign up below.

Today is Michael Cioni, SVP of Innovation at Panavision and Lightiron. Michael is a passionate, eloquent, and engaging speaker, and in this presentation, he talks about how a universal sensor size could revolutionize the industry, and benefit filmmakers from production to post.

Watch the Session

Session Highlights

Here are the highlights to take away from the video.

  • The issue of how big the sensor is relevant mainly because we have so many different methods of consuming video: mobile, desktop, apps, theatrical, etc.
  • Larger sensors will be the key to delivering content in any aspect ratio using extraction techniques.
  • Extraction techniques are made more complicated because of the various sensor sizes and shapes. 10% on an Alexa is not the same thing as 10% on a Venice or a DSLR.
  • When you look at all the aspect ratios around the globe (IMAX, EU Widescreen, HDTV, American WS, Digital IMAX, Anamorphic, etc.), you come to an average sensor size of 2:1. House of Cards was the first online show to use that ratio.
  • A 2:1 ratio makes all the extraction math very easy to do in your head.
  • Cinematographers, Editors, post & VFX houses, and lens manufacturers benefit the most from such a sensor.
  • Creating a 2:1 “universal” sensor can only happen if a community of filmmakers gets behind it.

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Too impatient to wait for the release of all the videos to drip out one by one? We get it. You don’t have to. Sign up below and on our next newsletter, you’ll get access to all of our NAB Session videos, which include:

  • Alexis Van Hurkman demos DaVinci Resolve 16
  • VICE Media shares their video workflow
  • Interview and Q&A with Film Riot host Ryan Connolly
  • Steve Martin and Mark Spencer of Ripple Training demo in FCP X
  • Panavision SVP of Innovation, Michael Cioni, shares insights about universal sensor sizes
  • BuzzFeed shares how they use to manage the hundreds of videos they create with a global team
  • Stu Maschwitz gives a presentation about his 1-person VFX pipeline
  • Master Mark Toia does a Q&A with Ivan Agerton about remote video collaboration
  • Moving Post to the Cloud with Michael Kammes
  • Patrick Southern of LumaForge gives a sneak peek of Captain Karl with Kyno + FCPX +

The Presentation Deck

Below is Michael’s Keynote presentation as a video. Feel free to play online, or download.


Written by Ron Dawson

Ron is an award-winning video producer with over 25 years experience telling stories in the video medium. He's a coach, speaker, and author of “ReFocus: Cutting Edge Strategies to Evolve Your Video Business." Ron was also the host and producer of Radio Film School a podcast described as "This American Life for Filmmakers." You can follow him on Twitter @BladeRonner.

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