Sunday, December 30, 2012

HFR (High Frame Rate) Movies

I recently went to see the movie "The Hobbit, An Unexpected Journey" in IMAX 3D. I also saw it in the new HFR (High Frame Rate) format which it was filmed in.

HFR (High Frame Rate) for this movie records and in select theaters, plays, at 48 FPS (Frames Per Second), double the normal 24 FPS.

So I went to the second viewing in HFR with a critical eye to this difference. It had been about two weeks since my first viewing and even though I was aware of what the difference should be, I didn't really notice much of a difference.

In the more instense scenes of fighting and motion, I was occassionally more aware of the movement and possibly a decrease in the blurring action of the lower 24 FPS version, but I didn't find anything else negative about it. It definitely didn't seem less real like some critics claim.

Perhaps another viewing of the lower 24 FPS version now might give me more insight into the differences. If it does, I'll update this review. Otherwise, I won't be going out of my way again just to see the HFR version only because the difference was negligible for me. I still applaude Peter Jackson's efforts.

Of course, if this catches on, you'll need a new system at home to view this new format but that's not surprising. You'll need a new one for the Dolby Atmos sound also. The theater I saw this movie in was not set up for the new sound system. Neither is my home. In fact, my system only supports Dolby Pro so I am a few versions behind when it comes to sound and haven't moved up to 3D either. It's hard to justify replacing something that still works.

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