would i gain anything by shooting in 1080 if i only plan to export to 720? (besides a ton of space consumption!)
super n00b question I know, but I'm just starting to get serious and this seems like something I should ask.
Thx for your time!
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Your lenses and lighting will often have more to do with how sharp your picture looks than the raw number of pixels. DSLR will look better than handycam. I use 720 when it's appropriate because the dataflow, responsiveness, time in post-production is easier to manage.
One advantage to shooting 1080 for 720 is you can zoom in to part of the frame without losing resolution, allowing for example, margins for digital stabilizing.
thank you for you're response. so zooming in/cropping is really the only benefit doing shooting in 1080 if you know ur final product will end up as 720?
responsiveness/workflow is exactly why I would prefer to stick to 720. I just didn't know how much I'd be giving up (aside from pixels), i guess.
It also depends on the camera - some HD cameras have a very poor 720 mode compared to their 1080 - instead of a proper resize, their method of downsizing is sometimes line skipping or subsampling the sensor, so you're left with aliasing and jaggy edges. So it depends how the camera is producing the 720 image. Do some tests before committing to 720
Besides the flexibility in post production that smrpix mentioned, oversampling has other benefits
It depends what you want to do with it - e.g. if you're keying, color correcting, acquisition in 1280x720 with 4:2:0 subsampling means the maximum chroma resolution is only 640x360. That's terribly low for effects, keying, grading
Always a good idea to do a quick test using your gear and workflow to see if there's any difference noticeable to you. The above is how I do it for 720p, with a dslr, for web or kiosk display.