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Phil Rhodes

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  1. I have one here; the quality of the lens elements is probably better than ETC's famous Source Four. The mistake people tend to make is to put a gobo in it, assume LEDs "dont get hot," then dump the gobo out into a bare hand. It's a good way to get an interesting tattoo in the shape of the gobo.
  2. I think the operative term is involuntary manslaughter. The consequences of these circumstances had there been any malice involved would presumably be vastly more severe. The question here is the degree of stupidity it took to have this happen, which in my view is not much in the context of the film industry.
  3. Let's take a moment to raise a glass to all of the broadcast camera operators who're going to be asked to produce sharp images with that thing, potentially using things like Venice in live broadcast situations. Yikes.
  4. The only issue with this is fire protection. Anything you're using for this should be fire protected, even if you're not pointing giant tungsten lights at it. You can get spray bottles full of fire retardant which might help - naturally, perform your own tests. Still, they only really work on fabrics. Plastics may be tricky from this perspective.
  5. Have to say, that's what I'd do. Aren't they usually just bent and welded steel rod? You'd want the right grade of steel so it had the right degree of rigidity. P
  6. I don't think anyone had a big problem with the first Tomb Raider movie, although it doesn't do very well on Rotten Tomatoes. Arcane is a TV show, but that reviews well. The Witcher is another TV show that goes down better with people who haven't played the games, raising the question of whether a faithful adaptation is more important than good film or TV material. Apparently the upcoming Last of Us adaptation is reasonably good, which it should be, considering it was written by Craig Mazin, he of Chernobyl. The thing is, if you're looking for a heady, cerebral experience, you're not going to get that from a video game adaptation. You're generally going to get an action movie. You can criticise video games for too often being effectively a simulation of an action movie, but you can't really criticise the adaptations of them for being what they are. I have a soft spot for the first Resident Evil movie, for instance. I'm told it has very little to do with the game and it's far from high art, with a couple of laughably bad CGI moments and no more story than it needs, but I take the position that it's a perfectly serviceable little action movie. It's not Cameron level, but there's nothing wrong with it. People who don't like action movies tend to look at video game adaptations and criticise them on the same basis anyone can criticise any action movie, and they're right, but I wouldn't criticise a Jane Austen adaptation on the basis it's a nineteenth-century romance, because that's exactly what it's supposed to be. Obviously that's not to make excuses for the likes of Uwe Boll, but that's my feeling on the matter. But then I like good-looking action movies, and honestly, given the popularity of the likes of Aliens, it seems I'm not alone.
  7. So, I put my wonderful equipment case on my wonderful equipment cart, and... oh for the love of Mike.
  8. To be fair, hydrogen is floatier. But it's also a bit more explodey.
  9. What did you think of it? I got to shoot with a pre-release model back in April and I thought it was excellent for the size and weight. 6K prores on board? Sounds good!
  10. I'm not in the market, but I wonder how it would perform on the 6K Blackmagic.
  11. White ripstop nylon. You can get it in various grades to suit various diffusion. It's sold to make kites, sails, and so on. The degree of diffusion may not exactly match dedicated film industry textiles, but I've always taken the position it's possible to overthink these things.
  12. Not necessarily. I put Resolve on a 7-year-old Windows PC recently and it's fine. It'll even just about cut 4K, although it's probably a better idea to use the built-in proxy stuff at that point. We are beyond the point where basic post needs huge hardware.
  13. People seem to make a living on YouTube with this sort of stuff, so let's document a process. I have a soft spot for old PAG battery gear. I should be clear that the company now makes far better stuff than this - it's all at least ten to fifteen years old, it's just that some of the old packs were really easy to recell. Creating a battery system with enough capacity to create a 48V bus for big LED lights would be several times more expensive any other way. So, today we're revisiting a truism about buying quality vintage gear, which generally keeps being useful for a lot longer than brand X. The problem is that one of my AR124 chargers came with a broken display. It's old enough to have some history. The upside is that the LCD character displays are very much an inexpensive commodity item, and I purchased a replacement for £6.50 on eBay. If anyone can see the immediate problem here, it's that the old display (bottom) has an electroluminescent backlight panel, like an Indiglo watch, while the modern one, at the top, uses LEDs. This means this was probably one of the original, oldest AR124 chargers, since more recent ones have LED-backlit displays from the factory. So, I modified the charger to properly drive the LED backlight. The relevant area of the PCB involves the transformer marked 5A and the black plastic TO92-cased transistor to its left, which together form a high-voltage inverter. The backlight connects to the smaller white two-pin connector. The relevant changes included cutting a couple of PCB traces to isolate the inverter circuit, and connecting pin 2 of the connector to the charger's +5V logic supply via a resistor to limit the backlight current to about 25mA. This matches the brightness of other AR124 chargers, and minimises the extra load on the charger's logic supply. Job done! All that remains is to reassemble the whole thing, and... oh, bollocks. The problem is that the variable resistor used to set the LCD's contrast bias doesn't have enough range of adjustment. It was fine for the old one, but this display needs a setting we can't achieve with PAG's original design. We might be seeing the fact that modern LCDs of this type are designed to be less temperature sensitive than old ones, which is fine, but it changed the bias behaviour. The resistor in question is marked 202, which means 20 followed by two zeroes, or 2000 ohms. That instinctively feels low. Usually we use 10K potentiometers for that. Checking the datasheet for the specific display I'm using, sure enough, it recommends 10K. So, I replace the 2K RV3 with a 10K pot, which I have to bodge in a little as I don't have one of the same physical layout. The new one is just above where it says RV3, the old one is below it. Splendid! First person to identify the modified unit wins a cookie.
  14. That's a sort of reverse coincidence; inasmuch as I've done either of those, I've sort of gone the opposite direction. If it helps, I spent much of this evening discussing the paucity of recent cinema releases. I'm not really particularly inspired by the writing in most films. I haven't seen a film that really got to me for years, which creates a sort of circular problem: they're mediocre, so I don't bother seeing them, so I probably miss good stuff, which is further discouraging. When was the last decent sci-fi, anyway? Is Dune as good as it gets, these days?
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