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Barnaby Coote

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About Barnaby Coote

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    Cinematographer
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    Paris

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  1. Omg, that's worse than I thought. I had some info from a small but reputable manufacturer who said the main problem with carpets (even the ones from aladdin) is that after a certain number of bends the copper wiring in the mat will almost certainly break. The only other viable option apparently uses fairly exotic automotive industry tech for the wiring but that makes the mats prohibitively expensive. Nice to hear that they improved that much on the 300d mkii. Did they fix the leaky fresnel ?
  2. I wouldn't say the noise is a deal breaker for sound rec. The mark i has the ballast separate from the dimmer and has an extension cable available which means you can put the ac ballast outside the room. That little ac unit makes a lot more noise than the actual light. When set to "auto" the fans in the light make the same amount of noise as some cameras, but the noise will increase if its at high power and you don't set it back to "force" between takes. Its manageable but an extra thing to deal with. I haven't tried the mark ii. It's still probably one of the most versatile lights you can get for the money. You can make a very nice close soft source out of it. Maybe rent it once and see if you're ok with the noise ? I really like the litemat 4s and 8s but they are more expensive. I haven't tried any carpet style lights yet but I have heard they are fragile and need to be sent back and repaired very often. The intellitech litecloth looks better, the tile design is appealing and could mean it would last a lot longer ?
  3. I hadn't noticed the prizmo in your list, I wasn't aware of this one. Has anyone used it ? How does it measure up to an s60 ?
  4. What sort of shoots are you doing ? Interviews and b-roll or more narrative stuff ? The lights you listed are a mix of soft and hard lights, Rgb/mono/bicolor. maybe you should figure out what you need to prioritize in regards to color temp, softness, battery mobility, case size, etc ? It's hard to find a light that will do everything and that will also fit in a small bag. The 300d is handy and pretty versatile in lots of situations but it does have quite a few drawbacks, namely lots of fan noise from the ballast and the not terribly practical accessories. The barndoors won't fit the basic bowl mount, making the fresnel a must have, unless you are putting a softbox on it. Its power ouput is ok, definitely not on the level of small HMIs but competes well vs gelled tungsten (but less so at 3200k, which tunsgten does better for a lot less money). The fresnel mount is also pretty much mandatory if you want to bounce it precisely or punch it through a window. That said the v1 attachment is pretty cheaply built and needs to be flagged or wrapped in cinefoil to not spill everywhere. Not sure if the v2 fixes this. I find the cheap panel soft lights almost all lack either surface area or power for most stuff, especially if matching to the ambient daylight at 5600k. I find myself using them mostly to supplement other sources, or as hidden practicals (tv or ipad screen) or as back or edge lights (or maybe for a very light bounced fill). I got away with rigging a large flag above a 300D in a light drizzle for 4-5 hours, but I was still a bit nervous doing it. The housing is very open to the elements.
  5. Your reference pic seems to be mostly lit with dimmed practicals. There is an overhead lamp which is giving the room a sort of base level, then the close lamps right and left are lighting the actor's face. They are pushed against the wall to create nice shapes that quickly falloff, and they are dimmed down to make them warmer. The light to the bg right could be used as a soft-ish key or backlight if an actor moves towards the foreground table (where they would also be lit from top). But it also provides a nice contrast between the two spaces on that particular wide shot. Placing practicals close to things (walls, furniture, actors faces like here) will allow you to keep the light contained and create the contrast you want for a moody look. You can put them on one or several dimmer circuits to warm up the colour and have them adjusted to be not too bright when in frame. If you want some practicals around the sofa area as key, like the reference, it might limit your actors movements too much so you might need to supplement with a bit of extra light in a similar direction. If you use the overheads as a top light in the centre sofa area I's suggest trying to keep the light off the walls to not interfer with the background. That way you can get nice moody pools of light from the background practicals. Skirting a toplight or using barndoors/snapgrids for instance works well. You have a built set so that gives you options to remove walls. But black solids out of frame (black curtain on speedrail or in a frame) can help you get more contrast and avoid bounce from the white walls if needed. You could also ask for the walls to be a mid to light grey instead ? They'll look sort of white but just darker. Should give you a bit more margin if you want to keep the light moody ?
  6. My main concern would be the look. I already have a water based smoke machine that I got a long time ago, a martin magnum 850, its smoke eventually turns into a somewhat heavy haze, but indoors it takes too long to even out, it's very hard to keep the level consistent between shots and there is always a bit of graininess to it. How do water based hazers compare to the df50 ? Would one really be any better than the martin machine I already have ? What about fire systems ? I've never used haze in a public building yet, but I've heard smoke detectors are getting much more sensitive than before. I'd always err on the side of caution and ask permission first, but does oil have more of a tendency to set systems off than water based ?
  7. Great, thanks ! I'll have a look at that machine. I'm not in the US but I'm guessing water based is preferred for comfort and long term health concerns ? What are the drawbacks to water based apart from cost ? Is it less smooth & even ?
  8. What would you recommend as a low cost but not too shabby haze machine ? Something lightweight, that can fill a medium size room just enough to get a bit of atmosphere and background separation, without any visible clouds or particle grain (I already own a smoke machine). Water based haze is new to me, any advantage over oil based ? Does it dissipate too quickly to be practical on set ?
  9. Looks like DC servos. You should be able to run it on dragonframe, if that's the case but you'll need to be prepared to solder some stuff together. If you are in Europe you can try to find that connector on the RS website if they carry it https://www.rs-online.com/ (the RS422 and 24v DIN should be available for a few £). Buy the male plugs and solder them to lengths of 5-core or cat cable. Then put a whatever connector dragonframe needs (RJ45 i think) and a connection to a 24v DC power supply on the other ends. If you can't find the connector then you will need to gut the system and replace them with something of a similar size. The focus and zoom ports look like passthrough connections which would allow you to plug in extra motors in without having cables get in the way. You can use them but you will need to make cables, find the connectors and source some suitable motors for focus and zoom. I'd stick to getting the RS422 and 24v working for now. The tricky bit will be finding what pin does what. Servos usually have power in/out and data and clock pins (that should correspond to what dragon frame outputs, unless there is an internal micro controller in the thoma separate from the servos), and there might be separate pins for reading positioning that you can run back to the system. If you get power and data confused, you can damage things. But it seems this design splits power and data so that things are a bit safer if you make a mistake. You might need to open the device up to get a part no of what motor is in there find a data sheet for it online, which will in turn give you the color coding of the cables. Red and black will usually be 5v DC+ and ground. Same goes for the 24v connector if it has red and black wires behind it.
  10. The french have what they call a 'luciole'. It's a rectangular aluminium frame, basically a rectangular china ball, with a 16mm stud on one edge and one or two 1kw bulbs inside depending on the size. Each side of the box comes with a choice of velcro pads (black or diffusion) so you can swap them out and either diffuse or mask the side you want. The velcro also makes it easy to skirt and some come with snapgrids. They're cheap and the pads make them really easy to manage spill and shape. I find them good for table scenes but haven't been able to find the english name. Any idea what they are called elsewhere ?
  11. Stop was t4 with the option to go up to 800 iso I only had a few minutes to meter the lights at the rental house, but on a flooded D12 I got around t4@400 asa at 4m/12ft which was ok. The would mean I'm getting around 500 lux or 50fc. The arri photometrics app gives 3500-4000 lux for a flooded undiffused d12 so looks like either the light was underperforming or the loss is closer to 3 stops. The flooded d12 could have done with an extra layer of diffusion though, its not nearly as even as what I get with a redhead on a medium softbox. I was in a country where domestic power is limited to 10A but I'll definitely go with a bigger light and internal diffusion next time.
  12. Thanks, I was thinking the same but wasn't quite sure. Full grid cloth is -2 1/2 stops so I'm ballparking off that, but yes i'm hoping the reflective sides of the chimera will up the output a bit more to something like -2 stops. Crew is limited so a d12 might be easier if I need to boom it. I'll post measurements if I get the chance !
  13. Why specifically 360s ? Those are going to put a lot of weight and a lot of light in a smaller area on the beams. Lots of small fixtures spread out over the ceiling would give you larger box surface and then allow you to bring the diffusion up higher if headroom is a concern. You could also forego diffusion if you want a more of a light bank style warehouse look vs faking daylight openings in the roof You could also boom two 8x8 squares of trussing on the condors, one for each panel, if the weight and reach requirements allow it ? I have seen this done quite a lot on outdoor shoots. Could be the fastest to setup as all the assembly would be on the ground and you can move and adjust a lot more easily.
  14. I have a shoot coming up and we're planning on using a chimera L on a daylight fresnel. I don't use chimeras much and I need to pick which size light to use. A D12 is going to be much easier to rig, but we have the option of using a D25 if we need the extra stop of light. Budget is tight and we can only afford one light. I find the arri photometrics app handy for direct sources and was wondering if I could find any info on how much the chimera is going to cut the light by ? Say x ft away, for a 1.2k source how much light will I get centre and off to the sides by about 30º ? Would be nice if chimera provided a photometric map of the light falloff for 1 or 2 typical sources, but they don't unfortunately.
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