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mabou

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About mabou

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    Cinematographer

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    http://www.talkingboxdmg.com
  1. Hi all, I am frustrated. I am a proud owner of the new DVX 200. I also own the AJPX-270 and previously owned the HVX-100. I've been shooting almost exclusively with DSLR for the past three years. A year ago I decided to buy an ENG camera and bought the 270. Although it was like I could breathe again by using a real video camera rather than a cobbled together and difficult to use DSLR, I was SHOCKED at the amount of grain that was present in the 270. I did side by side comparisons in a variety of locations and the 5D out performed the 270 in every way (in terms of image clarity and grain). I shot film-rec, spent weeks researching and experimenting with scene file customizations... literally tried everything I could, and the 5D was cleaner across the board. After extensive research and finding a lot of people complaining about the 270's grain, I decided to jump onto the HVX 200 and sell the 270. Today I did many side by side comparisons with the 200 and the 270 and I have to say that the 200 is MUCH cleaner than the 270... in some locations the difference is startling with the 200 being the clear winner. THAT SAID, the 200's image is still really grainy compared to the 5D. Especially in mid tones or where there is a shadow line. The 5D is sharp as hell and the 200 looks like sand. So I have to ask... WHY is the image from a mid-level DSLR so much better (in terms of grain) than a dedicated video camera? I guess my next option is to start the exhaustive research to try to find the right recipe in the 200 to minimize the grain... but shouldn't the default setting right from the camera already give us a solid general-use image? I'm really confused as to why a DSLR has so much less grain.... help?
  2. Hi all, I hope this is okay to post here. I spent the last year researching and purchasing a rig for my Canon 5D cameras (to shoot video). I decided to make an instructional video to help others with basic information about how the rig works. I have included a few helpful tips, and discussed how and why I made some of my decisions. I REALLY wish I had seen a video like this when I was first starting out with the HDSLR rig. Anyway, I spent quite a bit of time on the video, so I hope it helps you. Matt You can view the video on my website at http://www.talkingboxdmg.com/vidgal/vidgal/product-reviews.html or YouTube at or Vimeo at
  3. Hi all, I have been adapting all of my photo and video gear to use Arca mounting systems for years. I recently purchased a Manfrotto 504 head and found out (the hard way) that none of the Arca adapter clamps will work with the 504 The reason is that the top of the 504 head is large, flat, and nearly flush with the top of the Manfrotto plate. So this does not allow enough room for the Arca clamp's knob. I realize this is a fairly niche question, but does anyone have any knowledge of an Arca compatible clamp that will mount onto a flush surface (like the big, flat head on the 504)? Thanks, Matt
  4. Hi all, I am in dire need of some great advice. I realize that $6k is a paltry amount, but I have a new client that needs a product promotional video and the quality of the footage has to be incredible, especially in the jet-black shadow areas of the video (which is a major component of the creative direction of the piece). I have been researching the options for days (literally) and have yet to find the right solution. Every camera has strengths and shortcomings, and there are many tricks to tweak an image. So my options (as I see it at this point) are.... 1) I buy gear (external recorder) for my existing camera(s); 2) I need to do some whacky workflow (camera settings that work best for cleaning footage in post) that produces superb results; 3) I buy a piece of post gear or software, 4) or the answer could be that I buy a new camera. Or a combination of the above. I need to be creative with the purchase to get a camera/recorder that gives me 1080P, shoots pristinely clean video in the shadow areas, has no problems with moire (since I am shooting a refrigerator sized product that has many horizontal and diagonal details). The creative concept for the video is this... (Note that a camera that is on a motorized slider and shooting close-ups of Pieces and parts of the product), the video will reveal the product through a series of closeups that consist of a completely black setting, as the light passes over an area of the product, that area briefly reveals in the light then as the light continues flying by (the light itself is not in the frame), the frame goes to black. Repeat over and over again. So the Black Shadows and gradients of shadow) need to be incredibly clean, and the video of the product needs to be crisp and detailed to show the fine texture of the product surfaces. I own a Panasonic HVX 200 and a Canon 5D Mk II, I also have a variety of Canon L series still lenses. I have looked at the Panasonic AF100, the Sony FS 100, the Canon 5D Mark III, and from an overwhelming amount of positive reviews, the Panasonic GH2. I discovered that the 5DMkII and MKIII doesn't have clean HDMI out (which is really disappointing), so those are probably out. Do you have any suggestions as to what camera/external recorder I can buy on this small budget that will give me the most quality at a reasonable price? Thanks so much, I look forward to hearing your opinions. Matt
  5. Hi all, I just found two different camera rigs that look very interesting and are suspiciously low priced. I'm curious if any of you have tried these.... They might not be top-of-the-line in comparison to the rigs that are (literally) 5 to 10 times the cost, but these might be excellent deals for the $$$ First off... anyone try Konova rigs? For $715 you get a full blown rig with what appears to be an excellent Matte Box and a full featured follow focus..... http://konovaphoto.com/dslrkit03.html The next is from an american company named x-factor1. Their rig has an interesting combination of features, especially for only $349. http://www.xfactor1.com/xf1.html Your thoughts? Matt
  6. Hi all, I've been shooting with my HVX 200 for three years. I recently shot a two day event, shooting 269 clips to P2 Cards. In reviewing the footage today, I have found a problem that renders some of the footage unusable. Although I was ONLY shooting 29.97 DVCPRO HD, 13 of the clips have irregular frame rates ranging from 7.99 fps to 27.97 fps. To be exact, the clip frame rates are as follows: 7.99fps x 1 clip, 9.99fps x 2, 11.99fps x 1, 23.98fps x 4, 24.98fps x 4, 27.97fps x 1. I took a look at the quicktime footage of the original clips and sure enough, the frame rates are locked at the lower numbers and the audio is out of sync. I used FCP studio on my notebook, with a G-Safe 2TB external drive. Might not be a coincidence that this is the first time I have used this hardware/software configuration and this is the first time I've seen this problem. The interesting/annoying thing is that the clips had problems very randomly. For example, One clip is fine, the next clip is bad, the next clip is fine... all three clips shot within seconds of each other at the same location with the same setup. Anyone else seeing this kind of issue?
  7. Hi all, I am in over my head again. I have a two camera HVX200 shoot of a small group doing an hour long exercise video. Two of the girls will have mics on. The girls are vets to recording workouts and they claim they will be able to pull off the non-stop exercise with only one or two performance goofs where we stop and start over a few seconds back. Here are the complicated parts: 1) Two cameras, need to be syncd for ease of editing in post. 2) Two of the girls will be mic'd. 3) The workout music has to play live for the girls to exercise to, and also needs to be fed to camera A in stereo. 4) As mentioned above, if the girls have to stop for a mistake they made, we might need to back up the music (lets say 30 seconds) and pick up the routine again. In post this will be an edit, but on the shoot, what music source could I use that will be sync'd to the cameras? argh.....
  8. Hi all, I need to mount a Panasonic HVX-200 on a video tripod. The odd thing is, I need the HVX onto its side (Shooting in portrait perspective), AND I need the setup to handle a medium weight teleprompter. Any ideas? Oh, and guess what... the shoot is tomorrow. Matt
  9. This time regarding cases for the hvx 200. I blindly bought the Thermodyne/Panasonic system hard case. I am returning it. I really don't like how I have to smash the camera into place.... I think this is a seriously bad design and I would eventually accidentally destroy the camera while closing the case..... for $350. Beyond that case, I don't really see anything on the market that is "Made for the HVX-200". I previously owned a Canon XL2 and I am accustomed to finding "Made for xxxx" third party solutions. Does anyone have experience with a third-party case that will allow a "normal" amount of extra gear to be carried? (Normal = light, batteries, matte box, P2 cards, AC power, mic, etc).
  10. Hi all, I am on the hunt for a good on- camera mic shock mount. I will be using Senneiser ME66 cartridge. I need the mic to be a few inches higher than the built-in mic mount, otherwise the mic is behind the matte box. (But I hope to not use the shoe mounted variety of mic mount.) Anyone have the perfect solution? Thanks, Matt
  11. Thanks everyone, My DP for the shoot has confirmed that every HVX he has used has the exact same noise. Silly that Panasonic is not warning anyone. Also seems like a bit of clunky engineering. An internal component banging around at the whim of inertia is certainly taking some kind of abuse. Be sure to turn the camera on if you are ever going to drive on a bumpy dirt road or something.... seems like that lens element could beat itself to death given the right undulations. Anyway.. thanks again all. (I just bought the two Barry Green DVD's). Matt
  12. Thanks guys, anything that gives me a bit of relief about this is good. I have a shoot in three days and I have few options if the camera is a dud.... Anything affirmative would be appreciated. You would think that if this was a known thing, Panasonic would make a mention in the instruction manual. Anyway, thanks again. Matt
  13. Hi all, Okay, so my brand new 200 makes an odd clicking sound when I tilt it forward and backward. The click is something "loose" in or around the lens. The click ONLY occurs when the power is off, as soon as the power goes on (either AC or DV) the clicking sound goes away. I am hoping that this is a known oddity about the normal operation of this camera.... I have an important shoot on Monday.... Does anyone know if this clicking/thumping sound is normal when the camera is powered down?
  14. Wow.... I love your video. I can't believe how clean the blacks are from that camera!!! Your imagery is great, your camera work is beautiful. You shoot like an artistic still photographer.... you have the image composition tell the story rather than the motion.... very nicely done.
  15. Peter, thanks for the info... much appreciated. Hi Michael, Thanks a bunch for the reply. Having a nightmare in post is not much of a concern to me because of my workflow and the edit suit I use. I am most concerned about whether it will actually work on set or not. Have you ever used Multi-clip editing in Final Cut Pro? If not, just to let you know, it is very cool. I assign all of the clips for any given section to the multi-clip editor. This might mean that I have 9 or more clips stacked up (if I had to shoot three takes of the same section x 3 cameras). With the FCP Multi-clip editing, I can see thumbnails of all nine video tracks running in real time in a "switcher" window, and I can act like a live switcher, every time I click on one of the thumbnails, it drops that clip into the master timeline, then when I click on the next thumbail, it drops the next clip into the timeline... and on and on. Very, Very, Very, cool. In addition, the multi-clip element remains completely editable once I have dropped a clip into the timeline. At any time I want, I can select a previously edited clip in the timeline and open the multi-clip editor to choose one of the other 8 camera angles just for that clip. How cool is that? But I digress... Is there any reason why I could not drive the 3 cameras TC from the DVCAM deck?
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