Want your audio to sound as if it were coming from a dream? It’s easy. Just make a copy of your original sound track on another tape. Then, play the original and the copy through an audio mixer slightly out of sync. It will take some practice to start them at the right intervals, but with time, you’ll get the effect without the aid of a sound processor.
Jorge E. Torres
Some Light on the Subject
If you use a video light mounted on your camcorder and have had the experience of running out of battery power too soon, here’s a little modification that hopefully will help. On my light, a Kalimar, the on-off switch is not accessible enough to turn it on and off quickly and easily. My light has fins in the barrel, which makes it relatively easy to pull the power switch’s wire out of the light’s housing. After locating the right wire, I cut it and attached two 20-inch lengths of wire and added a push button switch. This allows me to turn my light on and off at the same time I activate the record switch on the camcorder, without having to feel around for the switch. Best yet, I am able to keep the light off when I am not recording, preserving my battery.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Videomaker Magazine does not necessarily recommend making this type of alteration. If done improperly, you may permanently damage your light. In addition, such alterations will most certainly void your light’s warranty.
Defrag, Defrag, Defrag
One of the most important things you can do to get the best quality video from your computer’s hard drive is to defragment it. I do it at least once a week, and always before capturing video to my drive, making a movie in Premiere, or transferring a finished file to tape. When I run the disk defragmenter in Windows 95 (start/programs/accessories/system tools/disk defragmenter), it usually returns a message, which states: "This drive is 0% fragmented; you do not need to defragment it now." It’s wrong. Always defrag anyway. It usually takes somewhere between 90 minutes and three hours to complete the process on my 9.1 gig Seagate Barracuda hard drive, so you may want to do it at night or when you’re about leave your house.
Just remember that disk defrag is probably lying when it says the disk isn’t fragmented. Believe me, everything will go much more smoothly if you defrag regularly.
Old Fashioned Database
Upon receiving my monthly issue of Videomaker, I immediately attach a blank one-inch by three-inch self-sticking label to the front cover. As I read through each issue and come across articles, data or ads that I feel are important to me for future reference, I make a note on my label. I list them as I read, thereby maintaining a chronological order of reference. If there is something of significant importance in an article, I mark it with a star symbol. I can now easily scan and search back issues without having to check the tables of contents. I save all my old issues and have now established a personal library reference.
Logging tapes is indeed a task worthy of procrastination. However, I have a suggestion. By using a color video printer (the type that uses video inputs to make high quality, photo-type prints of still video frames, not to be confused with a color printer for a computer) and utilizing the multi-print option at the 1/16 setting, it is possible to capture 16 different frames off of any videotape and add titles to make a picture log of the footage. Since video is all about visual records, I find this to be a very effective method of bringing instant recall to long forgotten footage.
Port Angeles, WA