Unexpected Opportunity – Help!?

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    • #43286
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Up until now my business main focus has been the wedding industry. There is one “DJ” (more of a wedding entertainer that goes beyond just a DJ) that I have had the pleasure of working with a couple times now, and he is far and above one of the best in the country.

      Last week he emailed me asking to set up a meeting because he had someone he wanted me to meet. I was very curious, and set up a meeting.

      He had me meet one of his good friends which is also one of the better stand up comedians in the area. He currently does a monthly comedy variety show, and is setting up to broadcast this show. I was asked to do the camera work/editing. It will start on just the metro wide public access station, but he has quite a few sponsors interested, and there is hype that it could move past public access into something larger in the near future. Of course I am not counting on large success here, I will take this one small step at a time.

      I did say I was interested – with confidence of course – but honestly I am now nervous and scared out of my mind. I will be doing a bit of a dry run for his show this Wednesday – and was wondering if anyone had any pointers. This is something completely new to me – and a new format. This would not only involve a 2-3 camera shoot, but also creating an opening of the show, and some other promotional work for the show.

      The Wedding Entertainer friend has stated to me he really likes the work that I do, and considers me in the top 5% of videographers he has worked with – which was quite the honor to hear considering I have only been in the business about a year now. Of course this is his opinion – and I am always highly critical of my own work, so I am very hard on myself.

      Does anyone have any pointers on this type of project, or anything I might NEED to know?

      Thanks in advance for the help!

      Adam

    • #181486
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      The old Combat Cameraman in me first wants to say to you, “Unpucker sailor! If there’s no weapons fire, you won’t have to work as hard.”

      From the sound of it you’ve been shooting for a while now, so you’ve already got the basics down. You’ll still have to make sure it’s exposed well, in focus, steady and you get clean audio. Now you’ll just have to do it with two more cameras involved.

      With a multi-camera shoot you really want to have 3 of the same brand and model cameras with the exact same color – brightness – contrast settings, format (i.e. all DV or HD with interlaced or progressive scan) with the same frame. If you don’t have the same model cameras you’ll need to spend some time getting all three cameras setup on a monitor and tweak their settings until their images look similar as possible. Another thing is timecode if you don’t have the cameras all linked up on ‘freerun’ then you’ll have to be certain the cameras all have different timecode or you’re going to have one hell of a time trying to edit your footage.

      So you’ll have one Main Camera (stationary) that covers the entire scene (center stage) in addition to front close-ups. If it’s a studio shoot you’ll have a ‘Second Camera’ (stationary) that will be off-center (stage left or right) and will cover a 3/4 or side-view of the talent. Last will be your ‘Third Camera’ (stationary which will cover the opposite side of your Second Camera. If it’s an on-location shoot at a comedy club or the like, your third camera will be a ‘Cut Camera’ (roving) and will cover close-ups near to the stage opposite Second Camera and reactions of the audience. depending on the stage’s size, you may want to use the Second Camera as ‘Cut Camera 1’ instead of keeping it stationary.

      Main thing is to work out the areas of overlap between the cameras so you limit the amount of times your shooters get into each other’s shots in addition to yours as Main Camera. Make sure your Cut Cameras know they’re supposed to move around. A good cut shot lasts for 5 seconds ‘rolling’, 10 seconds of the ‘shot’ with 5 seconds ‘roll out’ before moving onto the next angle and subject. That rule will be bent on occasion as you always want the cameraman to ‘cut on action’. Also make sure your ‘Cut Cam’ knows not to shut the camera off during filming unless it’s to put in fresh media or batteries. You never know if you’ll need that audio or not!

      Oh and only the Cut Camera should be recording in-camera audio with a camera mounted mic. Preferably, your Main Cam (specifically) and or your Second Cam should be hardwired into the studio or field engineer’s mixer. You’ll still have to make some audio tweaks to your cameras to keep the sound levels from being too hot.

      You really want to do site survey of the studio or venue where you’ll be shooting to work out power lighting and maneuvering issues. Also if you don’t already have a field monitor, get one. Even an inexpensive LCD TV 15 – 20 inches will do. Just make sure you put up color bars from your main camera so you can adjust the picture match your camera’s output close as you can get.

      Lastly, sit down with the show’s director and go over with him/her what’s going to go down so you can work out camera positions, angles and what-not. Don’t go in there cold! If you have any specific questions, PM me and I’ll do what I can to point you in the right direction.

    • #181487
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      YIKES! Thank you for the wealth of information there, greatly appreciated! Although I have read it a few times over trying to understand everything, and I am sure I will be reading it again and again to try and picture this all.

      A couple questions off the bat:

      The timecode issue – I usually use 3 cameras in my ceremonies and have learned to manually synch everything pretty well. While I was quite interested in synching the timecodes via firewire connecting my 2 Z5Us I always got an error and I could never get it to work. How important is timecode? I am guessing there really is a lot more to it than I realize. I truly don’t know how to utilize it to its full potential I guess.

      The field monitor – How exacty would you use this? I know how to put up color bars on my cameras, but am clueless how to utilize this as well. How do you match all of them via this method if only one camera is connected to the monitor? Maybe I don’t quite understand what you mean here.

      I know there is a LOT to learn and everything I have done so far has been self taught. This will be included in that category!

      This wednesday will be mainly a dry run to see what we get – and I will try to get as much “missing” equipment by then as I can (like a field monitor). The first live taping will take place in January so there is a bit of time to figure this all out before it really counts.

      2 of my cameras are Z5Us, and we are still uncertain about the 3rd camera. I can get my 3rd camera to match extremely well in wedding ceremonies, although it IS a consumer camera and manual adjustments on the fly are very limited. The main issue here would be the Z5Us would probably record in 1080 60i while the consumer would be in 1080 60p. I also am not sure the consumer even has a timecode option offhand.

    • #181488
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      How important is timecode?

      Well if you want to edit your footage from multiple cameras you can’t have timecode with the exact same numbers or the NLE Software will think that two or more clips of footage are the same. You mainly need timecode to match up audio with video clips. If your cameras can do ‘TOD’ (Time of Day) Free Run timecode, then you can just synchronize your cameras to the ‘TOD’ for your shoot and then match up shots from the different cameras without hassle. If you don’t have Free Run settings, then you’ll have to make sure each camera’s TC is different. You’ll have to ‘Zero Out’ the Main Camera’s TC so it will be the baseline for all of the shots and then make sure the other cameras TC won’t overlap each other.

      The field monitor – How exacty would you use this?

      Truthfully, you shouldn’t shoot without a field monitor even if it’s just a small on-camera mounted one. However, economics dictate you do what you can with what you’ve got. However, on a studio shoot or non-run & gun location shoot neglect to monitor at your peril. As for what you use it for, using a field monitor will allow you to see ‘what you’re going to get’ when it’s on TV. Camera viewfinders and camcorder viewfinders are fine for shooting, but to get good ‘reference video’ you need a monitor. With a monitor (properly set up) you’ll see that unnecessary ‘dead space’, the unneeded headroom, or when you’re cutting off too much of the scene.

      I know how to put up color bars on my cameras, but am clueless how to
      utilize this as well. How do you match all of them via this method if
      only one camera is connected to the monitor?

      Ideally, you would want to have all of your cameras patched into a video switcher with a single monitor and have a Technical Director to run it. From the setup you mentioned, you’re probably not going to get that. There are less expensive versions of what I described, but they are a bit pricey and you’re far from ready for that anyway. So without a waveform monitor on hand, you’re best bet is to hook up your cameras to a single monitor via an audio/video switcher that you can buy in ‘S-Mart’. Get one that has at least 3 video connections preferably with S-video and or at least RCA plug-ins.

      First you’ll setup your Main as the baseline for color and contrast based on the Main’s colorbars. Connect your main video to the monitor via the S-video or yellow RCA input. Then put up your colorbars in your camera. Calibrate your monitor using the instructions from the following link;

      http://www.videoproductionsupport.com/index.php?page=monitor-calibration

      *Be advised when using a consumer LCD TV as a field/production monitor you’ll have to base some of the controls described in the link on the equivalent controls of your TV. The good news is; the rules will still apply and you can get good results despite not having specialized controls.

      Once you get your monitor calibrated, if you have similar camera models set them all to the same image settings as your main. If you don’t then connect the other cameras to the switcher while the calibrated main is still connected. Using the main as reference, tweak the other cameras (using their colorbars) image settings until you can ‘eyeball’ them to be ‘close enough’. You’ll have to switch back and forth between the main and the camera your calibrating and that’s what the switcher is for. It’s a ‘ghetto’ field setup, but it does work!

      The main issue here would be the Z5Us would probably record in 1080 60i while the consumer would be in 1080 60p.

      I would say if there is no requirement to shoot in HD for a public access show, Don’t! Just shoot it in DV 16×9 if they can put it out like that or just to be safe, 4×3. Find out what they want and can broadcast. Shooting in DV will be a lot easier and you won’t have to worry about format issues (i.e. interlaced or progressive scan) as DV is all interlaced (unless shot in 24p.) Concerning the ‘consumer cam’ timecode issue, it probably doesn’t have timecode, but make sure if it uses a ‘counter’ that it is not ‘zeroed out’ just in case it causes a conflict with your main cam’s TC.

    • #181489
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      I just read this really fast on the way to work – but by request of the director, he wants everything mastered in HD even though the original broadcast will be in SD until and if the show progresses. So there it will all be in HD and I have worked with AVCHD enough to know my computer does not hate it as much as others.

    • #181490
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      Make sure you include the extra time it will take to down convert from HD to SD. Also, unless there’s a requirement for a 3 camera shoot, I’d pass on the consumer rig. You’re going to have enough ‘balls to juggle’ with getting your two same brand cameras up to speed without adding a consumer rig’s limitations into the mix. On top of that if you have mostly ‘interlaced’ video cameras you’ll have to deinterlace all the footage shot with both cam’s because of the 1 progressive scan one. That doesn’t make sense and will cost you more time in the editing bay. Better to spend that money on an extra cameraman as a grip or audio tech.

    • #181491
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Composite1,

      The 3rd camera was something I brought up at the meeting without thinking about it, and what you said makes complete sense. Even the creator was a bit worried about color matching different brands. So this ultimately will probably end up being a 2 camera shoot anyhow. How might you set that up?

      I just picked up a cheap 19″ Television on my way home from work, and am about to calibarate it. I do have a question about IRE though. Is broadcast still limited to 7.5 IRE minimum, or has that all changed since everything is broadcast digitally these days? My wedding shoots I bring down to 0 IRE on the low end mainly because from what I have been told, DVDs and Blu-Ray can support this and the newer televisions as well. It always looks really sharp on my own television via BluRay as well when I do this – and I have never had a complaint from a client about it not looking quite right.

      I know the TV itself wont give IRE values, but I am wondering this about editing in post. The Z5Us seem to record with about a 5 IRE base when I load them into Vegas, so this is already lower than traditional broadcast. The consumer camera I have bases out right at 0 when I load the clips, so I assume this is all meant to be transferred straight to DVD or Blu-Ray. Of course the goal would be to have to do no color correction in post and just do straight edits.

      The good thing about the Z5U is you can set one camera up to your liking, and then save the settings to a memory stick and load it into the other camera saving all the hassles of matching every single little adjustment.

      I am not too worried about the donconverting process as my computer does it faster than real time so it would be more of a set it and forget it type of deal. The show would be about an hour long. I do understand that being the most efficient is better though – and there will come a time that every little extra will be very important to me. For the time being I am excited to be a part of this – and maybe I am a little soft in what I COULD get out of this. It is not a very high budget yet, and I don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to be a part of it. That to me at the moment is more important than getting max value of every little thing I do. I am striving for that day to come though!

      A video switcher would be really nice to save on editing – and that was also discussed – but it would probably require adding another body to the crew and unfortunately at the moment I am not sure how possible that is. Then I assume would also come the issue of making sure each camera operator knows what to be doing exactly when, and that is something I have little experience with. My edits at the moment mainly consist of what camera looks best at the moment and try not to hold one shot too long. I think you covered this briefly in your original post. About 5 seconds a shot for this type of “show”? YIKES!

      As a side note all my weddings I shoot in 30p, mainly for the fact that that is how I have done it since day 1. Not that I really wanted more of a film look, but I have had brides-to-be comment quite a bit on the “flavor” of my videos, even though I never bring up formats when discussing my services. It is just something that has worked for me and if it works, why change it? I really wish Sony would implement 60p into their pro cameras (and even Vegas), but that is a discussion for another time and place.

      Thank you composite1 for all your very valuable information! This is and will be quite the learning experience shooting in more of a studio environment over what I am used to shooting.

    • #181492
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Calibration is not going well. I can not under any circumstances get the 3 shades of black to show up on the television. Only the right most bar is lighter. The left 2 bars are just 1 bar and there is no way to get them to separate on the TV. If I record the signal and import it to vegas, I can see the 3 bars, so I know the bars are suppose to be there (I know computer monitor is different). I don’t see any way to get rid of all but blue, and I have no gels, so that is also a no go. I did my best to get it to look like it does on my camera LCD, but not sure if that will cut it either.

      Now exploring Vegas further, I think I may have been using the waveform monitor all wrong. I think the default setting of -0- is actually 7.5 IRE. Could it be there for an easier way to adjust video? There are a couple options under the waveform “7.5 IRE Setup” and “Studio RGB (16 to 235)” I have both of those check marked now and the wave form markings from my color bar actually show closerto what is described on this page http://www.outside-hollywood.com/2005/11/an-introduction-to-video-scopes/

      The 7.5 IRE setup makes sense to me but what does the other option mean? I have to have them both checked to match what is shown on the link I posted.

      In this case, the Z5U actually seems to base out at just slightly over 10 IRE – which if I remember correctly is on purpose to allow more freedom when color correcting. This also would presumably put the base of the consumer camera right at 7.5 IRE.

    • #181493
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      First, don’t sweat the ‘TV’ as monitor. Unless you have a dedicated production monitor, it’s not going to have the full set of pro controls to get an exact image from your camera. The main thing you’re looking for is ‘close enough’ which it sounds like you achieved. Next the TV is there primarily for reference. Make sure your screen size is set to what you’re shooting (i.e. widescreen or standard.) The monitor gives you a good approximation of what the shot will look like on TV so you can size your shots appropriately. If you have ‘Safe Title’ guides in your camera’s viewfinder or LCD, don’t forget to use them! They aren’t as important for stuff headed to the web, but are vital for work for broadcast or DVD. You probably won’t see them on your LCD TV, but you’ll see exactly what the viewer will see far as the shot placement goes.

      As for this now being a 2-Camera shoot, your options are now either Main Camera/Stationary 2nd Cam or Main Cam/Cut Cam. Personally, I would go with the second one if you are shooting at a venue with a live audience present. You’ll need those reaction shots from the audience in addition to different angles of the talent on-camera. Main Camera’s job will still be the same to cover the talent from the front with wide-shots, medium shots and close-ups (depending on the length of your lens.) Cut Cam’s job gets a bit heavier in that he/she will have to cover more area to get enough shots to give the editor enough coverage and angles to work with during the edit. Otherwise nothing else changes. You’ll still use TOD Free Run TC for both the Main and Cut Cam’s and your audio will still go from the audio engineer’s board to the main camera.

      When it comes to your IRE settings, stick with the broadcast standard since this is going to be aired. Most of the settings are really more for old CRT based TV’s not Plasma or LCDs. However, just for your own sanity, stick with the standard because that’s what the station will expect you to turn in. When you get it into the edit bay save all your color-correction and tweaking the footage to broadcast standard for last. Long as you shot it close to BCS during the shoot, it won’t be that tough to conform it in post.

      Lastly, if they don’t want to put a body in to work a switcher, then don’t sweat it. All the switcher would have done during the shoot is allow the director/producers to see the different shots during the shooting.

    • #181494
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Just got home from the shoot. I am uploading the footage, anxious to look at it. I didn’t get a chance to look over your last post before doing this but I mainly had one camera static waist up. The camera I was told would be manned but the operator that I gave a briefing onseemed to run in and adjust every 5 minutes, so I am waiting to see what I will get. He was also taking photos, and I believe that was his main focus. That is something that WILL have to be changed, I want someone full time even at that camera in a 2 camera shoot – or it looks bad on me when somethining.someone went out of frame. But the creator knew this and thankfully this was a test shoot, and we have a couple months to work out the details.

      The 2nd camera I was running around the room shooting various angles and zoom lengths.

      Also a bit disapointing was I was surprised I had to have the cameras set at about 6-9db gain on average even with a spotlight. I will have to see if there is a way to add a bit more lighting, as there are many wedding receptions I can get away with less gain than that. 9db is usable, but starting to get into a scary area. The crowd was almost too dark and I will have to look at the footage to see if any crowd shots even turned out.

    • #181495
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      I am not sure how all this works sending it in for broadcast yet, but would shooting this in 30p be acceptable? I do like the 30p look, and I do most my other shooting in 30p. The only reason I went 60i with this was because i was thinking it was more of a standard – but I could be wrong

      My reason for shooting in 30p for this would be because there is not really any fast action- and lowering my shutter to 30 ( I know I could do this in 60i as well ) would allow me to shoot with -3db or -6db gain. I just figured the 30 shutter would match the 30p better than 60i, but if doing it 30 shutter with 60i would be more acceptable I would be open to that as well.

      I know we could add more lighting – but the look the venue has at the moment is pretty nice and if we could get away with just tweaking the cameras instead of the lighting it may be preferred.

      Right now the cameras seem to have to shoot with 6db gain on a waist up shot, and a lot of times into 9db with close ups. Nothing horrid looking on a television, but less gain would be better!

    • #181496
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Hereare a couple tiny clips from the show. The closeup camera had no full time operator which will change, but these clips it doesn’t show quite so much. There is quite a bit of footage where the subject is way off center or not fully in the frame.

      The blue lighting there is technically within broadcast IRE settings, but when played on a LCDtelevision it comes across as more of a bled out blue blob. Is there any way to help level this out?

      Lastly, I know you are suppose to cut on the action – but a lot of this is drawn out dialogue. What would be appropriate for this to keep one shot from being too long and boring?

      Password for this is jcnlepvideo

      http://vimeo.com/17300093

    • #181497
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      Not bad. Exposures were just fine, sound was indistinguishable from a full-on pro production. It need more audience reaction shots and MCU/CU shots of the performers. During the second bit you started to work more of that out. For a two camera shoot, from someone who’s never done it before it’s a good start. Once you get the bugs worked out after a couple more shoots you’ll be giving me advice! Good work, but don’t get lazy!

      As for 30p shooting, it’s best used for online broadcasts. When you submit it to TV stations they’re going to want it in 29.97 broadcast standard. Whether the original footage is shot in 60/30p/i make sure when you submit the final product you do it in the framerate required for NTSC or PAL as required by the client.

    • #181498
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Thanks for the input composite1! That was actually the difference between the first and 5th act. At first I was running around the room trying to get both sides to mix it up so the close up shots were longer as I was walking around. I think it is best to stick to one side until and if we can get a 3rd camera and operator. So about every 10-15 seconds or so switch the shot? And add some fast audience reactions shots? I was definitely a lot more comfortable near the end of the show, though most the show I barely paid attention to until editing (to what was being said).

      The down side of that night was it was a pretty nasty snow storm the night before a holiday, so the audience was pretty thin. About 1/3 capacity. But what can you do?

      I will discuss switching to a 30 shutter – I really don’t want to over light the room if we don’t have to. I guess I assumed before hand that 30p was still 29.97 just shot in progressive. I think shooting in full progressive then may help the overall picture be cleaner and not risk the more noticeable interlacing that sometimes happens the more you fiddle with editing.

      Thanks again for your help!

    • #181499
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Oh, and as for audio. It was a lav pack plugged into the headphone jack of the soundboard, a Zoom H2 recording 4 channels (2 front facing the speaker and 2 back facking the audience) about 10 ft or so from the speaker. And then the on camera microphone from the roaming camera. It worked better than I expected! When you listen to just the wireless audio from the lav pack, there is a slight hiss every time there is sound. I am not sure if this is the sound board, or the wireless pack. Once I layered all the audio, you really cannot hear it unless you know it is there.

      I would really like to get a CD recorder off the soundboard as well as I record to CF cards and it splits the files about every 22 minutes. While the video only loses 1-2 frames, the audio cuts out for about half a second. I know there is a stitching program from Sony, but I have never been able to get it to work as I don’t have any FAT32 drives and apparently that is what is required.

    • #181500
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Well I finally figured out the ru_util for stitching my files. It wasn’t necessairily files from any FAT32 drive as described. I found an old 25GB drive formatted in FAT32 and the program would still not recognize any drives on my computer. Almost losing hope I stuck my CF card in my card reader and then and ONLY then did a drive pop up in the ru_util program. I was ecstatic! I crossed my fingers and then started the import. The1:45:55 show combined flawlessly into one nice and convenient 19.3 GB file.

      I am kicking myself now because I never used timecode before this and always manually lined up all my footage, adjusting every track the 1 or 2 frames every time it was split, and then creatively patching the audio. How did I survive the last year of wedding ceremonies with this method??? Sometimes this was a giant mess – running with 3 cameras and sometimes up to 3 more audio sources which ALL had to be adjusted every time a track split, and it split MANY times over the 3 video sources.

      I will go to bed happy now that I know how to make giant files, and really with this timecode should become almost a non issue. My 32GB CF cards record 2.5 hours per card, and I have yet to see a ceremony come close to that. These shows are all under 2 hours as well.

    • #181501
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      “I am kicking myself now because I never used timecode before this and always manually lined up all my footage… How did I survive the last year of wedding ceremonies with this method?”

      Double,

      That’s the diff between learning on your own and either going to school or apprenticing under a master. You miss out on so many important little details of the craft that are there to make the job easier. Syncing audio w/o the benefit of TC is a PIA! Trying to do it with multiple video sources is asking for aggravation if not trouble!

      I’m surprised your lav audio wasn’t worse! Lavalier mics are designed for close in voice audio even though they are sensitive enough to detect more than that. However, that’s the prob because they are so sensitive. I’m surprised having that in front of a speaker didn’t overwhelm the dynamic range. You lucked out having only a slight ‘hiss’. If you have more of and audience present next time you may have a problem. An omni mic would be much more robust if you can get your hands on one.

      Glad to have been of assistance. I remember my first live multi-camera gig. I was supposed to just be the Director but it was a 4 camera shoot (Main, 2nd and 2 Cuts.) Unfortunately, we lost a cameraman the day before so I had to give a crash lesson to my Producer on how to run main cam and since I was the only other experienced cut cameraman I shot Cut! Should have been a disaster, but it came out really well. If I can spare others from the majority of that headache it’s the least I can do (did I mention some critical audio gear broke and I had to fix it in the field minutes before cameras had to roll?)

    • #181502
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      The lav mic pack was plugged into the soundboard, and it has a switch on it for line in – so that is what I used. No microphone on it, just a wireless transmitter rather than running a 50 foot XLR from the board to where the camera was set up. Maybe I explained it wrong.

      The audio I recorded from in front of the speaker was from my H2 digital recorder. It has 4 way mics on it so I had the front facing the speakers (2 mics set at 90 degrees) , and the rear facing the audience (2 mics set at 120 degrees). You get 4 channels out of it, and I set the gain a bit low so I didn’t have to keep checking on it and it worked like a charm.It picked up the audience much better than the sound board.

      Lastly I layered on the audio from the on camera mic, and all this together gave a beautiful mix and helped drown out the hiss. Technically all in all I had 8 different channels of audio. I offered to do something like a 5.1 mix for use on a Blu-Ray/DVD, but I don’t think Jason really is worried about that. I have done a couple ceremonies in 5.1 where it really stand out,such asa ceremony from the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis. It really didn’t seem to be that much extra work.

      Now – about a year ago I joined these forums and asked about going to school. I was laid off at the time and my wife was fully supportive of me going into this type of business. Every piece of equipment I have is paid for full with cash, no credit. I wanted to learn something in my free time, but I was overwhelemd with responses from people telling me NOT to go to school, because learning on the job and finding my own style was going to get me frther than schooling, and not cost an arm and a leg. The school costs would have even been covered by my unemployment – so it was little to no cost for me. Now I am back working a “9-5” job (really 8p-4a), with weddings and this show on the side so school is out of the question now.

      How do you sync external audio sources with TC though? My cameras have the audio included with the file and then I match up all other audio sources to the audio. I am guessing you may be talking about formats where video and audio are not grouped together? In either case the H2 has slightly different timing than my cameras so I split up that audio every 20 minutes or so and re adjust. It was over 1 second off at the end of the show when first put in. Maybe instead of doing that I could even time stretch it that extra bit?

    • #181503
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Adam,

      I’m not sure about the controls of the H2. I know you have standard and TOD TC on the H4n. Does the H2 even record TC? If not you’ll just have to use an oldschool Clapper Slate to make a sync clap for reference later in post when it comes time to sync audio. Make sure when you slate, you a) record the slate with your main cam and your recorder simultaneously and b) for God’s sake don’t turn off the recordings for either device until the show is over! That means you’ll need someone to start the recorder at the same time you start the camera and then clap the slate about 10 to 30 seconds before the show starts.

      Oh and I remember that forum post. I was one of the one’s emphatically saying GO TO SCHOOL! Learning on the job after you’ve been to school reinforces what you learn there. Learning on the job from scratch as you’ve been finding out leaves you with a crapload of ‘knowledge holes’. However, there are still seminars and workshops that won’t take up as much of your time as full on school would. When you get an opportunity, GO!

    • #181504
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      I was notified today that I will be getting an intern from MCTC to operate my other camera. I will soon have another brain to pick as well πŸ˜‰

      With the drifting of the H2 audio, even if it has TC I don’t see how it would line up properly for the entire show.

      Now for clapper boards I have wanted one for a while. I usually run in the middle of the isle in a church and clap my hands about 10 minutes before the start of a ceremony. It usually gets me some crazy looks – I can only imagine sitting there with a clap board.

      I was also looking at some color charts, but it seems DSC has that market cornered and they run $500 or more for a poster. While I understand they can be helpful, I am trying to figure out what kind of precious material these are printed on to justify the cost.

    • #181505
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Recieved some good news today. Starting in February the MCN (Metro Cable Network) that the show will air on will have an HD signal and be broadcast straight from Comcast, not from the station itself. I hope this helps the signal public access is typically notorious for – over exposed, everything pretty yellow looking. Or is this the source footage? Everthing looks prettymediocre on the channel, so I assume it is the signal – and this seems to be a bug with just about any public access channel I have seen.

      Also I was asked to look into finding a place where we could sell DVDs/Blu-Rays from. Both from ordering them straight online, and to have a little stockpile of them to sell at the show itself. Any ideas where to start from there?

    • #181506
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Public Access is notorious crap. It’s the signal. No broadcaster is going to spend more money on it because it’s required by FCC reg’s.

      Start by looking at Amazon.com’s ‘Create Space’. There are dozens of others but that’s the one you should look at as reference before you research others.

    • #181507
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Well it will be interesting to see what an HD signal has to offer then. It is a start anyway – more than I ever thought I would be doing, especially within my first year. Also a nice little bit to add to my portfolio and advertise through my website.

      I will check out ‘Create Space’ – Thanks Composite1!

    • #181508
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      I have another question here, maybe I should have thrown this in a new thread – but it relates to this project. After meeting with the show’s creator and discussing ways to have to use less gain, we have semi-settled on a 24p mode so that we can tweak the shutter speed down to 48 or even 40 without hurting the picture too much. He likes the 24p effect, and I belive this is pretty common in television these days as well, especially for sitcoms.

      My question is: My camera shoots 24p, 24pscan, and 24pscanA

      I am not entirely sure what would be the correct format to use for broadcast.

      What I have seen while loading the clips into Vegas is:

      24p=23.976 fps in a true progressive format in Vegas.

      24pscanA=29.97 fps and is showing as an interlaced format in Vegas.

      24pscan==59.94 fps and is showing as an interlaced format in Vegas.

      What would be the uses for each type of setting?

      My first assumption would be to go with the 24pscanA as it matches the NTSC framerate and I assume it is using some kind of pulldown to make it compatible for broadcast? Would I just render this out as a standard NTSC 29.97 fps file when creating the final output and it would hold the 24 fps visually?

      24pscan with 59.94 I am not even sure what that is doing or what it would be used for.

      24p seems to be the only true progressive. What would the dangers be in rendering this as a 29.97 file once editing is complete?

      Thanks in advance for the help!

    • #181509
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Going back and re-recording some of the footage with 24pscan it was showing up as 29.97 fps in vegas. HOWEVER none of my 24pscan (not pscnA)footage seems to load into vegas very well. There is no sound and unless I start playing the clip in the middle it is just frozen and a bit scrambled looking. Not sure why Vegas is having issues with these – it is a Sony camera after all! Even that first clip that showd as 59.94 fps would not load well into vegas. These clips do play fine no their own though with Windows Media Player…. hmm….

    • #181510
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Here is the entire first show that aired this week. I don’t expect everyone to watch it in full, but if you could skip around and watch a little here and there for feedback it would be greatly appreciated!. I still need to work on my other camera man to have him fill the frame a little better. The intro and closing of the show will eventually be polished up and not look so cheesy/generic but this is what we have so far. The first act is a bit slow for an opening act in my opinion, but that was not under my control. It was another small audience that month but it is being promoted much better this time around so tomorrows audience should be a lot larger. Enjoy!

      http://vimeo.com/19781312

    • #181511
      Avatarcomposite1
      Member

      Double,

      Looks brilliant! Timing on the cuts will tighten up as you go along and more tight shots on the talent would be nice. Sound is really good as well. Looks like some real money was spent on the production. My only nitpick comes from the opening credits. The static graphic doesn’t do justice to the work that comes later. Other than that great job.

    • #181512
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Glad you thought the sound was ok! We had real issues that night, only the Zoom H2 parked in front of the speaker picked up most the audio and then a slight mix of on camera audio. We are working on a better opening – hopefully next months show will display that better. I went with the 3 camera route that time, and I didnt know how it would all work out so I had more far shots from the 2nd camera as well. The 2 main cameras recording at 24pscanA and the back wide shot shot at 1080 60p. While it is not a perfect match, I did dumb it down to 24 fpsthen reconverted to 29.97, and I think it works OK for the wide audience shot – not perfect – but usable. I will try to throw more tight shots in and thanks again for the input!

    • #181513
      Avatarpush-play
      Participant

      Double? I agree with Composite…Nice Video. I think you did an awesome job! The sound is also great!

      It’s probably safe to say that because we are well knowleged in video we can sometimes be our worst critics for some of our work. butit’s good to be critical and ask for the advice of others. Those who don’t know video will definitely give you two thumbs up!

      Great job!

    • #181514
      Avatarvid-e-o-man
      Participant

      Enjoyed watching the video, I will have to admit that I fast-forwarded through some of it. I was really looking for your part of it more than the comedy.I noticed that the audience was not too numerous but maybe with some spotlights on some of the tablesyou could go tight on some individuals for reaction shots and with the backgound darker you wouldn’t notice the sparseness. These could bethe b-roll used in post. This might be difficult for you since you are probably busier than a one-armed paper hanger trying to shoot with two cameras from both sides of the room. You might try to get your company website (or info) on the credits at the end. I noticed that some others are there.

      Great shooting.

    • #181515
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      It was a small crowd that night, Jason (Host) had just had a baby and did not have much time to promote. We just shot another show last night and there were close to 200 people in the room – a far cry from the dozen or so in the first taping. Also the energy was MUCH higher – I cannot wait to post this new show!

    • #181516
      Avatarvid-e-o-man
      Participant

      Can’t wait to see the next installment.

    • #181517
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Well, this wasn’t quite intended to bevery publicon the web quite yet but someone couldn’t keep quiet about this one so here it is! Let me know what you think and anything else that could be done a little better ( I am ALWAYS looking for improvement, I can take critidcism). I know some of the side profile shots I have are a little TOO much to the side, almost behind, and I will try to not go so extreme next time. Some of these acts are VERY good, especially the last one – Jason Schoemer which starts at about 37:30 – the room was out of control for over 20 minutes!

      I may be starting a new thread to show these off in the near future as they are pretty buried here and it wasnt the original intent of this thread.

      Thanks again in advance for any feedback!

      http://vimeo.com/20369572

    • #181518
      AvatarEugene
      Participant

      Doublehamm,nicely crafted videography. Great picture quality with pleasant colour grading. Good, clear audio except near the end where it was breaking up for a second or two. Your concern about the side angle profile shots being too far back is unfounded. They worked for me as they showed the audience at the same time. Perhaps there should have been the occasional medium and close up shots of the audience’s reactions to the puchlines?

      Just some questions. 1.The two Sony Z5’s do a fine job butwhatwas thatsmaller unmanned cam at the back/side of the stage? 2.Did you have an audiorecording device plugged into the venue’s sound system for your main audio track?

      A job well done.

    • #181519
      Avatardoublehamm
      Participant

      Thank you for the compliments Rohlux!

      The back camera is a Panasonic HDC-SDT750 (My fun all purpose around the house and vacation camera). It records 1080 60p while I have the Z5s at 24pscanA mostly to shoot at a slower shutter speed to limit the gain, but I think the show looks pretty good being shot at 24 fps so it is win-win. Last month I pre-converted the panasonic footage to 24 fps but doing it in post just didn’t have the same effect and I almost felt it better to leave it “as is” this time around. This is a very low budget production at the moment and we don’t have everything we would really like to have yet.

      The extreme side shots I was talking about were the close-ups, not ones with audience. I like the shot a lot when I can have the uplighting on the far wall behind the act. Next month I may just request to move the lighting back a bit so I don’t have to go so far to the side to get my shot.

      I do have an audio feed from the sound board for my main feed. ALL the audio was beraking up at the end where you noticed it and during the intro to the pizza guy. This was from the sound board itself and nothing I could have done. I use on camera audio for some ambience as well as a Zoom H2 recorder parked about 10 ft. from one of the speakers and it recordes 4 channels so it picks up both the speakers and audience quite well. Last month the camera feed failed completely and I had to use the Zoom H2 audio for my main and it worked wonderfully – A true lesson in redundancy! The panasonic is also recording audio and being parked where it is there is some nice reverb audio. All together I have made quite the 5.1 listening experience for this when listened to on Blu Ray. Back to the audio breaking up though, ALL my audio sources broke up so I am pretty sure it was coming out of the board and out the speakers that way.

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