How to shoot LCD operation panels

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    • #60463
      AvatarPhillip Simmons

      I routinely need to shoot video that includes closeups of LCD-based operation panels (touch screens) on different pieces of equipment (think copiers, printers, etc.). Any sage advice on how to capture these screens would be greatly appreciated.

      The problem is that I always wind up with moire patterns. They are most noticeable with black and white images; color screens are not so bad. They tend not to show up on the camera's LCD screen, but are very apparent when viewing on my 27" monitor during post.

      I have tried changing the shutter speed to no effect.
      I have tried changing the iris. This sometimes helps, but the white areas always come out gray.
      I need for the image to be sharp and clear, as these often need to be shown full-screen in the edit.

      Camera: Sony HVR-Z7U
      I generally shoot 1080p @ 29.97 fps
      I have also tried shooting these with a still camera (Nikon D5100). I can edit extensively in Photoshop to get rid of extraneous material before importing into Premierem but the results are less than stellar.
      Yes, I always use a tripod.

      I have tried different angles from straight-on to perhaps 15 degrees in different axes.

      Thanks in advance for your help.

    • #207498

      The only real thought I could offer is getting the camera 100% flat & square on to the screen and try moving forward and backwards to see if it gets any better, My thought being that moire patterns (on the screen) is (more) a result of one number (copier LCD Pixels) not dividing by another (camera sensor Pixels) and by moving the lense closer/further you MAY (with luck) hit upon a number/distance that divides cleanly. Note you also will need to adjust the shutter for the LCD refresh rate.


      I don't know how good your photoshop skills are, I was faced with the same delema on remote GPS tracking site, I used a whole lot of screen grabs that were cleaned up in photoshop and then matted into the video.


      EXAMPLE the camera pans to the screen – It too far away/small to read – super the photoshop file fades over the top and as the VO talks about the feature the background stays put and the super expands square on to fill the screen, use black masks with cutouts @ 35% to highlight the screen area you want.


      Hope its some help ~ pete



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