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Alternative Imaging Methods
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 01:43 AM   #1
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Any engineers in the house?

As many of you have probably noticed, homemade 35mm adapters have become a huge subject on this forum. I'm making one that will work great, only the recorded image ends up being upside down. The Mini35, Pro35, and MOVIEtube use a prism block to invert/revert the image, which is a big part of why they cost thousands of dollars. That's way too expensive for me. I understand that turning the camcorder upside down would solve this problem, but it would also be very unpresentable. So, I am trying to find alternate solutions.

Currently, the process consists of recording the image upside down using an upside down lcd monitor for reference, then digitally flipping the footage in post production, which takes a lot of render time. Many older camcorders' (Sony, Canon, and JVC) checksum values have been modified by unlocking the DV-in feature with a Sony RM95 service remote or PC software. Sony's could even be modified to record a mirror mode image, much like Canon's mirror mode for the lcd screen.

So here's the big question: Is it possible to modify the values, whether permanent or menu selectable, to record an inverted and reverted image onto tape? And if so, who can I talk to that would be able and willing to hack into my camcorder to enable this feature? or does anyone know where I can get the official codes to do the hack myself?
Does there happen to be a secret button combination to flip the recording (similar to the secret colorbars on the XL1)?

Right now, this is just a hairbrain idea, but I'm certainly willing to go through with it if possible. Of course, that won't be until after I gather a whole lot of courage and my warranty runs out in a month or so.

Any help, ideas, or pointers will be very appreciated.
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 07:27 AM   #2
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Ditto

I'm with you Nicholi! I think correcting image orientation is the Holy Grail of these devices. I believe all of our efforts should turn to seeking out exactly what you're talking about. I'm going to "ask around" to see if I can dig up a Sony engineer who'll give it up and tell me how to invert the image in my camera. I'll post whatever I discover. There has to be enough people running through these threads that someone is bound to "know a guy" who can help. Just imagine being able to simply select an option in your on screen menu and be able to start shooting a corrected image. Lets all pitch in and get it done!

Joe
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 08:49 AM   #3
 
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there used to be a piece of software that would flip inverted images, de riguer, once it was being displayed on a monitor. The software worked on the video display driver. sorry, tho', I can't remember the name of it.
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 11:15 AM   #4
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inverting image

my thoughts on this : I don,t have a old camcorder to try this on. but the idea is the lcd is connected to the screen with a strap .I think all of the camcorders have this so the lcd can
swing it looks like a hard drive ide cable if we could extend this
10" we could put the lcd where we wanted it. this would even be useful for stedicam use If I had an old one I would take it apart.
and try it
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Old April 2nd, 2004, 01:02 PM   #5
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You might look for a surplus Dove Prisim which is the optical device that flips the image. I used to have one a looooong time ago. Try Edmund Scientific.
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Old April 3rd, 2004, 09:01 PM   #6
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If I remember correctly , finding a dove prism of adequet size was either expensive or extremely difficult. Definately the problem I have been trying to solve mostly over the past few weeks though.
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Old April 3rd, 2004, 09:11 PM   #7
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Also, in order to flip a full frame (36mm x 24mm), the dove prism would have to be way too long. I actually calculated it out, but that's way way back in the Agus thread. Even so, its big.

The other prism approaches I could think of use a Schmidt prism. That would flip the image properly and wouldn't be too big, but it projects the image out at a 45 degree angle. I think this is what the MOVIEtube uses.
Binoculars use Porro prisms to flip the image around. Basically this is just two 45 degree mirrors in that reflect the image horizontally then vertically. I actually made one of these last week out of mirrors and it was huge.
They also sometimes use Amici prisms.
This page provides a long list of potential prisms.

Like Louis said, custom prism blocks are way too expensive, especially when a "roof" is required. Most likely this is a big part of why the mini35, pro35, and MOVIEtube cost thousands.
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Old April 10th, 2004, 12:03 AM   #8
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Keep the dream alive

I'm posting just so the dream of a corectly oriented image doesn't die. (and this thread doesn't slip down the list into the nether world) Has anyone had any luck hog tying an engineer from one of the major manufacturers and forced them to spill the beans on how to hack the camera to record an inverted image?

Joe
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Old April 28th, 2004, 11:43 AM   #9
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Sorry if this idea has been posted before. My name is Juan, i am working on a 4:4:4 uncompressed 12-bit mod for the DVX100, there's a thread in this forum.

It is pretty simple to flip the CCD's in the DVX upside down. All the circuitry is on the backside of the chips, so you could rotate them 180 degrees. The only tricky part would be realigning them, but it's doable since there is a service procedure for doing this.

it is possible that this can be done on several other 3-ccd cameras, since they all use prisms and the chips are glued or attached in some other way to the glass.

Cheers,
Juan
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:28 PM   #10
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prism

What about just opening up the optics of the camera and removing the prism that is used in the camer itself? Then it would record an inverted image of an inverted image, and would end up being corrected. Not to mention you would probably increase resolution since it would be one less piece of glass that light has to pass through.

John
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:35 PM   #11
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you need the prism. if you have 3 CCD's, the prism splits the beam into three such that each CCD can capture a different color.
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:38 PM   #12
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JVC

What about the JVC MiniHD camera... that's just one chip. And isn't the industry moving towards one chip with three layers. Would the color still need to be split up for that?

John
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:40 PM   #13
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nope, if you have 1CCD you don't need the prism, but then the idea still doesn't work because you don't have a prism to remove. :)
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:44 PM   #14
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AHHHHHHH

Well what about placing a smaller cheaper prism inside the optics of the camera? You wouldn't need as bulky of prism as for the adapter would you? ...come on, I have to get at least one of these right... ;)
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Old April 28th, 2004, 01:55 PM   #15
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Hi Juan, as for the DVX100, short of phsyically flipping the CCDs, is there any way to just have the image display itself in the LCD or viewfinder flipped in X and Y? Some kind of "menu hack" like Nicoli suggested?

Please forgive my ignorance of what is and isn't possible with a service remote.
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