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Old February 15th, 2005, 09:26 AM   #1
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Tube Camera as opposed to CCD

Just wondering if tube cameras are easy to come by these days? I understand that it would almost definitly have to be 2nd hand probably very old but I really like the picture from these cameras, especially the lag and streaks and trails caused by bright lights. I reckon it would be a good effect to have for the likes of music videos. Have seen a few non-professional ones on ebay but love a professional or semi-professional one. 3 tube would be great but a good single tube would do the job. Anyone else like the lag and trails, etc from tube cameras or am I on my own? Haven't been able to find any special effects in editing that can be added to simulate the effect, not to the same degree as is accomplanishable (new word!!!) with a tube camera.

Graham
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Old February 15th, 2005, 09:35 AM   #2
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I think I know what you're talking about, as far as the effect. I've seen some 80's video clips where, say, the camera would pan across someone playing a brass instrument and the bright highlights on the instrument would leave long streaks as the camera moves, and they would stay ghosted on the footage a while before fading. Is that right?

I'm not sure about where to obtain a camera like this, though. Maybe some of the other guys can help in that area.
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Old February 15th, 2005, 09:43 AM   #3
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Yeah Frank. That's exactly the look I'm after. I think in the right situation, it could really have it's uses - Rock type music would be somewhere I can see it looking great. I'm sure there are plenty of other situations where it would look really ggod - Perhaps faking some old video or making an historical documentary and trying to get the footage look like it was actually shot in the '70's or 80's
Anyone have any ideas or comments or somewhere where a good quality, fully operational camera of this type could be obtained? Only new to this board so forgive me if you think I am being tacky.
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Old February 15th, 2005, 10:22 AM   #4
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Graham, you're on the money. For a feature I shot last year that involved a few flashback/home movie scenes to the 80's, I thought it would be great to get a consumer camera from that era rather than resort to a Super 8 look. I posted here and one of our fine members, Lorinda Norton, offered her vintage Magnavox (which fortunately came with an AC adaptor sprouting RCA outs, rather than most cameras of the era that used simply a multipin cable to the requisite portable VHS recorder). I was almost stunned when I first checked the image--it was almost like taking a trip back in time, the exact look of my earliest home movies and filmmaking attempts from 1981 onwards! The desaturated color, streaking, smearing and image retention of a tube camera has such a distinctive look. Unfortunately, we ultimately shot the flashbacks with a different style so the camera wasn't used on that shoot, but I hope to put it to use on something else.

In the meantime, I wouldn't be too surprised if you could find a 3-tube camera on eBay. Ranging from the not-so-greats (like the JVC KY-1900/2700) to the greats (Ikegami HL-79), I'm sure these days they are going cheap.
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Old February 15th, 2005, 10:29 AM   #5
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Thanks for that Charles. I thought there still might be some sort of demand for tube cameras alright. Not too sure about getting a full size camera though as shipping to Ireland would cost a small fortune - Also, as am I am in Europe, I would reply a PAL camera which makes matters a little more difficult although an I could always transfer to PAL in editing. Heck, that might give the image an even more distinctive look!!! I'll have a trawl through ebay this evening in work and see what, if anything is available. If anyone has any more info for a source for a decent tube camera, feel free to let me know. Thanks again. Great site this :-)

Graham
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Old February 15th, 2005, 10:39 AM   #6
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Another thought, Graham, might be a local TV station that could have such a thing wasting away all but forgotten in the corner of their engineering department. They may well be inclined to let it go for a small sum.
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Old February 15th, 2005, 10:47 AM   #7
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There used to be a local channel where I currently work. This closed down a while ago. The owner owns another channel and has been in the video business since the early 70's however he doesn't have any tube cameras. He had only dumped a few cameras not too long before I 1st met him and he would have given me the cameras for free. Good idea - might look around with that idea. Might ask my old friend if he know anyone in the business that might have one stashed away in a cupboard somewhere. great idea. Thanks Charles. Well I'm off to the pub for dinner so might talk to you later when I get back to do my last few hours in work today!!!

Graham
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Old February 15th, 2005, 11:07 AM   #8
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mmm...pub dinner...Dublin...Graham, you are making my eyes glaze over a little bit.

I've managed to turn my girlfriend into a Guinness "snob"...sadly, there are very few purveyors in LA that know how to pour the stuff properly; they tend to dump it at high speeds like a lager and send it along--it manages to be both flat and fizzy at the same time, an unfortunate combination. A while back we stopped by an establishment optomistically named the "Tam O'Shanter" and was delivered a typically puerile presentation of the black stuff; Amy hopped up on the bar and proceeded to lecture the befuddled bartenders on the merits of the "slow pour". It's a good thing she's cute. Needless to say, they sent over another two on the house--no better.

Guess we'll have to come visit you for some satisfaction in that area.

Sorry about the digression--!
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Old February 15th, 2005, 11:52 AM   #9
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No problem. Not sure if I'll have any mods giving out to me for also digressing but dinner was great - ham, turkey, gravy, mashed and roast potatoes, carrot and parsnip. working and driving in a few hours so could not divulge in a pint of Guinness (legally allowed one pint when driving but I have a no drink rule). Sat beside a nice coal fire having the dinner and then a read of the paper afterwards, in a pub first opened in 1734!! Had to make do with a pint of Coke! Feel much better now. Anyway, to make this post come back online, I'm checking out the Ikegami and JVC camera mentioned earlier. And I'll try a few local (Irish) production companies when I get a chance to see if they have some old tube cameras hidden away somewhere. I wonder if I'm the only Irish person on this board (who actually lives in Ireland!). Ooooh, I'd love a pint of Guinness right now. PS: When the wind blows from the east, I can actually smell the hops in the Guinness being brewed right in my workplace, a couple of miles from St James's Gate Brewery :-)

Graham
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Old February 15th, 2005, 05:21 PM   #10
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Ebay

Plenty of these on Ebay. I recently bought an Ikegami ITC-730a for a special-purpose project for $20. You have to be careful, and be aware that the tubes can be gone on these older cameras. They are picky about their power (you may or may not get a battery/ac supply with your used cam). Very 'tweakable' in terms of color balance and gamma, and hard to beat the price. The Ike I bought has around a 600 tv-line resolution at the center, so they're certainly not HD cams, but with good glass, should be pretty sharp. Of course, the color characterstics are unique.
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Old February 16th, 2005, 07:52 AM   #11
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Well Charles, I too like Guiness and other less dark beers. I really like to order black and tans (Guiness+Bass Ale). I haven't had problems here in Dallas with the bartenders. They seem to know that it should take a couple of minutes using what I call the 'pulsed tap' method. Pour, rest, pour, rest, pour...ahhhh that's delicious.

Whoops...getting off topic here.

-gb-
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