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AVCHD Format Discussion
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:31 PM   #1
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Cams Without Viewfinders

Working in bright daylight with only the LCD screen as a viewfinder is a nightmare for me. First I tried the Hoodman product (the plain one without the 2x magnifier) and found it so flimsy that in addition to being too small and short to be effective, it kept changing shape on me.

The Cinetactics Screen Hoodie was some better, being much more substantial it kept it's shape and also could be "closed down" a bit making it some better at shielding the LCD if you got your face close enough. But then my eyes don't focus well that close.

The latest thing being tried is the Hoodman with magnifier. The lens actually gives the hood some rigidity to hold shape and helps when I get close enough to block some light. But it is still too short and needs some kind of extension (I'll work on that when I have a chance).

For now it does work better than anything I've tried yet. The photo below shows first a montage illustrating the Hoodman with magnifier. You can see the hood can be postioned so you have access to the the joystick on the screen frame, and it is possible to shove a thumbtip up under the hood to press the function button.

The playback functions need to be addressed with the remote.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 07:20 PM   #2
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Something like this seems like it would work the best, basically a hood that terminates in a magnifying eyepiece so that it works essentially like an EVF:

http://dvinfo.net/gallery/showimage.php?i=962

Unfortunately, it looks like it would be a DIY gadget, unless somebody now manufacturers something similar.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 10:14 PM   #3
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Hi Bruce,

What you're after is easily made by you.

For your Screen Hood, you can use either a stiff thin card board (as I frist used) , or (as I use now) the plastic from VHS plastic hard cases. Black cases are preferred, so you do not have to paint it.

You can use the HoodMan as a template, and just make it as long as you need/want. You can even position the Magnifying Glass at the proper distance from the LCD, while having the tube extend as far out as you need beyond it. Some Super &/or Hot Melt Glue, some Velcro, and you've got the Hood you need. With what you've already got, it should cost next to nothing.

If you desire, you can make it so that the controls on the lower side of the LCD Screen are in the clear for use too.

You can also set up your IR Remote to use via a FiberOptic cable, so the Remote can be most anywhere you want it.

Harold
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Old May 31st, 2008, 10:52 AM   #4
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Great ideas! I'm just not the handiest guy with stuff like that, but it seems a lot like what I had visualized.

Harold, could you post a picture (or montage showing a few views) of what you made?
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Old May 31st, 2008, 11:13 AM   #5
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Hi Bruce,

Just think of your current set up, with another HoodMan setting on top of it (extending it out) with your magnifier still in place as you have it now - in the middle of the two.

You can make up a complete new unit, or simply add-on to what you've got.
From what I see, "adding on" would be a very simple task.

Depending on what type of Video you're doing, it might be even better to set up a seperate small monitor. This is what I've done - I seldom use the Cam's Viewfinder or LCD except for start up.

Here's a sample of one of my monitor setups, with a full hood with full dual eye cup, used outdoors for Horse Shows.

Check my other posts for more photos of this, and lots of other equipment mods.

Harold
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Last edited by Harold Schreiber; May 31st, 2008 at 06:12 PM.
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Old June 1st, 2008, 09:49 PM   #6
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For anyone interested in an eyepiece-type solution and doesn't want to make it themselves, it turns out that Hoodman makes a loupe designed for viewing LCD screens:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...een_Loupe.html

It's targeted for for DSLR's for reviewing shots in bright sun, but should work with camcorder screens as well as long as they are less than 2.7". It has no way of hooking on, but perhaps a few small pieces of velcro or gluing on some hooks might allow it to stay on the LCD while filming.
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