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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old August 5th, 2010, 11:44 AM   #1
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Monitor - Rent/Buy or laptop

I am shooting a short film with T2I for 10 days. Wondering if it is best to rent a monitor (~$600 at a day rate of 60) or best to buy Lilliput (~$400). Also what's the downside to using a laptop as a monitor strictly for focusing purposes.

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Subbu
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Old August 5th, 2010, 12:37 PM   #2
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Subba,

If you're going to spend that, you might want to consider a Z-finder. It's the best focus solution we've found for the T2i to date. Search and you'll find lots of opinions on DVInfo.net about its usefulness.

As for focusing with a laptop, we've done it. In my opinion, it's really not that great a solution. If you ever jump to the 5D Mark II (or future equivalent), the HD monitoring output would easily justify an external monitor.

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Old August 5th, 2010, 12:44 PM   #3
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With $600 for a rental, I would buy something. I've never used the Liliput, so I don't know if it's the right choice or not.

The problem with a laptop is mounting. You can put a small monitor almost anywhere - attach it to rails, clamp it to a jib, or whatever. A laptop is best on a table, the floor - or your lap. It could restrict your camera movements. Also, a laptop lags. It's good for checking focus, but not for live focusing.

Of course, the "professional" way to work with narrative projects is to measure the distances, use calibrated Cine lenses (or rig photo lenses with a calibrated scale), and have the AC pull focus to the marks. The camera operator is responsible for framing and will watch for poor focus. The op will say "buzz" when the focus is bad, and you re-do the shot. So, technically, a laptop will work if the camera op can frame well, given the delay. It doesn't matter if he says, "buzz" a second or two late. But if the focus puller is trying to follow an unscripted event, they need to use a monitor without a delay.
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Old August 5th, 2010, 01:09 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Subbu Vedula View Post
I am shooting a short film with T2I for 10 days. Wondering if it is best to rent a monitor (~$600 at a day rate of 60) or best to buy Lilliput (~$400). Also what's the downside to using a laptop as a monitor strictly for focusing purposes.

Thanks
Subbu
For that cost on renting I would sell you my Ikan 8" HDMI with case and batteries. I would buy once you get into that price range especially if you ever plan on doing it again. Oh and by the way after I got my Hoodman and the new magnifier I almost never pull out the Ikan unless I'm shoooting something that demands that a follow focus be used. (I don't do allot of that)
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Old August 5th, 2010, 01:55 PM   #5
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That brings up another possibility: buy a top of the line monitor, use it for a couple weeks, and sell it. It might only cost you one or two hundred bucks. If you get a monitor with false colors, it can help you set the exposure levels.

I use a loupe when handheld or on a shoulder rig, and I use the monitor or bare LCD when on a tripod or jib. A monitor is too big for handheld/shoulder, and you want to avoid touching the loupe when on a tripod, jib, or other fixture.
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Old August 6th, 2010, 06:39 AM   #6
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Thank you all for the suggestions. It is not a bad idea to buy and sell it. Thanks again all.
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Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

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Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

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