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Old December 14th, 2002, 05:25 PM   #1
Justin Cerato
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XL1S Monitor

Can anyone see any problems in using a Sony Vaio laptop TFT screen as a monitor in the field during shoots?
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Old December 14th, 2002, 05:46 PM   #2
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I suppose you could do this but (a) it's an expensive, over-qualified monitor and (b) it might not be a very practical size or form factor for the typical function of a field monitor.
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Old December 14th, 2002, 08:27 PM   #3
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XL-1s Monitor

I don't know if they have them at all Radio Shacks, but I bought a Power Acoustik 5.6" TFT monitor at our local one for $179.00 -- it is intented to be one of those in-car DVD viewers. Looks just like the ones all the DV suppliers are selling for $300-$500 and it works slicker'n snot.

This monitor will do PAL or NTSC. For a little more money, you can buy one that'll do real 16:9 or 4:3 interchangable. Another nice thing -- since it's made to be used in a car, the long power/video/audio cord works really sweet on a jib boom.

I took the shoe off an old flash unit and put it on the TFT, so now it sits atop my XL-1s just like it was made to. I power it with a 12VDC converter I also got at Radio Shack for $8.00. To get battery operation, in case I need it, I'm thinking of wiring two 6V lantern batteries in series.

There is an adapter you can get that mounts on the back of these TFT monitors... they convert a regular XL-1 battery to 12VDC; but the adapter goes for about $135.00 and I don't need battery power supply that badly.

It's not as good as using a real studio monitor; but all I use it for is framing, and it gives a much better picture than the funky XL-1s standard EVF.

So when I tape something interior and have it mounted (along with the hood I made for it), and the MA200, and the radio mic receiver, and the Vari Zoom controller, and the fuzzy on-board mic cover, the rig looks sexy as all get out.
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Old December 16th, 2002, 09:43 PM   #4
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If you wear bifocals you might consider mounting your monitor on the tripod or on a shelf built to fit between the legs of the tripod.

Some of us old folks need to look down so we don't get a sore neck.

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Old December 17th, 2002, 07:57 AM   #5
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Hey Mike, I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one with that problem. I fabricated a simple bracket and attached it to my tripod head with a large hose clamp. Anyone interested can see a picture of it at www.HighDesertRacing.com. Click on the far right picture to get a slightly larger view. By attaching it this way, the monitor pans with the camera but does not tilt.
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