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Old September 1st, 2009, 09:14 PM   #1
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In car camera suggestions?


I'm shooting a documentary that requires me to capture the audio and video from inside a car for an extended amount of time. The quality of the video doesn't need to be remarkable. What I'm looking for is something small that can mount onto the dash and record for about 4 or 5 hours at a time. The lens would need to be wide enough to capture both people from the center console. Any suggestions? Thanks for you help.

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Old September 2nd, 2009, 11:55 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Michael Malagon View Post
The lens would need to be wide enough to capture both people from the center console.
YIKES! Be prepared to buy a fisheye adaptor, regardless of what camera you end up with. There isn't much "throw distance" is most cars to make this two shot possible so you're probably in for some serious barrel distortion. You may also want to look into security/surveillance cameras is image quality really doesn't need to be all that great and handle the recording with a portable VTR.
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Old September 11th, 2009, 07:35 AM   #3
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I've used an HV40 with a Raynox wide angle lens sitting in a mini Cinesaddle in my Chrysler Caravan. It nicely captures the driver and the passenger with very little if any vignetting, but you'll need a car with a deep dashboard. The Cinesaddle is strapped down with a couple of little bungie cords hooked into the air vents on the dash. A cable runs from the HV40 to a Juicedlink mixer with a Shure boundary mic gaff taped to the head liner between the two people. If you can afford it, I've been told great things about the CUB-01 boundary mic. I also run a 7" HD monitor (Manhattan is probably best deal now) out of the HDMI port for monitoring the video. You can run the camera with the remote control that comes with the HV40. If you want to capture 4-5 hours, you'll also need a solid state or hard disk recorder. I use the Sony HVR-MRC1K.

It's not ideal in some ways. The camera tends to shift around a little after a hard turn, but suction cup systems don't allow you to mount the camera far enough back on the dash to get both people in the frame. It's a pain to change batteries and if you want to run for 4-5 hours, you'll also need some kind of extended battery system. It shouldn't be hard to rig up a Tekkeon battery with an adapter cable.

There are several good threads about capturing audio in cars if you do a search....

Good luck!
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Old October 1st, 2009, 01:06 PM   #4
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I wide angle lipstick on the dash and a portable audio recorder would work fine. I shoot these hand-held though:
videographer/driver? on Vimeo
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