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Old January 31st, 2008, 08:45 AM   #16
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John very innovative and could be a great way to go. I would also suggest you have bungee in a smaller diameter holding the unit down and too the sides. So say off at 45 degrees to each bottom corner of the door jam. Also of course a safety line from the unit to a secure part of the helicopter.

Very exciting stuff have fun and please let us know how it goes and post some clips.
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Old January 31st, 2008, 11:31 PM   #17
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Paul, and anyone else for that matter, care to comment regarding EX1 camera settings. OIS on of course, and do you suggest full auto, or what? I shall have my hands full just holding the camera I imagine.

Should I shoot progressive or interlaced?

Thanks for the suggestions regarding tying things down. That I shall do. Located bungee cords that are length adjustable and rated to support up to 85 kg made by Master Lock. Should be ideal for the main load carrying role.

Many thanks.

John
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Old February 1st, 2008, 08:48 AM   #18
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John yes OIS on, but I would not go full auto. I would pick what you want 1080 or 720 with the frame rate you prefer and go progressive. I have found that progressive works better then interlace while flying.

Then try both auto focus and manual if you are hovering. With iris try to get the pilot to head in one direction for each clip so you can set the iris then shoot a few clips. Some pilots like to circle the subject and this makes it hard to expose properly but can make dramatic shots. Don't be afraid to ask him to fly toward what you want to shoot since they want you to be happy with the flight.

I know it is expensive but experiment that way you can see what works in post. Also it does not take too long to change settings.

One thing I always like to do is shoot take off and landings to experiment with settings.

How did the fitting go?
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Old February 3rd, 2008, 01:19 AM   #19
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How did the fitting go?
Great. I need to shorten the base plate by a little, but other than that; no problems, and the seat belt harness attachments are almost perfectly located to hang the camera in the best position. Shooting this coming week, hopefully, when the weather cooperates.

And many thanks for the setting suggestions. Probably shoot 30p. I have two 8 Gig S x S cards and we figure one hour flying time to cover the locations.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 11:32 PM   #20
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Still waiting for the weather to cooperate. In the meantime Iím playing around with various formats using the camera hand held. Looking at the files played back on a Dell m90 core 2 duo 24inch monitor combo it appears the 720 60p is the smoothest but this might be a factor of the playback equipment. Given that I wonít have kenyonlabs gyros this time what settings would you suggest I use to get the smoothest footage?

1080 30p or 720 60p or what?

Appreciate any feedback.

John
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Old February 12th, 2008, 11:38 AM   #21
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john flew yesterday an used 1080 30p but will try 720 60p later this week when I fly again.

I did have a very big problem with the camera yesterday that I have never had with other camera. 90 percent of the footage yesterday was junk due to horizontal banding moving up the frame at a steady 3-4 sec interval. The band is about 1/20 of the frame height and moves from bottom to top an only making it to the top 80 percent of the time. Glad it was only a 1/2 check out flight. Also I can not see it on the LCD only on FCP when at full screen. I can not attach a clip since my only on line access is my iphone which I am using now.

All thoughts welcome.

I also have noticed this problem while on a tripod this week when panning. But again I can not see this in the LCD while recording or viewing the clip after only in FCP at full screen. Need to solve today an tomorrow while it is rainning.
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Old February 12th, 2008, 04:55 PM   #22
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Oh dear, thatís not good! Are you sure the footage is junk? If you are not seeing the banding when viewing the clip then perhaps it is a FCP/computer problem. I imagine you have thought of that. Maybe try another computer. I use Vegas 8 pro so Iím no help with FCP.

Iím still working on determining the settings that give the smoothest footage. I believe Iím on the edge, performance wise, with the Core2 CPU T7400 @ 2.16GHz when it comes to playing the files. If the weather suddenly takes a turn for the better and we decide to fly today, which probably isnít going to happen, then I shall shoot at 720 60p.
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Old February 12th, 2008, 05:33 PM   #23
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I think I might have found the problem. I am 100 feet from the main power lines into the Keys. That could be the problem so I will take the lap top as far as I can from the power lines an Test in 10 min. I agree since it plays fine on on the LCD the footage could be fine. If all checks out I will try 720 60p on Thursday while flying.

When are you going up?
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Old February 12th, 2008, 07:39 PM   #24
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Not the power lines but working on two other options an will know in a few hours. But I think it is a scratch disk problem since the full size QuickTime files play fine in QuickTime.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 02:27 PM   #25
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Well I have not solved the problem in FC but I am very glad to say the footage is great when viewed on the camera. I talked with Sony yesterday an we went through alot of options an it is a lap top or software problem. So for now three hard drive back ups an DVD DL back up until I get back to me edit station.

1080 30p was excellent choice for a one hour flight today. Up again tomorrow an will shoot 720 30/60p for some slow motion since it always looks better from the camera when flying. I will also try 720 60p at the same time.

Thank god the footage is good an it is a computer problem. I need a good big field monitor for play back from the camera. Any suggestions?

John have you been up yet?
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Old February 14th, 2008, 04:11 PM   #26
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John have you been up yet?
No not yet; the weather has been the pits. Right now itís coming in from the south, very low solid cloud, raining hard, cold, 8 C (46 F) and Iím sitting here with the heater on twiddling my thumbsÖand the weather forecast for tomorrow Ďrain, strong southerliesí. And this is mid-summer! Probably snowing up in the Alps. Sunday at the earliest is my guess, but more likely Monday or Tuesday.

Glad to hear your footage is great and that 1080 30p worked so well for you. Highly likely you will be able to report on the difference between the options before I get even close to flying so look forward to your observations.

Yes, a good big field monitor would be most helpful. I would even settle for a good smallish one. Most of the time Iím back to my workstation that day so havenít had a big need. I was wondering if it might be handy to have one mounted near the pilot, plugged into the camera, so that he might see what Iím doing. I know there has been discussion here at DVINFO about field monitoring so instead of twiddling I shall take a look and report back. If I recall correctly a good big monitor will be costly.

Have a great safe flight tomorrow and I look forward to your thoughts.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 05:31 PM   #27
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I would be curious on how your camera support rig worked out, and what if any, adjustments you had to make.
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Old February 14th, 2008, 06:20 PM   #28
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Thanks for your interest Don, and for your initial input regarding design. I have only yet been able to test in the helicopter while on the ground and as a result I did reduce the plate to 38cm x 30cm. But regarding a real-world test we are still waiting on the weather to cooperate. With strong southwesterlies forcast for the next 2 days it might be next week before we get airborne. We really need calm conditions up there and while this shoot is important it is not urgent. So we waitÖ
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Old February 21st, 2008, 09:46 AM   #29
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John have you been up yet? I am on my way home today an did not get a chance to shoot 720p since the helicopter was grounded due to a bent rod. So instead we went into the back country in a flats boat.

So only two flights but enough footage for a satisfied customer.

Back to NE weather for two weeks.
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Old February 21st, 2008, 03:36 PM   #30
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John have you been up yet?
Not yet, unfortunately. Couple of days of decent weather this week but my pilot has been very busy supporting the high paying shooters from primarily the US, but a few from Canada also; the ones with guns, not cameras, and itís Chamois, Thar and Red Deer they want to see in their sights, not the glorious vistas all around to which they are probably quite blind. I donít understand what motivates these folks who will happily pay huge amounts of money just to kill a large animal in the wild.

We have a few enterprising hunter-type fellows here who support the rolling-in-dough shoot-to-kill crowd, one of whom I have met; his name is Bart. Well, one day not so long ago Bart gets a call from a very wealthy American asking if he can guarantee him a kill. Sure, says Bart, come on down, Iíve booked my hunting lodge for you, and we will get you a kill, I promise.

Large introduced mammals such as Chamois, Red Deer and Thar are getting fewer and farther between up there in the high country, which is arguably a good thing as they are considered pests by the conservation people, and the sheep station owners. But not to worry, Bart knows that so on the side he keeps a few tame domesticated Deer and Thar. So just before the hunter arrives he calls my helicopter pilot friend and they take one of these hand raised animals up onto an isolated spur in the mountains and plonk the unfortunate beast out on the rocks. I imagine the poor animal raised on flat green pastures among the ducks, chickens, pigs and happy farming people has never in its short placid life seen a rocky mountain and way up there alone is quite petrified. On the other hand maybe it simply enjoyed the magnificent view!

Next day the visiting hunter jumps in the chopper and my helicopter pilot friend takes him to where they dumped the bewildered animal and bingo, a few poorly aimed shots later, quite a few shots actually; our hunter is not a good shot but eventually he has his bullet-ridden trophy, and Bart and my helicopter pilot friend are laughing all the way to the bank. Go figureÖ

I digress. And now the weather has taken a turn for the worse again. Iím still waiting.

Did you use the Kenyon Labs gyros? IĎm seriously thinking I need one of those devices.
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