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Old June 23rd, 2006, 10:17 AM   #1
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First Shoot-Messed Up

Hey all.
I've been gone and away for a while. During my absence, I spent my time shooting a 13 page action short AND ending a relationship and moving. So I've been a touch busy. :)

Now that life is settling down, I've had a chance to capture my footage to my computer and start to catalog/check it out. I've noticed that about 65% of one of my scenes is out of focus. I have myself to blame as I was doing so much on set that I relied on my DP way too much. Lesson learned.

For my setup, I only had a small 7" NON HD monitor to watch. So I'd like to get rid of this and find something that will let me know when there's a problem next time. I've seen a couple things I can afford. The Marshall 7" on camera LCD, and the Sony 17" computer monitor used on 24. I've been reading a lot of back posts. :) I was wondering if anyone that's used both has an opinion on which way to go. I kinda like the 17" approach, but for some shoots, you'd need a long component cable, I would assume.

Thanks for any help that anyone can offer.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 10:32 AM   #2
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Heath- From what people are saying, the focus assist is as valuable as a monitor. Other than that, I can't help you. I just got mine, and haven't been ready to go really through it... and I spent all my money and can't afford a monitor anyways. Best of wishes to you though.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 11:18 AM   #3
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I guess I need to figure out how to use focus assist so I don't have to rely on others. So, to do this, turn on focus assist and then when the color around the object is at it's brightest, it's in focus? Is that how it works?
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 11:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath Vinyard
I guess I need to figure out how to use focus assist so I don't have to rely on others. So, to do this, turn on focus assist and then when the color around the object is at it's brightest, it's in focus? Is that how it works?
Yes, and if you combine it with peaking control, the edges in focus will get this nice 'glow' to them available in a selection of colors that you choose in the FA menu.

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Old June 23rd, 2006, 11:29 AM   #5
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Like I said, I haven't really gone into mine yet. I have no way to capture yet, or view it. Until then, I don't want to put wear on it. Paolo might check in, or Tim, Jonathan... somebody who knows this cam much better than myself.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 11:30 AM   #6
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See? I told you somebody else would chime in ;)
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 11:59 AM   #7
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When shooting HD, you need a large monitor to check focus. The 9" CRT monitors only have 450 lines resolution at the most, even 14" CRT HD monitors have only around 800 lines.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 12:11 PM   #8
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Guys,

all that focus assist business is great but one really needs to also use the old technique of 'zoom-in for focus'. It is the ONLY reliable technique. The FA is a nice help but it isn't precise enough. If your target is moving, it would provide some assistance but ideally (especially in fiction production) you'd measure the distances the old fashion way and your focus puller (with real experience) would pull focus. As Brian mentioned, there should also be a larger size HD monitor on the set to confirm your focus. Oh, and yes, don't forget to check and adjust if necessary your back focus - because of course if that is out, the whole zoom-in technique goes out of the window.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 12:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Drysdale
When shooting HD, you need a large monitor to check focus. The 9" CRT monitors only have 450 lines resolution at the most, even 14" CRT HD monitors have only around 800 lines.
Not completely true. The 7" Marshall for instance can show upwards of 900 lines.
I think there are two realities:

The one where the crew (or lack of one) and schedule dictate a quick setup and immediate power source - that's where the Marshall is the only reasonable solution for on camera with a D-tap, or on a light stand with a V-mount.

The one where crew and setup allow for a video village and/or larger director's monitor and power and time aren't an issue. In that case I like the Sony 17" or 19" Wega. But even in this situation I'd reccomend getting the Marshall 7" as your first priority because you can judge color and focus and composition with it and it has component out, so you can keep it on or beside your camera, dolly, jib and still feed a larger monitor from it.

Also the Marshall is a pro monitor where the larger affordable HD monitors are consumer (meaning the Marshall has Blue Check, Bars and all of the appropriate field connections)

The Marshall is the best investment you'll make for your HD100, IMO.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 01:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jiri Bakala
The FA is a nice help but it isn't precise enough. If your target is moving, it would provide some assistance but ideally (especially in fiction production) you'd measure the distances the old fashion way and your focus puller (with real experience) would pull focus. As Brian mentioned, there should also be a larger size HD monitor on the set to confirm your focus.
Yes, all that would be really nice. Don't forget a producer with lots of cash, and of course a huge but quiet generator to power all of those HMIs and Mole Richards lights... But, not everyone has access to that. In which case, you work with what you do have, right?
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 01:13 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Keith Forman
Yes, all that would be really nice. Don't forget a producer with lots of cash, and of course a huge but quiet generator to power all of those HMIs and Mole Richards lights... But, not everyone has access to that. In which case, you work with what you do have, right?

Well we produce lots of high end stuff without any of that in the field. Everyone has budget constraints and I just put together a new field lighting kit with Flo lights that can push about 5k of daylight without a generator in the field (just a $300 inverter and your car)\

The Marshall is powered by the same system as your HD100 and a D-tap cable costs about $35.

The question was about pulling accurate focus and frankly, if you can't judge focus and color and exposure accurately on location then why shoot HD? It costs a lot more to blow 65% of your shots than the $1350 for a Marshall

My point was and is get the Marshall first because it will give you what you need immediately and then provide for the other things when you can afford them - and a 17" Sony os about $425.

It seems you've got me confused with the big talking Hollywood types Keith <g>.
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 01:30 PM   #12
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So it seems the going consent is to get the marshall? Hmm, anyone know of a good place to get one at a good price? I see avdeals.com has them for 1249 with free shipping. Never dealt with them. Anyone know of a reputable place that has them for similar?
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 02:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith Forman
Yes, all that would be really nice. Don't forget a producer with lots of cash, and of course a huge but quiet generator to power all of those HMIs and Mole Richards lights... But, not everyone has access to that. In which case, you work with what you do have, right?
In which case you revert back to the basic 'zoom-in for focus' technique...:-)
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 03:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heath Vinyard
So it seems the going consent is to get the marshall? Hmm, anyone know of a good place to get one at a good price? I see avdeals.com has them for 1249 with free shipping. Never dealt with them. Anyone know of a reputable place that has them for similar?
Heath, after comparing different resellers, Avdeals had the best price and that's whom I bought my Marshall monitor from. Now I'm a happy man :-)
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Old June 23rd, 2006, 04:35 PM   #15
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Heath, after comparing different resellers, Avdeals had the best price and that's whom I bought my Marshall monitor from. Now I'm a happy man :-)
Right on. Thanks for everyone chiming in and thank you Jaadgy for saying they're a good dealer. I think I'll go with them for it.

How is the monitor with this cam? Any downside? How is it for framing and focusing? Do you use any other monitors on set that you NEED because this one doesn't work in some areas?

Thanks,
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