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Old September 9th, 2006, 08:58 AM   #1
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Need advice on multi camera shoot

Hi all!

This is my first post here, and probably not my last.

I have in my posession 2 hd100 cameras. I am looking into putting together a portable package that allows me to do multi shoots. (i apologize for this being non descript - i am typing this in Pisa, Italy currently)

What i need is to output the video into a switcher, either one that switches firewire or component. Firewire looks like a dead solution because the specs say that firewire can only go 5 meters in length. Firewire 800 can go 100 meters in length, so is there a way to adapt the cables for firewire 800 specs? Or is component video my best bet? Or something else I am not aware of, but I am looking at getting in the 100 foot range of cable. (switcher models, http links welcomed)

Next, I will put the output of said switcher into the jvc deck, as well as some wireless mics (i use the sennheiser g2 series for wireless, fantastic performance for a cheap price)

I wanted some expert input from people who have either done this before or thought about it. Thanks in advance.

I would offer to provide some nice HD shots from Italy, but my camera is suffering from extreme SSE (naive of me to bring a new camera on a europe shoot, right? ) It works sometimes, but is sporadic.

Jon
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Old September 9th, 2006, 10:02 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Snyder
Hi all!

This is my first post here, and probably not my last.

I have in my posession 2 hd100 cameras. I am looking into putting together a portable package that allows me to do multi shoots. (i apologize for this being non descript - i am typing this in Pisa, Italy currently)

What i need is to output the video into a switcher, either one that switches firewire or component. Firewire looks like a dead solution because the specs say that firewire can only go 5 meters in length. Firewire 800 can go 100 meters in length, so is there a way to adapt the cables for firewire 800 specs? Or is component video my best bet? Or something else I am not aware of, but I am looking at getting in the 100 foot range of cable. (switcher models, http links welcomed)

Next, I will put the output of said switcher into the jvc deck, as well as some wireless mics (i use the sennheiser g2 series for wireless, fantastic performance for a cheap price)

I wanted some expert input from people who have either done this before or thought about it. Thanks in advance.

I would offer to provide some nice HD shots from Italy, but my camera is suffering from extreme SSE (naive of me to bring a new camera on a europe shoot, right? ) It works sometimes, but is sporadic.

Jon
I don't know were you got those figures for firewire. I have an SD firewire switcher and I always connect cameras anywhere from 60' to 120' without a problem.

The real problem would be if you want to switch in HD. I don't know of any company selling a HDV switcher.

Your solution for HD would be to go component, but the switcher retails for about $13,000. A work around would be to monitor is SD and edit in a multicamera editor like FCP5.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 10:02 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Snyder
Hi all!

This is my first post here, and probably not my last.

I have in my posession 2 hd100 cameras. I am looking into putting together a portable package that allows me to do multi shoots. (i apologize for this being non descript - i am typing this in Pisa, Italy currently)

What i need is to output the video into a switcher, either one that switches firewire or component. Firewire looks like a dead solution because the specs say that firewire can only go 5 meters in length. Firewire 800 can go 100 meters in length, so is there a way to adapt the cables for firewire 800 specs? Or is component video my best bet? Or something else I am not aware of, but I am looking at getting in the 100 foot range of cable. (switcher models, http links welcomed)

Next, I will put the output of said switcher into the jvc deck, as well as some wireless mics (i use the sennheiser g2 series for wireless, fantastic performance for a cheap price)

I wanted some expert input from people who have either done this before or thought about it. Thanks in advance.

I would offer to provide some nice HD shots from Italy, but my camera is suffering from extreme SSE (naive of me to bring a new camera on a europe shoot, right? ) It works sometimes, but is sporadic.

Jon
Hey Jon,

I would use component for switched camera shoots, you will get the distance you need and the best posable picture.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 07:46 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Snyder
Hi all!

This is my first post here, and probably not my last.

I have in my posession 2 hd100 cameras. I am looking into putting together a portable package that allows me to do multi shoots. (i apologize for this being non descript - i am typing this in Pisa, Italy currently)

What i need is to output the video into a switcher, either one that switches firewire or component. Firewire looks like a dead solution because the specs say that firewire can only go 5 meters in length. Firewire 800 can go 100 meters in length, so is there a way to adapt the cables for firewire 800 specs? Or is component video my best bet? Or something else I am not aware of, but I am looking at getting in the 100 foot range of cable. (switcher models, http links welcomed)

Next, I will put the output of said switcher into the jvc deck, as well as some wireless mics (i use the sennheiser g2 series for wireless, fantastic performance for a cheap price)

I wanted some expert input from people who have either done this before or thought about it. Thanks in advance.

I would offer to provide some nice HD shots from Italy, but my camera is suffering from extreme SSE (naive of me to bring a new camera on a europe shoot, right? ) It works sometimes, but is sporadic.

Jon
Got a good budget? You'll need it to put together a reasonable HD live switch system including the switcher and three HD monitors. The audio is less of an issue depending on your needs. FireWire works very well but you have to run the mixed audio thru the FireWire switcher or employ some other method to adjust to the substantial picture delay that FireWire will cause.

I suggest renting a switcher to test the system before purchasing anything.
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Old September 9th, 2006, 08:40 PM   #5
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The best solution (I think) would be to convert firewire or component to HD-SDI at the camera (only really practical if your camera is stationary, but oh well) and run coax back to your switcher. I can't think of any real video switchers that will take HDV firewire or analog component HD (the latter especially since it's really a consumer standard). HD-SDI is *the* broadcast HD standard.

Of course this would be a bad time to tell you "Should have waited for the HD250, which has HD-SDI output natively."
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Old September 9th, 2006, 10:57 PM   #6
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Oh yeah, there is no HDV switcher yet... or is there? For-A, which has become a sort of mystery company in the U.S. in the past decade, announced this portable HD switcher: http://www.for-a.com/news/press_603011.html at NAB this year.

Curiously while the press release touts HDV compatibility, the product page, http://www.for-a.com/products/hvs500hs/hvs500hs.html , makes no mention of it. It also doesn't accept 720 30p (or 25p), only 720 60p and 1080i NTSC and PAL. I have no idea if this is a problem with analog or SDI inputs from the JVC cameras but it might make any FireWire connection impossible.

Whatever HD switcher you end up using, I say ditto on the HD-SDI lines, that would work great if the cameras were mounted on tripods with electricity near-by. Right now, analog RGB lines are probably the way to go for hand-held cameras. The quality will be very good.

But you might just decide to do a switch in post and have a central monitoring station at the shoot. It'll take longer but will be a lot cheaper and technologically easier at this time.
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Old September 10th, 2006, 01:23 AM   #7
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One solution if you're using handheld would be to run the firewire/component to the SDI converter box, then coax the rest of the way. You could probably get away with a firewire/component run of only a couple dozen feet that way. If component, make sure you marry the three cables with some gaff tape to make them a little neater.

That switcher you posted does not take HDV as an input. It uses the term "HDV camcorders" without actually meaning HDV, you're supposed to hook it up through component or HDSDI.
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