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Old March 14th, 2010, 05:53 PM   #1
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Travelling with tapes

Hi guys,

I will be shooting a documentary in Nepal next week and was just wondering if there is any danger of my tapes (Sony mini-DV) being wiped by an x-ray machine or something when I go through customs on the way home.

Probably a totally paranoid question, I just like to be prepared!
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Old March 14th, 2010, 08:23 PM   #2
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Nope unless it's the one they scan checked bags with then it might be a problem but I've never heard of an airport using the same type of machine for checked as they do for carry on.
I"ve never had a tape damaged going theu security XRays.
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Old March 14th, 2010, 09:01 PM   #3
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I've travelled through airports in India and Brazil where it has been suspected the output of the X-Ray machines is higher than normal with no ill effects. Airport security taking an interest in your tapes is significantly greater a potential problem.
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Old March 15th, 2010, 02:29 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, by the sounds of it I'll be best off keeping the tapes in my handluggage (i.e. with the camera)

Yes, I was a little worried when I read that you need permission to bring in 'movie and film cameras', but I'm hoping as I'm shooting on a Sony V1 it wont look too big and impressive and will; pass as 'amateur'! All the filming will take place up Everest, so hopefully that will satisfy any interest they may have.
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Old March 16th, 2010, 09:55 AM   #5
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Hi Rob,

Mt Everest you said? Just check with your local Sony rep that the camera will still perform well at the low temperatures it will be exposed to. Some of the lubricants will go stiff at very low (arctic type) temps.

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Old March 16th, 2010, 10:15 AM   #6
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Hi Andrew,

I'm only going as far as Base Camp (5,400m) so it shouldn't get much below -10'C, so should be okay for my Sony V1E (well, fingers crossed!). I know people who've taken it to much colder places, like Scandinavia (-30'C!), and everything was fine.

I'll do a good check of all the equipment every night and store my tapes and lenses wrapped up in spare socks :)

Although any extra advice is always appreciated, never been anywhere that cold before myself!
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Old March 16th, 2010, 10:26 AM   #7
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Hi Rob,

I thoroughly recommend thermal underwear! :-)

Others have spoken of heat packs placed inside a camera cover to keep the batteries and other bits nice and reasonably warm (ie not frozen) .... mainly to keep the batteries as functional as possible.

Of course, we'll be looking forward to seeing some footage that you shoot. I'm also keen to hear how well you go as I also have a Sony V1P.

On a minor note, double-check that your V1 doesn't have the back-focus issue that those manufactured in the earlier batches had. From what I have seen in others cameras, it's like a smeary Vaseline look when the lens is zoomed out wide (and the focus is at infinity in my case). The zoomed in optical quality isn't that crash hot either when compared to a properly functioning V1. [As a guide, I purchased my V1 about November 2008 and it doesn't have the issue ... so the manufacturing issue would have been rectified by then.]

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Old March 17th, 2010, 07:20 AM   #8
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Hi Andrew,

Sounds like we both got lucky! My V1 is only a couple of months old so it will hopefully be fine. I've found the focus when zoomed in tight from far away works great - you got to love that gorgeous shallow depth of field look :)

What sort of heat packs do people put in the camera cover? This is a great idea and may work better than socks!

I've got my helly hansens packed, and perhaps a peg to put on my nose to block out the smell after three weeks would also be handy! :P

The documentary I'm shooting is for the British Heart Foundation, so when I'm back I'll post a link to the video on their website under the V1 part of this forum so everyone can see Everest through the eyes of a V1 :)
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Old March 17th, 2010, 07:24 AM   #9
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From memory (and I haven't done this myself) the heat packs were the chemical based thermal ones that you can obtain from a camping / mountaineering supplies store. Good luck with that.

Heart Foundation, eh? Whatever excuse gets you over there, eh? :-)

Andrew

PS. Sony V1s to rule the world!!!
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Old March 17th, 2010, 07:34 AM   #10
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Thanks Andrew, I'll check them out when I'm buying the last of my trekking gear tomorrow.

V1s to rule the world? I guess in filming terms they're the equivalent of guerilla warfare! Lightweight, mobile and good quality every time :)
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Old March 17th, 2010, 09:32 AM   #11
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My Sony rep says they just can't get enough of them to sell, though in the last 3 months there has been a noticeable shift towards non-tape recording.

Andrew
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Old March 17th, 2010, 09:51 AM   #12
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I've noticed that too.. but recording to tape is a valuable practice to learn! And anyone who wants a sturdy camera of the PD150 mould could do much worse than the V1. Though once I've saved up some money I'll be buying one of those snazzy Red Rock kits and some prime lenses to pop in front of mine.. :)
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Old March 17th, 2010, 10:04 AM   #13
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Tape: It doesn't lose your data when you drop it.

Andrew :-)
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Old March 17th, 2010, 10:09 AM   #14
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Amen to that! :)
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