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Old April 3rd, 2008, 01:12 PM   #31
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What about hiring a pro?

I followed your thoughts, and think there may be another approach. Why not find someone with experience in this field, and follow his/her lead? See what they do, how they do it, what equipment works and what doesn't and why?

If you pay them $1,000 for the day, consider it well spent. You'll learn about which cameras work best, what editing suite and platform is most appropriate, how best to author DVDs and the equipment needed, etc.

You may even find such a person on this site, but there are other dedicated sites that may target directors/producers more directly.

Also, try your local cable TV access station. I've become a certified producer, allowing me to create and broadcast video content on cable TV.

Better yet, I had professional training on Apple Final Cut pro, became certified in production field camera use, learned how to convert my output to DVD or streaming media on the web, and lots more. The total cost for all of this training and access to video cameras that I can borrow, various pro grade microphones (sound does matter), editing suites (FCP), etc. has been very modest.

I also came in contact with lots of other producers, learned a lot about what worked and what didn't and found the experience I gained well worth the time.

My point is that before committing lots of money, one form or research that may be very useful is paying for professional expertise by someone who is doing what you want to do.

Best of luck.
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Old April 3rd, 2008, 02:23 PM   #32
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Another option, to get a little practical experience with a camera that might work well for you, would be to rent a camera for a few days. Personally, I would opt to buy one instead (possibly used), try it out for a month, and then sell it if you decide it is not suitable for your purposes. With something like an HD200U, the cost to "rent" the camera that way would be pretty minimal. The problem with renting for a period of time that is actually long enough to get to know the camera, is you wind up basically paying out the cost to buy it outright anyway (or maybe more).
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Old April 3rd, 2008, 03:39 PM   #33
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Chris,

No offense taken. I appreciate your thoughts and have taken your posts, along with all the others as a genuine effort to help so no worries.

Len, good idea. I may do that. Learning from someone who's experienced will no doubt cut the learning curve down a bit. Problem is I don't know of anyone else in this area doing what I'm proposing to do, hence the idea to start this up. Kind of a catch 22.

The JVC 200 does look like the way to go for now.

The jib argument - here's why the scaffold/van idea doesn't work. I'll use soccer as the example as I have three kids who play. And I don't mean to insult anyone intelligence here.

First off, you're not going to be able to set up a scaffold or drive a van onto the field. In most cases you've got a complex where there are anywhere from 4 to 12 fields anywhere from 50 to 200 yards away from the parking lot. Access like that is just not allowed. There's no complex where they are going to let you drive a van on to or around the field area. None.

Then take something like a tournament setting. If you're shooting 3-5 games per camera a day you may have only 15-30 min between games. There's no time to set up and tear down a huge rig. The other issue is at most of these complexes you have only about 10-15 feet between fields so again, space is an issue. Unless there's a tri-pod that will get the camera 12 feet up with room for an LCD, LANC conrtrol, and pan/tilt/focus/zoom control I haven't found it. If someone knows of something let me know because the jib is the best idea I can come up with.
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Old April 3rd, 2008, 04:58 PM   #34
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I don't know about how profitable this venture will turn out to be (got my doubts), but it has a strong personal appeal to me. I would just love to have 720p60 footage, shot with an HD200U, of my son's football games when he was in high school (he was pretty awesome to watch, and I thoroughly enjoyed it). I'd quickly put down some cash to have that. I really wish I had been into shooting video back then, even though it would have been analog SD (a little over 10 years ago).
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Old April 3rd, 2008, 05:33 PM   #35
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(Whoops, I'd just read the first and last pages of the thread and didn't see that you've already addressed the fact that you didn't want input on the business stuff. Sorry, my bad.) Not being able to remove the whole thing. Just ignore the following.


You have a lot of good advice here.

The only thing I'd do is caution you that this is a WONDERFUL personal/hobby project - and a TERRIBLE business proposition.

I can't imagine any way to recapture a $60,000 investment over the few years that that gear will be in active use (before it's obsolete via technological advancements) let alone turn a profit.

Most business folk will tell you that an investment like that needs to generate a RETURN of a few times the investment to make the business sustainable - but lets cut it to the bone and assume you just need around a 40% gross return on your investment to survive. That means you'd need to generate $100,000 plus or minus to take profits and also be ready to re-invest in new equipment as your equipment ages over it's expected useful life.

(and if you think that's too agressive, ask yourself what a USED jib sells for on eBay. Not much. Same with camcorders. This stuff loses value VERY, VERY quickly as technology improves.)

Even with shooting 52 weeks a year, you'd need to generate an after expenses profit of around a thousand dollars a week for two straight years to amortize the gear and take a modest $20k/yr in profits out of the business!

That's moving 1000 DVDs each year for two years at $50 each.
THAT is a TOUGH GOAL TO MEET.

Is your soccer league large enough to do that? Are there enough parents willing to part with that kind of money to get memories of their kids? Not just the stars, but the bench kids as well? What about the "off season?"

I don't think your idea is a GEAR driven idea, so much as a BUSINESS PLAN driven idea. And I think the investment you're talking about making has a poor chance of success unless you scale back your investment substantially.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old April 4th, 2008, 12:57 PM   #36
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You realize a jib takes about an Hour and A half to setup and there's so much gear, that you would probably want to drive a truck up to the field any way.

If you get wheels you can probably move the jib around.

At the price of a jib you might be able to get a boom lift.

I bet they sell some kinda colapsible camera platform. I saw one at a concert. It looked kinda like the metal stucture on this boat. No Idea what it was called

http://www.pwsobx.com/images/fishing-boat.jpg

Maybe you should rent a jib to film a game and see how it works out.
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Old April 4th, 2008, 10:25 PM   #37
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Some relatively minor modifications to this would work way better than a jib:

http://www.safeplatforms.com/main-co...affolding.html
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Old April 4th, 2008, 10:53 PM   #38
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Strewth...............

Looks positively lethal.

Think the mods may be a tad more than "minor".

CS
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Old April 4th, 2008, 11:12 PM   #39
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I don't know they are called Safe platforms. Look at the gallery under broadcast. Hu EH Eh WEll !
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Old April 4th, 2008, 11:35 PM   #40
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All that really needs, to be relatively safe, would be some sort of extension to the foundation, to make it less tippy, front to back. That could be done by welding on some hinged bars, to fold out from the base a few feet (and lock too).

Of course, if a platform is going to be easily mobile, without being heavy enough to need a motor to move it, it will be at least somewhat susceptible to players colliding with it and knocking it over, and if it is heavy enough not to be susceptible to players knocking it over, it won't be easy to move without a motor.

...and health insurance can be a very good thing.

:)
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Old April 5th, 2008, 01:02 AM   #41
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I talked to the owner of Jony Jib and we figured an hour to set up but then the thing is on wheels so that should take care of movement around a complex.

A platform of some sort with a tripod would be better but I'm not going anywhere near that "safe" platform. It looks like one step either way and your either face planting or ending up on your butt.

What would work is a tripod of some sort that can get the camera at least 10 feet up, have room for controls and a LCD so you can see what you're filming, and fold up nice and neat into a 4 foot long little package with little tear down.

Now if I ran the world......
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Old April 5th, 2008, 01:18 AM   #42
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So let's change the subject for a moment and assume, for the sake of what I'm about to ask, that everything works the way I envision.

Any suggestions on the following -

Upgrade to the mic for the JVC 200
What filters for the lens? UV? ND?
What batteries to run the whole rig? Anton Bauers?
I know we talked about DTE and Firestore but I was reading about the whole FAT32 vs NTFS and the break down of large files into smaller ones and the dropping of frames that that can cause. Have they addressed that yet? And what about JVC's own little DR-HD100 recorder? Anyone know anything about it's performance?
DVD replicator? Suggestions? Buy one or build one? Sounds like I can save money building my own. Drive suggestions?
Blank media (DVD) suggestions? And I read not to burn at too fast a rate on another post here. What's the fastest/safest burn speed to ensure no issues with the DVD's?

Lot's of questions but you all have the experience I lack and your willingness to share your views on what brands work would be a great help as well.

Thanks in advance,

Henry
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Old April 5th, 2008, 10:55 AM   #43
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JVC might be coming out with a flash memory recorder.

http://governmentvideo.com/articles/...cle_1425.shtml

Personally, the current choices for camera mountable hard disk recording strike me as pretty poorly conceived devices at awfully high prices.
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Old April 5th, 2008, 05:52 PM   #44
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Here's a mic you might want to consider (long shotgun):

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...icrophone.html
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Old April 5th, 2008, 10:28 PM   #45
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If your gona put the mics directly on the cameras your gano want the really long shot guns. You can't put one on the jib because of motor noise.

Save yourself the trouble, buy the burners, Unless your good with that kinda stuff. If you buy them it's as simple as pushing one botton.

I have heard good and bad stuff about the firestore hd-100 for the fvc hd cameras. I guess it's one of those try before you buy.
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