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Old June 9th, 2005, 07:58 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Nivelles, Belgium
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Technical Specifications of Camcorder Fuctions

Hey there,

I am currently trying to learn alot more about the actual internal functioning of a modern camcorder. I have been googling around for some time, but I can't really find anything technically detailled enough.

I'm realy looking for highly detailled info on all the manual functions in a camcorder (Shutter Speed, White Balance, Exposure, Gain) internal pieces such as CCD's etc. Basically everything that will help me comprehend how it really works.

Now I'm kind of a geek, so I'm looking for really detailled stuff, something close to Adam Wilt's level of knowledge. If anyone could point me to some places or give me some info I would be greatly thankful.


Last edited by Laurence Currie-Clark; June 11th, 2005 at 07:16 AM.
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Old June 12th, 2005, 07:32 AM   #2
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Holland
Posts: 12,514
This is a complicated matter where probably books upon books have been
written about. It is far beyond the scope of a board like this to discuss such
technical things, however I will give you a start on some things:

1. shutter, in video camera's this is nothing physical but simply a process of how long the CCD/CMOS is allowed to gather light (the longer, the brighter)

2. white balance, you will basically find almost no information on this (although some technical research papers by universities exist etc.) since this is one of the very closely garded secrets of digital still and video camera manufacturers. Nikon (still camera's) is going so far as to encrypt its white balance information in the RAW files for its latest digital camera. It all works on shifting the color channes in regards to each-other.

3. exposure or f-stop is a function of the lens. It has a diaphragm that closes or opens up to let less or more light go through the lens and hit the CCD/CMOS

4. gain is simply an electronic amplification to boost the (analog) signal coming from the CCD/CMOS to the analog to digital converter (where the signal gets converted to digital).

5. after the signal goes through the A->D conversion it goes through a (or multiple) DSP (signal processing) chips to convert the signal to YUV 4:2:0 or 4:1:1 sampling, do white balance, color correction, any parameters the user has set and the DV compression

That's a rough writeup on the various elements you asked about.

Rob Lohman,
DV Info Wrangler & RED Code Chef

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