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Old January 5th, 2003, 01:00 PM   #1
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gradual ramping up of zoom speed

OK, I think most people agree that the manual zoom ring on the DVX100 is a little too loose. The servo zoom is slightly noisy, but seems to be the only way to do a controlled zoom. Is there a way to have the zoom slowly ramp up to speed? If not, I guess I just have to work on gently finessing my finger pressure on the servo zoom so that the start of the zoom is not so abrupt.
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Old January 5th, 2003, 01:50 PM   #2
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This is an issue that plagues all but the high end broadcast zooms. Even if a given zoom motor has continuously variable zoom speeds, the rocker is usually not designed to be sensitive enough to provide a truly feathered start to a zoom.

My recommondation would be to jerry-rig something that creates a little extra friction on the zoom ring, such as a rubber gasket, and use an oversized lever on the zoom to improve the leverage, then practice your manual zooms. They can be beautifully done under the right conditions.

I've heard that there are external zoom controls that will interface with the DVX100 on the way, if not out already. These may help.
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Old January 5th, 2003, 07:05 PM   #3
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depending on the subject matter,

it may be better to simply slowly ramp it up in post.

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Old January 6th, 2003, 12:26 AM   #4
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Ramping a zoom speed in post is actually not that simple for many people. I know I would consider it a headache. As Charles points out, this is a problem on most prosumer DV camcorders.
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Old January 6th, 2003, 04:45 AM   #5
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Chris, yeah it would require planning before hand, but would be a relativly painless excercise, for eg, just using Vegas Videa, you just open a velocity envelope and curve it up in that.

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Old January 6th, 2003, 09:47 AM   #6
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I think the lens needs a heavier grease in the zoom mechanism. This would provide the propper weight and friction to do smooth manual zooms.

Also, maybe a Chrosziel fluid zoom could be adapted?

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Old January 8th, 2003, 02:00 AM   #7
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I found this suggestion on Adam Wilt's site

Here is the link to Adam's suggestion.

http://www.adamwilt.com/24p/#HandlingTheZoom

I hope you find it helpful.
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Old January 8th, 2003, 03:03 AM   #8
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The "DVX100 fan" has an intersting solution too. It's a EXTENSION ZOOM LEVER.

http://www.geocities.jp/sumi653/AG-DVX100.5.html#L2



Use altavista translate if you want to convert it to english.
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Old January 8th, 2003, 04:52 AM   #9
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Well, I do have After Effects and am capable of doing a controlled zoom in post, but I'm trying to stick with optical zooms instead of digital ones, just to keep from degrading the image too much. I tried out Adam Wilt's idea and it works pretty good! Too bad the dangling string loop looks unprofessional, but hey, with my $14 steadicam, my setup already looks like a plumbing experiment gone wrong
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Old January 8th, 2003, 03:52 PM   #10
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I too agree that the zoom ring is much to loose. I've tried a couple of manual zooms for use in a dramatic montage, but have been dissapointed because of how hard it is to get a perfectly smooth zoom. It took more than a couple trys to get the zoom speed correct and smooth.

Perhaps Panasonic used the light grease because a thicker grease would have taxed the servo motor more? Don't know if that is a valid reason or not. I do wish I could get it to be more like a good photographic manual focus though.
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Old January 8th, 2003, 06:10 PM   #11
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I'm surprised that nobody else has posted the obvious yet: a LANC zoom controller. The Varizoom and others should be able to dial in just the speed you want, and you can ramp up or down quite slowly and smoothly.

Or does the 100 not have a LANC jack?
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Old January 8th, 2003, 11:11 PM   #12
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It has a propriatary jack but I'm pretty sure that a Varizoom was recently released for it.
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Old February 6th, 2003, 02:39 PM   #13
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Found one

Here's a zoom that will supposedly let you ramp up the speed!

http://www.studio1productions.com/dvx100.htm
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Old February 6th, 2003, 05:03 PM   #14
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I've found that if I engage the zoom motor, and manually zoom (using the ring) with the fingers on my right hand while placing a finger from my left hand half on and off the ring to create drag, I can get a very slow creep.

I know it sounds complicated, but it's not. In fact, I found myself doing that on my first job with the camera without even really thinking about it, I was so preoccupied about some other part of the shot.

Downside is that you then have to steer by putting the pan arm in your armpit or something.
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Old February 8th, 2003, 02:24 PM   #15
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I am a big fan of the Zoe controller that I use on my PD150. They have a model for the DVX100 that is available from Abel Cine and B&H.

The good news is that the DVX zoom does not have the dreaded "hiccup" that is found in "step increment" lenses, such as the PD150.
The bad news is that Panasonic built in a "dead spot" in the command to the lens that can be annoying using a controller. Also, there is no focus command available with the DVX, as with LANC cameras.

But the Zoe is the most professional-like of all the controllers I have tested. It can easily mount to a shoulder brace or jib handle as well. You would do well to check it out.
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