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Sony HVR-Z1 / HDR-FX1
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CCD HDV camcorder.


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Old June 11th, 2006, 01:34 AM   #1
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Crying Nut

I just got back from shooting Crying Nut, a Korean punk band, for KOAM TV.

The concert was held here in Federal Way for a Korean festival. Like all true punk bands, they were a blast to watch!

The lighting wasn't that great, it was in a big circus tent and they had overhead lights but no spotlights.

The FX-1 still performed like a trooper and did a great job of shooting in low light.

I shot the crowd scenes in 30 and the band on the stage at 60 frames. It seems to have worked pretty well.

The 30 frames seem to look a little like slowmo on the LCD screen, have to see what it looks like on my HDTV set tomorrow.

Now, I like to ask, even though I don't conceder myself to be a pro, is there always someone in a crowd, who tends to ruin some of your shots? I try to not block the audience or move around too much to irate the audience but this one lady was popping in and out of my shots, going in front and blocking the audience as well as my shooting.

How do you handle something like that, when you're trying to get that perfect footage and you get those annoying people that just know intuitively how to ruin it for you?

Another side note...I had this brillent idea to have a spot light, actually one of those haligan lamps connected via a power adapter on my car to light up the crowd as they were leaving the concert. Well, I got the idea earlier in the day when I noticed a news truck and saw a camera man and a reporter doing some reporting in front of Wild Waves. They had this bright light set up in the middle of the day. Well...I blew out the fuse. Next time, I'll get one of those 1,000,000 candle power flash lights! I don't know what I was thinking...thinking that the power adapter would work with a 500 watt light!
I was lucky enough to get some footage by turning on my highbeams on my car. It's great to be associated with the press. The police will let you do just about anything!

Goes to show you to never rush into a shoot and always prepare for things early!
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Old June 11th, 2006, 03:24 AM   #2
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Yea, i've filmed events where theres always that one token person who's always in over 50% of your shots.. usually they are really drunk. Theres nothing much you can do.

Sometimes they might just trying to make sure you got them on tape, so i tend to shoot them blatently (or pretend too, depending how drunk they are) and then sometimes they leave.

Other times they dont.. you just have to put up with it im afraid, or if you know the security they might be able to help you out.
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Old June 11th, 2006, 03:28 AM   #3
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I tape a lot of bands and I know what you mean about getting in peoples' way. You don't want to obstruct their view, but at the same time, you don't want them in yours. What I've found works best is to find a spot just before the band starts and talk to the people around you to make sure they know you'll be shooting there. I've never ever had a person complain that I was in their way, and I've never had a person say no when I've asked if I could stand in front of them. If you're polite about it, they're usually fine with it.
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Old June 11th, 2006, 11:17 PM   #4
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Ok,

I've taken a look at the tapes. The picture quality is great! The crowd scene I shot with a shuttle speed of 30 looks decent, lot's of noise but still viewable...

I have a problem with the tape now though. I say 40% is unusable for audio. It's got static like pops and fizzes. I thought it was because I was near the speakers when I took the shots but I notice it goes on even when I'm a good distance away from the speakers.

I'm wondering if my messing around with the shuttle speed could cause audio problems. I didn't stop the recording when I was switching the shuttle speed with the roller.

Anyone had such problems with audio like this?

I never had audio ruined before during my other shoots in a concert setting...
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Old June 12th, 2006, 11:06 AM   #5
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I do not think the messed audio had something to do with the shutter speed and the setting changes.

However, strong bass can mess up your camera.... It blew my D8 handy cam away.... The heads were all out of line after a gig a long time ago.

I think maybe its just a bad day. I would personally do a sound check on a test tape in different controled conditions and play that back... maybe you might find a corralation.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 01:03 PM   #6
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If you have the audio levels on auto, they might have been hot and distorted. If they're clean, you might just have to cut out a lot of bass.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 09:59 PM   #7
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I had used manual settings at 5 but noticed it was going into the reds so I had it lowered to 3 and seemed to have been okay. Guess I'll need to have a pair of headphones with me to check the sound while recording...

The camera man at the TV station said to use Auto mode for recording on a set like this as it should work to lower the bass.

Is he correct on this? Mark, you mentioned that if it was on auto so that is why I'm asking about the question above.

I'm going to see if I can find the sound scrubbing/cleaning program that was mentioned on the audio section on this forum.

I tried to do an audio gain set and lower it in decibles in Adobe Primiere 1.5 but then what would lowering the sound level do anyway, just lower sound with the pops and fizzes still in it...

One thing I did notice, I definately am impressed with the cineform codec used in Adobe Primiere. I know it's still not working in HDV format but it does seem a lot faster than Sony Vegas Movie Studio.

I think Vegas still is a little more easier to use than Primiere but 1.5 definately does a great job. I'll have to check out the demo version of the Vegas pro version and see what that's like.
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Old June 12th, 2006, 10:19 PM   #8
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I used to always tape shows with the audio on auto but it was clipping fairly consistently so I always use manual now. I guess having VU meters helps a lot, though.

Does anyone know what the FX1/Z1's stock mic's max SPL is?
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Old June 14th, 2006, 09:12 AM   #9
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Well I tried a new tape and so sound problems so I'll go with the loud bass causing the issue.

I checked out the quicktime demo of Sound Soap and it seems like this is probably the best program for sound issues. They didn't have a demo to try out, however... Anyone know if this is the best program for cleaning sound? It looks like it's the easiest to use.

I downloaded Sony's Sound Forge 8 Pro and tried out the demo. Not being an expert with this new program, the Noise gate and Audio cleaner function seems to work decently. I'll need to fiddle around with it more to see what can be done with the program but it seems to have corrected about 85-95 percent of the sound problems I was talking about. Too bad this is only a 10-day trial limit on it.
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Old July 9th, 2006, 09:25 AM   #10
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Because the FX1 and Z1 have more clean images when the gain is turned up, I'd go to a +12 db on gain before adjusting the shutter from 1/60 to 1/30, which gives a more "slo-mo" look.

Also, with HDV audio (or DV, SD, etc.), trying to record good sound at a concert is tough. Use mics and a special recorder/mixer, like maybe an M-Audio Microtrack or other quality recorders.

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Old July 12th, 2006, 05:24 PM   #11
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My last live event shoot involved shooting a bunch of drunken bike messengers some of whom actually try spitting beer at my camera or grab the dead cat attached to my shotgun mic while making sex toy references about it. I resolved the situation by handing the camera to my assistant and getting 4 inches from the ring-leader's face. "If don't wanna be on camera, I'll avoid shooting you and you can stand behind me. If you've got a problem with me, fight me right now before I go back to holding my camera which is worth more to me than your jaw-bone."

At shows and more friendly crowds, I tend to gently push people out of shot and apologize later. Most people understand and don't respond negatively.
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