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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old March 4th, 2004, 04:46 PM   #1
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favorite pdx10 shoots

Hey everyone,
It's been a while since I've posted, but I've been trying to keep up with everyone's posts. I've had my PDX-10 for almost 4 months now, and I absolutely love shooting with it. This past weekend, I shot the Penn State Lady Lions' women's basketball team win over Purdue, which was for the Big Ten regular season title. The game was a thriller (PSU came back from 12pts down at halftime), and by far the most exciting thing I've shot with the camera. I was just wondering what were some of everyone else's favorite memories of things that were shot with a PDX10. Please share!
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Old March 4th, 2004, 05:28 PM   #2
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Go Team!

The weekend before last, I had my first humdinger of a shoot schedule.
Beginning Friday morning, I did a 3-4 cam shoot of a man's 100th birthday, with my two PDX10s (and two trv19/22s). The shoot was off to the side of the main space of a hotel conference room. I codesigned it, with one of the grandsons, a location manager for Paramount, as a 3cam talkshow type setup, with two large cushy chairs slightly facing in towards one another, and two tabletop mics/micstands on a small night dresser in between, where friends and fam could sit with grand papa and reminisce or ask him about stories from his 20th century long past. It was quite something. Lots of white people and good food.
This lasted until 5pm or so, when I scooped up and headed to the local junior college to shoot an ex lover's production of Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues. Got a good audio feed from the house to a behind-glass wideshot A-cam, and crept along the sides of the house with a handheld
B-cam, both PDXes. I think it turned out...pretty good...really could have used a stabilizer of some sort. Am giving serious thought to a Steadicam JR. There were steps all along the sides of the house for me to sit on and stabilize on my knee.
And then the next two days were me doing a 3cam shoot of a two performance concert at the local community theatre. ONe PDX up top for wide, one from House Right on the landing of some stairs for manual tripod work, and one (my trv19) taped to the corner of the flat wooden stairway rail on House Left, to get the closeup of the piano player that I couldn't get from House Right.
It was more the whirlwind effect of everything rather than a single memorable instance that made "it" a favorite PDX10 shoot.
I felt like a bonafide pro! (I did all of this for free, tape reimbursement aside).
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Old March 4th, 2004, 06:14 PM   #3
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Hello,

For me it was probably my trip with my dad to Ireland.. Which is really the reason I bought this camera for.. (wanted something small, tough and professional..)Got the camera just weeks before the trip, and it worked out great for me..

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Old March 4th, 2004, 10:29 PM   #4
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For me it started early in the morning with the director scouting locations along a wild section of the coast. Just after lunch we were joined by our stage managers, then an hour later by a van load of opera singers and some more tech people. We then spent 5 hours (which felt like a lifetime) capturing some remarkable footage, ending up around a campfire on the beach.

http://www.greenmist.com/trovatore/film/20030909

However, I'd like to believe that the best memories are those which lie ahead...
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Old March 5th, 2004, 06:39 AM   #5
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Boyd, what process do you use to come up with your images that you have linked to? And I noticed some artificats in your frame grabs, that is merely the still image compression for the web, right?
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Old March 5th, 2004, 08:42 AM   #6
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That's a good question. Those were done awhile ago, late at night in a hurry. A few days later when I looked at them I noticed the artifacts also (they were more apparent on an LCD monitor than they were on my CRT). Some of it is probably DV compression, but I think the way I exported them (as a low quality JPEG) created some problems also. Most of that video was processed with various filters in FCP and that probably degraded it. However everyone felt the actual video looked really good projected on the 40' screen. Tooting my own horn just a bit here, Philadelphia Inquirer critic Peter Dobrin who is often quite brutal, had this to say:
Quote:
At key moments, diaphanous video projections light up a scrim between the Academy of Music audience and the singers, contributing a mood or a thought to the action on stage. Much of the footage is of nothing more than one of the characters standing on a windy beach (shot on digital video at the Jersey Shore by director of design and technology Boyd Ostroff). But looming large, the images give the audience otherwise rare glimpses of facial expressions. Elsewhere, large flames appear to lick the entire stage as Dever implodes. The idea is a smart one, but only because the polish of the video work is so high.
One day when I have a bit more free time I'll revisit this see if I can pull some cleaner still frames.
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Old March 5th, 2004, 09:28 AM   #7
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That is impressive Boyd. Do you use S-Spline for your blowups?

PS. Now that I think about it...I may wait for NAB.
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Old March 5th, 2004, 04:23 PM   #8
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Not sure what you mean by "blowups". For the show we projected anamorphic 720x480 DV. On the website the still frames are full size 854x480, stretched horizontally in PhotoShop to display properly with square pixels. Is s-spline some sort of PC software for enlarging images? (I use a Mac). I played around a bit with Genuine Fractals for some other image enlargement and found that unless I was doing a substantial blowup (4x or greater) that Photoshop's bicubic interpolation produced results that were pretty comparable.

If you don't need to buy something right away then it can't hurt to wait for NAB I suppose. However anything new that is announced probably won't be available right away, will not sell at a discount, and you would be an early adopter. OTOH, prices on existing models might drop in anticipation of something new. Buying technology is always a bit of a gamble...
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Old March 5th, 2004, 04:39 PM   #9
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When I said blow up I was referring to the 40' screen. But then DV projectors are either SD or HD, and you didn't mention anything about it being uprezzed to HD, so.... Anyway, S-Spline is an image enlargement program. And yeah, you're right about the NAB issues (in terms of the cons of waiting.)
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Old March 5th, 2004, 05:16 PM   #10
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Ah, I see. The projector was a Barco SLM-R10 10,000 lumen DLP with native 1280x1024 resolution. Scharff-Weisberg, who rented us the equipment and provided consultation, set us up with a rendundant system using two projectors and two Doremi hard-disk video recorders. We uploaded the video directly from a PowerBook G4 via a box that transcodes 1394 to component so we could record on the Doremi's. This all seemed a little roundabout, but the quality was excellent and it utilized very rugged studio grade gear that Scharff had in stock already. The Doremi's had the advantage being able to easily jump between the various video cues. The projectors themselves handled the image scaling very nicely. Hey, wouldn't you expect that from a $125,000 projector? ;-)

Actually we're getting pretty far off topic here, although I suppose it's related to my "favorite PDX-10 shoot" indirectly...
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