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Sony TRV950 / PDX10 Companion
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Old November 23rd, 2004, 08:16 AM   #1
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"Long Way Round"

Has anyone caught any of this 6-part series on Bravo, called "Long Way Round"? It's a documentary series following Ewan McGregor and friend Charlie Boorman riding around much of the world (London to New York) on motorcycles. It's very cool--last night I saw them slog through much of Mongolia: just beautiful, stark and beautiful.

The thing is--in the intro I see a shot of their camera guy, and he's holding what appears to be one of our beloved PDX-10's. A second later, there's a shot of the second camera guy, and he's holding what looks something like a PD-170, not sure--the clip went by too fast and I was still in the middle of jumping off the couch to point at the screen. Plus, I'm not too good at IDing the other models on the fly.

The odd thing is: on their website, I can find no mention of the cameras used, and Sony isn't listed as a sponsor, either. Shame, since I'd like to confirm my PDX-10 sighting a little better.

I recommend the series on landscape alone, and McGregor and his friend Cahrlie Boorman are affable subjects. It's on Bravo cable channel Thursdays at 8 here in the States and on Sky One Mondays at 9 in places where Sky One is available.
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Old November 24th, 2004, 03:09 PM   #2
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Is the show 16:9? Is there nightime footage?
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Old November 24th, 2004, 05:38 PM   #3
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<<<-- Originally posted by Ignacio Rodriguez : Is the show 16:9? Is there nightime footage? -->>>

I'm not sure about the 16:9, isn't that funny? I'll have to check that out. I think it is, though. And no there aren't many night shots--mostly daytime travelling, and setting up camp, and then morning before taking off again.

There was one particular scene that I wondered about. The 2 cyclists were seen in silhouette against a sunset at the end of the day--and the sun had a star-like pattern, with maybe 6 rays coming off it. No telltale smear. A filter? A shutter effect? I was wondering which of the cameras was used for that shot...most likely not the PDX, I guess.

By the way--the last episode had a scene in a mongolian ger (what we might call a yurt) where there was communal meal of a soup made of 200 fresh testicles--cow, goat and sheep. Interesting!

There are small cameras on their helmets, and on their bikes, and little DV cams they use as "diary cams", so there is a lot of footage from various sources.
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Old November 25th, 2004, 11:54 AM   #4
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Yup, 16:9.
I'm actually going to buy the DVD when it becomes available here in the States (a PAL version is currently being offered in the UK).

And Pentax is a camera sponsor, so maybe that explains why they don't mention the Sonys they use.
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Old November 25th, 2004, 12:13 PM   #5
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Your NTSC DVD player will most likely very happily transcode PAL DVDs for you so no need to wait I think.
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Old November 25th, 2004, 01:31 PM   #6
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Here's the link to the website of the production company responible for the fiming. There's a contact email link. You could email them and ask them about the cameras used.

http://www.elixirfilms.com/longwayround
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Old November 25th, 2004, 08:46 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Long : The 2 cyclists were seen in silhouette against a sunset at the end of the day--and the sun had a star-like pattern, with maybe 6 rays coming off it. No telltale smear. -->>>

I haven't seen this show myself. But what you describe sounds like the telltale PDX-10 signature. In spite of everyone bemoaning this camera's vertical smear I find it can be used for a nice effect: http://www.greenmist.com/trovatore/f...030909/duel/04
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Old November 27th, 2004, 06:52 AM   #8
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That's basically the look I saw in that shot, Boyd--you're right. Looks nearly identical to what I saw on the show. I think it looks OK, too--in fact, as I noted, I was wondering whether it had been created by a filter, intentionally...

Here's the clip, it's on their website. Click on the "Camping" clip. It's fairly short--the effect shows up near the end...

http://www.longwayround.com/lwr.htm

BTW I had been categorizing "smear" as just a single vertical pole of light, emanating from the light source. So here's a maybe-too-picky-question: Is this '6-Bladed Wheel Of Light' we see properly referred to as "smear"? Or just some form of internal refraction/relection/etc not directly related to the chips?
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Old November 27th, 2004, 05:37 PM   #9
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> Is this '6-Bladed Wheel Of Light' we see properly referred to
> as "smear"? Or just some form of internal
> refraction/relection/etc not directly related to the chips?

What I think I see in Boyd's pic (and have seen many times on my cam) is a small amount of vertical smear and a 4-way refraction effect, probably related to the physical structure of the camera's optics, specifically: it's iris.

You can make this happen by pointing to a bright source of light. Interestingly, the vertical smear part of the effect varies if you change the exposure, and the variation is not as linear as you might expect. You can also vary the amount of vertical smear by changing the shutter speed, the higher the speed the more smear you get.

Anybody tried this on other cameras? The PD150 should have somewhat less smear and it's iris is also different.
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Old November 27th, 2004, 06:16 PM   #10
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Just looked at that clip. Yep, I'd say it was probably shot with a PDX-10.
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Old April 28th, 2005, 12:15 PM   #11
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Did anyone e-mail these guys mentioned above? I would like to hear it from someone involved directly with the show. Perhaps asking for a quick rundown of all their gear would be interesting.

I will watch for this one too.

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Old April 28th, 2005, 09:04 PM   #12
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I didn't, Sean. I'm still waiting for the US release of the DVD, too. There's a rumor that it'll have more unused footage on it; I'd be happy just to get the regular version...
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Old August 5th, 2005, 09:17 PM   #13
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I have watched and enjoyed the show, and wanted to raise another possibility; multiple cameras. The three motorcyclists were followed by a crew car, so changing cameras for certain scenes - if planned ahead - is quite possible.

That said, I thought it looked like PDX10 myself...
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