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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old March 30th, 2006, 09:18 PM   #1
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"tuning" the LCD

Is it possible to adjust (tune) the on camera LCD on the PD170 so that is it close to accurately showing what you are recording as far as brightness, color, etc.?
I have done several searchs and have done a lot of reading but I can't find any instructions for attempting this.
I did find reference to adjusting the LCD on the urban fox site but I found no instructions on how to do the adjustments.
I understand that a monitor is the only way to accurately see what you are getting, but as a pure novice a little help from the LCD would be great.
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Old March 30th, 2006, 09:27 PM   #2
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Mike,

The short answer is no. I've tried to calibrate the LCD on my 150 and it just won't go there.

You should be using the zebra stripes for exposure control. Unfortunately, you need a calibrated monitor to look at the color. That's why some of us have the portable Sony monitor that can run from batteries.

The really formal setups have waveform monitors and vector scopes to make certain the cameras are correctly set up.

I go halfway and when I can, use a battery powered waveform monitor to keep my video completely in bounds.
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Old March 31st, 2006, 06:29 AM   #3
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Mike, thanks.
i know that there is a whole forum on monitors, but, in your opinion, what is the least expensive "portable" monitor that is OK for personal (not professional) use?
I think that a small monitor would be a great learning tool until I can judge settings from zebra and other on camera tools.
It seems to me after tons of reading that many of the small inexpensive monitors are only suited for framing a shot, not for focus or color.
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Old March 31st, 2006, 11:30 AM   #4
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I don't know of an 'amateur' monitor that will work OK. Been there, tried that. Amateur or pro, what you want to do is judge exposure (which you really cannot do with a monitor) and color, which an amateur (television set) display is not capable of.

2 things here.

Waveform monitors and their portable cousins, zebra stripes are use to judge exposure. You need to practice using the zebra to judge exposure properly. It won't take you all that long if you just go out and do it.

Many of us want to judge color in the field. But I have to ask why? What can you really do about it? The answer is not much unless you have a traveling studio and are prepared to modify the environment to suit your needs. (now you are incurring the expense level of a movie).

If you are white-balanced, there isn't a whole lot you can do for color in the field. Or not a lot other than insure that (if possible) you aren't mixing lighting types.

For me, a field monitor has been useful for 4 reasons.

1. It keeps the director away from my camera.
2. I like it to check depth of field.
3. I like it to double check framing with all concerned.
4. It keeps the director away from my camera.

While you are learning to use the camera to get what you want, remember that the audience is really only concerned with content. As long as the technical details don't get in the way of the story, they don't matter. Look at the technically junky stuff that gets on television.

If you still feel you need a field monitor, don't waste your money on amateur gear, it doesn't work and can lead you down the primrose path. Spend $400 or so on a good used Sony field monitor and feel that at least you have that permanently covered.

Myself, if I had to make a choice, I'd pick a waveform monitor first and a television monitor second. The waveform monitor REALLY allows me to set optimum exposure (that's what they use in television studios) even in the very tough high-contrast scenes.
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