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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old September 22nd, 2008, 07:14 AM   #1
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Thorough EX1/3 camera alignment tools

Now that there are a fair number of EX camera owner/operators, what have you done to ensure that your camera(s) is/are properly aligned & setup correctly.

Do you use test charts? If so, which do you use? What monitoring tools do you use? Vectorscope, waveform monitor? What adjustments do you make on the camera picture profiles to effect the changes?

I have a EX3 with a Fujinon XS17x5,5BRM lens combo and they have been aligned (automatically from the service menu) together. I now want to adjust the colour matrix & detail but only with the right tools.

I am seriously looking into buying a good test chart like DSC Labs ChromaDuMonde & flange focus charts for my EX3/Fujinon lens. What other high quality charts are there?

Thanks very much
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Old September 22nd, 2008, 08:53 AM   #2
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I asked the same basic question in the picture profiles thread a couple of weeks ago and I am still waiting for someone to respond.

Good luck

Greg
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Old September 25th, 2008, 04:09 PM   #3
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I put my order in for standard size ChromaDuMonde28R and backfocus/resolution chart. Been told 2 to 3 weeks wait. Cannot wait to properly setup my EX3/XS17x lens combo.
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Old September 25th, 2008, 04:23 PM   #4
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The most important thing is a known monitor. One you trust and know to produce accurate repeatable images. Domestic monitors are often unsuitable as they have various automatic controls that you have no control over. You can use the cameras colour bars to setup you monitor and then play with the settings until you find an image you like. Test charts are helpful for achieving specific responses to specific colours or brightnesses, but what might look good on a chart might not look so good in a real world situation.
Setting up a "look" is subjective, what might look good to one person may not work for another. There are no hard and fast rules.
Back focus can be done with any flat object with fine detail such as a picture on a wall or take a sheet of paper and a marker pen and draw lines across it in a star pattern. Charts help but are not essential.
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Old September 25th, 2008, 07:36 PM   #5
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So you don't use waveform monitors or vectorscopes?... or are they included in your monitor?

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Old September 25th, 2008, 10:18 PM   #6
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You can use a program from Adobe that is called "On Location" that has waveforms and vectors you can use on your laptop, for your chart set-ups. And of course, a very good monitor. DCS labs has some good tips on using their charts, ck website.

All so read "all" of the picture profile threads. That will answer some questions.
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Old September 26th, 2008, 01:33 AM   #7
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Vector scopes and waveform meters are useful for setting specific responses, adjusting the knee and levels or checking that the image is legal. But for generating a "look" the best tools are the human eye and an accurate monitor.
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Old September 26th, 2008, 05:44 PM   #8
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To enable the very best out of your camera, test charts are absolutely the first port of call. A properly calibrated monitor is equally as important BUT one cannot always have such a monitor to hand at all times, whereas calibrated charts come in various sizes and even shooting a few seconds of colours/grey scale for the colourist in post can also assist in obtaining the look.

With charts, one starts with maximising the camera's potential with let's call it a neutral setting. Once tuned, you can then apply various adjustments to obtain the look you are after.

This had been instilled in me from my first day at the major TV station that I worked for many years ago and absolutely still applies today, especially if one needs to match a number of cameras together.

Utilize all of these tools to get the very best out of the most important revenue raising tool - our EX cameras.
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Old September 26th, 2008, 09:25 PM   #9
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Here is a link to a good back focus calibration chart. I printed this out on 11 x 17 photo paper. It works better than the one that was orginally supplied with my BetacamSP camcorder.

http://www.rondexter.com/focus_pattern.pdf
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