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Old February 16th, 2009, 09:04 AM   #1
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Problem viewing Steadicam Pilot Monitor outdoors

I have a problem viewing from the monitor outdoors. Using a hoodman may restrict viewing. I do not own a hoodman but I DIY something from some hard paper. It worked but restricted my viewing a little. How are you guys overcoming this in outdoor shoots? Should I try a hoodman?
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Old February 19th, 2009, 01:00 PM   #2
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I'm still thinking of getting video googles, I know they're wired, and that's the only thing that stops me; I use both camera flip LCD and pilot monitor, and for framing 90% those work well, but on the bright sunny day it's not as easy, so I think I'll try video glasses, I like new toys :)
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Old February 19th, 2009, 09:41 PM   #3
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I'd be interested to give the goggles a try just for the fun of it someday. I don't hold out much hope for them, however. It's amazing just how much information you require and use via peripheral vision while operating. Watching for marks, obstacles, feeling the action (rather than just seeing it) and more, are all things that would be virtually eliminated with an "in your eyes" system like goggles. All that said... I'd still like to play around with them someday.

Sean, unfortunately a sunshade is really the only reasonable option. Find a good tilt angle that works best depending on the position of the sun and the shot. I'm not sure about the monitor you currently have, but if it doesn't already have anti-glare treatment, you could try getting an anti-glare overlay for it. The only drawback to that is it cuts down slightly on brightness - would just be a matter of which produces the best final result. Bright sunlight is the main reason the greenscreen CRT monitors are still quite popular with the professional rigs. Even the best LCD's, although very close (and getting closer), can't compete.
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Old February 21st, 2009, 04:28 AM   #4
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thanks guys. I have the original steadicam pilot monitor. I am considering the Ikan HDMI monitor but I'm concerned if even changing the monitor will not solve the prob. I will try to DIY something b4 I go for a hoodman. If anyone has a photo of the 16:9 monitor with hood I would be most appreciative :)
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Old February 21st, 2009, 01:14 PM   #5
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I saw a set of these glasses Gametrailers.com - CES 2008 - My View TV Glasses by gaffyh at C.E.S. the past 2 years (the video is from 2008's show and newer/better models are available, see Myvu personal media viewer | video eyewear | iPod video glasses). They don't obstruct one's peripheral vision too much so you could use them on the move. They're not HD, by any means, but the pair I looked at gave the impression that you were looking at a screen similar in size to the average living-room wall.

Not sure I'd want to operate them with a Steadicam though.

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Old February 21st, 2009, 03:58 PM   #6
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Garret tried a goggle setup in the early 70's, and found it impractical. The camera is rarely point in the direction of your movement, and it's very disorienting. Your brain places you in the camera space, not real space, so you lose orientation in the real world and begin to move as if in the cameras virtual world. Not a good look.
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Old February 21st, 2009, 08:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David C. Williams View Post
Garret tried a goggle setup in the early 70's, and found it impractical.
You can watch the footage of the first Brown stabilizer (with the fiber-optic eye-piece) here:
Steadicam Forum: Chapter One
about 2/3 of the way through.
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Old February 21st, 2009, 09:45 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by David C. Williams View Post
Garret tried a goggle setup in the early 70's, and found it impractical. The camera is rarely point in the direction of your movement, and it's very disorienting. .
neither my eyes, they're almost all the time on the monitor or flip LCD, plus in the crowded place I have to watch my space and steps and that makes it even harder. With the video glasses i hope I'll be able to watch my steps and keep the frame at the same time without constant looking at the same direction with the camera; just like I do when I shoot with a live eye, I rarely look in the viewfinder or monitor, always at the large screen , which sometimes located 90 degrees from what i have to shoot, but it's easier to frame and focus for me this way.
anyways, today I got the pair, it's on the way, as soon as I'll get it, I'll try and share my thoughgts;
Garret tried it, I want too
:)
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Old March 3rd, 2009, 05:04 AM   #9
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Video goggles are possible. see my thread here:
Myvu video glasses

I haven't done a full text/video review yet, which should be coming sometime in the near future, so I can't really fully communicate their effectiveness as of this moment, but in my tests so far they have been functional, viewable, and I have been able to retain my peripheral, bottom, and top vision.....completely able to navigate in other words.

I've used them while walking around inside my house, down the street, around trees, up and down hills, following subjects....been good so far.
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Old March 3rd, 2009, 05:12 PM   #10
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This may help outside:
LCD Screen Protector Films
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Old March 8th, 2009, 01:53 PM   #11
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Video goggles didn't work for me because after about 5 minutes, I started to get motion sickness. I'm sure you will too. What you see in the goggles and what your inner ear feels will conflict, prompting dizziness and nausea.

An easy solution to the problem is to use the flip out lcd monitor on your camera. Angle the screen so it's facing the ground just a bit, to reduce reflections from the bright sky. With this method you'll have 2 monitors as reference, with no modifications necessary to your steadicam monitor.
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Old March 8th, 2009, 05:51 PM   #12
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An easy solution to the problem is to use the flip out lcd monitor on your camera. Angle the screen so it's facing the ground just a bit, to reduce reflections from the bright sky. With this method you'll have 2 monitors as reference, with no modifications necessary to your steadicam monitor.
This doesn't sound like a good idea. Operating with the sled out in front of you is generally bad form. Your back will hurt more and your shots will look worse.

Most people operate with the sled on their left close to their body, so most people will not be able to see the LCD monitor on the camera. Also, if the camera LCD is sticking out, Don Juan (with the camera pointing back over your shoulder) may be difficult, since the LCD could easily hit your left shoulder.

Some people operate with the sled on their right side. This is called "goofy", which is actually a standard steadicam term. When operating goofy, it may be possible to see the camera LCD if you're looking off to your right, but I doubt you would be able to see where you're going. In goofy Don Juan, you wouldn't be able to see the monitor at all.

Perhaps the best solution for sun glare is to buy some black coroplast, some black gaff tape, and start experimenting with custom hoods.

You could also try turning down the brightness, and turning up the contrast to max. That might help.

Last edited by Dave Gish; March 8th, 2009 at 06:28 PM.
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Old March 9th, 2009, 02:20 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Gish View Post
This is called "goofy", which is actually a standard steadicam term. When operating goofy, it may be possible to see the camera LCD if you're looking off to your right, but I doubt you would be able to see where you're going. In goofy Don Juan, you wouldn't be able to see the monitor at all.
Actually "goofy" is not a steadicam term... been used for decades in relation to surfing and skateboarding with your opposite foot (right?) forward on the board... maybe found it's origin elsewhere even before that... :)
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Old March 9th, 2009, 06:46 AM   #14
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Actually "goofy" is not a steadicam term... been used for decades in relation to surfing and skateboarding with your opposite foot (right?) forward on the board... maybe found it's origin elsewhere even before that... :)
Didn't know that. I'd only heard goofy for switching sides used in steadicam circles. Learn something new every day. Thanks!
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Old March 9th, 2009, 07:02 AM   #15
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Goofy foot actually comes from Goofy the Disney character, he was drawn surfing left foot leading. Goofy foot :)
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