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Old May 10th, 2009, 08:57 AM   #1
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insults from a local news guy...

So,
I shot a new story last week on the Chrysler bankruptsy with MY CAMERA I might add, and saw another station's camera man there with the station's 10 yr old DVCAM whatever. So he says, "It must be hard shooting outside with one of the 1/3" cameras. I can get in any situation and still shoot anything I want" I was thinking, whatever dude... So, I watched the newcast later that night and shockingly, my A1 held up great. In SD in 4:3 over broadcast. It looked awesome. His newcast was just fine. But, nothing different. I felt silently vindicated...
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Old May 10th, 2009, 09:23 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
His newcast was just fine. But, nothing different. I felt silently vindicated...
It depends on what you're doing. In low light something like a DSR500 will trounce a 1/3" camera, whilst in decent light levels the difference won't be so pronounced. You can also get lenses with far greater zoom ranges (and with doublers) for 2/3" cameras, so if the story was happening a long way away, then again the larger camera would be at a big advantage. They also have better connectivity options, such as better integration with radio mics, and it's far easier to do controlled iris and focus pulls with a true manual lens.

He could have been more tactful, but the point is not that his camera was necessarily better than yours for that story, but will still produce good results in conditions where a 1/3" camera will struggle. Not really surprising - they cost a lot more money.

Not all a one way street though - the size and weight of a 1/3" camera can be a positive benefit in some situations, such as trying to film in a car, etc.

It's just the same with still cameras. In good light, taking straghtforward photographs, I struggle to see the difference in quality between the end results from my Canon DSLR and tiny Ixus. But when the light goes down, or more specialist lenses are needed, the DSLR is far better and more responsive to use. But the Ixus is cheaper, and I can have it in my pocket at times I'd never be bothered to carry a DSLR. Different horses for different courses.
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Old May 10th, 2009, 10:27 AM   #3
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For our American readers, Ixus = Elph.

In my experience, when faced with less-than-tactful comments such as Bill received, the best response is no response at all except perhaps a smile and a polite nod. Let your camera do the talking -- or maybe better to say let your shooting skills do the talking.
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Old May 10th, 2009, 11:14 AM   #4
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For our American readers, Ixus = Elph.

In my experience, when faced with less-than-tactful comments such as Bill received, the best response is no response at all except perhaps a smile and a polite nod. Let your camera do the talking -- or maybe better to say let your shooting skills do the talking.
Yep, that's just the response I had. Plus mine shoots HD :) oh and I own it... oops, forgot about that one... :)
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Old May 10th, 2009, 12:05 PM   #5
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Snappy answers that YOU can use to piss off people who still shoot big shouldermount cams (no matter how new):

-Wow, nice camera... How's the weather back there in 1996?

-Are you using that brick because you need to the workout, or because you're being punished?

-Can you get collector plates for that?

-My grandad was a newsman back in the great war... he used one of those too. Glad to see they are still in service.

-If I fix your flux capacitor, can we hop in your DeLorean and go get me one of those too?
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Old May 10th, 2009, 12:45 PM   #6
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One thing to keep in mind as well when watching tv news footage broadcast over air:
- in house, the video may well have been edited in a linear suite connected via composite (not component, not SDI) video connections;
- in broadcast news, there is often no time for down conversion/cross conversion. TV is still largely a 4:3 medium and tv gear is aimed at quick "to air" times;

Broadcast TV, whether over-air or cable/satellite is either modulated or compressed to fit "the pipe" so it really is unfair to compare what you see in your edit bay versus what you see on broadcast tv. I used to think my PD150 was "equal" to DSR500 cameras. Well, one trip into an edit bay with footage sourced from both fixed that in a hurry. BUT, which was more convenient to travel to the third world on an "unofficial" documentary with? The one that fit into my carry-on with my underwear, shirts, all my tapes for 3 weeks and batteries to shoot for 24 straight hours without seeing AC power to charge everything.

Shoulder mount TV cameras are designed with specific purposes in mind. Switches are easily accessible, the body is large enough to mount a myriad of equipment from additional wireless receivers (including in-body in some cases), on-camera lighting, quick draw stick mics and about a million other things. There should never be a direct comparison about which is "better - END STOP": shoulder mount or handicam style cameras, only a deference given to a specific task or workflow.
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Old May 10th, 2009, 06:04 PM   #7
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The other camera guy's comments perhaps could refer to getting easier access to news events with the larger camera compared going in with the smaller camera which could get you being confused with a member of the public. Although, perhaps that would be less of an issue these days, since quite a few news organisations use the 1/3" cameras.

Unfortunately the reply to the getting at the age of the other guys camera might be if only your 1/3" camera could last as long. It's best getting into silly arguments, both cameras have their place and the 2/3" cameras are still much in use on news, even brand new cameras.
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Old May 10th, 2009, 10:36 PM   #8
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considering I just said "sure yep uhh huh", and went about my business, I watched both newscasts on air (I don't edit the stuf) and dumbed down to 4:3 SD, there was no diference, it was just the cockiness of him openly insulting my camera's supposed "dynamic range" issues in that he could shoot outside at 1:00 in the afternoon and everything look just great, where I had to be very careful of what I shoot with my little camera cause it just can't handle it. In the end, he went inside to do his interview as well. So, my issue is not with the camera, just the dude...
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Old May 11th, 2009, 02:21 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
... BUT, which was more convenient to travel to the third world on an "unofficial" documentary with? The one that fit into my carry-on with my underwear ...
Very funny Shaun, your comment wins the prize hands down. Normally I'd take Chris' advice and keep my mouth shut, but I'm gonna try that one next time and see if I can crack a smile.
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Old May 11th, 2009, 03:53 AM   #10
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considering I just said "sure yep uhh huh", and went about my business, I watched both newscasts on air (I don't edit the stuf) and dumbed down to 4:3 SD, there was no diference, it was just the cockiness of him openly insulting my camera's supposed "dynamic range" issues in that he could shoot outside at 1:00 in the afternoon and everything look just great, where I had to be very careful of what I shoot with my little camera cause it just can't handle it. In the end, he went inside to do his interview as well. So, my issue is not with the camera, just the dude...
Bill
I rather suspect there wouldn't be that much difference outdoors and in order to achieve a noticeable difference you'd have to set up the camera better than the typical news camera settings. Although the better viewfinder on the 2/3" cameras is much better for setting the best compromise exposure than the LCDs found on the small cameras.

As has been mentioned, the main advantage would be in low light situations rather than outdoors.

All sorts of things are said on the street by news crews, some are funny, some sad and some best ignored.
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Old May 11th, 2009, 03:00 PM   #11
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They're not all like "the dude"...was at a presser recently, sitting with three local TV guys with their Betacams or whatevers and my XHA1. One guy looks at the other and says "What's that he's got there?" and the first guy replies. "I don't know, but I think it's our future..." True story. / Battle Vaughan/miamiherald.com video team
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Old May 11th, 2009, 10:57 PM   #12
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Oh yeah,
I've had alot of the newsguys comment on how "nice" my camera looked. One was floored that I have 3 of them. Like its shocking to have 3 cameras. I thought everybody had at least 3. Maybe he thought they were more expensive or something... anyway it's funny being in an essentially "non-production" world. Most of these guys just shoot. I've not ever contemplated being just a cameraman... I want to control the content too much :)
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Old May 12th, 2009, 04:27 AM   #13
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Oh yeah,
I've had alot of the newsguys comment on how "nice" my camera looked. One was floored that I have 3 of them. Like its shocking to have 3 cameras. I thought everybody had at least 3. Maybe he thought they were more expensive or something... anyway it's funny being in an essentially "non-production" world. Most of these guys just shoot. I've not ever contemplated being just a cameraman... I want to control the content too much :)
Bill
Most of the high end DPs don't own their gear, often it's rented in by the production company. For television work, it's a mixture of both, although with the increase in formats it does make sense to just hire in the camera and own the accessories like monitor, tripod etc. You should bear in mind that these guys' tripods can cost more than your camera.

Having 3 or more cameras isn't that usual unless you're a company shooting multi camera. Most 2/3" camera owner operators would have just one camera, although I know some who have different format cameras eg 1 x Digibeta and 1 x HDCAM. These cameras are expensive, so unless it's out working, paying for itself you don't buy a camera.

With the smaller cameras having a backup/B camera does make more sense, although in reality many camera people only own the one camera (perhaps may be holding onto their old SD PD 150 kit "just in case").
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Old May 12th, 2009, 09:34 AM   #14
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Oh yeah, I see those sachtler carbon fiber jobbies all the time... It's interesting to me coming from an independant producer background in a very small media market, how different TV production is. How many editing decisions I would've made differently(some good some bad) in the final product. I believe it is giving me a new perspective on my production side. I still think it's interesting that with my A1 and a senn G2 setup, I can go shoot news with abandon. I shoot football, etc. and that is pretty cool. Alot of the stations have adopted the HVX though for its P2, but some are still holding on to those massive shoulder cams... You never know what the day will hold...
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Old May 12th, 2009, 10:37 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Brian Drysdale View Post
All sorts of things are said on the street by news crews, some are funny, some sad and some best ignored.
I know this isn't the spirit in which this comment was offered but PLEASE be very careful just how close you walk to the line of basically saying that those of us who earn part of our living doing tv news are out of touch or arrogant or ignorant. We too have had to suffer from the indie producers showing up to newsers looking for audio on RCA's or 1/8" from a media feed instead of showing up with the industry standard XLR wireless transmitter. OR, turning on an LED on camera light balanced for daylight when it is obvious that the other 5 of us that were there first are using tungsten in a scrum.

We CAN live together with tolerance, and THAT my friends is a two way street.
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