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Video Monitors and Media Players for field or studio use (all display technologies).


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Old October 19th, 2004, 10:09 AM   #1
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Using a computer monitor to focus

Anybody know if this thing actually works? I know it wouldn't be that reliable for exposure, but it would be nice to be able to actually focus.

http://tinyurl.com/67lhv
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Old October 19th, 2004, 12:08 PM   #2
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Marco's link points to the AVerMedia TVBox 5, which is basically a breakout box for a PC containing analog video inputs.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 12:13 PM   #3
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Yeah, that's it. Do you have any experience with this product Chris? The product description says that it can be used without a PC, so presumably all you need is a monitor, this box, and a way to get power to both of them. I was unaware such a product existed. Professional video monitors with more than 700 lines of resolution are way out of my price range at the moment. I'm dying to be able to pull off a rack focus.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 12:36 PM   #4
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Marco I'm a little confused -- couldn't you just use a small, portable 5.5" LCD monitor connected directly to your camera to accomplish the same thing?
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Old October 19th, 2004, 01:17 PM   #5
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Yeah, but they're really expensive and practically every one I've ever looked at has a maximum vertical resolution of like 230 pixels. People seem to really like the Nebtek, but even their top units, which cost more than $1,000, have a total resolution of 336,960. I know specs only mean so much, and maybe that's plenty. I've asked that question in here before and never had a very emphatic response one way or the other. But computer computer monitors, even fancy thin LCD models, are really inexpensive these days, and have much higher resolution. I'm just exploring if this is a realistic option.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 01:58 PM   #6
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Oh I'm sure it's a realistic option but I wonder about portability and power. The best thing about the Nebteks, other than their compact size, is that they'll run off of a spare camcorder battery.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 02:10 PM   #7
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For a few occasions I used my Dell portable (1394 input build in) connected through firewire to my cam. I used Sclive capture and could use my 15"Dell LCD screen for focussing and framing as well.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 03:04 PM   #8
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Well, I'm envisioning a cart of some kind, like a Magliner, but smaller, with a big honking battery on the bottem shelf. I've read about people using those massive batteries designed for boating. We're already carting around an 11 pound battery for the Frezzi, so that would be a good home for it too. The cart would also be pressed into service for dolly shots.
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Old October 19th, 2004, 10:01 PM   #9
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There are a number of LCD monitors that also have composite/s-video/component inputs as well. I use a Sony 17" 16:9 monitor (1280x768) and like it a lot. I also have a 15" Samsung 4:3 LCD monitor (1024x768) with the same inputs. They are not very practical for location shoots unless you have AC power (or a cart like you describe :-) One thing about these combination monitors is that they overscan like a consumer TV so you don't see the full frame. Price keeps dropping on these, but they're still in the $600+ range for 17" 16:9 native LCD's.
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Old October 20th, 2004, 03:31 AM   #10
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The battery and the overscan problem is not a problem if a portable PC is being used.
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Old October 20th, 2004, 09:31 AM   #11
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Yeah, on the Mac I use BTV Pro on my powerbook as a portable field monitor. It uses the full screen, shows full frame and even has variable aspect ratios. The image isn't quite as faithful or bright as a dedicated LCD monitor, but I find it useful anyway and it connects via firewire. Has the advantage of having video scopes and can capture directly to the hard drive.

However I don't think that's what Marco has in mind. His idea of a cart with a power supply on it would work fine for a multi-funtion LCD screen.
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