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

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Old September 8th, 2006, 05:23 AM   #1
New Boot
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Central PA
Posts: 5
Production monitor vs. TV (CRT or LCD?)

Hi everyone, I am slowly setting up my "studio" I currently am using a Powermac G5 and a Dell 24" monitor and have recently realized the need for a production monitor. I am doing video conversions and restorations of 8mm films as well as doing some wedding/ one time only event videos. Mostly using Final cut studio and after effects.

I recently created a slideshow using Imovie (It was easier and the client wanted the "motion thing" ie. the ken burns effect) and when I finished and burned it to dvd the images were cropped off around the edges of the screen which is not usually a problem but they wanted file names on the slide so they knew what they were looking at and they were cut off on the TV.

Any way to get to my question. I didn't realise the problem until I had burned it to dvd and played it on the TV. So I want to get another monitor to hook up to the computer (either from the second port on my video card or firewire mode through the camera) What I want to know is can I get an accurate framing representation using a TV this way and if so what is best to get. I really don't want to spend the money on a production monitor yet but I don't know what to get. I am thinking of getting a small TV from Cirtuit city or Best buy and using that but should I get a CRT set or an LCD? I would prefer to get an LCD mostly beacuse of the small amount of desk space it would take up. Would that suit my needs or should I wait and save for a production monitor?

I have learned so much from just reading this board and I hope you can help. Thanks in advance

Jason Matthews
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Old September 8th, 2006, 07:08 AM   #2
Inner Circle
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 4,750
The cropping (over/underscan):
Just make sure that the text doesn't hit the edges of the screen.

The standards are as such:
10% of the image is action un-safe, so anything in that area may be cropped off.
Another 10% is title un-safe. The monitor may have geometric distortion in this area, so titles here will be curve-y. This is less of a problem now than it used to be, where everything was CRT. Now we have flatscreen CRTs, flatscreen LCDs, plasmas, etc. etc.

2- Final Cut Pro has overlays for safe area.

3- Or, just eyeball it. You know the edges will get cropped off so... don't go near them.

4- For video work, the ideal monitor to use would be a broadcast monitor. They are like $500/600+ for a basic model... the smaller ones are easier to carry for field use (if you do any shooting).

If you don't have the money for that, get a consumer CRT. They have image cheats so the image isn't entirely accurate... but it's better than your next option. JVC supposedly has TVs where you have lots of control over the monitor according to Simon Wyndham (I haven't tested this myself).

And your worst option is any computer monitor. (For SD work.) Use computer monitors for computer applications like your FCP windows and such.
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