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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old August 4th, 2008, 10:35 AM   #1
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1st Wedding shoot, Camera Setup

Hi guys,

I am really not a wedding video, but my niece is getting married at the end of this month, and since they are short on money, they asked if i would video tape and edit the wedding.

What i need help on is this:
I have two cameras im going to use; GL2, and a HV20. Now i know that one is SD and the other is HD, so the HV20 will be set up for SD. But my question is how do i get the footage on both cameras to match. I would like the DVD i make to look good on todays Plasma/LCD Wide screens. So would i need to set up the gl2 for the wide screen formate and keep the hv20 on the SD wide screen? I am very much a novice when it comes to camera set up, so any help from season pros would help.

The plan is to have the GL2 with Rode mic as main camera at the alter, and the HV20 as the 2nd cam for the wide shots.

Any other advice would be greatly appreciated as well.
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Old August 4th, 2008, 12:08 PM   #2
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Hey Matt - I have the exact same setup, but I don't use widescreen on the GL2, as it is not "true" widescreen - check out the GL2 forum for more info on this. It just loses some of the quality. On the HV20, I use SD 4:3 and with some CC work, it can look pretty good.

If possible, try to find a way to mic the groom, as the Rode is a decent mic, but it really won't pick up the vows. I know there's an Olympus recorder that Travis talks about - you can pick that up locally. http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?t=96034

Or I would suggest renting a good wireless mic. Audio is so important and it really should be a primary focus. With my first "unofficial" wedding gig, I just brought one camera and nothing else. I was fortunate that the DJ had a mic on the groom and I was right in front of the speaker, so I picked up the vows. Now I have multiple sound recorders. Also, if money is an issue, see if you can get in contact with the DJ. Always better to know before the ceremony.

Hope that helps...
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Old August 4th, 2008, 03:16 PM   #3
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Depending on the situation and budget, how about picking up a second HV20/30 on eBay, and selling it after the wedding if you don't need it? Prices are pretty stable, so shouldn't cost you too much if you pick it up right, and that way you've got two HD cams and can future proof the production.
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Old August 4th, 2008, 04:40 PM   #4
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I bought a Vx2100 a year ago and sold it for the same as what I paid (I even kept the batteries).
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Old August 4th, 2008, 05:12 PM   #5
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I would use the GL2 in widescreen mode. You do lose a little, but I think it still looks great when delivered on a standard def DVD, even on a plasma screen. I would then use the HV 20 in High Def mode as a second camera.

You can shoot wide from a distance, either with an operator or on a tripod without an operator, then bring the HD footage from the HV20 into a standard def timeline on your editing program. I am using Premiere Pro CS3, but I think most average or above editing programs can do this. You then have a high def picture that is much larger than your standard def footage, so you can scale the footage down to show the full frame or you can zoom in on the picture, and since it has much more resolution that standard def it will look at good as your SD footage. This allows you to use a static shot from a distance and then zoom or pan on the footage as you edit to focus on the important parts and make it look like you have a manned camera in the back. For instance, you could zoom in on the flower girl, bride, etc and then follow them as they walk down the aisle. You could pan accross the congregation, you could focus on the groom, etc. all from a static shot.

I use an HV10 like this and find that it works very well for me. Good luck with your shoot.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 09:57 AM   #6
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Hi guys thanks for the replys very informative.

One question though. If i shoot with the GL2 in 4:3, when put on a lcd or plasma, will the sides be cropped off? Most of my family have the wide screen tvs and i want it to look natural on the screen not cropped on both sides.

Another question; If i shoot HD with the HV20 and use it on my time line, wont the footage look different than the GL2?
thanks for your help.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 10:43 AM   #7
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If you shoot in 4:3 then of course the TV will show a 4:3 picture. Depending on the TV's settings this may be under or overscanned, it may be stretched, zoomed, or shown correctly as pillarboxed (black lines L & R). All will be under the remote's control, and at no time will you get the sides cut off.

If you burn the 4:3 footage to DVD as 16:9 then the TV should show it 16:9 - but with a vertical resolution hit of course.

If you shoot HDV on the HV20 then indeed it will look different to the GL footage. It will be far more detailed and a lot sharper.

tom.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 11:12 AM   #8
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As was mentioned above, if you burn 4x3 footage as 16x9 it will match the shape of an HD TV, however, the footge will be stretched to fill the space and everyone will look as though they put on 20-30 pounds (not a good thing for most brides). If you shoot with the GL2 in widescreen mode, not 4x3, it will fill the space without stretching the image wider and will match the shape of the HV20 in High Def and the shape of an HD television without making people look fatter. The HV20 picture will record more detail and be sharper, but when you edit it in a standard def timeline with the GL2 footage and then burn it to a standard def DVD it will be converted to have the same resolution as standard def and will look close to the GL2 footage both in shape and resolution.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 11:19 AM   #9
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I'm not in agreement with LLoyd, but there you go. I've intercut PD170 wedding footage shot in its 16:9 mode with Z1 footage in its standard def 16:9 mode and there's not a single switch-over between cameras where the resolution hit the 4:3 camera takes is not clearly and horribly evident.

The maths proves it - the 4:3 camera will have its 432 (PAL) lines interpolated to 576, whereas the HDV camera will be shooting 576 lines right out of the box. 25% is a lot of ground to make up, and the 4:3 cam can never do it.

tom.
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