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


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Old March 9th, 2005, 03:45 PM   #1
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Question for Glen Elliott

When shooting receptions do you ever find it necessary to use on camera lighting? I've almost made up my mind to buy a vx2100, but if I still need to use a light I might just stick with the dvx100a.
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Old March 10th, 2005, 09:43 AM   #2
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I've shot with both and it really depends on the reception hall. I try to shoot without external light if I can but sometimes it's required even with the VX2100.

I've found, even in dark reception hall environments, all I need is a little boost. I personally use the Sony 10/20 light and 90% of the time only use the 10watt setting. Granted I could light it "better" with a higher wattage light but in dark environments when you spill bright light on the subject the aperature has to adjust causing the subject to look like they are swimming in a sea of blackness. For my taste I prefer the image to be more appealing to be a stop or two darker but also include some background elements. I've never been fond of the spotlight look from bright on-camera lighting- a diffused 10 watt light and a VX2100/PD-170 on +12 give me the best results....to my eyes at least.

Also remember if your image is a few stops down but has a more evenly lit image of both forground and background...you still have some latitude in post. Where as if you have a well lit subject with a practically black background there's no way to recover the detail from the background without blowing out the subject.
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Old March 10th, 2005, 12:54 PM   #3
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I'm using a DVXA and just got a jam up little on cam light that is testing wonderfully, it's a Besor 50 dimmer light kit w/ barndoors and battery pack. Rush at EVS will know exactly the kit, he special ordered it for me and is getting ready to stock a few, took about three days to get to me drop shipped, and was around $270. I wouldnt hesitate to recommend it, as you can dim it down to acceptable levels, but still have plenty of available wattage for other funtionality you may need down the road. OF course, I'm no Glen Elliot.....yet. OK, I'll never BE Glen, but you know what I mean!
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Old March 10th, 2005, 01:37 PM   #4
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Is it OK to use a 20/40W on-camera light? I own the MX5000 (1/6" 3CCD).

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=304512&is=REG
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Old March 10th, 2005, 05:21 PM   #5
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I would suggest a dimmer, because it is very easy to cross the line between acceptable and blinding.......a dimmer enables you to perfectly fine tune your output. A lot of people here have suggested no stronger than a 20 though, if you get a non-dimmer.

The one you linked to looks to me like it would be fine, it's got built in diffusion of 20w. I would get someone to aim your camera at you and see for yourself what someone on the other end would be experiencing when you come up to them with your rig.
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Old March 10th, 2005, 09:53 PM   #6
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Glen, what battery are you using to power your light and how long does it last? Do you diffuse it in any way?
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Old March 11th, 2005, 07:59 AM   #7
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One of the reasons I chose the Sony 10/20 was because it uses the same batteries as my Sony cameras. No external battery pack required.

I diffuse the light with Smith Victor diffusion paper I purchased from B&H. I took the light apart and sandwiched the diffusion paper between the glass and the metal plate/frame inside.


I have been considering giving the Frezzi Mini-Dimmer a shot, it definitly has many benefits over my fixed 10 or 20 watt solution. My only concerns are: 1) Carrying around an external battery source can be cumbersome/uncomfortable and...2) You have to watch when you change the dimmer setting because these lights are made to hold the same white-balance setting throughout the entire dimming range. After you adjust the dimmer you might have to manually white balance again.
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Old March 11th, 2005, 08:00 AM   #8
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<<<-- Originally posted by Young Lee : Is it OK to use a 20/40W on-camera light? I own the MX5000 (1/6" 3CCD).

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=304512&is=REG -->>>

Seems like a good deal. Just be carefull because you might end up in situations where you need just a little boost to pop the colors and 20watts might be a bit too much. You could, however, offset the excess light with additional diffusion.
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Old March 11th, 2005, 09:30 AM   #9
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Thanks. :)
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Old March 20th, 2005, 12:30 PM   #10
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I use a Frezzi micro-fill with the shoulder pack. Weight's not really a problem. I'd recommend the soft box though since it helps diffuse the spotlight effect. At the beginning of the evening, I white balance with an average intensity and that seems to work for the remainder of the night. Overall, it's great having the ability to dial in your light.
Bob
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Old April 4th, 2005, 05:10 PM   #11
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Bob- I just picked up the Frezzi Mini Dimmer with MFSB-2 softbox (w/ interchangeble diffusion grids). I'm starting out with a cheaper Bescor shoulder pack just to power the light to see how I like it. If it's something I feel I can do glidecam work with (re: added weight) I'll invest in a nice NRG battery belt or Vest.
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Old April 4th, 2005, 08:23 PM   #12
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Glen,
Do you use the body pod for the glidecam or just the glidecam itself? Does anyone know if this is worth buying?
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Old April 4th, 2005, 08:38 PM   #13
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No the body pod is not worth it. You can't glide when using it. It's soley for resting.

The glidecam on the other hand is worth every penny.
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Old April 4th, 2005, 08:44 PM   #14
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how about the forearm brace? I have a 4000pro and a vx2100
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Old April 4th, 2005, 08:56 PM   #15
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I tried the forearm brace once and didn't like it. It didn't allow your wrist to torque to raise the glidecam high above your head or for low shots. Imagine your wrist fused in a neutral position- now raise your arm (glidecam arm) above your head. If you cant torque your wrist so that your knuckles aren't facing the ceiling you can't hold the glidecam.

If your doing standard mid level shots (never high or low) it might be a decent investment. I just felt it was too limiting. In regards to cutting down fatigue- it's not my arms that get tired anyway...it's usually my central back muscles.
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