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Old June 13th, 2011, 09:26 PM   #1
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LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Hi there,
We have recently come across a problem at weddings this year where Decor company utilizing LED lighting is causing flickering on our videos. I figured the solution would be shutter speed but I played around with it and despite how dark it became the it still flickered

Any thoughts?


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Old June 14th, 2011, 08:15 AM   #2
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Cheap lights? - I use an inexpensive LED for fill light and it has the same problem. Works fine with fresh batteries but as soon as they start to wear down I get the flicker.
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Old June 14th, 2011, 12:43 PM   #3
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

We've been dealing with this a lot more over the last 2 years as more and more DJ's and lighting companies added LED's to their inventory. It's a problem with the frequency of the lighting, and sometimes the right shutter speed can eliminate or greatly reduce the problem, but often you're stuck and won't be able to get rid of the banding.

We use additional lighting of our own to make sure that our subjects don't have the banding on their faces.
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Old June 14th, 2011, 04:04 PM   #4
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Art Varga View Post
Cheap lights? - I use an inexpensive LED for fill light and it has the same problem. Works fine with fresh batteries but as soon as they start to wear down I get the flicker.
Those cheap LED lights usually have the option to be powered by large Sony Video camera Batteries. Use those and flickering will disappear all the way till the battery dies completely.
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Old June 14th, 2011, 07:31 PM   #5
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Guys, he's not talking about on-camera LED lights.
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Old June 15th, 2011, 09:03 AM   #6
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Thanks Travis for clarification.

Here is what I am talking about. Just check out decor footage half way and close to the end


True that they may be cheap lights but there has to be something to take care of that. I am not too crazy about casting lights on decor as it takes the mood and details away

Anyone.
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Old June 15th, 2011, 03:00 PM   #7
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

I'm guessing you're talking about the pulsing purple background lighting? Has the client complained about that (or the RS artifacts <wink>)?

I found the RS partial frame flashes more irritating, and hardly noticed the other - I thought it made it look like some sort of "water" effect, not overly objectionable...

It's a physics problem, sort of like dealing with flourescent lighting or shooting ANY lighted scene where the electrical system is oscillating (alternating) at about the same rate as your shutter.

I'm going to venture a guess that there's a range within which the AC and lighting transformers can oscillate, and it probably co-incides with either the fundamental shutter speed or a multiple/fraction thereof.

Solving it? Too many variables, IMO. My "non-technical solution" would be that unless there's a client complaint, just try to ignore it in "finished" footage, and if there's a complaint put it in the same category as RS, it's a "function of the technology" and cannot be avoided.

Travis's solution of having supplemental lighting you can use to "overpower" the "bad" lighting in the critical areas of your frame is pretty much the only answer to ANY light related issue. Sort of the same theory as to why we have secondary discrete audio sources whenever possible, and why we curse the dark venue...

I know it's hard to look at "flawed" footage caused by one or another technology or situational limitations, but it is what it is, and I believe if the customer likes the OVERALL result, these little things aren't as bothersome as they are to us in the edit bay.

I think it's also easy to forget that while we try to achive "Hollywood" (or Bollywood!) end results, it's hard to replicate that production value without a sound/lighting/grip/rigging CREW! One guy, or a couple, if you bring assistant(s) can only bring and rig so much gear, after all!
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Old June 15th, 2011, 04:08 PM   #8
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Thanks for the help.

And to be honest, besides customer satisfaction you want your product to be close to perfect and it's more for a company's goals then clients:)


Travis, anything you wanna share in terms of light set up and types of lights you use. Any example I can check out online

Thanks buddy
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Old June 15th, 2011, 08:16 PM   #9
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jawad Mir View Post
Thanks for the help.

And to be honest, besides customer satisfaction you want your product to be close to perfect and it's more for a company's goals then clients:)


Travis, anything you wanna share in terms of light set up and types of lights you use. Any example I can check out online

Thanks buddy
Jawad, I agree with David. We can only do so much with a limited budget. For $3k-$5,000 the brides are really getting some great results for that price range compared to a Hollywood film that cots tens of millions.
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Old June 15th, 2011, 09:47 PM   #10
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

Right that makes sense Michael :)

But like I said it's not always about the bride or groom or anyone but yourself :)
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Old June 16th, 2011, 01:35 AM   #11
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Re: LED Light Flickers on DSLR Cameras...

The best thing I can tell you to do with lighting is to get the light up high and aim it down as much as possible. This will help keep the light on the subject and not the background (decor). You can also aim the light up if necessary and have it very low. We also use barn doors on our lights to help control where the light is going and how large a spread we're throwing.
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