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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
Topics also include Sony's TRV950, VX2000, PD150 & DSR250 family.

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Old November 13th, 2002, 10:42 PM   #1
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Guys,I searched the forums just now,and if this topic has been
beaten to death,I apologize.However,I was curious to know if
anyone has been able to use a teleprompter that can work with the PD 150.I'll be doing docs later on,and would be nice if
one could be obtained.Thanks
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Old November 14th, 2002, 12:18 AM   #2
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If you have a laptop, or a computer monitor that you can setup on the set, there's no need to buy a teleprompter. All you have to do is buy the software (might even find a free version).
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Old November 14th, 2002, 12:36 AM   #3
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Here's a link to a thread on teleprompters and the site they are discussing.
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Old November 14th, 2002, 06:29 PM   #4
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In general, the camera really does not effect the choice of teleprompter unless you want to hand-hold the camera and lock the prompter to the camera.

Having purchased several teleprompters lately, I can tell you that unless you have a nice chunk of money in your pocket, you have some heavy compromises ahead of you.

There is no substitute for a 'real' teleprompter. Meaning that a CRT or computer monitor off to the side is not an adequate substitute. The viewer can always see the eyes move off to the prompter and back. In fact, the talent has to learn to not move their eyes with a 'proper' promter too. It is tough to do that and appear to look right into the viewer's eyes while reading unfamiliar text..

There are three types of prompter with many variations of each.

There is the prompter that is mounted to a camera tripod or pedestal and is a permanent part of the system. This means that the support has to handle the prompter (which may be a color CRT), the mirror and the camera.

There is the prompter that is supported on its own stand and the camera snuggles up to its backside and you stick the lens through a fabric light baffle that has a hole in the middle and a means of tightening the fabric around the lens. More flexible until you try to truck or dolly the cameras.

The prompter that is mounted right on the camera. I've seen two versions of this. One has a horizontal plastic panel horizontal above the camera and you place your paper copy face-down on that. The mirror hangs below. There are no lights IIRC so you are dependent on ambient light (or an on-camera light) to provide enough to read by. The other I've read about is small and uses a Palm Pilot as the display source. I think it was just into Beta testing not too long ago. I don't care for either one.

After all was said and done, I purchased the stand-alone prompters to avoid the installation problems with the studio cameras and the limiting of camera motion (since we could not afford the really good LCD color panels like those used at the local television stations.

In reality, you don't normally need the fancy half-silvered mirrors and the rest of the stuff. Especially if you aren't going to use it all that much. A piece of plexiglass will work as a mirror. Any computer display will work as the source. There are some free software packages out there. Some even work. The for-pay software, is, I feel limited and light-weight unless you want to spend thousands of dollars for this. It is possible that a Word Processing program could be pressed into service for this. Or one could scroll text as if it were credits and create a video file for replay on a TV monitor. Hard to control speed though.
Mike Rehmus
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Old November 14th, 2002, 07:47 PM   #5
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Thanks Beas and others.I have to admit I've thought about locking down the camera and using cue cards,but in a way I'm not really crazy about that idea,even if it is the cheapest way to go.It seems that people reading cue cards would have a harder time with such things as glare issues from the cards;also following the text on cue cards would not seem to give as smooth a flow as a teleprompter would scrolling text along electronically without a skip.The Pocket PC seems to be a nice,yet pricey solution,and I wouldn't mind paying more if the quality I would get would be worth it.
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