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minicams feeding CRT monitors

Lorenzo Levrini
 

Hi all,

For an upcoming music video I need to recreate this setup from 'Maniac'. 

(See attached still)

A minimum of 6 minicams feed 6 CRT-style monitors in shot. 

I know minicam companies so my biggest hurdle currently I think is finding the right monitors that will take a modern signal.

Any leads appreciated. 

I'm in London, UK.

Thanks,

Lorenzo Levrini
DP, London

Screen Shot 2018-11-06 at 09.09.54.png

Marty Brenneis
 

It will be easier to get SDI to analog converters. Lots of them in the used market.
I am assuming you are shooting at some variant of 25 or 50 FPS.
You are in luck since you are not dealing with the 24/59.94 stuff we deal with here in the US.
Your cameras will need to be genlocked so all the monitors are locked together.

The real answer is to find some gray haired video geezer who understands sync to get it all sunk up.
You should be able to work with most any commercial monitor that has component inputs.
Remember that those will  be 4:3 rather than 16:9.

The real answer is to use scan converters, but decimators will do a basic job of getting from HD to SD.
You may also need to work with your color balance since the CRTs are generally daylight balance.

If you have time to do some testing you should be able to figure it out.
If you are time pressed then hiring a real TV broadcast engineer for a day or two will be a good investment.
Not to cast aspersions on the DITs of the world, but many that I have met do not understand the word of sync and analogue gear, hence the suggestion for an old school broadcast engineer.

Feel free to email me directly with questions.
Marty Brenneis
droid for hire
24frame.tv

drew@...
 

Hi Lorenzo,
 
You will be well-served by hiring a capable video engineer.
 
It's a triple challenge you'll need to tackle:
- Syncing the monitors to the camera you're filming with
- Syncing the monitors to each other
- Sourcing the equipment
 
A "monitor that will take a modern signal" means a late production/broadcast CRT that can take SD or HD-SDI. Beware that those usually come as optional input boards. A Sony PVM-20L5 might be perfect for you, since the bezel is clean (and somewhat thin). Easy to dial the color temperature, too.
 
Good luck sourcing 6 (or 9, or 12) of them, can't help you with that. :) But the more I think of it, you'll definitely keep your life easier if you can avoid analog signals.
 
You definitely need to genlock everything to one reference signal - the 6 (or more) minicams, the filming camera, and the monitors. Keep that in mind when choosing your minicams, e.g. the Marshall CV365-CGB takes external sync but many don't.
 
And if your monitors only take composite or VGA, you'll need a set of converters. BrightEye 15 would be ideal because it's one of the only SDI>analog converters that genlock, but I'd be shocked if you found 6 for rent.
 
Marty: Refresh my mind, CRTs have no choice but be in sync with the analog signal they're fed, don't they? And, if you feed multiple genlocked SDI sources to identical SDI>CVBS converters (especially the cheapo ones), will the resulting CRT images be in sync?
 
I'd test things with 2 minicams & monitors, make sure everything works - and works consistently - then scale up.
 
 
Drew Lahat
Dangerous in several disciplines, and remembering too much from his SVHS days
Los Angeles, CA
 

Mako Koiwai
 

You can try shooting at that Magical setting of 150.15 degrees and 25 fps … where there is NO line on a CRT.

If you are slightly off you will see a few dots, the start of a line, black or white, depending which direction you are off.

Maybe it was easier when we were using camera likes a 435 with an RCU. You could adjust the hand wheel between 150.1 and 150.2 degrees for the fine tune. But we also did it with Panaflexes where one used the mechanical adjuster at the back of the camera.


makofoto, s. pasadena, ca

Bob Kertesz
 

Refresh my mind, CRTs have no choice but be in sync with the analog
signal they're fed, don't they?
And, if you feed multiple genlocked SDI sources to identical SDI>CVBS
converters (especially the cheapo ones), will the resulting CRT images
be in sync?
You will be well-served by hiring a capable video engineer.

Yes, yes, and yes.

-Bob

Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC
Hollywood, California

DIT, Video Controller, and live compositor extraordinaire.

High quality images for more than four decades - whether you've wanted
them or not.©

* * * * * * * * * *

Bob Kertesz
 

You can try shooting at that Magical setting of 150.15 degrees and 25 fps … where there is NO line on a CRT.

To be specific, certain shuttle angles at certain frame rates will result in no moving line on a CRT.

There will be a slightly diagonal line somewhere in frame, but it won't be rolling through if your playback source is somewhat professional and therefore stable.

You then need to use something to gently 'bump' the line into the space between frames by subtle shutter angle adjustments.

And you need to check it every time you roll the playback.

-Bob

Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC
Hollywood, California

DIT, Video Controller, and live compositor extraordinaire.

High quality images for more than four decades - whether you've wanted them or not.©

* * * * * * * * * *

Mako Koiwai
 

You can try shooting at that Magical setting of 150.15 degrees and 25 fps … where there is NO line on a CRT.

Makofoto, s. pasadena, ca

Steve Oakley
 

Contact Mike Sime in NY/NJ at  frelancer@...   .this is his day job to supply monitors of any sort - CRT, LCD, Projectors, supply the content for them, supply the monitors, sync to cameras at whatever frame rate. He’s got all the gear, in fact a small warehouse of stuff thats pretty amazing. Not sure if you can fly him in, but he can certainly answer the questions and point you in the right direction, maybe local UK contact who does the same.

check out his website http://www.visualalchemy.tv

having said that… 

sync isn’t that hard. if the cameras don’t have sync, then rent 6 TBC’s, a sync generator and a composite DA. feed sync to the TBC’s and main camera. its probably a solid day of messing around to get it to work if the gear is reasonably good. I’d be tempted to say add an extra of everything because the gear can be old and cranky to make work.

if you can get 6 SD cameras they will most likely have composite coming out so feeding them into TBCs if needed should be easy. if they have HD SDI then decimators will convert to SD SDI, then SDI -> composite converters. Rental houses usually have one two still. VER had milk crates of them.

Analog engineering used to be one of my day jobs. I built many edit rooms, a couple control rooms. You could convince me to visit ;) 

S

On Nov 6, 2018, at 3:26 AM, Lorenzo Levrini <lorry.pearlrocks@...> wrote:

Hi all,

For an upcoming music video I need to recreate this setup from 'Maniac'. 

(See attached still)

A minimum of 6 minicams feed 6 CRT-style monitors in shot. 

I know minicam companies so my biggest hurdle currently I think is finding the right monitors that will take a modern signal.

Any leads appreciated. 

I'm in London, UK.

Thanks,

Lorenzo Levrini
DP, London

Geoff Boyle
 

I couldn’t agree more!

 

cheers
Geoff Boyle NSC
EU based cinematographer
+31 637155076

www.gboyle.nl

www.cinematography.net

 

 

From: cml-general@... <cml-general@...> On Behalf Of Marty Brenneis

 

If you are time pressed then hiring a real TV broadcast engineer for a day or two will be a good investment.
Not to cast aspersions on the DITs of the world, but many that I have met do not understand the word of sync and analogue gear, hence the suggestion for an old school broadcast engineer.

 

Daniel Drasin
 

Lorenzo Levering writes: A minimum of 6 minicams feed 6 CRT-style monitors in shot. 

----------

Can you bypass the whole analog setup by somehow faking the analog monitors? -- say, by comping a live image of six CRT monitors onto a large 4K TV screen? The minicams could be dummies, with the actual images being supplied by offscreen digital cameras.

Dan Drasin
Producer/DP
Marin County, CA

Marty Brenneis
 

Drew: That is true, the way CRT monitors work they are in sync with their incoming signal. The invention of SDI kind of messed with all that since the SDI signal can be asynchronous with the video it is transporting. (Hence the need for a separate REF input on SDI devices)

Ted: I'm not sure if I'm the only one here who has a set of Schindler converters. They are handy especially for the US with the 24/29.97 issues. Mine are available for hire.
Frame rate conversion is probably not needed in this case. Just use genlocking cameras and a sync generator and all will be swell.

An old and grey vision engineer should know all of this anyway, (Perhaps there are some young whippersnappers out there who are in to vintage video too)

Of course you could hire a droid form the states to come over and help, (I know one for hire) but that is probably not needed since there are many capable engineers in the UK.

Be Well
Marty Brenneis
Droid for hire
24frame.tv

Franz
 

Another solution is to apply green screen to the CRT monitor (as a video feed or as a "plaster on" physical thing) and add the minicams feed in post.
Franz


Sir Franz Pagot AIC OMRI 
Cinematographer
BAFTA
MBKS GBCT


http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1219277/

mob UK +44 7770 520757
cell ITA +393409344107
skype: acquademon

On 8 Nov 2018, at 07:01, Marty Brenneis <marty@...> wrote:

Drew: That is true, the way CRT monitors work they are in sync with their incoming signal. The invention of SDI kind of messed with all that since the SDI signal can be asynchronous with the video it is transporting. (Hence the need for a separate REF input on SDI devices)

Ted: I'm not sure if I'm the only one here who has a set of Schindler converters. They are handy especially for the US with the 24/29.97 issues. Mine are available for hire.
Frame rate conversion is probably not needed in this case. Just use genlocking cameras and a sync generator and all will be swell.

An old and grey vision engineer should know all of this anyway, (Perhaps there are some young whippersnappers out there who are in to vintage video too)

Of course you could hire a droid form the states to come over and help, (I know one for hire) but that is probably not needed since there are many capable engineers in the UK.

Be Well
Marty Brenneis
Droid for hire
24frame.tv

Eric Wenocur
 

Sorry... what? Both analog video and SDI contain sync information that a monitor (or other device)
can lock to. That's been the principle of video transport since at least the 70s. What does "the
SDI signal can be asynchronous with the video it is transporting" mean? The video *is* the SDI signal.

External ref on a monitor is there to provide a fixed reference when comparing the timing of
different inputs. Or, in rare cases, to give the monitor sync when the incoming video has none
(such as an RGB signal without sync on any of the color channels).


Eric Wenocur
Lab Tech Systems
301-438-8270
301-802-5885 cell


On 11/8/18 1:01 AM, Marty Brenneis wrote:
Drew: That is true, the way CRT monitors work they are in sync with their incoming signal. The
invention of SDI kind of messed with all that since the SDI signal can be asynchronous with the
video it is transporting. (Hence the need for a separate REF input on SDI devices)