Equipment Tip

Equipment Tips

SAVE SOME BREAD [12/5/03] From: Adrian Kill NHDTV Cable ID can be a pain in the butt, so a simple and cheap way to id your myriad of cables is by saving the little plastic thingies off you bagel, bread, muffin and rice cake bags. They make handy reusable labels that you can mark up with a sharpie. And snap onto your Audio and Video cables. They make cable ID…

White Balance Tips

From: Eric J. Smith, Director/Director of Photography, Puritan Films I rarely use anything but my “Preset” white balance. Preset defaults your white balance to 3200 Kelvin degrees (except on some newer cameras where there is an ENG menu setting to switch between 3200 and 5600 Kelvin degrees). It is as if you were shooting color film, where you don’t have a white balance button, and must use filters. This usually…

It’s All About Protection

When using a lav mic, tie a very loose knot in the wire that will help control the mic from being jerked around if it is pulled on, which can cause the mic to rub across the clothing making a nasty noise. When using a wireless transmitter in the heat of summer, wrap the transmitter in a non-lubricated condom. It will keep condensation out. Non-lubricated condoms are also good protection…

Don’t Get Blown Away

From: Mike Sellers, KPLC-TV I don’t have a windscreen for my lav, but a photog from KLFY showed me a trick once that works just as well, if not better. If your subject is wearing a shirt that has a button front (regular button-down or polo), clip the lav with the mic between the fabric. Placement of the subject helps as well, but its a great trick, and doesn’t look…

Water Cooler Talk

From: J.D Dworkin WPIX-11 NY Need a little bit of extra nat sound but your station doesn’t have good mic equipment? Try this trick and see what happens. Go to your nearest water cooler and take a few of those cone cups. Cut the cone tip off the bottom of one. Take your simple little lav mic and put it inside the hole. Now… role. Yep, your done. An extra…

Back Focus Settings

For a variety of reasons, your backfocus can be messed up. Anything from using someone elses camera to swapping out a lens. I’ve had to adjust my backfocus in the field several times. Put the camera on sticks. Zoom in and focus on something really far away. Tree branches, a fence, anything with nice fine/thin lines. I also like to use my neutral density filters to make the focus point…

It’s Not Just a Camera Anymore

From: Jim Travers WBTV I have had great luck recently using my DVCPRO D700 as an audio mixer while doing live shots.  Just have an engineer (or anyone who knows the secret handshake) go into the internal menu and set your audio output to the “mix” setting.  That sends both channel 1 and 2 to the audio out on the back of the camera.  Plug your audio cable into that…