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Varricam 3700


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#1 brooksrobinson

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Posted 18 July 2009 - 12:36 AM

I’m starting a show with the Varricam 3700 out of Panavision Hollywood. I’ve been shooting film and don’t have a lot of experience with HD, much less this camera. I did a forum search, but I still have a few questions about this camera prior to my prep on Monday.

• Low-mode – does Panavision have a good solution to mounting this underslung?
• Cables – I haven’t talked to the DIT yet, but I’m wondering about cable solutions for this camera (assuming we are cabled). Does Panavision carry or make the sexy thin cable or is there something else I should be looking at? Any good solutions?
• Downconverter – Does this camera have an internal downconverter, or does Panavision have a decent one that works nicely with this body and my XCS sled and Transvideo 3A?
• Power – Is this camera a power hog? I have dionics and trimpacs (2 dionics and 1 trimpac on my XCS sled at a time). Will I be okay with this?
• Power connector – I assume this is a 4 pin XLR?
• Weight – How heavy is this camera?

Is there anything I forgot to ask about that I should be aware of – either on the rig or hand-held? Are there any must-haves that I should request?

Thanks in advance for the help.

Brooks Robinson
brooksontheroad@pacbell.net
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#2 Emre Tufekci

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 04:56 PM

Hi Brooks,

We have a 3000 in house but they are pretty much identical with the 3700 so here are few answers:

-Low Mode: the camera is a ENG type body so unless you have plate you will see movement in the handle. We just flip sled upside down as the camera has a reverse scan function and it's a lot easier than trying to mount it on a low mode.

-Cables: depending on what format/resolution you are using it varies. If you need 4:4:4 at 10bit 1080P you need to go Dual Link HD-SDI. Otherwise camera can record 1080P 4:2:2 using the AVC-I codec so you use the on-board P2 cards. They weigh nothing.

-I do believe it should have an internal downconvertor. 2700 and 3000 does.

-The body power consumption is 38W ,we have a Ultra-2 and Clipper 2 and we can run camera, sled, wireless transmitter, bartech FF using only 12V or 24v steadicam powercubes (or dionic 90)

-Power is 4 pin XLR

-Weight is not too bad (10.8 lbs body, 17lbs with lens and VF) its nowhere near flying a single mode genesis.

Hope this helps

Emre

www.productionpit.com
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#3 brooksrobinson

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Posted 20 July 2009 - 06:04 PM

Emre,

Thanks for the response. I went to the prep today and was happily surprised. There were a couple of wanky things bracket-wise from Panavision’s end, but overall it seemed fine.

We are using some sort of HD transmitter (wasn’t available for my prep) instead of running cables which helps.

Panavision insists that it is fine to mount a plate to the handle for low-mode (I don’t know if their handle is an after-market modification or not) – I’ll have to see how stable it is.

Power is fine, although it is run through some 4 pin XLR/Anton Bauer plate at the back of the body (instead of using the standard 4 pin XLR at the back of the body) so as to power the breakout P-tap AKS. I was initially getting a power warning light on the body until I remembered that Greg Bubb modified my sled a while back (for HD cameras) to draw camera power simultaneously from all three sled batteries out of the 12V out in my junction box instead of using the normal 12/24V out. Once I switched it over, it worked great. One strange thing I found was the camera and CineTape stayed powered up even when I had switched off the power to my sled. I need to remember to switch off power at the camera, which is probably a good idea anyway.

The internal downconverter seemed to work well, and it is nice not needing to carry something else external.

We will carry digi-primes, but I get the sense that we will be flying the 6-24 (?) zoom mostly. It seemed like a nice and light combination – quite a bit less than the XL I had on my rig last week.

Thanks again for the help. This is a great community, and it is nice to know there are people willing to take time away from their hectic schedules to help out a fellow operator in need. Thank you.

Brooks Robinson
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#4 Emre Tufekci

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 09:25 AM

No problem and thank you for posting your follow up with the gear after your set up day.

Good Luck with your shoot.

Emre
www.productionpit.com
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