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Canatrans mounting options

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#1 Bryan Fowler

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Posted 24 January 2011 - 10:16 AM

I have an archer2.

I have a canatrans.

I've read some about interference with the camera when it's mounted on the camera.

So I mounted it behind my monitor, (standard SD monitor from the Archer2) ran video OUT of the monitor, to the Canatrans. Powered through the Dtap on the battery. (I would eventually power it through the 3pin Lemo on the sled...this is just the testing phase, so I know what cables to buy)

That seemed to work ok.

Then I thought about the 4pin Hirose on the topstage. That would be an elegant way of getting power and video.

So now I'm just wondering what the rest of you do?

(My previous 1st gen canatrans was just simple 4pin XLR and BNC, so options were simple, and I mounted it on my battery of my EFP)
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#2 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 24 January 2011 - 11:30 AM

Hey Bryan!

I've mounted my Canatrans to all sorts of spots on the camera and have never had a problem or reports of a problem.

The four-pin Hirose is the proper connector on your top stage. My old Clipper had the same on the bottom for low-mode but I don't know what the Archer has.

My preferred mounting spot is the back of the camera in the case of a video camera, or the top if there's a 1/4 - 20 threaded mount up top. You should have a small mounting plate that came with the Canatrans but I prefer to mount an spare dovetail plate on top and use 3M Dual Lock Velcro. I also mount it on the right side of the camera or again with the old Clipper I would occasionally mount it on the nose of the top stage.

The higher on the rig the better and the object is to keep that 360 deg omni directional antenna as free and clear as possible.

For cabling I have one 16" power/video cable, one 24" power/video cable and one power only cable so I can power it from a D-Tap.

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#3 Scott Dropkin

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Posted 24 January 2011 - 01:01 PM


I did have an interference problem a while back. The interference was very minor and unfortunately was not noticed until they saw the footage on a larger screen a few days after the shoot. The camera was a lower end digital camera, which was part of the problem because I think the cheaper cameras have less insulation. I also mounted the Canatrans directly on the camera, right next to the tape recording. Lesson learned for me. The problem has since been solved by just moving the canatrans just inches away. I can't speak for everyone but I would be more concerned for interference on cheaper cameras than I would with the F35 or Alexa or even the RED.

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#4 brooksrobinson


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Posted 24 January 2011 - 02:24 PM


I’ve always mounted my Canatrans at the highest position – VTR guys are notoriously nosey, and this gives the appearance that I am trying to make their life easier. Sleds vary greatly, and some are much easier to attach a transmitter to – especially in low-mode. Most (I believe) have video/power connectors at both the top and bottom of the sled, allowing you to move the transmitter from top to bottom depending if you are in high or low mode.

When in high-mode, the transmitter sits horizontally on the top dovetail plate (the one used for low-mode). Use a Velcro strap that wraps around and circles both the transmitter and dovetail plate to hold it in place – soft on one side, hard on the other, with a small amount of sticky Velcro on the transmitter to anchor it in place. Swivel the Canatrans antenna up for a better signal and to keep on the VTR op’s good side.

When in low-mode before I had my current XCS sled which has a sweet transmitter bracket at the base, I used Velcro to mount the transmitter to the bottom of the sled (now at the top since it is in low-mode). This keeps the transmitter at the highest point, and makes the signal less likely to have interference.

For both high and low-mode, I like doing this instead of mounting it to the side of the sled or camera body to try and keep the weight centered, and not too side heavy.

I still do mostly film jobs, so I can’t comment definitively about video camera interference. The HD jobs I have done while still using my Canatrans instead of an HD transmitter have been fine – the last of which was the other day with an Alexa.

I have had issues with my Canatrans interfering with certain Panatape packages. Two of the AC’s I work with have issues with my Canatrans and their readouts, and we need to mount my Canatrans at the back of the mag to avoid bad readouts on the display, both on the brains and my HU-3.

Good luck and let us know what worked for you.

Brooks Robinson

PS Robert – Have you tried the XCS transmitter bracket with your new sled? It is great for high mode as well as mounting it to the base for low-mode (unless you are going through low doors). It mounts vertically into the notch at the back of the top dovetail plate and keeps the transmitter up high where it belongs.
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#5 Bryan Fowler

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Posted 26 January 2011 - 10:22 AM

Thanks guys for the help.

I think I might go with cabling for both options. When I need more weight below the gimbal I can mount the Decimator and Canatrans on the back of the monitor, and with lightweight jobs up high on the camera. Maybe overkill, but will be ok for now.

Good point Brooks about the VTR op. I'll remember that for sure.

The XCS transmitter bracket sounds handy. I'm guessing it's just for XCS sleds?
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