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Dropouts with RED and Switronix Recon

Red One Red Epic Switronix Recon Wireless HD

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#1 J. Christopher Campbell

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 11:23 PM

I bought a Switronix Recon Wireless TX/RX several months ago and have had really good results.  I did several Alexa jobs and had very few dropouts and a pretty great LOS for the pricetag (75-100 ft consistently).

 

However, I just finished my second RED job with this setup and for the second time I was plagued with dropouts all show long.

 

The first job was a one day music video.  Then on a 5 week feature with RED EPIC as A Cam and Red One as B Cam, both gave me serious problems.  

 

I talked to Vinnie at Switronix (their customer service has been phenomenal btw), but they have no idea why I am experiencing such problems with RED only.

 

Has anyone experienced this problem specific to RED cameras?  Or does anyone know anything I might try?  

 

I know my assistants tried outputting several different signals from the EPIC, but I am not sure what all they tried.  None of the settings seemed to work. 


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#2 Victor Lazaro

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 12:26 AM

The Epic outputs 1080 true progressive and not PsF (Progressive segmented Frame) as most camera does. This is known for being a pain with some older monitors and a real pain. I would bet that's what's going on. Check with Switronix if they accept true progressive and PsF. Also check with your monitor to make sure it reads the signal properly (without the wireless in between)
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#3 Jarrett P. Morgan

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 12:59 AM

I was Chris's 1st on the feature he mentions. To add to the conversation, here are the formats the Recon accepts (as listed on their website):
1080p: 23.98psf, 24p, 25p, 25psf, 29.97p
        1080I: 50I, 60I
         720p: 24p, 25p, 50p, 60p

 

The camera at the start of the show was at 1080 23.976P as normal. I then tried 720 60P and 1080 29.97P with slightly more luck, but still not the 75-100 ft Chris says he gets on Alexa jobs.

If anyone has a MD-DUCC in Atlanta and wants to try out different framerates and resolutions and see what works the best, I would be (and I am guessing Chris would as well) game.


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#4 Victor Lazaro

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 01:06 AM

Would it be just (bad) luck with the environment and faraday like metal structures around? Of its just a signal strength issue I doubt it's related to the frame rate or video format.
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#5 Alan Rencher

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 01:14 AM

Are you using hd-sdi or HDMI? Have you tried going through a Decimator or another cross converter? What's the placement of the recon, top stage or bottom?
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#6 thomas-english

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 06:10 AM

I am having none of these problems on the RED / Epic you describe. It behaves exactly the same with RED as well as Alexa. The above comments all seem the way to look at your problem.

 

I always run HD SDI via BNC from the camera on the back of the cam or through the sleds internal HD loom from the HDSDI loop through on my decimator to have the TX on the base.

 

I turn the camera brain output to 720p and Auto HZ


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#7 J. Christopher Campbell

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 03:45 PM

I am having none of these problems on the RED / Epic you describe. It behaves exactly the same with RED as well as Alexa. The above comments all seem the way to look at your problem.

 

I always run HD SDI via BNC from the camera or through the sleds internal HD loom from the HDSDI loop through on my decimator

 

I turn the camera brain output to 720p and Auto HZ

 

What is Auto HZ?

 

And to answer a few questions...

 

I generally run the TX on top of the sled connected to the back of the battery mount.  

I run HD-SDI cable straight from camera to the TX.

 

On the 5 week movie we ran the RX out HD-SDI to a Decimator, then HDMI into a crappy Samsung Monitor (This job was both RED One and RED EPIC).  This could very well be the problem.  The only thing is that on my next RED One job I was still having the same problem running HD-SDI out of the RX straight into a 17" Panasonic HD-SDI input.

 

Thomas, what kind of range are you getting with your Recon?  And you are not having random dropouts even when close to the TX?

 

Sometimes if I just turn around quickly I have a dropout.  I wonder if I am having internal problems with my unit???

 

-chris


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#8 thomas-english

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 04:11 PM

What sled are you running,? How are you powering the unit? have you swapped out the BNC cables for cables from a completely different manufacturer? 

 

None of these systems work well when the TX is physically next to the RX or too close. 

 

These are I assume different cameras? 

 

Yeah I think there is a fault with your particular Recon. Maybe on the logic board that only acts with the red style signal rather than the alexa. Try getting a loaner and testing them against each other. 


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#9 J. Christopher Campbell

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 04:36 PM

What sled are you running,? How are you powering the unit? have you swapped out the BNC cables for cables from a completely different manufacturer? 

 

None of these systems work well when the TX is physically next to the RX or too close. 

 

These are I assume different cameras? 

 

Yeah I think there is a fault with your particular Recon. Maybe on the logic board that only acts with the red style signal rather than the alexa. Try getting a loaner and testing them against each other. 

 

I fly a Pro I with a few mods.  I use an AB batt (wired into the camera power) on the lower stage and 2 chocolate bars (aux and monitor).

 

I power the TX via a Pro 12/24 V Lemo to 4-pin XLR.

 

I have tried BNC's from 2 different manufacturers including Tec-Nec and an unknown manufacturer from a local rental house(heavy duty 15' or 50' BNC they use for video village).

 

When I say close I mean 15-20'.

 

Yes they are different cameras.

 

A loaner is a good idea.  I have already spoken to Switronix and they want to look at it.  They are already replacing the noisy fan for me and wiring the D-tap out to make it hot.  I have been very pleased with their customer service.  Now I just need a free week to send it in!


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#10 Victor Lazaro

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 10:49 PM

Would walkie talkie or other radio frequencies interfere with the device?


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#11 thomas-english

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 04:54 AM

I am talking breakup at 5ft to 1ft which is standard on all implementations of this chipset. 

 

By auto HZ: Its in the same menu you setup output to 720p. try 50hz and 60hz but this issue has nothing to do with that. 

 

You've a dry joint in there for a module that interprets the RED signal differently to the Alexa. You need a loaner to back to back them. Sending it in will be a nightmare because they almost certainly don't have a Steadicam, RED Epic and stuff sitting about the workshop and you don't have a week off. 


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#12 J. Christopher Campbell

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 07:30 PM

Good thoughts Thomas - on the loaner - I will call Vinnie.

 

Thanks everyone.


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#13 Osvaldo Silvera SOC

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 01:51 AM

Any updates to the above issue Mr. Campbell?


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