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Minor jitter in image


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#1 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 18 January 2009 - 09:58 PM

So I shot the Motor City Bowl for a client who wanted HD. My rig is the Flyer LE, so naturally the HVX was the camera of choice. Upon looking over some of the footage (particularly when I move a lot faster), there's some jitter in the image. Here's a clipping that illustrates the jitter the best:



I'll include all the specs and components used incase something in my rigging was the culprit:

-HVX200A
-FireStore FS-100 mounted on dovetail plate
-Anton Bauer ElipZ battery unit
-7.9" Panasonic HD Monitor (4-pin power from sled)
-VariZoom VZ-Rock PZFI
-Bogen/Manfrotto Quick Release Adaptor for fast switches to low mode

I had to run power and component video down and around the post to run the monitor, with velcro straps to keep it away from the gimbal. Throw in the FireWire and PZFI cables, and there was a lot of potential hazards on the rig. Of course now I wish I would have taken a picture of the setup..


My Flyer is the SD model, so I took that monitor off and threaded on the Panasonic one in its place. My original thoughts were that the mount might not be substantial enough to support that heavier monitor, and that it might be flexing as I moved causing jitter up the post. Upon further comtemplating, I realized that I did notice some play in that ElipZ battery where it mounts to the camera. Like an idiot, I put it smack-dab between the camera and dovetail plate anyways. I probably should have put it on my lowmode bracket which was mounted on the handle, but I switched back and fourth so often. The Bogen Quick Release assembly is really solid, so I vouch for that not being the issue. I use it all the time with other cameras and get perfectly stable images.

So I can't think that it was my operating that caused the jitter, especially since this is the only occasion that it's ever come up. Luckily all of the footage that was used in the production looked fine. I was almost running in that shot..

Edited by Mike Germond, 18 January 2009 - 10:00 PM.

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#2 Richard W. Davis

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Posted 19 January 2009 - 12:59 AM

I realized that I did notice some play in that ElipZ battery where it mounts to the camera. Like an idiot, I put it smack-dab between the camera and dovetail plate anyways. (Quote)


Ding ding ding. You knew the answer... That seemed to be s a high frequency vibration which is most often a problem near camera plate, or camera connection or donkey box. If you noticed some play, you already have your answer.

Best,

Rich Davis
LA
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#3 Peter Hoare

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:22 PM

Make sure that your plate is screwed down nice and tight to the camera. If the screw is loose, the camera can rock back and forth to cause this shaking.
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#4 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:19 PM

I'm shooting NCAA wrestling for Live TV on Sunday and I was given a selection of cameras to choose from. Since everything will be in low-mode for the matches, I was looking at handle stability. Some of the cheaper ENG cameras they showed me had some pretty flimsy handles. I did notice some jitter in the image again, even at low speeds.

I'm becoming a stickler for this now..
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#5 Amando Crespo

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:53 PM

Hi Mike!.... 2 years ago, I had the same effect in a shot.... Just I almost become crazy.... In my case it was the camera -V- mount batts who had vibrations....
Take a look to the plate... I think...It was not troubles with your vest or arm adjust....
I think that you had tapeworm a loose piece and made vibrations.....
There are other troble way.... (only...0,01%)... Camera peing rollers was loose.... I don´t know... Check your gear with camera before shot... It´s the way
Luck.... :( :(
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#6 Ken Nguyen

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 02:20 AM

Hi Mike,
I think you have the "steady shot" function ON.
Most consumer video camcorders have this feature.
The jitter is most likely the result of this digital stabilizing correction.

Hope this help!
Ken Nguyen.
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#7 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 02:28 PM

Ken,

Turning off the OIS on Panasonic cameras is usually the first thing I do. Besides, all it will do is create a floaty looking shot...I've tried it.

I've definitely narrowed the problem to a less than solid connection between the camera and stage.
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#8 Erik Brul

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 07:28 PM

I had the same jitter problem in my second (previous) Flyer during a short..
After checking all the components, i have checked the 4 black screws in the topstage. I have loosen these and rescrew them as firm as possible.

This solved the problem at my side.. Be carefull, between these screws also the power and videowires are there !

Erik
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#9 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 10:45 AM

I'm not a huge fan of Tiffen's low mode kit and D-bracket for the Flyer LE on ENG cameras and larger. Inherently, the rubberized grip in the handle bracket allows for movement, which is multiplied by the heavier camera.

Is there another type of universal handle bracket out there? Or is it specific to each camera?
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#10 jay kilroy

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 11:10 AM

Mike,

Look up Brant Fagan. He makes a great little alternative for low mode, his VLS system. Not sure if it will work for your Flyer though, worth a shot.
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#11 PeterAbraham

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Posted 03 February 2009 - 12:02 PM

It takes a few loose screws to remind me to obey the basic rituals. Check everything periodically. Check ALL of the screws and bolts after flying. The high-frequency vibration of flight wreaks havoc. A few thoughts in this regard.

1. Blue non-permanent Loc-Tite will keep screws from unwinding. For those that are never moved aside from major projects or overhauls, apply a drop and let set. When I had my Master Series Elite rig, I used it on the stage screws that held things together. Similarly, it's VERY useful to apply to one's top thumbscrew on the vest. The one we use to measure our settings? Unless you gain or lose a lot of weight, those settings are rarely touched. And yet, every time you put the vest into the bag/ case, the thumbscrews are turned randomly. Some blue Loc-Tite will stop the top one from moving day to day. Quite useful.

2. The Stomp Test tm. Useful for all rigs and set-ups. Unless you are completely confident in the mountings of all gear, try this when you set up in the morning. Similarly, try it when a new bit is added to the camera. Get in good posture, fly the rig with fingers barely touching and stomp your back foot hard. Watch the corner of the monitor housing. If there is vibration, you can usually see it there. Or, zoom in all the way on the video camera and hit record. Watch playback. If you see vibration when doing a stomp, you will see it when running because the vertical shuddering inherent in running is identical to the vibration caused by a stomp. On a film camera, hit record on your on-board to check. Quick test, done at the stand ( you needn't RUN to do it ) and delivers valuable information before you get on set with the rig.

3. Keep a good collection of very long zip ties on hand. When adding on elements whose bracketry is suspect, zip ties are a great way to stop movement / vibration. A good example here is an older follow-focus set up. Heden motor, IIIA-style rod off of "rabbit-ear" on the dovetail plate, stiff lens. Motor struggles to turn, can "roll off" of lens, causing lack of grab and vibration. Zip tie can pull the motor against the lens- yet the lens barrel can spin against the zip tie freely. Not so with velcro and tape. Anyone using a rig with a broadcast video camera and a teleprompter has had to deal with vibration.

A bit of forethought in terms of a kit that allows you to rapidly reduce vibration, and a few moments of checking when building in the morning might help you to prevent this situation.

Best to all,

Peter Abraham

Director of Technical Services, Steadicam
The Tiffen Company

( and 21 years Operating. 5 sleds, 5 arms, 3 vests )
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#12 Adam Vesely

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Posted 07 March 2009 - 07:24 PM

Hi all,

I have noticed an annoying jitter when trying to run with my new Steadicam Pilot and administered the Stomp Test with the camera zoomed in and see noticeable jitter. I have checked all my screws and everything seems to be A-OK. The only thing I found was that the pan ring part of the gimbal can be rocked ever so slightly by holding either side and pushing up on one side and down on the other. Alternating up and down forces back and forth produces an audible clicking sound from it shifting. Could this be my problem? If so, how can I fix it?

-Adam Vesely
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#13 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 02:11 PM

I just had a similar issue with vibration on a Flyer LE. I was using an EX3 with a Chroszeil Matte Box and eyebrow.

My fast walk shots were completely useless due to the vibration. The camera was very secure on the plate and nothing moved in my tests.

I'm thinking the eyebrow might have been causing some of this since I wasn't using rods and the vibration from the eyebrow probably went straight to the stock lens.

However, I do notice the SD monitor on the LE likes to jiggle a bit when the inertia of the sled goes up with heavier cameras. Eagerly awaiting the redesign of the LE sled base.
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#14 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 08:55 PM

Kevin, you nailed it. That's the tricky part about the LE. The monitor jitters all the time, so there's no telling if it's in your footage or if the monitor is just moving until you play back a recording on a stationary monitor.
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#15 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 09:32 PM

Think replacing the entire lower section of the sled with a double rod system like a clipper would be an improvement.

I don't actually own the rig I use, but looking at picking up an LE for myself and then modifying the crap out of it.
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