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Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor

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John Young
Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 4:43:26 pm

Does anyone have any experience using their editing monitor as a field monitor on set. I just upgraded my computer and now I am ready to upgrade to an IPS monitor to edit on. I would like to be able to take that monitor and put it on a C-Stand, connect through HDMI to my camera (usually Canon 7D) to use as a monitor when shooting.

Ideally I would have a ton of money to get a Flanders Scientific with right scopes and HD-SDI connections dedicated for use on set, but right now that is not where my bank account is. I am leaning towards Dell Ultrasharp 27inch U2711 - $850. I know that without scopes you wouldn't have 100% accuracy between what you are seeing on the monitor and what you are capturing, but I wondering if you can get close with a calibrated IPS monitor.

Anyone having success with this type of setup?

Thanks in advance,
John

http://www.johnathanyoung.com


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Nick Griffin
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 6:38:20 pm

We went with the 17" Flanders (FSI) monitor a few years ago when they first came out and couldn't be happier with it both as an editing and field monitor. Like other pro monitors the Flanders have a set of screw threads on the back which attach to an adapter which then attaches to a C-stand. It's simple and its secure. Not sure if the Dell has anything like this as that's not likely the monitor's intended use.

John, I understand the economics of your decision but would make two arguments. 1) There's really no good substitute for a real monitor with the myriad of functions the Flanders monitors have, ie. - blue gun only for set-up against color bars, a freezable sub-window for comparing an existing one shot to the live one, safe areas and 4x3 protection markers, easily battery powered in the field, on screen time code and a myriad of real scopes which you an toggle on and off instantly. 2) The Flanders is made for pro use and built to last for years so it will hold its value. Not likely with the Dell.

Now for one fly in the ointment, I don't know what outputs you have on the Canon, but I don't believe that the Flanders monitors have an HDMI input, meaning if you need HDMI you might have to spend a few hundred bucks for an adapter. If it were my decision, I'd still go with the pro choice even if it required floating a loan.

My two cents.


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Bram Desmet
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 6:44:41 pm

Just as an FYI you can use a really inexpensive HDMI to DVI cable or HDMI to DVI adapter to get video from a camera with HDMI or mini-HDMI out to the DVI port of all FSI monitors. This should only run you somewhere between $5 and $35.

Bram Desmet
FSI (Flanders Scientific, Inc.)
http://www.FlandersScientific.com


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Juan Salvo
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 6:47:13 pm

$5! Bram that's way too much!

Try $2.72.

http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=102&cp_id=10231&cs_id=10...



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Bram Desmet
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 7:00:17 pm

Even better, though for most DSLR's make sure to get the mini-HDMI to DVI, not standard HDMI to DVI cable. But as your link proves, super inexpensive to get a cable like this that will allow you to use the Canon on a monitor with DVI port.

Bram Desmet
FSI (Flanders Scientific, Inc.)
http://www.FlandersScientific.com


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Nick Griffin
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 7:11:49 pm

Wow. I had no idea it was so simple. I was under the mistaken impression that something like a Black Magic adapter would be needed.

Bram- do you know if the Canon outputs timecode that the monitor can display? Also does audio travel through the HDMI connection as it does through SDI? That's something I've found VERY useful.


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Bram Desmet
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 7:25:51 pm

While HDMI can carry audio DVI does not so you will only be able to get the video to the monitor with the type of cable Juan linked above. FSI monitors can only pull LTC, VITC1, or VITC2 timecode from the HD/SD-SDI inputs, though I don't think the HDMI output of any current DSLRs can embed timecode into ancillary data anyway so this is likely a moot point. Come to think of it, I suppose most DSLRs have no true timecode per se, though I am not a DSLR expert by a long shot so I'm happy to be corrected on this point.

Bram Desmet
FSI (Flanders Scientific, Inc.)
http://www.FlandersScientific.com


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John Young
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 2, 2012 at 8:29:47 pm

I guess I am trying to decide on a IPS panel for monitoring on set vs. a small 4-7” on camera monitor (like the Small HD DP6). I have to buy a new computer monitor and I can afford a large IPS that has solid color reproduction. I was hoping that I could use that and not have to buy the small on camera monitor. Kind of killing two birds with one stone (although with an IPS monitor without scopes it would be more like, killing one bird and wounding another).

I mostly agree with what has been said, but for me, right now a $3,000 monitor is just not going to happen. Maybe at a later time, I will get a $20,000 small business loan and I can put an FSI on the list, looks like it would be worth it. Bur for now, I am definitely not going to put an 17” FSI monitor on a credit card.

Thanks for all the input.

John

http://www.johnathanyoung.com


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Scott Sheriff
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 3, 2012 at 7:40:16 pm

I'll throw out a different opinion.
I wouldn't take a big expensive studio-edit monitor on shoots. As soon as it leaves the studio, there are a hundred ways for it to get damaged. Dirty power, C-stand gets knocked over, vibration from traveling, etc.
I know people do it all the time. But unless I need a big studio type monitor to set up FX, or something of that nature that pays well enough to justify the risk, I say no. For most gigs a small lower cost monitor is risking a lot less, and is often more convenient to move around and place where it's needed.

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com


"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." ---Red Adair

Where were you on 6/21?


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Nick Griffin
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 5, 2012 at 6:33:14 pm

Scott-
One of the few times we disagree. After a few years of shooting with the 17" FSI, for me it's the only way to go. First of all it's not a 24" or larger monitor so it's not that heavy or difficult to pack up and take with us. Second, features including the IRE scope; the side-by-side picture comparison which, using playback from the camera, enables us to see the live shot beside any previous shot; the 4x3 protection overlay and the 1:1 pixel mode for doing critical focus without being on top of the camera are too useful to be without.

As to risk, it's a $2,500 monitor. If it were more, I might feel differently. We also mount it on a rolling C-stand so it can roll along with dolly shots when needed. In an ideal world (also known as "when I grow up") I probably will have a large monitor which stays in the edit suite and a 9" for the field -- provided it has the full FSI feature set. But for now I like having a real monitor on shoots.

And to re-address the original post, how realistic is it to get the gamma and other things set to turn a Dell computer monitor into a realistic -- and informative -- field monitor? If anything there's the case where travel vibration, etc. will reek havoc. (IMHO.)


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Scott Sheriff
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 5, 2012 at 7:22:33 pm

[Nick Griffin] "As to risk, it's a $2,500 monitor. If it were more, I might feel differently."

I still think $2,500 bucks is a chunk of change to lose if Murphy shows up on set, but I know what your saying. But look at the OP. If I were in his situation, I wouldn't take my one and only edit monitor on location.
Just sayin'
We are now living in a world where the on set monitor costs more than the camera. Never thought that would happen.

[Nick Griffin] "Scott-
One of the few times we disagree."


LOL, you better get yourself checked out quick if this is true!

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com


"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." ---Red Adair

Where were you on 6/21?


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Nick Griffin
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 5, 2012 at 7:36:29 pm

[Scott Sheriff] "$2,500 bucks is a chunk of change to lose if Murphy shows up on set"

My greatest fear of Mr. Murphy and his immutable laws is when something happens to the camera. Had that happen a few years ago, fortunately after 4pm when most of what was going to get done was done, and had to call an immediate wrap. A buddy suggests having and EX-1 or EX-3 along as a back-up/2nd cam, but there are lots of things I'd buy before going that route.


[Scott Sheriff] "We are now living in a world where the on set monitor costs more than the camera."

I'm pretty sure the matte box & follow-focus stuff was more than the cost of the monitor. But then I'm a fairly weak shooter so I need all the help I can bring along.


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Scott Sheriff
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 6, 2012 at 12:23:26 am

[Nick Griffin] "I'm pretty sure the matte box & follow-focus stuff was more than the cost of the monitor."

Excellent point.

[Nick Griffin] "My greatest fear of Mr. Murphy and his immutable laws is when something happens to the camera."

Sometimes the most innocent thing sets up a cascade failure.
I was shooting at an event in Boulder and there was at least one guy from every station in the market set up in the press area shooting B roll. One of the competitors photogs decided to move his sticks a little, to gives us some more elbow room. Like us, they had an Oconnor 50 head with a Peter Lisand quick release. He picked the sticks with a 'bear hug' type move, and his shoulder hit the release tabs and the Betacam came off the head, ass first, in a rotating motion, like a rock rolling down a hill, hitting the pavement lens first. It was unbelievable, and surrealistic. Kind of a car accident like slow motion. It was on the pavement before any of us could even react. We were all speechless (I know you can't believe that) as 70 grand worth of camera and lens lay there shattered and bent. Back then a typical house in the 'burbs didn't cost much over 60 grand. It was clear that the camera was totaled, and we all felt very bad for this guy. Never saw him at any other gigs after that.

Scott Sheriff
Director
http://www.sstdigitalmedia.com


"If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur." ---Red Adair

Where were you on 6/21?


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Bill Davis
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 7, 2012 at 5:30:38 am

Most of the DSLR shooters I know tend to use either the Marshall or Small HD monitors in the field. (I prefer the Marshall's because the Small HD is cheaper, but has no loop through - and requires one to spend hundreds to add on external loop through monitoring for director/client viewing)

No one I know with solid experience really trusts them for total color accuracy - so you must be able to look at a scene and see where you might have mixed light issues. But the "false color" abstracts are as good as a WFM for exposure if you learn to read them properly. And the focus assist is OK and a big improvement over the terrible LCD resolution of any DSLR screen.

For focus, if your working EFP, just drop out of Live mode and just look through the lens which is 100% dependable.

These (along with the requirement for double system sound) are the trade offs for getting astonishing video capabilities in a super cheap DSLR form factor.

And often, small, agile rigs are superior to large rigs and needing more hands in modern production. Not always - but often enough.

FWIW.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Alex Campbell
Re: Editing Monitor doubling as field monitor
on Mar 26, 2012 at 4:44:25 am

I have a pelican case that I mounted a monitor in. I drilled 4 holes through the lid and mounted a $50 used 17" monitor using aluminum spacers. I have a flip down piece of plastic that doubles as a sun shade that protects the screen from everything else that I tend to throw into the case (batteries, chargers, LED lights etc.

It is a little large for true run-n-gun, but if you are doing anything in studio or a true location shoot, it is absolutely fantastic. I would say that the total price was less than $200.


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