ASK RICK -- DECEMBER
I wish to go seriously into video photography
and was wondering if I
should change my Hitachi VM2300E
for a Sony V6000 and a professonal editor and VCR.
At the moment I have a Hitachi VM2300E, a Hama Enhancer and a Ross universal microphone. I'm finding it
difficult to get a processor and editor which is compatible with what I've got
at the moment: can you suggest possible
products that will go with the VHS camp,
such as VHS and Hi8 compatible so that when I do buy the Sony V6000 I won't have to purchase new equipment.
Could you also recommend suitable equipment for
the VM2300 and editing suite? And finally, does anyone out there have a Ross RE-381 stand holder adaptor they don't
want, as my son lost mine? Ross sent me
a new microphone free of charge, but
it's not the same...
It depends what
you mean by serious. Your present set-up is capable of good results, and
mastering in VHS has a lot of advantages. You won't find any edit controllers
compatible with your VM2300 because it doesn't have an edit terminal, so if you
want to get into automated assembly editing you will have to re-think your
camcorder, or get a VHS VCR with a built-in edit controller, both Hitachi and
JVC have them in their range.
Is there an
edit controller that will give me greater accuracy in my editing when using my
current set-up of Mitsubishi B27 VCR,
Sharp VL-C670H camcorder, Panasonic WJ
MX12 production mixer and Panasonic NV-F55B recording VCR? I intend
to treat myself to a Panasonic
NV-MS4B S-VHS camera soon and was wondering if I need to
buy an S-VHS VCR or will the high band
signal (via the Y/C
connectors) give me
good VHS copies? Whilst using
the MS4 in the low band mode,
will I get better pictures than a normal VHS camera? If
the high band signal doesn't work with a VHS VCR, will a S-VHS to RGB transcoder, as sold by Syntronix, help me in
upgraded to S-VHS, what leads do I need to get...
believe in getting your money's worth. From the top: No, your present camcorder
doesn't have an edit terminal, so there's nothing you can do to increase
accuracy, apart from improving your own button-pushing reaction times. Of
course, when you get the MS4 you will be able to use an edit controller,
there's several on the market that are compatible with its 5-pin/RMC terminal
and VITC time-code system, including Panasonic's own. It's probably only worth
buying an S-VHS VCR as well if you plan to run off copies from your movies,
otherwise you can edit to standard VHS using your F55 as the destination deck.
The results, copying or editing from S-VHS to VHS should be very good, better
in fact that a VHS original recording. Recordings made in the standard VHS mode
on the MS4 won't look significantly better than those made on a VHS-only
machine. There's no point in buying an S-Video to RGB converter for S-VHS to
VHS copying as the vast majority of VCRs do not have RGB-configured inputs.
Finally, you should get a S-Video and AV leads with your new camcorder, so you
shouldn't need to buy an additional ones iof the rest of your system is already
I have a Panasonic NVG2B video camera and edit
my videos on to a Panasonic NVJ45 VCR via a Videotech VE1060 mixer/processor
unit. I can't justify the purchase of an edit controller, but a simple wired remote controlled
unit to activate the basic camera
functions of play, pause, etc., would make life a lot easier when editing. It occurs to me that the edit socket on the
camera must provide all the necessary
connections - do you know
of any company who markets such
Some time ago Panasonic used to have a corded remote control for their
camcorders -- circa 1988 -- it used the same 5-pin plug/socket as the edit
controllers but they tell us it won't work with the G2. Unless someone out
there knows of such a product the only solution would be to use an edit
controller. The Panasonic WV-EC1 is the cheapest, shop around, we have seen them selling for around £150.
MIXED UP SOUND
equipment is a Canon E850 Hi8
camcorder and a Sony SLV715 recorder. The 8mm sound technology is driving me mad.
I think I understand the integration of the sound and video signals and the use of the linear soundtrack, but the
main problem is Insert Audio. A normal copy, made from the Canon to the Sony,
played back on a mono recorder gives me the original sound okay. If I dub a music signal on to the initial
copy using the Insert Audio facility on the Sony deck then again onto an
ordinary domestic recorder I get the dubbed music but lose the original sound.
I know the original sound is still present
because if I use the Audio Mix on my
VCR I can get the original and the dubbed
sound, so why can't I get both
tracks on an ordinary recorder as used by friends and colleagues?
I can see why
you're confused. It's obvious your friends have mono VCRs which cannot pick up
the original stereo hi-fi soundtracks which were recorded by your machine. It
works like this: When you copy or edit from your E850 to the Sony VCR the stereo soundtrack is recorded using a
technique known as DFM or depth frequency multiplexing. The audio signal is
recorded by a seperate pair of heads on the head drum, which imprints the
signal deep in the tape's magnetic layer; they're followed a fraction of a second later by the video heads which
lay down the video signals, on top of the audio. Meanwhile, the VCR also
records a mono version of the stereo signal along the top of the tape, on
what's known as on the linear edge track. Unlike the stereo hi-fi
soundtracks, which are buried
underneath the video signals, the edge track can be replaced using the VCR's
audio dub or insert audio facility. So, when you dub the linear track the
stereo tracks are unaffected and when you replay the recording in the 'mix' mode,
you will hear both soundtracks together. If, however, that tape is replayed on
a mono VCR, which doesn't have the additional heads and circuitry to replay a
hi-fi soundtrack, only the linear edge track will be heard.
please tell me which issue of Video Camera featured the Sanyo VM-D6P camcorder?
Would the colour monitor for the Sanyo VM-EX30, that you featured in the August
93 issue, fit in any way onto the aforementioned Sanyo, or would
you have to use any other attachment. If so, could you tell me the price
for the attachment and monitor?
Oddly enough we
never got around to reviewing that machine which, by the way, was launched back in Autumn 1989. In answer
to your question, the answer is no. The colour monitor will not work with your
machine as it doesn't have the necessary socketry. You can, however connect
other types of LCD monitor/TV to your machine, see the Shop Window feature in the December 93 issue
for more details.
I purchased a Sony TR55E three years ago and
have been pleased with the results. Along with a simple editor I'm able to put
together quite good-looking video movies.
My successes have led me to consider investing
in a camera that would give me
even better results. I cannot afford professional equipment but it has been
suggested that I buy second hand
pro-gear rather than a new top grade domestic machine. I want professional
performance but I'm concerned about the size of pro-cameras.
magazine over recent months I'm inclined towards the Sony V800, but
the recent reports on Sony's new triple-chip VX1 seem quite exciting. Working
within the price range of the cameras
mentioned, what's your opinion, bearing in mind I'm not one who wishes to
keep pace with the latest in hi-tech.
The V800 was a
good machine but it has been discontinued for a couple of years, so be cautious
about any machines you might come across that are being sold as 'new'. The VX1
has much to commend it, and it looks very classy, but we felt it was a rather
expensive at £2,500; maybe it's cheaper over where you are? If we had that sort
of money to spend on a top-end machine the Sony V6000 would be very high on our
list, but if portability was a consideration then we would also look at the
Canon EX1, Sony TR805 and FX700, all of which sell for considerably less than
I have two VCRs - a Mitsubishi HS318B and a
National NV250A. When editing
from the former
to the latter the sound
is distorted. I'm told there is
a means of adjustment to overcome
this incompatibility but
there's no mention of this
in the instructions books, not
even in the sections dealing with editing using two VCRs.
Can you please
This one is a
bit of a mystery. As far as I am aware Matsushita never marketed National brand
VCRs in the UK, they've always used the Panasonic name, so the first question
has to be, is your machine a UK, PAL-I spec model? If not, and you're
connecting the two machines together by their aerial leads then there could be
a problem with the sound, caused by the audio sub-carrier being on a different
frequency. Admittedly that's a long-shot; assuming they are both UK-spec
machines then there's no reason why they shoudln't work together, provided
you're making copies using AV leads. The only other possibility is a fault on
the NV-250's audio system. It's getting on a bit, so it might just need a
Come on Rick,
please give me some information I can use! My electronics whiz-kid husband has
built me a discharger unit for a 6v Nicad battery, which discharges down to
1volt, as stated in Hama's New Guide to Better Videos book.
concerned when we read your Ask Rick - Assault on Battery article in the April edition, that we shouldn't discharge below 5.5
volts.Now, after reading your May
article Discharge Dilemmas, we're
totally confused as to what the discharge optimum
should be. Please advise.
you about home-brew dischargers! I said in that piece that a nickel-cadmium
cell should never be discharged below 1 volt. There are five cells connected
together in series in a 6-volt battery, and that should never be allowed to go
below 5.5 volts (ie 1.1 volts per cell). If you discharge a 6 volt battery so
that the voltage goes down to 1 volt it will almost certainly be damaged.
I recently purchased a JVC GR-323 camcorder, which doesn't have a
backlight compensation facility. What
can I do to prevent the silhouette effect when shooting against
the light? Can the auto exposure be fooled,
or do I have to
rely on secondary lighting which
is not always practicable?
Is there anything else I can do?
The only manual
exposure option on your machine is the electronic shutter and this might help,
though the auto-exposure system will always do its best to compensate.
I have a
Ferguson NICAM television, JVC
HR-D860EK video and a Panasonic NV-S20B
VHS-C camcorder. This combination works
well when editing
a previously recorded tape. Then I purchased a VEC1060 editing console
and it doesn't seem to work; I wired it in as instructed in the manual but get
As I'm a
complete beginner, your help would make
me a very happy man.
The Videotech VEC-1060 is not, repeat not, an
edit controller, or console, whatever that may be. It is a video processor and
mixer and it has no editing facilities whatsoever. If it was sold to you as an
edit controller we strongly suggest you take it back from whence it came,
insist on your money back, and tell them to review their staff-training
As a wildlife artist I'm interested in
filming in the field. My
last two camcorders had 6x zoom - not enough
to get close. I was
to get a 12x camcorder, but after reading one of your
in the September issue I
discovered I could
teleconverters to get better results.
With this in mind, I bought a secondhand Panasonic
teleconverter would you suggest to get good
close results? Would
a 2x give me satisfactory all-round
J. Woodland Stoodley
Since I progressed to a better and more
powerful PC, my Sinclair
has sat in a cupboardm, until I
read an article about
computer to video conversion in the October
issue. I immediately
potential new use for my faithful old machine
video titling without the need for expensive
hardware to link my
PC to video.
Then I read the preceding article, only to find that there were
no software packages mentioned for the
Spectrum. Are there any
and, if so, where can I get them?
Grimsby, S. Humberside
have shot some holiday film on my Sharp VLC-73 camcorder and
trasnsferred in onto full size tape. However, when I decided to
make another copy from the original, there was a noticeable wide
horizontal line on the picture which stayed
for about ten minutes
through the film.
It's like a glass tube across the middle of
the picture with the
picture inside it. This has
happened with previous
camcorder tapes which I discarded, assuming
that they were worn.
Can you advise?
I bought my Sony CCD-V90E back in '88 and now
I'm retired I would
like to edit my previous tapes and add music
and titles to them.
not really sure what equipment to purchase as there are so
many different makes of equipment around at
Can you please tell me which would work best
with my Sony?
unable to find any knid of reliable information about pro
microphones. I have been considereing
the Sennheiser ME80 or
ME88 which retail at œ300 and œ354
read that the pro microphones have balanced circuits and that
camcorders have unbalanced circuits.
If I use one of
microphones with a balanced to unbalanced adaptor with my
Sony V6000E will it work to full potential?
have phoned everyone from Sony to Sennheiser and no one could
tell me if I could use this equipment
together: can you help, as
the nearest stockist is 250 miles away!