RICK COPY -- OCTOBER
am interested in low-cost editing using a Panasonic NV-SD200B recorder and my
JVC GR-AX 200 camcorder. The camera has an insert edit feature -- can you
confirm that I can use this only with a recorder with this facility? If so, is any recorder compatible?
would also like to know if the JVC JX-ED11 controller would run the Panasonic
VCR. JVC also do a wireless remote -
RM-V704U - would this drive the Panasonic?
Are Assembly editing and Random Assembly editing different?
I also benefit from other add-ons, i.e. a processor, audio mixer etc., and is
it cost effective to buy cheaper units
which I often see on special offer?
camcorder is compatible with JVCís
ĎEasy Edití system. It works using the optional RM-V704 remote controller,
available from JVC dealers for £60. This plugs into the edit socket on the
AX200 and controls the record VCR using an in-built library of IR commands, and
yes it can be used with your Panasonic machine. The controller stores the start
and stop points for up to 8 scenes, theyíre presented as a list on the
camcorderís viewfinder. Once theyíve been stored, the controller instructs the
camcorder to replay the scenes in the required order, at the same time
operating the record-pause mode on the VCR. Random Assemble Editing is a JVC
term, itís the same as assembly editing, which simply means recording a
sequence of scenes in any chosen order. You would be better off using the
RM-V704 -- as opposed to the JX-ED11 -- which doesnít have a scene memory, and
itís dearer. An audio mixer is definitely worth having, thereís no need to
spend a great deal of money, thereís plenty of good ones on the market selling
for less than £30.
makes a video camera most sensitive in low light? Is it the size of the CCD or the lens and are there theoretical
minimum and maximum sizes, plus why do pro cameras perform better in this area?
light sensitivity is governed by a number of factors, including those you
mention, and several others including the structure and design of the sensor
chip. However, itís important to distinguish between actual sensitivity, and
various electronic techniques, that artificially enhance a camcorderís ability
to Ďseeí in poor light. Models with a Ďgain-upí mode amplify the video signal,
unfortunately this also amplifies the unwanted parts of the signal as well,
leading to increased noise and grain in the image. Low-speed shutters also
improve a camcorderís low-light capabilities, though because the image is
refreshed more slowly, any movement in
the picture looks jerky. Generally speaking pro broadcast video cameras are not
especially sensitive, if a scene is too dark camera operators will normally lay
on extra lighting.
have a Panasonic MS4 camera, a fairly steady tripod, but I would like the
camera to be more mobile occasionally. I have seen adverts for the Steadycam
and Handyman, which are suitable for cameras of any weight. I appreciate that this is a domestic version
of the real thing, but how effective is it?
It looks difficult to use with a full size camera. With my engineering background, could I
possibly make something?
of these contraptions can match the stability of a tripod. Itís possible you
could get a full-sized machine to fit but I share your concern that they would
make the machine awkward to use.
would like to start making professional videos. The tutor on the Film and Video course I am currently undertaking
is selling his Sony Hi8 pro V5000 for £700.
Could you please tell me if this is a good buy? I understand that this is an old camera; I
canít seem to find any information on this model. Would this be an ideal camera to start with?
V5000 dates back to July 1990. It cost a whopping £1900 new but it was the most
sophisticated Hi8 camcorder on the market, and remained so for several years.
It was a superb machine and many are still
in everyday use but I have to say that without knowing a lot more about
the model in question itís impossible to say if £700 is a good price or not.
For that sort of money I would expect it to be in almost mint condition, with
not too many miles on the clock, and come with some sort of guarantee. Repairs
can be very expensive indeed. If youíre serious about making professional
videos you might be better off saving up a bit longer, for a digital camcorder.
The picture quality of even the cheapest models is far better than the V5000 is
have a Sony CCD TR610E Handycam and was shocked to find that after the bag
containing batteries, etc. was stolen, the replacement cost of these batteries
would cost over £300.
was a rumour that Infolithium batteries are going to be made by Energiser. Is there any truth in this? If so, do you know of any time scale for
their release and will this bring the prices of these very expensive batteries
list price for a standard NPS530 pack is £70, so yes, they are expensive and
definitely worth including in travel or household insurance, along with the
camcorder. Stories of other manufacturers producing Infolithium batteries have
been circulating for a while. Sony control the manufacture of Lithium-ion cells
and the management microchips; companies weíve spoken too say they cannot
obtain them at a low enough cost for them to be able to compete with Sony on
price. The design and construction of the battery packs are also controlled by
large number of Sony patents, so itís very unlikely weíll see a repeat
performance of the 6-volt nicad camcorder battery market, with the world and
his wife making replacement packs.
GLITCH IN TIME
have a Sony V800 camcorder, for editing I use an IQ editor and until recently
used a Sony VCR to edit onto. I now have a Panasonic NVHS900, S-VHS
machine. When the Panasonic VCR goes
into record-pause mode for a split second it records before pausing and on
playback I have a glitch between scenes.
I have never had this problem before.
Is it the editor or the VCR; have I done something wrong in setting up
shouldnít be happening. Nothing the edit controller does, or the ways in which
it can be set-up and connected, can account for the effect you describe. It
sounds as though there could be something wrong with the VCRís backspace edit
function, have it checked by a service agent.
Panasonic NVS70 camcorder seems to have an aversion to orange. When filming Autumn leaves the colour fades
to khaki and cedarwood fades to grey.
This occurs on S-VHS as well as standard VHS. Panasonic suggest I use only manual white balance.
am a raw recruit as far as the camcorder is concerned but friends suggest it
could be peculiar to Panasonic as they have not experienced this on their Sony
and JVC camcorders.
advice would be most welcome.
auto white balance systems on Panasonic camcorders have no particular vices,
and as far as Iím aware, any dislike of the colour orange. AWB systems on most machines operate on a
series of compromises and it is unrealistic to expect perfection under all
types of lighting conditions. Autumn light tends to have a red-bias and it is
possible your machine is simply trying to compensate. Setting the white balance
manually should do the trick. You could also try fooling it, set the WB using a
piece of card with a light blue tint, this should give red colours the slight
boost you want.
wonder if you can help me with an unusual fault that has occurred on my Sony
CCD-F340E video camera which has baffled local dealers?
I put the power switch to Camera for recording and slide the standby switch up,
on checking the viewfinder screen, the display ĎSTBYí rotates vertically. When you press the start button on the
display ĎRECí does the same and will not stop.
If any other viewfinder displays are displayed they too revolve. The picture in the viewfinder is as it
have found that if I run the camera forward or rewind for some time and then
record again the wording eventually seems to stop rotating and I can record as
normal for a short time.
of the dealers I have talked to have ever come across this in a video camera
before and they say it should be almost impossible for this rotating wording to
be recorded on the tape as the two things are on separate circuits. I find it very time consuming trying to get
this lock in before I can record anything.
surprised your local dealers havenít offered to fix it for you. This sounds
like a fairly basic fault, caused by poor synchronisation on the camcorderís
on-screen graphics generator. The fact that it stops after the machine has been
operating for a while suggests itís thermal in nature, and as such should be
fairly easy to track down, once it has been opened up on the work bench.
have decided to buy myself a camcorder.
Not knowing anything about them or seeing what the finished results are
I only have your magazine to make my selection. Being a pensioner with little money I have decided on the popular
8mm format. Then thereís the Hi8 with better colour results, but costing a
a first time buyer do I buy the cheaper one like the Samsung K85 or Canon
UC3000 and be disappointed with the result or go straight into Hi8 like the
though I only intend to use the camcorder for holidays, being on a basic
pension I only want to buy once with as little cost. It is a difficult
decision, spending so much money without seeing the finished result.
the models you list I assume you have a budget of around £600 to spend on a camcorder. Iím sure an
8mm model will suit your needs, though donít completely dismiss VHS-C as there
are some really good machines around at the moment. Hi8 camcorders only make sense if you plan to do serious editing,
when the reduction in picture quality on second and third generation copies
isnít so noticeable, moreover, you will need a fairly recent television, with
an S-Video input, to get the most from it. With that in mind I think the Canon
UC200 would be a sensible choice, the extra £50 for the UC300 buys a colour
viewfinder screen, which you probably wonít miss, unless youíre planning to
record a lot of wildlife, or shoot things like horse races, where a colour
viewfinder can come in handy. Unlike the Samsung models these machines have a
Control L socket, which will come in handy if you want to try your hand at
editing. You might also like to consider the Canon UC500, which in the same
price bracket, and has its own built-in edit controller. On the VHS-C front
have a look at the Panasonic NV-RX9 and the JVC AX-270, both of which are
comfortably within your price bracket.
while ago I purchased a JVC GR-SX1 camcorder because I wanted a high band
machine with an animation capability and audio dub. Iíd previously purchased a JVC television and VCR. With this combination I can replay high band
recordings through one of the TVís (AV-29SX1EK) S-VHS inputs and output a
standard VHS signal to the VCR from the TVís EXT-2 SCART socket. I can also connect an audio source, other
than the camcorder, to EXT-1 replacing the camcorderís stereo soundtrack with
other audio material.
I donít believe I can do without buying some other piece of kit is mix the
camcorder stereo track with some other audio source onto the target tape.
am reluctant to purchase a full blooded editing console if I can achieve the
audio mixing with some other gizmo. Can
you suggest a suitable device, or am I better off waiting until I can afford a
full Edit Controller?
you need is a simple 2-channel stereo audio mixer, thereís plenty of them to
choose from, prices start at under £20, from video accessory dealers and
companies like Maplin Electronics. Your set-up is a little unconventional, but
you can connect the mixer in the audio line, between the output from the TV to
the input on the VCR, with your second audio source fed into the mixerís other
input. You may need some extra cables, a pair of SCART to phono AV leads should
do the job, though make sure theyíre switchable types, or one is configured for
input, and the other for output signals.
video lectures and slides and to edit them I put the original lecture tape into
a Sony EV-C500E player connected through a Panasonic AV mixer WJ-AVE5 to a
Panasonic NV-HS1000 where I record onto S-VHS tape. I control these with a Sony RM E33F by LANC to the C500 and
infra-red to the HS1000. The slide video is played through my Sony CCD-VX1E and
the titles are done on my P166 computer. When the master copy is finally on
S-VHS I can audio dub music and then make copies onto VHS tape with a Panasonic
know this is a long-winded way of editing and I had thought of going to non
linear editing but I donít think this is going to be of benefit unless I get a
digital camera as well. These have only
one hour tapes and the lectures are between one hour and one hour and twenty
minutes. Is there another computer
mixer that will do the same job as the AVE5 with better quality?
fact tape running times on digital camcorders neednít be a problem, most DVC
machines have LP recording modes, that give up to 2 hours uninterrupted
recording. Changing to a digital camcorder would yield a significant
improvement in picture quality -- even at LP speed -- using your present
set-up. However you will have to spend some really big bucks on a faster PC and
cards to get into non-linear editing, if you want to do the job properly. Itís
early days yet and prices are coming down quickly, maybe in a year or so it
will be worth looking at PC systems editing again.
” R. Maybury 1997 2109