new to DVRs with a question...

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Leo Kerr, Jun 2, 2006.

  1. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

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    this week, we were shooting video of far to many high school graduations in far to little time (11 in three days.) A feature of the location was that there were two very large LED displays (Lighthouse panels, maybe 20' diagonal) that we were providing a video feed for, in addition to going to tape.

    The bored graduates, upon seeing themselves on the big screen, would start doing tacky and rude things. Considering that the cut-aways (apart from general applause-reaction shots) were less than 5 seconds, we started talking about trying to do a 5-second delay on that one camera's feed. By the time they see themselves, the camera would be long gone.

    Obviously, the official solution is to buy a professional broadcast video delay line. Given that we do this shot once a year, it's kind-a hard to justify that sort of expense.

    The notion came from recalling the "pause live TV" from the early Tivo advertisements - not that I ever paid much attention, 'cause I don't watch cable or broadcast, myself. (LD and DVD only.)

    The short of it is, we're now sort of looking for a DVR-type box that'll take video in, hold onto it for a while, and play it out. The play-out would need to be either (a) 5-sec delay, or occassionally (b) no delay. Ideally, it'd be "easy" to switch between delayed and not-delayed outputs.

    Since we're really only looking for a short delay, we don't need a huge capacity, no HD capability, no subscription services, and pretty good quality on the video side.

    Any recommendations?

    Leo Kerr
     
  2. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Yup, they are pretty pricey!

    We’re new to DVRs as well, a Direct Tivo, but in researching for them I found that you can get stand-alone DVRs. Don’t know if they’ll do the “live pause” thing, though, so make sure before you buy.

    One concern I’d have in your situation would be whether or not you would loose video quality.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  3. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

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    The big quality hit we take is actually from the big screen displays. The Lighthouse panels are pretty small (for a LED based video wall,) so I wouldn't be surprised if the panel only had, say, 480x360 - or maybe even less.

    'course, the funny thing was people taking pictures (generally with flash!) of the video walls, or even videos of the video walls... Granted, they were brighter than most of the stage areas, and for many people, they were considerably larger, but...

    It's always amusing, whatever else you can say about a whole bunch of graduations in a few days, to see what the audience does. Little video cameras with a tiny internal light... from 200 feet back. People taking pictures of the stage - or of the video walls - with their cell phones. Pictures of the stage with disposable cameras from 200+ feet away... in some ways, it's almost scary.

    On the other hand, we could get an almost acceptable picture of the choir the first night when they were out of all direct light. Granted, f/1.8 with 18dB of video gain, it wasn't a pretty sight, but you could recognize the faces on the low-res video walls.

    Ya know the scary thing? A week later, and I'm already reminescing about the show! I must be sick...

    Leo
     
  4. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    This is the same phenomenon as during the Olympics when the thousands of flashes go off in the spectator stands yards away. I don't think I've ever scoffed so much [​IMG].
     
  5. Russell G

    Russell G Fake Shemp

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    It should work on a stand alone DVR that has "Timelapse" (I think that's what its called on my LG.) I've never tried it, as I don't have cable*, but the manual says "You can use TIMELAPSE to pause live TV, have a potty break, and than watch what you missed!!"** I think it has a 2hr cache, and of course, you can save the material on the hard drive to copy off at the end. I don't have TIVO, as I'm in Canada and we don't have "Broadcasting Systems" but from what I've heard, it sounds like "Timelapse."***


    *this admission is not open to debate
    ** Might not be a direct quote
    *** it might not be called timelapse.
     

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