View Full Version : Shop video equipment?

05-16-2008, 09:28 PM
Been playing around my my now ancient camera and took a video of a part I was turning this morning-

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0903/wierdscience/th_DSCF0003.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/0903/wierdscience/?action=view&current=DSCF0003.flv)

The quality sucks for sure and there is no sound,but it's kinda neat,better than pics for explaning a given action.

So what are you guys using for equipment and just what is required now for decent quality video in the shop?

Would a laptop and webcam be a good option or is a digital camcorder better.

Oh,this is the finished part-


05-16-2008, 10:16 PM
I kind of prefer good old fashioned pictures. The main reason is, most inexpensive video options are of poor resolution. Web cam, inexpensive digital camera with video mode. Even if you find one for a reasonable enough price to keep in the shop, you typically have to transcode the video to get it down to a reasonable enough size to post online and not piss off the dial up people. Transcoding video, especially any clips of significant size, take a lot of time. Then you end up with compromises of resolution, bit rate, and frame rate as well to make it small enough to be online friendly... Clear digital pictures have the upper hand right now IMO.

I have a Flip video 1Gb flash camcorder. The thing takes decent video for use on a computer, On TV it is pretty poor quality. Over all, the thing is not high quality, but it is priced at under $150. It is plagued by firmware and hardware issues, but when it works, it is decent. I would have never bought it, but it was a christmas gift to the family. My new cannon digital camera takes far superior video to the Flip. I also have an older digital 8 sony camcorder that takes excellent digital video as well. I still rarely post video on line.

*edit* The points on transcoding video may have little or no impact on using the "video hosts" like you tube. I have never used their hosting, I typically transcode because I host the videos on my own domain.


Your Old Dog
05-17-2008, 08:21 AM
I think more light and that would have been fine for posting. My experience with video tells me that these little cameras work fantastic if the light levels are brought up to daylight levels. Where they get really 'noisey' is under low or ambient light. That can even be said for the $35,000 TV News cameras I worked with although they look phenomenal under street lighting when shooting news. Use whatever you have but pour the light onto it while you're taping.

As for the dial up folks, not to be rude or crude but I don't worry much about them. It's not always there fault or maybe not usually their fault or choice but the world is moving on. I don't want to hold back the ability I have to nurse an older technology. It would really be nice if uploaded pics were converted at server level to both mediums for dial up and high speed connects. I was dialup here for some time before high speed became available and hated it.

05-17-2008, 12:48 PM
http://i115.photobucket.com/albums/n319/davidfe/untitled2.jpg?t=1211042434 (javascript:void(0);)

I adjusted the "gamma" in the picture.

Don 't know how to lighten the movie. Am sure some one else would know.


05-18-2008, 01:16 AM
Like YOD says, crank up the light. It causes the imaging chip in the camera to produce a higher signal level, much higher than the noise which is also produced. You can crank up the gamma if it's video that can't be shot again but whatever you do, the noise will be there.

I recently picked up a Nikon Coolpix LII for about $110. It's a 6 megapixel camera and the video is pretty decent, even on a tv. Light sensitivity is many times higher than a few years ago. More than adequate for online use unless you're trying to post high quality images, with the space and bandwidth requirements that go with it. Den

05-18-2008, 09:32 AM
The video cleans up quite well.


I use Media Player Classic together with FFDshow as a post processor. It allows full control over all possible aspects of the audio and video with multiple choices of different filter implementations.



05-18-2008, 09:41 AM
Evan, did you not post, some time back, re biasing CCD or CMOS cameras?
IIRC, the gist was biasing with IR, thus increasing the effective sensitivity?

05-18-2008, 10:01 AM
Yes I did. For it to work you must remove the IR filter, not an attractive proposition for most digital cameras. I do have a cheap HP that I think I will butcher to see how well it works. It's an easy mod on most web cams, just unscrew the lens and pop off the bit of greenish looking glass on the back of the lens. This isn't possible on all though as some have the filter integrated in the lens itself.

05-18-2008, 10:08 AM
OK, thanks Evan,
I was thinking more of cheap CMOS cameras, as opposed to "webcams" per-se.
Perhaps it was another post?

I have an idea in mind, currently, because I've found a source of cheap lasers in the 200mW/635 nM range and I'd rather burn a $20 camera than pay $200 for laser goggles :D

Hope the OP does not consider this a hijack.
Rgds, Lin

05-18-2008, 11:02 AM
200 milliwatt???!!! :eek:

I do hope you know precisely what you are doing Lin. That's plenty enough to cause immediate eye damage even from specular reflections. More important though is that the Chinese are now selling such lasers without an IR cut filter. Most such lasers don't just emit at the stated wavelength but also produce very significant amounts of IR as a secondary wavelength. It's that IR that will get you if you aren't careful. BTW, gas welding goggles will do a good job of blocking the IR although not the 635 wavelength.

Incidentally, if you are very careful with the orientation of your laser source you can obtain a significant amount of protection from plain polarized sunglasses. Laser diodes produce highly polarized light usually in the same plane as the wide dimension of the chip which if oriented horizontally will be blocked by sunglasses. Any specular reflections will also be horizontal only as vertical surfaces will will fail to reflect horizontal polarizations. For more protection buy a pair of polarized and aluminized sunglasses. They will block virtually all IR as well as horizontal polarizations.

05-18-2008, 11:13 AM
Thanks Evan, I appreciate your concern, but I do know what I'm doing with lasers, even at that moderate power, hence my remark about using a camera.

I could spend 4 times the price of the (yes, Chinese) laser and buy the appropriate eye protection. I could just wear my welding helmet :(

My intention is to mount the gizmo on my CNC router for etching plastics-timber-leather........etc.

It would be fully enclosed with opaque material, no worries on that score.

05-18-2008, 12:00 PM
Okay,more light, need that anyway check.

Now for sound I guess that a decent digital camcorder would probably be best huh?

Another question,filming a welding arc.I am assuming through a filter lense is a must right.Would an auto-dark lens be best?

05-18-2008, 12:07 PM
Been there, done that Weird.

Keep the autodark for yourself and just set up the camera on a tripod with a shade gaffered over the lens, or behind a spare helmet if you have one.

Solution 2 makes it easier. You can flip up the shade to set up the camera, just as you would when using the helmet. Flip down the shade, hit "record", get your auto-dark on, and get to makin sparks.

05-18-2008, 12:42 PM
Been there, done that Weird.

Keep the autodark for yourself and just set up the camera on a tripod with a shade gaffered over the lens, or behind a spare helmet if you have one.

Solution 2 makes it easier. You can flip up the shade to set up the camera, just as you would when using the helmet. Flip down the shade, hit "record", get your auto-dark on, and get to makin sparks.

Okay,shade 8 for the camera and shade 10 for me,I don't need no stinking auto dark,I learned to weld by ear:D

05-18-2008, 12:46 PM
Hehehe, you tink you tough bastid?
I learnt to weld by braille!

05-18-2008, 03:00 PM
Hah. :D


05-18-2008, 03:04 PM
And why is Calvin screaming in that frame?