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Need to film inside a dark box


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#1 Isil Onol

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Posted 23 June 2006 - 07:36 AM

Hi. For a user-feedback experiment as part of my research project, I need to place cameras inside a box to film the hands of people that are touching/examining objects in the box. The users won't be allowed to see what's inside the box therefore it will be dark unless it is lit from inside (or the bottom of the box can be made of glass to let ligh in). I thought about surveillance cameras and even to place a camcorder through a hole that would fit the lens in and let the camera's body outside the box. But I couldn't go anywhere as I haven't got a clue about the current technologies and what lighting (if any) I should use. Thanks in advance. I would appreciate your advice on this. :unsure:
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#2 Robert Goodrich

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Posted 23 June 2006 - 10:54 AM

A solution might be to purchase or make a lightbox.

They are usually used in product photography to offer a nice even light, along with reducing the direct reflection of camera and lighting equipment on the object being photographed.

Instead of thinking of it as a solid box you need to light from inside, think of a transluscent box that allows you to light from outside.

Here's an example of one that can be purchased, but you might get an idea how to make one yourself that better serves your needs.

http://www.bhphotovi...egoryNavigation

Edited by Robert Goodrich, 23 June 2006 - 10:56 AM.

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#3 isiono

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Posted 23 June 2006 - 11:34 AM

Thank you for the link. This does sound like a very good idea, I will look into it. Bearing in mind that film/video is not really my industry, can you/anybody suggests spy cameras or survaillance equipment by anychance? Do you think they are suitable to place in a box? It would be nice to keep everything in the box so the users won't be distracted with the filming equipment. How about infra-red cameras, has anyone used them. are they easy to acquire from hiring companies? Thanks again.

Edited by isiono, 23 June 2006 - 11:34 AM.

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#4 Chris Keth

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Posted 24 June 2006 - 10:34 AM

Thank you for the link. This does sound like a very good idea, I will look into it. Bearing in mind that film/video is not really my industry, can you/anybody suggests spy cameras or survaillance equipment by anychance? Do you think they are suitable to place in a box? It would be nice to keep everything in the box so the users won't be distracted with the filming equipment. How about infra-red cameras, has anyone used them. are they easy to acquire from hiring companies? Thanks again.



It depends on the quality of image you want to achieve. Surveilance cameras are generally terrible-looking, as are reasonably priced infrared cams. Why does the object have to be in a box? Why can't it be on one side of a small wall or a box with one side missing, with holes through which the person can examine the goods? That would let you light to satisfaction, shoot the hands and object, but also shoot the face of the subject(s) with a second camera.
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#5 isiono

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Posted 24 June 2006 - 02:03 PM

Thank you very much Christopher D. Keth. Great idea. Why didn't I think of that? :huh: I completely got lost in the problem, therefore believed that the box is the only way to do this. But now thanks to you, I've decided to put a barrier between the user and the object (taller than the subject's eye-level), cut a hole big enough for the users to fit their hands; and seal this hole with cloth that has an elasticised end, so the user cannot see through the hole but still fit their hands easily (like in hands-on children museum exhibits). I can then just borrow digital video cameras from my University with no extra expense. And it will be a lot easier to build the flat barrier/wall than the box. Thank you again sooooo much :)
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#6 Praetorian

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Posted 27 June 2006 - 09:17 PM

but also shoot the face of the subject(s) with a second camera.


Good thinking. Especially if they are touching something gooey or wet.
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