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Filming of a TV screen to get an early 60s look?


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#1 grantsmith

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Posted 23 September 2006 - 02:36 PM

Hello,

I have an idea for a music video.

I'm trying to get an early 1960s B+W look.

I seem to remember reading somewhere that in pre-video recorder days, to record a tv show they pointed a film camera at a special synched tv screen and recorded this as it was being transmitted.

My idea was to film the band on a stage (top of the pops/variety show style) using a couple of tube video cameras (possibly some old consumer betamax's), transfer to dv and edit on computer.

Then film the finished edit with a film camera (16mm) of the monitor.

My question(s) is will this work? Can I point it straight at a TV screen (PAL) and record? Would it be easier using an LCD/Plasma screen? What shutter/Synching problems would I have (and how would I solve them?)

Should I have the intermediate video edit corrected to B+W or should I use a B+W stock (7222?)?.

More importantly, will this give me the look I'm after? (Old Top of the Pops/Dr who for those in UK and late 50s variety shows for US).

Many thanks,

Grant
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#2 David Venhaus

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 05:42 AM

What you are talking about was originally done with a special machine called a kinescope recorder. It is basically a camera pointed at a tv tube but specically made and was a self contained unit.

Here is a picture of one and some info- http://www.kinescope...inehistory.html

Edited by David A Venhaus, 25 September 2006 - 05:44 AM.

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#3 grantsmith

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 04:45 PM

Thanks David,

I love all those old devices. I've never seen this machine before but am very happy to now know what it is called.

I'll try a little test with my bolex but did not realise it took such a complicated machine to do. Would really love to get that look. Maybe one day....

Cheers
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#4 sibte hassan

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 04:58 PM

Thanks David,

I love all those old devices. I've never seen this machine before but am very happy to now know what it is called.

I'll try a little test with my bolex but did not realise it took such a complicated machine to do. Would really love to get that look. Maybe one day....

Cheers


If you post a reference image, i might be able to tell you how you can achieve that effect in After Effects.
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#5 grantsmith

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 05:20 PM

Thanks sibte but I'd like to get this as close to the 'real thing' as possible using as little computer effects as possible. I'm a big fan of after effects and plug-ins but I like the idea of the actual process of using hands on equipment and the effort taken to do it (although I understand the great skill and time involved in cgi). I'm just a retro fan I suppose.
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#6 Michael Collier

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 08:20 PM

Time was film printing from video was done with a CRT-opticle machine type unit. I believe some houses still have those around (at a lot less than 500 bucks a minute that a laser print costs) the only problem you have there is the transfer being too clean. maybe if you get some really old expired stock, and experiment with using that and their CRT based printer you could achieve the look your going for. Maybe the lab has something really old around to impart that authenticity to the look (like an old lens or old CRT) I think the biggest factor on the look your going for is the tube cameras. (I would recomend tube over old betacams, because they are more prone to trailing with really hot highlights. That to me says old video camera. Esp. those old 70's music video and soul trains, where everyone has sequened outfits, and everytime one catches a light reflection, the trail lasts up to a second, in the 50s they could last a few seconds. Good stuff) You can also experiment with exposure on the camera, since back in the (poorly built tube-amp) analog days, a bad referance could push the video signal up or down prior to being recorded.
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#7 Hal Smith

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 09:05 PM

I have an idea for a music video.
I'm trying to get an early 1960s B+W look.
Grant

A big part of that "old TV look" was the kinescope transfer to film. TV's still weren't very good in the earlier 60's (even professional ones), the horizontal and vertical linearity was pretty bad - the pictures tended to "bloom", bright areas were noticeably out of focus. If I were you, I'd look for a working 50's or early 60's b&w TV set. Use a video to TV modulator, an old tube camera like an early VHS camcorder, and film the TV set while the TV camera is taking a live picture that is showing on the TV set. Doing it in real time should simplify sound sync, you can use a crystal camera and a DAT, etc.
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#8 grantsmith

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 03:53 AM

thanks guys. really good ideas.

cheers,

grant
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