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How to Check the motion picture camera


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#1 L K Keerthi Basu

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Posted 22 April 2007 - 11:16 AM

Hello everybody,

This may be a Bad question but I what to know about what are the Procedures or the tests to be done when we check the camera for the shoot .

We mostly do some of the camera test at rental house like shooting these ,

1. Lens focus check, with the focus chart, grey and color chart test for the redition,

2. Registration test,

3. Ground glass test,

4. we check each and every filter and adapter and the special lens like shift and tilt lens.

5. some of the physical tests of the equipments whether they are at good condition.


Is this enough or any other tests should be done, or I have missed it, so that I can correct that in future.

What are the test you people will do for your checkups


L.K.Keerthibasu
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#2 Tony Brown

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Posted 22 April 2007 - 02:00 PM

You should check with your production company what their insurance company requires.

In the UK it was never necessary to shoot lens tests, though in France its the norm. as long as the collimation has been checked then an eye focus check should be sufficient. If you are using the lenses over an extended period I'd get the 1st to shoot harp tests.

Registration tests should be shot at various intervals depending on the camera. Arri 3's need to be checked a lot. I always reckoned 1 in 3 was unsteady to some degree, though if its live action work and not stuff that is intended for titles its not so critical obviously.

If you've zooms then look for tracking and focus hold through the range.

Check every conceivable combination of lens/matte box.

Rest assured the one thing you dont check will be the first thing out of the box Monday morning.

Cross check and double check ......
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#3 Kenny N Suleimanagich

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Posted 22 April 2007 - 02:21 PM

Scratch test the mags, run dummy film through the camera and then look closely for scratches.
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#4 Michael Garcia

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Posted 25 April 2007 - 12:39 AM

Depending on the Camera being used, and many other Variables, it's difficult to say exactly what should be checked. However, I would recommend reading through Douglas C. Hart's Book The Camera Assistant: A Complete Professional Handbook, or at least the chapters on Equipment checkout and tests. This book is extremely well written and thorough. I would imagine that it would clear up any Questions you my have.
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#5 Chris Keth

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Posted 07 May 2007 - 03:29 PM

Scratch test the mags, run dummy film through the camera and then look closely for scratches.


This should be new film i.e. short ends you've saved. You want to be sure that the only possible source of scratches is the mag you just tested. New film ensures that.
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Visual Products