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uk to us power conversion


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#1 Ollie Bartlett

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 06:39 PM

Hey there,

It looks like a crew of us from the UK might be shooting a commercial out in the US in the near future, however it seems like it would be cheaper for us to fly our own equipment to the states rather than hiring whilst we're there.

With the expected shoot mostly being done at night, in winter, and in the mountains, we would rather take this option as it means we're not having to pay possibly extended hire rates due to unforeseen weather conditions.

However, what are the complications, if any, of using 240 volt lights from a 110 volt power source? I take it some sort of step down converter would be needed, but does this limit the output of the light source in any way?

As a side note (at this point anyway), what are the problems i should look out for if we decide to use our own camera kit, shooting pal and converting to ntsc.

Poor poor questions, but we've got a shoestring budget, and never had to deal with these issues before.

Cheers people,

Ollie
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#2 John Sprung

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 07:16 PM

On a typical 120/240 volt single phase generator, you should have no problem at all just using the two hot legs to supply 240 volts to incandescents -- no transformer required, just ignore the neutral. The problem comes with using HMI's, flourescents, etc, where you have a potential flicker problem with 60 Hz power feeding the lights and a 50 Hz. PAL camera. But that's a bad idea in the first place if your requirement is for NTSC delivery. Shooting an NTSC camera, or better yet, HD at 24p, will yield a better NTSC picture than you can get from a conversion. Slight mismatch between the generator and camera frequencies can still be a problem with non-incandescents, though.



-- J.S.
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#3 timHealy

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 08:06 PM

Depending on your shoot and types of lighting you may need, it may be nice to get equipment from a local vendor that can support your shoot while you are in the US rather than having a vendor that isn't even if the same country. Shipping stuff overnight could be quite expensive. just my 2 cents

Best

Tim
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#4 Walter Graff

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 08:46 PM

Probably easier and cheaper to rent. Simply buy the 120 volt lamp equivilents for an easy solution. Most every fixture made works on both sides with different lamp.
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#5 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 29 November 2007 - 05:33 PM

Given the current exchange rate, you must be getting a good deal on the freight to make it worth while bring larger lights over to the US instead of renting there.

If you're just using tungsten lights you can easily replace the 240 volt with 120 volts bulbs.

Edited by Brian Drysdale, 29 November 2007 - 05:34 PM.

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