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#1 David Owen James

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 06:49 PM

I'm studying 16mm film production and have come to the subject of sound syncing.
I will be recording sound with an analog tape recorder. I imagine an audio recorder with crystal sync and timecode (no pilot channel) is best, but if I choose to shoot with an older camera will there be an issue of compatibility? The options for audio recorder seem to be either crystal sync with pilot channel or crystal sync with timecode, but not both.

Many thanks for your knowledge,

David
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 07:12 PM

If both the camera and the recorder are crystal then no. They'd both be operating at the same speed. I'd not worry about pilot tones or anything like that. Just roll sound, roll camera, slate the shot and now you have your audio/visual sync point. Just make sure you're working at the same speeds (e.g. don't set the recorder for 30p and the camera to 24!).
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#3 David Owen James

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 11:24 AM

Do most 16mm cameras have crystal sync, even older cameras from the 60's and 70's?
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#4 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 11:37 AM

Do most 16mm cameras have crystal sync, even older cameras from the 60's and 70's?


Depends on the camera, 1970s 16mm cameras like the Aaton, Arri 16SR, Eclair ACL and CP16 will. The older designs from the 1960s like the Eclair NPR may have, depending on the motor fitted, Arr 16BLs might have an external crystal lock fitted or one model has an internal crystal motor.

Non sound cameras like the Bolex you need to check, but they're noisy and not intended for shooting with sound..
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#5 Simon Wyss

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 03:01 PM

Depends on the camera motor control alone. The motor must have its power supply at a certain alternate current frequency such as 60 Hertz or 50 or an exactly pulsed direct current in the case of a commutation (brushless) motor or the control signal frequency, respectively.

Sometimes the camera has to be or can be enough distant from the scene so that direct sound is possible. A Bolex can be quieted fairly well by having its gears lapped in, rubber insulation put in, and a barney wrapped around. Of course, the EBM and EL are less noisy than the H. Bolex 16 Pro is also rather quiet.

Forget pilotone. Frequency from a crystal is so much better as a concept that I’m tempted to say by light years. Perhaps a clever head may provide you with the little software it takes to pull a given frequency from a laptop or even a cell phone, but that’s where my electronic knowledge finds a border. Only this added: deviation must not exceed half a frame over 16,000 frames which is the 400-ft roll. Head or tail clap, synch you have.
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#6 David Owen James

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 03:25 PM

Thanks a lot guys - I'm starting to piece all this stuff together.

David
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