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Purpose of field monitor?


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#1 Viktor Sloth

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 10:56 AM

Hi guys,

I just got hold of an Limelite M7 HD field monitor. It's an supplement to the small, and not very clever placed screen on the Sony FS700. I do not know, if I was naive or if i'm doing something wrong, but I had the idea, that when I plugged in the monitor, the Sony screen would simply duplicate it self to the monitor... The case is: It's not!

So, what I have is a monitor with no histogram, no peaking, no zebra, no information at all telling if the exposure is correct. The monitor can be adjusted in any way and that is making it completely unusable regarding to read the exposure.

Did I misunderstand the purpose of an monitor? Is this what they do?
From my POV it dosen't add well to my workflow that I have to first set white balance, tint, contrast and brightness to match the sony screen before shooting.

Thanks in advance, and have a nice day :)
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#2 Brian Drysdale

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 11:40 AM

Field monitors can be variable, the high end quality ones, when properly calibrated (the SMPTE bars are used in HD), can display the image you're shooting and you can used these to make exposure and colour judgements by eye using these. However, most field monitors aren't of the highest standards, but are useful for letting the director see the action remote from the camera. Some field monitors do have waveform displays that allow you to see the exposure using a video waveform.

I wouldn't match to the LCD on the camera, they're not of the highest quality, more suitable for framing than anything else. I don't know the field monitor you're using, but usually these specialised monitors are better than most LCDs found on cameras, although yours is in the budget end of the market. You need to correctly set up your monitor before comparing them
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