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Pilotone

pilotone arri sr 16mm

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#1 Cory Zapatka

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 11:31 PM

Heading into the field shortly to shoot some sync sound camera tests-- I'm interested in trying to use as much of my "new" camera as possible, including the Pilotone and the start mark system.

 

Has anybody had success recording this Pilotone, especially going to a digital recorder? 

 

If it's possible, I'd love to be pointed in the right direction for cables, 5-pin DIN to 3-pin male XLR.

 

Thanks!


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#2 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 11:46 PM

I'm not sure what use pilotone will be. An example of hew this was used originaly. The Bealieu R16, non Xtal sync, had a litle shaft driven module that produced a sine wave. This could be recorded onto one of your reel to reel tracks. When transfering to 16mm mag tape the pilotone wave was used to match tape speed to the original camera speed.
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#3 dan kessler

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 12:55 AM

Exactly.  Pilotone is only useful if you're recording sound on
a Nagra or an equivalent tape recorder. Digital recorders are
already constant speed, very precisely controlled by the internal clock.
Crystal-controlled or microprocessor-controlled motors on cameras
give them the necessary precision to maintain "cable-less" sync.


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#4 Cory Zapatka

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 11:59 AM

I was under the impression that this would allow me to keep my digital recorder running all the time. If I had the input from the Pilotone, then I would be able to register when the camera began each time, thus making synching easier in post. It's basically for run and gun situations where it would be great to continuously roll audio, but only selectively roll film. 

 

I guess I thought it would be make it easier to synch up rather than having to slate in the field. 


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#5 dan kessler

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 01:49 PM

Pilotone alone would not provide a reliable start mark.

You still need to slate each take somehow, using clapsticks,

bleep tones and lights, or something.  Even if the camera

has crystal control, it still needs to come up to speed

before you can establish sync.

 

Remember, too, that pilotone depends on a cable

connection between camera and sound recorder.

Consider how that might affect your run-and-gun

style.


Edited by dan kessler, 11 May 2013 - 01:54 PM.

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#6 Gregg MacPherson

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 05:36 PM

 

I was under the impression that this would allow me to keep my digital recorder running all the time. If I had the input from the Pilotone, then I would be able to register when the camera began each time, thus making synching easier in post. It's basically for run and gun situations where it would be great to continuously roll audio, but only selectively roll film. .......


Ok, I understand the objective. Finding the sound for your sync shots easily, and being able to adapot a more observational aproach, enabling a freer association of picture and sound in the final film.

If you have a bloop generator to mark sync start that will help with syncing up. 
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#7 Cory Zapatka

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Posted 11 May 2013 - 11:11 PM

Thanks all! After looking up the wiring in the old SR manual, I was able to make a custom 2-prong cable to XLR to go directly into my tascam. It creates an unpleasant signal when I fire up the camera, but it's exactly the signal I need in order to distinguish when I'm rolling film or not. We'll see if it works in the field-- if not, I'll be synching by hand.
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#8 Alessandro Malfatti

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Posted 19 January 2018 - 02:31 PM

I'm just going to dig up this 5 year old topic and ask, did this pilottone experiment work out? Because just today I was thinking about doing exactly the same, using the pilottone signal connected to the digital recorder to easily synch up the footage.


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