Thread: The SDI issues

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  1. #141  
    Yes, above 6G is way more sensitive.

    Most HD out camerras has 3G. Only latest iterations do 12G.

    I think komodo gets troubled alot buy this due to the fact that many has different power source for their monitors. A lot of Dtap stuff. A lot of not so good power plates.


    But yes, I used my vaxis atom and I been swaping power sources like crazy, not following the safty protocol at all. Even fried one Vaxis siting on the camera by giving it reversed polarity by mistake. Smoke was comming out of that vaxis. Still my komodo did not flinch. I also use D tap alot and pull them in out without any precautions, happens even when camera is on quite often. Still no problem.
    What I have not used is monitors with seperate power source. I pretty much dont use any monitors at all, tend to go only wireless on the komodo.
    Björn Benckert
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  2. #142  
    Senior Member Robert Hofmeyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    I pretty much dont use any monitors at all, tend to go only wireless on the komodo.
    Maybe this is the solution :) Do you monitor using Red Control? Do you find the lag acceptable for pulling focus?
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  3. #143  
    Member Nathan Ryan's Avatar
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    Would using a Blackmagic SDI-HDMI Micro Converter help with this situation at all? Obviously this would need to be powered from one of the available V mount adapters, or it's own power bank, so maybe it wouldn't help anything... also extra bulk and cables, so not an awesome solution. :/
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  4. #144  
    Senior Member Blair S. Paulsen's Avatar
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    The necessary electronics for proper power circuits are, as it turns out, an expense for the manufacturer. Who knew? ;-)

    There appears to be multiple issues at play:

    1) Janky power on some lower cost accessories (also plastic casing instead of metal)
    2) 12g over BNC/Coax is not as robust in terms of shielding and has tighter physical tolerances at the connectors
    3) An accessory like a monitor that has it's own power source, perhaps a 5v battery, that shares the SDI ground facility, can support a ground loop

    For some folks, Vance's pin modification (notes in his post above) could be a low cost way to avoid spikes when changing batteries. Without more information we can't be sure that's a bulletproof solution, but I love the ingenuity.

    Galvanic isolators should offer solid protection for the SDI board, but there will always be at least some signal loss. With 12g, even a little attenuation could be enough for the signal to drop below the minimum threshold. Fortunately, a camera mounted monitor only needs a very short cable, so you shouldn't lose much signal there. Strongly recommend throwing down for a high spec cable with proper connectors, even if you don't plan to use the full 12g capacity.

    It can be nice to power the monitor from its own battery, but there is circumstantial evidence (and some basic electrical properties) indicating that doing so can allow ground loops. The smart move would seem to be powering the camera and everything on it from a single power source. Does that completely protect the SDI board? Likely not, but it should reduce the number of failure points and offers a common ground.

    Cheers - #19
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  5. #145  
    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Lubensky View Post
    It's all the cameras out there with SDI.
    I've seen fried SDI boards on Alexa Classic, Mini, LF etc just as often as on any other camera. BTW, the more cameras out there on rentals- the more fired SDI's you know.
    Not saying it isn’t an issue with all cameras, but it seems like we hear of it happening more with ARRI and RED, less with Sony. Again, “seems”.

    I am not suggesting, if indeed the case that it less occurs with Sony cameras, that Sony cameras are more robust or better engineered. Just wondering if it more afflicts more “sophisticated” cameras. If it is even true that ARRI and RED cameras are necessarily more complex engineering than,say, the Sony FX9.

    Anecdotally is seems to be mostly occurring, or even exclusively occurring, with higher-end “cinema” cameras.

    The Sony FX9 has 12g sdi. Not yet heard of any issue with sdi-power sequence on the FX9.

    I guess my bottom line here, selfishly, is how much I need to worry about this with my FX9.
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  6. #146  
    Björn Benckert
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  7. #147  
    Quote Originally Posted by John David Pope View Post
    Not saying it isn’t an issue with all cameras, but it seems like we hear of it happening more with ARRI and RED, less with Sony. Again, “seems”.

    I am not suggesting, if indeed the case that it less occurs with Sony cameras, that Sony cameras are more robust or better engineered. Just wondering if it more afflicts more “sophisticated” cameras. If it is even true that ARRI and RED cameras are necessarily more complex engineering than,say, the Sony FX9.

    Anecdotally is seems to be mostly occurring, or even exclusively occurring, with higher-end “cinema” cameras.

    The Sony FX9 has 12g sdi. Not yet heard of any issue with sdi-power sequence on the FX9.

    I guess my bottom line here, selfishly, is how much I need to worry about this with my FX9.
    Obviously it’s not a made-up issue and according to most authoritative sources, it can happen to any camera with an SDI port, regardless if it’s 1.5, 3, 6 or 12G. But I don’t recall ever seeing or even hearing about a camera with an SDI port getting fried in this manner, until Arri started talking about it last year. And I’ve been in the business for close to 25 years.

    Maybe Sony and Panasonic, because of their knowledge, experience and expertise from decades of building ENG and live broadcast cameras and gear, that have to perform under the rigors of some of the most demanding and unforgiving environments and conditions, have the knowledge and wherewithal to do everything they can to harden(protect) these ports that can be so incredibly important and necessary, to where an entire shoot hinges on them working or not. And is also why most cameras like that also have more than one. My opinion, a camera should, at a bare-bones minimum, have two. I prefer a camera with three and really like four, like on my F55. Not necessarily just for back-ups, but it makes feeding all the numerous things that need a video signal in today’s production world, easier.
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  8. #148  
    Senior Member Christoffer Glans's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Yeah, linking to the information that's already known. There's no additions to the use of monitors with their own batteries and so on. Changing batteries on the monitor by shutting not only the monitor off, but the camera, then removing the SDI, then changing the monitor battery, then attaching the SDI, then turning the accessory on, then the camera... every damn time you need to change the monitor battery is never going to be a viable workflow option for a normal set, not to speak of the wear and tear this will produce.

    The solution needs to be something else, something that makes us able to connect the SDI at the start of the day, and work normally with changing batteries on our gear fast and efficiently. That Red just links to a list of standard procedures is no help at all. Would have been better if they just designed a module that has a breaker inside or something. Locking the SDI port into the camera means that whenever it goes dead you need to send in your entire camera.

    So I hope Red can offer some actual solutions to this instead of just doing the whole "support read from the book" answers.

    Do the galvanic isolators work? Yes or no? Red should battle test it and let us know. If they made the camera so the SDI port isn't easily fixed, we need some assurance measures, otherwise, we will never be able to rent out or lend the camera to anyone without risking blowing our SDI board. It doesn't matter if we know how to operate the camera, we will never be able to safely let others use it without interviewing them on the procedures of SDI cable management. The possible problems and drawbacks just pile up as long as the only thing we have is a link to a general procedure list.
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  9. #149  
    Senior Member Christoffer Glans's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher A. Bell View Post
    And is also why most cameras like that also have more than one. My opinion, a camera should, at a bare-bones minimum, have two. I prefer a camera with three and really like four, like on my F55.
    It should have none, it should be on a module that can be replaced. If the SDI is this sensitive to damage, it's not a viable option for the chaos of productions. The best thing Red could do is to do another type of baseplate module that has an SDI out.
    Or recommend an isolator that works, or make them themselves. The worst thing about all of this is that the SDI port is the ONLY option for good monitoring with our Komodo. We don't have a dedicated monitor on top and using the Komodo Link is not even close to enough for critical view work. So if the SDI gets blown it's over. If there's one thing I know, it is that anything that can break on set needs to have a replacement option on set. Here we have no such thing, if it breaks, we're screwed.
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  10. #150  
    Quote Originally Posted by Christoffer Glans View Post
    It should have none, it should be on a module that can be replaced. If the SDI is this sensitive to damage, it's not a viable option for the chaos of productions. The best thing Red could do is to do another type of baseplate module that has an SDI out.
    Or recommend an isolator that works, or make them themselves. The worst thing about all of this is that the SDI port is the ONLY option for good monitoring with our Komodo. We don't have a dedicated monitor on top and using the Komodo Link is not even close to enough for critical view work. So if the SDI gets blown it's over. If there's one thing I know, it is that anything that can break on set needs to have a replacement option on set. Here we have no such thing, if it breaks, we're screwed.

    We work on a big series starting to shoot on two komodos now. Will be interesting to see how that flies. I tried to explain all this to the AC´s, camera ops and the DoP when they where gathering their gear, but they did not even want to listen, and looked at me as I was speaking about trolls...

    But as I see it the easiest way around all this is to use something like the Bebop hotswap adapter and power everything from it. on board monitors etc. Then I´m quite positive that you can do what ever you want with the cables and camera without risking the camera. But the shit thing is... The problem does not need to be on the camera... If you got a client monitor hooked up on a 30m BNC cable and the video assist guy go of to put on a new brick... then yes he need to unplug that montor SDI before he do the battery swap. Which is something video assists will not learn any time soon.

    http://bebob.de/en/ml-120v-v.html


    My komodo has been out quite frequently and I had no issues. It could be the Vaxis atom that saves my ass. With a bit of luck Red forced Vaxis to put an isolator inside of the module to approve it so the SDI port is secured, or at least that is what they should have done, the Vaxis is built in away so when mounted vertical then you can not even get the SDI cable out of the camera or module.... And as I understand its´only 3G video coming out of in the vaxis SDI port. likely because its difficult to find a 12G isolator that works well and does not cost a fortune so I suspect that's the reason it only does lower G´s.


    To me best you can do is, as described above, to drill out your Dtap´s female + pol. Just 3mm or such then someone really have to push that dtap in on an angle to manage to fry anything.
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