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Video Production and Hardware: August 2008 Archives

Sony EX-1 Peaking.gif
One of the best ways to tell if you are in focus or not with the Sony EX-1 is by using the Peaking function. Peaking allows you to make precise adjustments to your focus and helps you ensure your picture is in perfect focus. To put into simple terms, peaking, applies a color around everything that is in focus. This is only in the viewfinder or monitor and not recorded onto your footage. The default color is red but you have your choice of yellow, blue, white or red. I do not recommend using white because it can easily be confused with your zebra lines. You can also choose the level of peaking from low, mid and high which changes the thickness of the peaking color. I prefer mid and the color blue but you need to play with it and choose your preference. Once you start using Peaking you will never turn it off. It is a must have feature that helps you ensure you are capturing the picture you need.
The Sony EX-1 has many great features that can sometimes feel very overwhelming but if you follow a few set-up suggestions you will be on your way to mastering this great camera. There are several settings I want to cover and a few in detail so I will cover them over the next few blogs so yo can practice them in small increments. Sony EX-1 Full Auto.gifThe Full Auto feature is actually not a feature. This setting should never be used and will be a dead give away that an amateur was operating the camera. With this turned on yo will have no control over critical settings like white balance, exposure, audio levels and focus. If you record in this mode your EX-1 will do its best to make settings accordingly. For example: as you pan a scene with different tones and light levels the Sony EX-1 will constantly be refocusing, setting different white balance settings and adjusting the exposure which will not only look awful but will also take away from the story you are trying to tell. So if there is anything you take away from these set-up tips I am going to offer you; never ever use Full Auto. Manual Focus Ring.gifManual Focus.gifNext is the manual versus auto focus. First you need to understand that it is very important that you maintain perfect focus on our intended subject or for that matter out of focus for the intended subject. This is impossible with the auto focus turned on. Maybe you are trying to achieve a nice rack-focus, not possible unless you enter full manual mode. To do this you need to pull the focus ring back to MF and flip the switch on the side to Manual focus. This will give you, the operator, full control of the focus on your EX-1. You might be tempted to push the PUSH AF button to see if you have focus. This is not a good on the EX-1. On most other cameras this will seek and find focus as long as you hold the button down, but not so on the EX-1. The EX-1 will search for a up to 15 seconds trying to find the proper focus. This is very annoying and you will more than likely never use this feature. The best way to check your focus is with Peaking. I will cover Peaking along with Zebra in the next tutorial. Stay tuned and make sure you sign up for one of our Sony EX-1 production classes bundled with your favorite editing program.
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This page is a archive of entries in the Video Production and Hardware category from August 2008.

Video Production and Hardware: July 2008 is the previous archive.

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