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Finley1128

Sighting in your cameras

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Finley1128

Other than by trial and error, what are some of the ways that you all sight in your camera set up's? Ring sights? Circle cut out stickers on your goggles? Laser pointers?

Pictures would be a great help as well :)

Thanks!



Connect the camera to a screen, switch it on, put it on your helmet and you can see what you film.

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Not sure if I can make this make sense via computer, but for me it isn't about "sighting in". I'm not of the school of thought that I want a sight to intersect a line going through the camera lens at a given distance.

I just want to make sure that my line of sight/point of aim is on a parallel line with the center-line of the camera. That is, I'm ok with the idea that where the center of my ring sight is, will always be be 2-6 inches lower on a parallel line, instead of "dead on" at a given distance via an intersecting line and therefore off at every other distance.

Mount your cameras level/flat, and set your ring sight up such that when your eye looks through it, it is also on a parallel line with the cameras.

If you do this, when you put your helmet on and get it cranked down right, you will see the perfect cross (or circle pattern) in your ring sight, letting you know your eye is lined up on that same line as the cameras (if the light isn't coming straight in through the ring sight and into your eye, the cross/circles skew). If the cross/rings aren't lined up you either bumped it, didn't put your helmet on right, or otherwise know you may not be looking on the same parallel line as your cameras.

The idea of twisting/cranking the ring sight to a point of impact like you would on a gun scope...isn't the way I want to go. If you have it set up right, there is no need to "sight in", and you will know you are pointing within a few inches of dead center on your cameras at any distance.

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Sorry to inject of your thread but its here already.

I also am having a problem getting dialed in, first few days trying it out (Replay Mini HD 1080 on a Benny Helmet).

Bit of advice I got around the DZ was top mount a bit higher then level (Tried that and on inside video it was aimed too high. More likely a good setup for outside video).

Then tried sidemount, mount spot its just under the eyes tilted back up a nudge to be inline with eyes. Those ended up too low on inside video.

I realize a lot of camera work is aiming it by orienting your head in relation to where you know the cam points (Rings for instance). So a lot of my problem is noobness and not having learned to keep head a tad up or a tad down.

Replay mini has no HDMI out, you have to download to view so sighting in realtime isn't an option. Are there rules of thumb for inside video and outside video, like standing 10 feet back from a wall standing up should record centered same height as your eyes? or lay down on a creeper 6 feet from a wall and check what your recording is centered same height as your eyes? Or just dead center top mount perfectly centered and level and just learn to aim ones noggin more?

Cheers
'Femur' Ron

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With my most recent helmet setup, I took a sort of opposite approach. I mounted my sight so that it matched my eye level when I held my head at a natural angle, then mounted and adjusted the cameras so that they matched that view.

So, I brought the mounts to my head (BWHAHAHAH. I crack me up!)

The sight is little piece of smoke coloured perspex with a hole in the middle. What I see is a small white blob floating in my field of vision to let me know the center point and, if I close my left eye, I can see the edge of the sight to know the rough boundary of the image frame when filming at med (120 deg) mode.

Here is a picture of the setup .http://www.dropzone.com/cgi-bin/forum/gforum.cgi?do=post_attachment;postatt_id=144879;. (I recently changed the GoPro 3 case to the new 4+ skeleton case with the lower profile and bigger control buttons)

For the Sony ActionCams, I just used their wifi viewing mode to send a live view to my mobile phone to set the aligment. With the GoPro, I did the same via the HDMI cable to a nearby TV.

With regards to slightly tilting a camera, I suppose it comes down to what you film most. If you film tandooms / AFF all day, then a slightly up tilted camera will make your life easier when filming right in their face and below them.

The issue of looking down or across a bit when flying very close to the subject is unavoidable with top or side mounts, unless you want to angle them slightly to converge their focus at a set point at a set distance. I found this solved just as many problems as it created, so now just go for level cameras and let the wide angle lens make up the tiny difference.

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As the previous guys have said...

Sight your ringsight in to a point on the horizon. The further the target is, the closer to parallel it will be. You absolutely cannot do it in your front room because, at that distance, the line of your eye sight and your camera will converge on a single point.

With this method, your target will be center of ringsight at any distance past about 6 foot.

If your target is closer than 6 foot, you'll need to move your head down a bit to compensate.

You'll get used to how much you need to adjust your head at what distance over time. It helps to walk around your house naming the things you are looking at and moving closer/further away from them. I did this in my underpants (optional). When you watch the video back, you'll get an idea of how off you are.

For me though, I put my subject dead center in the sight for 4-way (apart from the exit) and top quadrant for tandems.

If your not convinced by this and think you might prefer having it sighted in at a certain point (so your eye sight and camera sight converge), go and zoom your camera in a bit and try and film someone under canopy. At that distance, if your sight isn't parallel with your camera, you won't film shit.

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ronkhensley


I realize a lot of camera work is aiming it by orienting your head in relation to where you know the cam points (Rings for instance). So a lot of my problem is noobness and not having learned to keep head a tad up or a tad down.



Something to think about here- "camera helmets" are designed to have flat surfaces that easily allow you to put your helmet on with your eye on the same line as your cameras. What several of you are talking about are using sport *helmets and mounting action cams to them. Obviously this is now the majority of "camera" helmets we see, but that is also creating some of the problems you are discussing. A benny or a G3 weren't really designed to mount cameras to in the way that a FTP, or 4X was.

How you guys figure out how to mount them and get them lined up will be up to you. However, I'd suggest working hard on it and trying to come up with a solution that is clean, but also naturally points the camera where you are looking as much as possible. IMO, the last thing someone with 200 jumps and a camera on their head needs to be thinking about is tilting their head for the shot. The beauty of the wide field of view of most action cams is that if you are close...you should still get everything in frame. I'd prefer to see you able to focus on flying safe and staying out of trouble, than to have you focus on keeping your chin up/down/left/right to get the shot with a poorly aligned camera.

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