LED light…damage to your eyes !

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Do not stare at high brightness LEDs, because doing so may cause permanent damage to your eyes.

The optics of our eyes focus visible light onto the retina, which is the light sensitive part of our eyes, similar to the way a magnifying glass can focus an image of the sun onto a piece of paper. Just as the piece of paper might smolder and catch fire, a light that is brightly focused on your retina can cook and thus permanently damage your eye. Exposure to bright white and blue LEDs can also cause permanent damage to your eyes through photochemical action.      

Here is a link to an article about the particular hazards of blue  LEDs:  http://www.mdsupport.org/library/hazard.html#blue

The key factors that determine whether or not a particular exposure to light from an LED causes permanent damage are the wavelength and intensity of the light, the length of the exposure occurs, and the distance from the light source to the eye. 

This danger is most pronounced with the use of the newer high output blue and white LEDs. These are intended to illuminate large areas, and for those designed for direct view applications, to be viewed at a significant distance. These LEDs can be identified by packaging or mountings that are designed to carry heat away from the junction. LEDs without these special thermal management features can also pose a danger when operated beyond their specified maximum current.

Infrared and ultraviolet LEDs can also be hazardous, and when using those, please consult the manufacturer’s data sheets or IEC 60825-1:2001 for guidance with respect to safety. You may find IEC 60825-1:2001 summarized on the web. The standard can be purchased from IEC’s web store http://webstore.iec.ch/.

The IEC specification was written to apply to primarily to lasers , though it also applies to LEDs. A new standard, IEC TR 60825,  is in development that promises that includes a section that is intended to address LEDs directly. You might want to check the web for drafts or summaries of this standard in the future.

The standards mentioned above rely on measurements that can only be made with very expensive specialized equipment, though some manufacturers state the safety classification of their LEDs, under specified operating conditions, in their data sheets.  Take note of these comments on the data sheets for LEDs you may use. In the mean time, play it safe by not staring at any bright LEDs.

My thanks to Geoff Davies of Lucid Optical Services Ltd. (http://www.lucidos.co.uk), for raising the issue of permanent eye damage, and providing the information contained in this section.

For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Litepanels Micro Pro LED light

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litepanels2Litepanels has introduced the MicroPro on-camera light fixture, a new lamp that doubles the light output of the company’s previous Litepanels Micro. The MicroPro offers luminous, soft, directional lighting and is ideally suited for mounting on an ENG camera.

The MicroPro produces 1.5 hours of continuous output from six standard or rechargeable AA batteries (depending on make) or more than five hours using Li-Ion AA cells. Power can be supplied optionally through a convenient 5-12V input jack located on the back of the unit.

The compact new head measures 5.5in x 3.75in x 1.5in and weighs 10.5oz.

A daylight (5600 degree Kelvin) source, the MicroPro features an integrated filter holder to provide the ability to attach diffusers and color modifiers. Filters not being used at the time can be stored on the back of the fixture. The unit comes with three filters including daylight to tungsten conversion, CT0 warm and white diffusion.

The MicroPro includes a ball-head camera adapter and also has a threaded receiver that enables the fixture to be mounted on a light stand or camera arm.

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Larry’s Tip of the Day

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For all your video production needs in Scotland, get in touch with Small Video Productions

Sony 24months @ 0% offer ends 30th June 09

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sony-ex-3ab-copy24 months 0% finance is currently available on all Sony XDCAM EX and XDCAM HD Tapeless products and accessories, enabling you to acquire the most current Sony XDCAM technology now, and spread the cost over 24 affordable and predictable payments.

This limited period offer ends on the 30th June 2009.

Sony Specialist Dealers receive comprehensive support from Sony, including training, priority access to technology roadmaps and new product details, as well as special offers and promotions. So if you want access to the highest levels of expertise, service and value for money, please contact your local Sony Specialist.


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HD Warrior the COMIC

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comic-with-logoTo see more fantastic comics (3 so far) press the tab above called funnily enough, comics…

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Panasonic US announce price for Lumix GH1 $1500

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Panasonic today announced pricing for the highly-anticipated LUMIX DMC-GH1, the new Micro Four Thirds digital camera with Full-High Definition (HD) video recording ability, which will be available in early June for a suggested retail price of $1499.95.  The LUMIX DMC-GH1 includes the LUMIX G VARIO 14-140mm/F4.0-5.8 ASPH/MEGA O.I.S. lens as part of the kit.  The new lens, designed to support HD movie recording, features a silent motor and continuous auto focusing (AF) capability – a differentiator from traditional DSLRs.  

 In the U.S., the LUMIX GH1 will be available in black and has advanced photography features, such as the ability to record AVCHD 1080p/24p High Definition video, yet is easy enough for entry-level users to understand and take beautiful photos and videos. With Panasonic’s iA (Intelligent Auto) mode* – a user-friendly setting made popular in the LUMIX line of digital point-and-shoot camera products, both entry-level and more experienced DSLR users can enjoy a complete suite of technologies that allow beautiful photo-taking and engage automatically – no setting adjustments needed.

The LUMIX GH1 provides cutting-edge video recording features, including the ability to record high-resolution full HD (1920 x1080) video at 24 fps or smooth HD video (1280 x 720) at 60 fps using an AVCHD format (MPEG-4/H.264), which provides the important benefit of doubling the HD quality recording time compared with Motion JPEG. The LUMIX GH1 features a dedicated video record button on the back of the camera which lets users instantly start recording videos, even while shooting still photos – removing the fear of potentially missing a must-see video moment.

MY TAKE : This camera without video is $800 almost half the price !  Has it cost $700 more to add HD video and a longer standard lens, it’s the same physical body after all.

g1-lensI was so impressed with version one of this camera I bought it…would I buy version two, not till the discounters bring it down to a reasonable price.

My main gripe with the camera is the quality of the glass used in the 14-45 lens. A few months after using it basically on family occasions I noticed a mark on the lens… on further inspection I discovered to my horror it was a  ‘pit’ in the glass. I keep this camera in a lowepro camera bag and I am not known to abuse my equipment so I have no idea how it got there. 


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Sony need to get their act together

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Once again we see how the money is taken from our pockets when you compare Gig for Gig with the professional solid state media. Sony should be ashamed of themselves for almost 18 months down the road of the SxS (S by S) card pricing, we see no reduction in prices…in fact all the Sony cards went up by 10% at the end of April 09. Even the 64Gig P2 ‘E’ card is £126 cheaper than Sonys 32Gig card.

Panasonic have overtaken them and the HPX-301 is now £102 cheaper than a Sony EX-3. Sony are also fighting the MxM (SDHC card holders) total cost including a class 6 Transend 16Gig card is £80.
The argument from Sony will be “our card is newer technology” that may be but the EX-3 does not film up to 100Mbs nor does it go all the way down to 3.6Mbs DV.

Value for money you can now buy a Panasonic HPX-301 full spec HD camcorder for £7475 and get a 32Gig card FREE saving you £460 !  

Pricing was taken from H Preston Media 6th May 2009

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H Preston Media “New look web site”

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John and the boys at H Preston Media have been busy redesigning their web store and I think it looks cracking…JOHN ” Our old web site was getting tired and we felt we needed a new look. The new site is far easier to navigate and we have got some great hot deals especially on the Panasonic HPX-301 with FREE 32 Gig P2 ‘E’ card.”

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Esquire photo shoot with RED ONE

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esquireIf the fusion of video cameras and dSLRs hadn’t blurred enough before, Esquire shot their June issue cover of Megan Fox in video—a purported first in the magazine world.

Rather than click and endless series of stills, photographer Greg Williams shot the cover with the 4K Red ONE video camera. Fox essentially acted out a scene for 10 minutes, the best moment of which will appear on the June 2009 cover. (Not to be wasteful of Megan Fox footage, the video will also be uploaded to Esquire’s site, of course.)

red-one-formattsIt’s fascinating that as digital cameras evolve, so will the roles of photographers, models and publications. I can’t see traditional photography ever dying, but whether photos will always be captured in photographs is another question.

The diagram on the right shows you the sensor sizes so it’s not surprising that the Red ONE 4 K video camera filming in 1080p captures Megan Fox for an A4 cover shoot.

Personally it’s a gimmick, let’s not kid ourselves we all know video runs at (UK 25fps) (USA 29fps), so if you shoot enough FPS with a large sensor running at 1080p you are using a glorified digital stills camera running at 29fps. Nothing special, apart from the cost of hiring a Red ONE for a morning.

It’s the coin flip on the digital SLR having the ability to film in HD…so what. Camera manufacturers are becoming obsessed with the “MUST DO EVERYTHING” these days, personally I still prefer a DSLR for taking photographs and a camcorder for filming live action. If I ever get round to upgrading my Lumix G1 to the GH1 I may rethink my last statement.

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Apple tip for Bloggers

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Apple tip for bloggers By Philip Johnston
View in HD  Download 394p Version  Visit Philip Johnston’s ExposureRoom Videos Page

Mailing a link while browsing, this is a great tip for bloggers as long as you are using a Mac but then you would not be a professional unless you were !

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