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This weekly course covers the most common questions videographers encounter when shooting and editing with DSLR cameras, from choosing a frame size and frame rate to understanding moiré. Authors Rich Harrington and Robbie Carman will also help you understand the impacts of compression and the difference between cropped (or micro 4/3rds) and full-sized sensors in cameras, and much more. This continual FAQ guide is a handy way to find the answers to the questions that plague you the most.
Robbie Carman: So, Rich, I've got a little bit of bad news for you. Go Pros don't run don't on solar power, or like thermo-nuclear power, or something, you know, everlasting power source, you have to use a battery. Rich Harrington: Actually, I'm going to slightly disagree with you, because I picked up a really cool solar charger. Robbie Carman: Oh really? Cool. Rich Harrington: Yeah, I was camping the other day, and I got a solar charger. It's about 100 bucks that puts up enough juice to charge a phone or a GoPro. Robbie Carman: Oh, wow. Rich Harrington: But, you do have to charge, you can't run it, you have to put it somewhere. Robbie Carman: Got it. Rich Harrington: And of course, you know, we do need to store that power and where are we going to put that power? Robbie Carman: Generally speaking that would be on a battery.
Rich Harrington: And with a GoPro, that would be multiple batteries, because if you are, it's a small battery, it's a small camera especially if you are using that LCD back. Robbie Carman: Yep. Rich Harrington: And you're using the Wi-Fi feature to control this remotely. It's going to suck it out, right? Robbie Carman: Yeah. So on the back of the camera here you have a little battery compartment. And it's just a small little battery and you can just pull it out. Here it is. There's the battery. Rich Harrington: And that tab is not a manufacturing defect. You're not supposed to cut this off. I've seen people look at this. Robbie Carman: Yep. Rich Harrington: Like, what is that? And they, like, they cut them off. That's the tab to pull it in and out. Robbie Carman: Well the other mistake I've seen a lot of people make is that, if you actually look at the battery like a lot of camera batteries, there's a little slot, a slot here where the pin connectors are.
And you just want to make sure that that lines up to, the appropriate pins inside. Don't put it in backwards and try to force it in, you'll break those pins off and you'll have a giant mess on your hands. Rich Harrington: I guarantee you, it drops in very easily if it's lined up correctly. Robbie Carman: Yeah. So once you get the battery in, you simply put the protective cover back on the back there, and you're good to go. Now the thing about these batteries, Rich, is that, as you pointed out, it really does pay to have a, quite a few of these. Rich Harrington: Yeah. Robbie Carman: And ready to go, because, we were recently on a shoot where we were using Go Pros, and we went through, I would say, over the course of the day, what, five, six, seven of these, you know.
Rich Harrington: Yeah. Robbie Carman: They, they, they do, especially if you're using WiFi Or you know some of the other features, you're going to suck a lot of juice out of the camera. Rich Harrington: Well and the thing is, is when you're shooting with the camera you're somewhat limited, because yeah it's, if you're just using this and it's on your handle bars, that's great. You could stop, take a battery out of your pocket, pop it in. Robbie Carman: Sure. Rich Harrington: Or you know you're using it intermittently, fine. But what happens, when you've mounted the camera somewhere that's not convenient, or you are using it in a sports situation, and you're halfway down the mountain and the battery goes out. Robbie Carman: Well, that's, that's a good point.
These batteries are actually pretty small. I mean, they have a limited capacity, let's put it that way. Rich Harrington: Yeah, you were just trying to do the math there, weren't you? Robbie Carman: I was trying to do the math in megawatts and all that stuff, it didn't work out so well. But the smaller batteries are obviously not going to have as much juice. Now, Go Pro does make a larger or higher capacity battery which you have right here. Rich Harrington: Yeah. Robbie Carman: And the cool thing about that is that it can just plug in right into the back of the camera. Rich Harrington: Yeah, it's much like the LCD pack, in fact, it has the same carrying case so make sure Robbie Carman: Rich Harrington: If you have both accessories you know what you're doing. Robbie Carman: Yeah. Rich Harrington: It just hooks onto the edge. Robbie Carman: Yep. Rich Harrington: And then drops on in. And you've extended the battery capacity.
And I like it has its own battery meter on the outside. Robbie Carman: Yeah, absolutely. And the nice thing also about this one is that it has a little mini USB port so you, if you need to plug it into some external power to charge it. Rich Harrington: Yes. Robbie Carman: I've actually in, more in favor of these than these smaller guys. Rich Harrington: Right. Robbie Carman: The smaller guys are nice and convenient, because they keep the, the kit a little smaller. however, for things like time-lapse or when you're going to be shooting for a long period of time, I, I've opted to get a couple of those. Rich Harrington: Well and those, unless, and, and I reserve the right to be wrong. I've only been able to charge those inside the camera. Robbie Carman: Me too. Rich Harrington: I haven't found a dedicated drop the battery in charger.
Robbie Carman: Correct. Rich Harrington: You nailed it, this has its own USB port, you can just set these up on the desk. Robbie Carman: Yep. Rich Harrington: And plug in 20 of them, and let them go. Robbie Carman: Now obviously these are a little more expensive, but I think depending on the shoot the, shooting situations you're going to find yourself in, they're definitely a go-to thing. Rich Harrington: Now, but you did mention timelapse. Robbie Carman: Yep. Rich Harrington: And with time lapse, I need to power a camera for a long time. And there are so many of these on the market, but we've seen a rise in battery packs that are high capacity. Now, this weighs more than three GoPros put together. Robbie Carman: Right. Rich Harrington: It's not heavy, it's just, it's big.
But it's got two USB ports, so I could just run the USB cable out of here. Robbie Carman: Right. Rich Harrington: And power two GoPros and I've done that right on a shoot. And you just plug it, turn it on for the day. I ran a time lapse shoot where we ran the camera for 12 hours. Two cameras off of one of these guys. Robbie Carman: Yea, so you're right Rich. All it is is plug it into this end of the camera. Plug the main in into the actual battery pack. And I've actually been pretty surprised, because these battery packs were a pretty high voltage. They'll actually charge the smaller batteries anyway. These guys, they'll charge them relatively quickly.
Rich Harrington: Yeah, and what's nice is is that these are designed to be recharging battery packs. Robbie Carman: Yeah. Rich Harrington: Not just powering battery packs. And so, you nailed it. They will charge much more quickly. I love it. And, and they'll actually drain first. So, what's really nice is, is you notice that this one has sort of a, a color gauge on it as it's going down. Robbie Carman: Yeah. Rich Harrington: I could see that from a really far distance. Robbie Carman: Yeah. Rich Harrington: If I've got a camera strapped up into the rafters shooting time lapse of a, of an event happening, like an all day event. I can look up and go I'm on one bar, okay, and, and then I know it's going to roll over to the internal battery but I better get up there soon and swap out that battery.
Robbie Carman: And I shouldn't have to say this but I'm just going to say it, so it's said. And that is, before we go out in the field, if you're going to be using external battery packs like this, or, you know, even the batteries, the GoPro batteries. Do yourself a favor, before you go out in the field and just double check those that they're all charged. We actually had a situation recently, Rich, when we went out in the field and we go, huh, none of the batteries are charged whose fault was that? So you just want to make sure that those batteries are charged before you got in the field. Rich Harrington: Yeah you always want to make sure of that. And I'll through in one more caveat.
If you're going to be flying on an airplane, TSA agents get a little nervous if you show up with. Oh, let's just say 30 different battery sources in your bag. Robbie Carman: Lot of cables, wires, not good. Rich Harrington: Not good. You may want to check some of that stuff, you know, carry the cameras, carry one or two batteries with you, so in case things got lost, you can still be up and shooting. Robbie Carman: Totally. Rich Harrington: But check some of that stuff, so you don't get extra scrutiny. All right, well, this is great, we got one more thing to look at, and that is the menu system, which, I think, confuses a lot of folks, but we're going to walk you through it.
We're going to show you how to use the menu on the front of the camera, and then once you've agreed with us that that's pretty much impossible, we'll show you what the other settings do using a monitor.
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