Saturday, April 14, 2007

How not to do a Vibrating Ground Glass

The static is fine for web videos but leaves much to be desired for full DV. At low light like indoors shooting the grain shows up around the edges. So I try to convert the simple static to a full vibrating ground glass. Unfortunately I am not successful yet.

Notice something wrong? The adapter was a full centimeter short! One of the spacers is too short. This wreaked havoc with the infinity focus.

I started with the 52mm tube and cutout a plastic card. I carefully cut a rectangle the size of the Nikon Type D for mounting the ground glass. I tried it alone inside of the tube as a static but it wasn't stable. So I try using a 52mm filter in reverse and that held the ground glass well. Trial fitting the motor I found that there wasn't much room to mount it vertically as it should. So just for kicks I try it horizontal. It doesn't work.

Not one to give up, I sacrifice some of the focus screen's visible area by mounting the motor vertically against the fastening tab on the Nikon Type D. The vibrations are more quiet but I can't see the grain moving. There isn't enough play in the rectangular cutout nor the plastic card to allow the grains to move.

I ask the kind folks at DVInfo Alternative Imaging what kind of stupidity I've delved into and I'm told that my arrangement wouldn't work. The horizontal was moving in the wrong direction. It was also loud because it was turning the card into a diaphragm. Meanwhile my vertical was too tight on the tube to allow the movement necessary to blur the grain. Just for kicks I'm taking the vertical setup to the seaport for some test shots.


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