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On 1/12/2018 at 11:58 AM, Constantin said:

 

QBit: $249

USO: $299

 

that‘s not 50% more, it’s about 16% LESS. 

 

Tentacle is $289 (added just to round out picture) 

 


Yes, you're right; I messed up on my price analysis.  Thanks for bringing it to my attention.  I'd inadvertently looked at the price of the set of two QBit XL's, instead of the single unit.  Gotham has the single available for $239.  I've edited my earlier post, to remove the error.

 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:58 AM, Constantin said:

 

There are a few things things I am curious about: 

 

1) how do you mount the UCO? I asked this before in this thread, but I‘m curious if there are other options

 

 

Velcro is the most common way.  There are two designated spots on the back of each unit, for attaching rectangles of self-adhesive velcro, without covering up any labeling.

I've also used bongos or gear ties, for setups on which Velcro wasn't the most practical solution.

On a side note, I'm not a huge fan of putting adhesive on gear, so I ended up making a couple of nice form-fitting pouches, with Velcro on the back, and cutouts in the front front for the screens and buttons.  It's totally unnecessary, but that's just me.  I like to keep my gear clean.
 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:58 AM, Constantin said:

 

2) how well can you read the read the display outside and in bright (sun-) light?
 

 

Yes.  You can set the brightness via the phone app, or with the buttons directly on the unit.  Anything in the upper 50% is easy to read outdoors.

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:58 AM, Constantin said:

 

3) the case feels very soft - wobbly. Does that concern you? 
 


I'm not following you on this one.  Can you please explain?

If by "soft", you mean the texture, then yes, it does feel soft to the touch, due to the micro-texture rubberized coating.  But that material is not actually soft for real; it just feels that way.  It's pretty tough stuff, the same type of material that a lot of phone cases are made of. 

My current and previous phone cases have it, in fact.  Neither the cases, nor the phones, have ever been damaged, despite numerous drops on concrete and asphalt, skids across floors, etc.  I'm pretty sure if the stuff can protect a large 6-8 ounce phone that gets dropped all the time, it can also do so for a little 1.5 ounce box that spends most of its life either in a case or securely mounted to a camera.

On the "wobbly" part, you've lost me, I'm afraid.  The Ultrasync boxes are quite solidly built, no wobble or flex or anything else along those lines about them.

 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:42 AM, Constantin said:

 

Then it‘s not working well and for more than $900 you SHOULD be nitpicking.
 

 

Heh, perhaps. :)

The app actually works very well.  It just can take a minute or so to find all the devices on the network.  That's a slight annoyance, but hardly a showstopper.  Given that it's the only thing I've found to complain about, I think I'm doing OK.

 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:42 AM, Constantin said:

 

So I buy this really tiny TC box and then increase the size again by all these dangling adaptor cables?
 

 

You've lost me again.  The adapter cable simply extends from the connector, the same way any other cable extends from the connector of any other device in existence.  If that constitutes "increasing the size", then so does every other cable.  If you started with a larger box, the problem would be even worse, would it not?

Of course, total cable length does increase by few inches with an adapter as opposed to without.  But that doesn't change anything of significance.  If you're coiling the cable anyway, then just coil it one more time.  If you're snaking it around, so you don't have to coil it, then just snake it a very tiny bit further.  Practically speaking, there is zero discernible difference.

 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:42 AM, Constantin said:


No, I would prefer the proper cables, which are quite pricey, but admittedly they would be for most other TC boxes as well, but here they do seem a bit more expensive. 
 

 

They're around $45 each.  There's no shortage of similar cables available form other manufacturers, if you simply must have them, but you want to price shop first.  You can also make your own, obviously.  Coax ends are pretty simple to attach.

 

 

For me, though, as I said, the simplest solution is also the most inexpensive.  A couple bucks worth of barrels, and done.

I'll repeat that I just don't get why this a thing for anyone.  I use these boxes and cables every day, and it's such a non-issue, I never ever would have thought about it in a million years, had people here not brought it up.  But to each his own.

 

 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:42 AM, Constantin said:

 

Also, TCS seem to sell them with a straight connector only. A right-angle version would make so much more sense - to me anyway.
 

 

 

If you really want a right-angle cable, there are other manufacturers that make them.  Markertek has a large assortment.  Just search for "din 1.0/2.3 cable" on their site.  Alternatively, you could also simply replace either or both ends of the Timecode Systems cables.  Right-angle ends are just a few bucks.

But as far as I'm concerned, this is why God gave us right-angle adapters.  I prefer to have the option of right angle or straight, at all times.  With a straight cable, you can always go right-angle, but with a right-angle cable, you can never go straight.


 

On 1/12/2018 at 11:42 AM, Constantin said:

 

The straight connector effectively increases the size of the box again. 
 

 

...And you've lost me again.  Sorry, but I really don't understand what you mean by this. 

If you mean you're adding the length of the connector to the height of the box, then wouldn't you also have to add the length of the right-angle connector to the width or depth of the box?  Considering there are an infinite number of angles at which the box might be mounted to all manner of different cameras, I fail to see how either the right-angle or the straight could be an automatic winner, in this regard.


In any case, the bottom line is I've been using these for months now, and the problems you seem to be imagining have just never manifested in reality.  I hope that information is helpful. :)

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On 1/12/2018 at 5:49 PM, afewmoreyears said:

I don't know about that....

 


Only has half as many connectors however, as it has no genlock. 

 

On 1/13/2018 at 5:58 AM, Constantin said:

1) how do you mount the UCO? I asked this before in this thread, but I‘m curious if there are other options

 


With velcro.

 

On 1/13/2018 at 5:58 AM, Constantin said:

2) how well can you read the read the display outside and in bright (sun-) light?

 


Easily.

 

On 1/13/2018 at 5:58 AM, Constantin said:

3) the case feels very soft - wobbly. Does that concern you? 


Not at all in the slightest. Never even ever entered my mind.

 

On 1/13/2018 at 6:28 AM, ABBloch said:

Just to be clear, the phone app isn't actually needed.  It's just a handy tool to have.  You can forego it if you want, and the system will still work just fine.  You'll just have to push buttons on the units themselves is all.  The same settings are available, either way.


Agreed, the first time I used my USO units I had not put the app on my phone (as my phone is a total piece of sh*t!! Spent the $$$ on buying new TC toys instead... ha!). But it was still super easy to set up the USO without a phone, thanks to the nice big screen on the unit itself (heck, it is so easy you don't even need to read the manual! If you want to live life on the edge). 

 

On 1/13/2018 at 7:07 AM, ABBloch said:

Interesting.  My stuff tends to be pretty evenly divided between 23.976, 24, and 29.97.

I've also got one series that cross jams.   Camera needs 29.97, while sound has to be 23.976.  That one's annoying, but it's also one where the system really shines.  I set the :Wave as the master, at 23.976, and set my mixer to ignore incoming FPS data while respecting incoming timecode.  The mixer takes FPS from its project settings.  It beats the hell out of resetting every device manually.


Why do they need that mix of settings?

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On 1/12/2018 at 5:28 PM, ABBloch said:

I was on a reality TV shoot last week, two cameras.  Staging was in a metal barn/machine shop, and set was in the building nextdoor.  On day one, I got the usual, "Wow, these are so cool!" exclamations from the camera crew, upon seeing the Unltrasyncs.  (I'm used to that, by now.) On the morning of day two, as I was still setting up, the DP came rushing in, to inform me the two cameras (in the other building) were out of sync with each other.  I said, "No worries.  The wifi just can't make it through these metal walls.  As soon as I walk in there, they'll sync right up.  You'll see."
 

 

Do Ultrasyncs and master, use a choice of 3 different continental UHF bands with a choice of 14 different frequencies for each, for radio sync between each other? (not wifi)

865.050 - 923.200

https://www.timecodesystems.com/products-home/rf-channels/

 

I think they might.....:) and I think this is what can give exceptional line of sight range, in my experience.

Wifi gets used for metadata and to broadcast info for other purposes, wifi tablets etc.
This is part of what makes the whole system exceptionally excellent as far as I'm concerned.

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8 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Why do they need that mix of settings?
 

 

They explained their post pipeline to me once.  It's a bit of Rube Goldberg machine.  Apparently, their picture edit process, for reasons that I don't pretend to understand, requires an FPS of 59.94.  So, they shoot at 29.97, and then upsample in post.  Their output needs to be at 23.976, so then they downsample, and it all lines up.  Their production staff is fully aware that this is a confusing PITA, with a considerable chance of error on set, but they have no power to change it.  That post pipeline is there to stay, at least for the foreseeable future.

 

Reality TV is just wonky like that sometimes.  A lot of these shows tend to use ancient cameras and unusual post pipelines.  I never encounter stuff like this in narrative TV or film.  Reality is it's own animal.

 

3 hours ago, pindrop said:

 

Do Ultrasyncs and master, use a choice of 3 different continental UHF bands with a choice of 14 different frequencies for each, for radio sync between each other? (not wifi)

865.050 - 923.200

https://www.timecodesystems.com/products-home/rf-channels/

 

I think they might.....:) and I think this is what can give exceptional line of sight range, in my experience.

Wifi gets used for metadata and to broadcast info for other purposes, wifi tablets etc.
This is part of what makes the whole system exceptionally excellent as far as I'm concerned.


Good question.  You've jumped beyond my knowledge.  I'm afraid I don't know a whole lot about how their wireless technology works; I just know that it does. :)

There are several wireless settings to choose from, including different channels and types. It's all referred to as "wifi" in the menus, but it's possible they're using more than just that.

I just went with the defaults settings for this.  They worked, so there was no reason to mess with them.  When I get a chance, I'll do a little research on what all the various settings mean, but it's not a pressing issue, so it might be a while. 

 

If you're curious in the mean time, maybe download the manual, and see what you think.  It sounds like you know more about the technologies involved than I do.  

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4 hours ago, ABBloch said:

 

They explained their post pipeline to me once.  It's a bit of Rube Goldberg machine.  Apparently, their picture edit process, for reasons that I don't pretend to understand, requires an FPS of 59.94.  So, they shoot at 29.97, and then upsample in post.  Their output needs to be at 23.976, so then they downsample, and it all lines up.

 

I'm just reading this thread for a way different reason, but this is just so fucked up...

(Yes, of course sound lines up as there is no speed change anywhere, but the image will be severely damaged.)

 

Bouke

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Yeah, it's crazy.  As I said, I have no idea what their reason or their reasoning is for all that up and down sampling.  Sometimes you just have do as you're told, and accept that the rest isn't your problem.

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16 hours ago, ABBloch said:

 

They explained their post pipeline to me once.  It's a bit of Rube Goldberg machine.  Apparently, their picture edit process, for reasons that I don't pretend to understand, requires an FPS of 59.94.  So, they shoot at 29.97, and then upsample in post.  Their output needs to be at 23.976, so then they downsample, and it all lines up.  

...

 

Are their Frames Per Second 59.94 or is that their Timebase?  The difference is often misunderstood. 

 

For many years into the digital world, (I haven't confirmed if this is still the case on their very latest units) Panasonic cameras have operated with a Timebase of 59.94, and a FPS of 29.97 (some other cameras have too).  If you shoot 23.976 with these Pannys, the TB and FPS still remain 59.94 & 29.97 and it internally flags which frames will be used to output the 23.976 result.  It works fine as long as the person using it understands the system and knows what they're doing.  Isn't that the case, of course, with any of our gear.

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On 12/01/2018 at 8:46 PM, Constantin said:

 

Should I ever really need genlock I still have my original lockits

 

Exactly. Not all buyers of the new TC boxes have lockits in the cupboard (to go back to). There's a lot of choice out there for c.(£€$)300, all impressively small and light (albeit with differing style of cases, powering solutions and connectors) but in usage, TCS seems to offer the most complete set of 'historical' functions (GL/WC) and modern (wireless jamming, display and ios control). The price differential for me is the least significant variation across these systems:

~ Extra tough - Mozegear (Q28 has 'Flow Through Audio').

~ Wireless jamming, ios control, built in mic - Tentacle.

~ Wireless jamming, ios control, ACN - Ambient.

~ Wireless jamming, display - Betso (Sbox-2RF has WC).

~ Wireless jamming, display, ios control, blink network, genlock/WC - TCS.

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20 hours ago, ABBloch said:

They explained their post pipeline to me once.  It's a bit of Rube Goldberg machine.  Apparently, their picture edit process, for reasons that I don't pretend to understand, requires an FPS of 59.94.  So, they shoot at 29.97, and then upsample in post.  Their output needs to be at 23.976, so then they downsample, and it all lines up.  Their production staff is fully aware that this is a confusing PITA, with a considerable chance of error on set, but they have no power to change it.  That post pipeline is there to stay, at least for the foreseeable future.

 

Reality TV is just wonky like that sometimes.  A lot of these shows tend to use ancient cameras and unusual post pipelines.  I never encounter stuff like this in narrative TV or film.  Reality is it's own animal.


Wow. Wow. Just wow!
Astonishing, glad I've never came across that myself! 

 

 

 

1 hour ago, daniel said:

~ Wireless jamming, ios control - Tentacle.

~ Wireless jamming, display, ios control, blink network, genlock/WC - TCS.


Not just iOS, Android too!

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3 hours ago, daniel said:

 

Exactly. Not all buyers of the new TC boxes have lockits in the cupboard (to go back to). There's a lot of choice out there for c.(£€$)300, all impressively small and light (albeit with differing style of cases, powering solutions and connectors) but in usage, TCS seems to offer the most complete set of 'historical' functions (GL/WC) and modern (wireless jamming, display and ios control). The price differential for me is the least significant variation across these systems:

~ Extra tough - Mozegear.

~ Wireless jamming, ios control - Tentacle.

~ Wireless jamming, ios control, ACN - Ambient.

~ Wireless jamming, display - Betso.

~ Wireless jamming, display, ios control, blink network, genlock/WC - TCS.

 

Concise summing up +1 :)

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7 hours ago, John Blankenship said:

 

Are their Frames Per Second 59.94 or is that their Timebase?  The difference is often misunderstood. 

 

For many years into the digital world, (I haven't confirmed if this is still the case on their very latest units) Panasonic cameras have operated with a Timebase of 59.94, and a FPS of 29.97 (some other cameras have too).  If you shoot 23.976 with these Pannys, the TB and FPS still remain 59.94 & 29.97 and it internally flags which frames will be used to output the 23.976 result.  It works fine as long as the person using it understands the system and knows what they're doing.  Isn't that the case, of course, with any of our gear.

 

Well, that makes a heck of a lot more sense now.  They do indeed use Panasonic cameras.  Thanks for the info.

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On 13.1.2018 at 2:58 PM, daniel said:

Like I say it was a while ago - multiple camera and sound operators on a reality gig with radio channels shared across recorders iirc.

 

Definitely don’t need wordclock for this. Unless, as I said earlier, they roll for a really really long time. Even then I‘ll doubt it makes much of a difference. Sure, wc won’t hurt, but not essential here

 

On 13.1.2018 at 9:12 PM, ABBloch said:

lcro is the most common way.  There are two designated spots on the back of each unit, for attaching rectangles of self-adhesive velcro, without covering up any labeling

 

I have only handled a USO once briefly, but it felt like and was told it doesn’t hold adhesives well. So I was curious how you did it. Velcro as such doesn’t tell me much. Is it a special kind? 

When I mentioned this earlier in this thread, the reply seemed to confirm my worry and the solution sounded more drastic than Velcro, but maybe I over-interpreted that reply. 

 

 

On 13.1.2018 at 9:12 PM, ABBloch said:

If by "soft", you mean the texture, then yes, it does feel soft to the touch, due to the micro-texture rubberized coating.  But that material is not actually soft for real; it just feels that way.  It's pretty tough stuff, the same type of material that a lot of phone cases are made of. 

 

No, I mean the case. I could squeeze it. And in fact I could press buttons just by squeezing on the back. Tough maybe, but not firm. Anyway, if you haven’t experienced any problems with this...

 

On 13.1.2018 at 9:12 PM, ABBloch said:

You've lost me again.  The adapter cable simply extends from the connector, the same way any other cable extends from the connector of any other device in existence

 

Yes, but from the adapter cable you need another cable going off to the camera - unless it’s BNC. You’re not so much adding to the case, but to the clutter in the camera. 

This is not an argument for or against the USO, but rather for using dedicated cables. 

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On 13.1.2018 at 9:12 PM, ABBloch said:

If you mean you're adding the length of the connector to the height of the box, then wouldn't you also have to add the length of the right-angle connector to the width or depth of the box?

 

That would depend on the size of your box. But in most cases the straight cable will add a few inches to the length, whereas with a right-angle one it’s only maybe half an inch. Width? Hardly. I have never seen such a large right-angle adapter for such a box. 

 

14 hours ago, daniel said:

Exactly. Not all buyers of the new TC boxes have lockits in the cupboard (to go back to). 

 

Fair enough. I‘m not intending to state absolutely which one is best, only stating which one I like best, and trying to find out more about the others. I still maintain that genlock is needed so rarely, it shouldn’t be the one deciding factor. Nonetheless, it can certainly be a part of a list. 

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13 hours ago, daniel said:

~ Extra tough - Mozegear.

~ Wireless jamming, ios control - Tentacle.

~ Wireless jamming, ios control, ACN - Ambient.

~ Wireless jamming, display - Betso.

~ Wireless jamming, display, ios control, blink network, genlock/WC - TCS.

 

Yes, that’s a nice list. And as was said all three phone controllable devices have an ios and Android app. 

To be fair though, to make full use of the features listed for TCS you’re not in the $300 range anymore. You’re way beyond that. 

 

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On 1/12/2018 at 9:28 AM, ABBloch said:


I was on a reality TV shoot last week, two cameras.  Staging was in a metal barn/machine shop, and set was in the building nextdoor.  On day one, I got the usual, "Wow, these are so cool!" exclamations from the camera crew, upon seeing the Unltrasyncs.  (I'm used to that, by now.) On the morning of day two, as I was still setting up, the DP came rushing in, to inform me the two cameras (in the other building) were out of sync with each other.  I said, "No worries.  The wifi just can't make it through these metal walls.  As soon as I walk in there, they'll sync right up.  You'll see."

I'm sorry, but this sort of issue has been solved for a long time.  You jam sync two (or more) reliable TC boxes to the master recorder with good batteries, and everything stays in sync for 8+ hours.  The cameras can be on the other side of a metal wall, up on a crane, in a submarine underwater or in an aircraft flying overhead--sync stays good.  Why make this more complex with the addition of wifi or anything involving wireless transmission?

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4 hours ago, Constantin said:

I have only handled a USO once briefly, but it felt like and was told it doesn’t hold adhesives well. So I was curious how you did it. Velcro as such doesn’t tell me much. Is it a special kind? 

When I mentioned this earlier in this thread, the reply seemed to confirm my worry and the solution sounded more drastic than Velcro, but maybe I over-interpreted that reply. 

 

 

You're right that not all adhesives will stick to that micro-textured surface very well.  Some just peel right off.  The heavy duty stuff sticks pretty well.  Just give it some pressure, and a few minutes to set.

That said, I like my pouch solution better.  I made them out of gaff tape, in about five minutes.  It's really easy.  Here's how:

  1. Wrap a couple pieces tightly around the device, sticky side out, so that the tape does not stick to the device, only to itself.
  2. Then do a second layer, sticky side in.  No adhesive should be exposed at this point.  Again, the tape is only sticking to itself, not to the device.  The device will be able to slide in and out of the pouch freely (but not loosely).
  3. Cut out some holes in the front of the pouch, to expose the screen and buttons.
  4. Cover the back of the pouch with velcro.

I've done this for all manner of devices, over the years.  It's an easy way to keep stuff protected, for almost no expense.  If you do it right, it looks very professional.  Most people won't even realize it's just tape.

 

4 hours ago, Constantin said:

No, I mean the case. I could squeeze it. And in fact I could press buttons just by squeezing on the back. Tough maybe, but not firm. Anyway, if you haven’t experienced any problems with this...

 

I've never experienced this, no.  It sounds like maybe the particular unit you used was defective or damaged.  Sorry to hear that that was your first experience with it.

 

4 hours ago, Constantin said:

Yes, but from the adapter cable you need another cable going off to the camera - unless it’s BNC. You’re not so much adding to the case, but to the clutter in the camera. 

This is not an argument for or against the USO, but rather for using dedicated cables. 

 

I get what you mean now, but really, that extra few inches of cable doesn't add any clutter to speak of, in my experience.  As I said, if you're coiling the cable, you just coil it one more time, and if you're snaking it, you just snake it a little bit further.  Until and unless a camera op ever complains about it, I can't see it as cause for concern.  As I said, I've gotten nothing but 100% positive feedback from camera guys, so far, so I'm pretty sure it's all good.

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I have been using TCS products for several years and at the end of last year bought a couple of the USO boxes.  Used them several times and like them.  They integrate very well with their other products.  

So today using one of the USO boxes and discovered the main function switch (read large) is sticking slightly down in the case.  It still worked, so finished the shoot and when I got home took it apart and there in the middle is the broken main switch.  I have reached out to TCS for I hope warranty repair as I have only had them for 32 days.

Up until now, no issues, from the inside peek, the board level switches could be a problem.  Also there is no weather sealing around the switches, so this could be a problem unless you protect them from the elements.

Amen to the velcro not sticking.  I have cleaned the surface with denatured alcohol and gone to industrial strength velcro.  We shall see.

I have not used the other vendor products mentioned in this thread, so no comments as to their performance or suitability.  There are compromises made for each product and only the user can determine if they meet their needs.

YMMV

David

 

USO.jpg

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2 hours ago, Philip Perkins said:

I'm sorry, but this sort of issue has been solved for a long time.  You jam sync two (or more) reliable TC boxes to the master recorder with good batteries, and everything stays in sync for 8+ hours.  The cameras can be on the other side of a metal wall, up on a crane, in a submarine underwater or in an aircraft flying overhead--sync stays good.  Why make this more complex with the addition of wifi or anything involving wireless transmission?


I think you missed the point of the story, Phillip.  Yes, we're all aware that a physical jam sync is a viable option.  That's how we all did it for years and years and years, before wireless sync was a thing. :)

The issue you seem to be envisioning is not the one I was talking about, nor one that would ever actually happen.  Perhaps I was less than clear on that.  Let me explain. 

 

You appear to be under the impression that USO boxes do not maintain sync if they lose communication with the master.  That's not the case.  In fact, quite the opposite, they're among the most reliable TC boxes on the market.  Even without a wireless connection, an Ultrasync One will drift no more than one frame per 24 hours of continuous use (and battery life is about 40 hours).  With the wireless, they'll drift zero frames until the batteries die, since every device will be in constantly updated sync the entire time.

The reason those cameras had initially been out of sync that day was because the camera guys happened to have finished setting up, a few minutes before I did.  They walked out before I'd turned my master transmitter on, so nothing had yet had the opportunity to sync up.  (In the non-wireless world, this would be the equivalent of their having walked away before you'd had the chance to jam.)  Had they been a minute or two later, everything would have sync'ed before they'd left the building, and the question never would have come up.

 

The point of the story was just to illustrate that no physical connection was necessary to right the situation.  Once the master was in radio range, everything sync'ed up automatically, instantly.  Consider it an automated self-jam, over the air, if you will.

 

You mentioned the scenario of the camera being up a crane.  Let's explore that for a moment.  Imagine your camera crew gets ahead of itself, and they send the camera up before you've had a chance to jam.  Since you need to connect physically, the camera now has to come back down.  Nobody's gonna be happy about that.  But with wireless sync, it's a non-issue.  There's no such thing as taking time out to jam.  Everything syncs itself automatically, and then stays in sync at all times.  The camera could be 500 feet in the air, and you'll still be able to sync it, without even so much as standing on your tippy toes.
 

32 minutes ago, drpro said:

I have reached out to TCS for I hope warranty repair as I have only had them for 32 days.

 


In my experience, their customer service is excellent.  I'm sure they'll take care of you.

 

 

32 minutes ago, drpro said:

from the inside peek, the board level switches could be a problem.  Also there is no weather sealing around the switches, so this could be a problem unless you protect them from the elements.

 

 

Hmm, that's definitely something to keep an eye on.  Thanks for sharing this info. 

 

32 minutes ago, drpro said:

Amen to the velcro not sticking.  I have cleaned the surface with denatured alcohol and gone to industrial strength velcro.  We shall see.

 


Try my gaff tape pouch solution.  It works really well. :)

Given what you said about the lack of weather sealing around the buttons, I think I'll be revising my design, to put clear plastic on the front, instead of just holes.  It'll be an easy mod.

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1 hour ago, ABBloch said:


I think you missed the point of the story, Phillip. 

[...]

You appear to be under the impression that USO boxes do not maintain sync if they lose communication with the master. 

 

I doubt that Philip isn't aware of that ;-)

His point was more "why would you even need it" (just hand out your synch boxes jamed and fully charged in the beginning of the day and there's very little that can go wrong).

 

But what strikes me as odd is how you praise the USO like it was the only ultimate synch box, one has to wonder how people ever managed to make films without it ;-). sure it's a nice little unit with some extra features and advantages, but so are all the other little boxes (like for my use, I prefer having a built-in camera mic for a scratch track over Genlock and wireless synch for example).

 

chris

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1 hour ago, chrismedr said:

 "why would you even need it" (just hand out your synch boxes jamed and fully charged in the beginning of the day and there's very little that can go wrong).


Oh, there's plenty that can go wrong.  You're telling me you've never lost sync on set?  There's never been a time when you've had to re-jam?  Really?

 

1 hour ago, chrismedr said:

But what strikes me as odd is how you praise the USO like it was the only ultimate synch box,

 

I really don't think that's what I've been doing.  I thought I'd made my intentions clear, in the first paragraph of my first post in this thread.

For whatever reason, people who do not own the device keep suggesting imaginary problems that either don't exist or are so trivial that they might as well not exist.  Nearly every time I've replied here, it's been simply to correct that sort of misinformation.  Since I do own the device and use it every single day, I'm in a position to present experience, rather than imagination.

After Drpro pointed out a very real potential problem (based on experience), I thanked him for it, and agreed that it's something worth keeping an eye on.  Perhaps you missed that?

I've also stated several times that I'm often one to write about problems with gear in great detail, and that if I had encountered any issues with either the Untrasync One or :Wave, I'd be writing up a storm about them.  But since I haven't, I'm not.  It's that simple.

Look, I have no agenda here.  I don't own any stock in Timecode Systems.  I have no reason to care what anyone else chooses to use or not.  I simply saw an opportunity to help by sharing a little first hand knowledge.  That's it, and that's all.  Anything you might be reading into it beyond that is a product of your own imagination.
 

1 hour ago, chrismedr said:

one has to wonder how people ever managed to make films without it ;-).

 

No need to be sarcastic.  You appear to be implying a sentiment that was never there.  Best not to do that.

 

1 hour ago, chrismedr said:

sure it's a nice little unit with some extra features and advantages, but so are all the other little boxes


I never disputed that, and neither did anyone else.  OF COURSE there are tons of good TC boxes on the market.  That was never in question. 

The topic of this thread, however, happens to be just one specific box, not all of them.  If the title were "General Discussion of Timecode Sync Boxes," or "Let's Compare and Contrast Various Timecode Sync Boxes," anything else along those lines, then I'd probably have mentioned things I like and don't like about all kinds of others.  But since the actual title is "NEW: Timecode Systems | UltraSync One," I've limited my comments to that, with very few exceptions.

 

 

 

1 hour ago, chrismedr said:

I prefer having a built-in camera mic for a scratch track over Genlock and wireless synch for example).


If that's the case, then you'd probably love the newer Tentacle units.  Great.  Enjoy.

Me, I don't really see the point in the mic, for what I do.  On 95% of my jobs, I'll have wireless hops on the cameras, so the audio they're getting is as close a match to mine as possible. 

The other 5% are DSLR shoots, in which the camera's onboard mic grabs the scratch, and timecode isn't even used.  I've thought about purchasing a Tentacle, just for those shoots, but every time I've asked the powers that be if they'd want to use timecode in post, the answer has been no.  So, I haven't bothered.  If the need ever materializes, I'll do it, of course.  But until then, it wouldn't be a sensible investment.

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On 1/15/2018 at 8:43 AM, John Blankenship said:

 

Are their Frames Per Second 59.94 or is that their Timebase?  The difference is often misunderstood. 

 

For many years into the digital world, (I haven't confirmed if this is still the case on their very latest units) Panasonic cameras have operated with a Timebase of 59.94, and a FPS of 29.97 (some other cameras have too).  If you shoot 23.976 with these Pannys, the TB and FPS still remain 59.94 & 29.97 and it internally flags which frames will be used to output the 23.976 result.  It works fine as long as the person using it understands the system and knows what they're doing.  Isn't that the case, of course, with any of our gear.

 

This is just adding pulldown. So the FPS is 29.97 (frames per second), but since pulldown is added, it's interlaced making it 59.94 fields per second. These cams are steam powered afaik. (The trick was invented to shoot 23.976 on tape that could not hold other framerates.)

 

Bouke

 

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4 hours ago, ABBloch said:

Imagine your camera crew gets ahead of itself, and they send the camera up before you've had a chance to jam.  Since you need to connect physically, the camera now has to come back down.  Nobody's gonna be happy about that.  But with wireless sync, it's a non-issue.  There's no such thing as taking time out to jam.  Everything syncs itself automatically, and then stays in sync at all times.  The camera could be 500 feet in the air, and you'll still be able to sync it, without even so much as standing on your tippy toes

 

How would you switch the unit on? Can you do that via the wave thing? 

That would be really cool!

 

Having said that, I actually like the manual jam each morning as that is sometimes my only interaction with the camera crew and a bit of jovial banter can go  long way. Of course, I could still talk to them, but this is an easy start

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12 hours ago, Philip Perkins said:

I'm sorry, but this sort of issue has been solved for a long time.  You jam sync two (or more) reliable TC boxes to the master recorder with good batteries, and everything stays in sync for 8+ hours.  The cameras can be on the other side of a metal wall, up on a crane, in a submarine underwater or in an aircraft flying overhead--sync stays good.  Why make this more complex with the addition of wifi or anything involving wireless transmission?

 

Well looking at it in more detail it turns out that these sync boxes, cameras, recorders, need to be tuned to each other otherwise they do drift, and you can't be sure how much, and the tuning is not trivial, even with a top of the range Ambient for example.

The advantage of RF sync is that this is done whenever the units are in range and continue highly accurately when out of range.
Personally I love this degree of accuracy and assurance, I'm not left wondering if the boxes are in tune, have lost tune, need retuning, how long was it since they were last tuned, do I need to tune these hired in units etc. etc.

 

Or you can have this fun.....!

From the top of the range Ambient ACC501 – Timecode Master Clock manual
ACC501 – Timecode Master Clock

This menu is used to tune (calibrate) other Lockit devices or for the Controller to calibrate its reference oscillator to an external source.

The internal reference can be tuned to + - 10ppm with a resolution of 0.15 ppm per digit. The tuning number DAC is shown on the display as well as recent tuning history. The tuning process may have to be carried out several times if the tuning error is large (over 4ppm). The tune values are estimated and the final value approached and met after up to 5 tune processes.

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