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Hi everyone. This is my first post to JW and I'm somewhat new to the location audio world. In December I'm doing my first feature film and the DP wants to use timecode which I've never used before. He is providing a Tentacle Sync and a Denecke Smart Slate which we'll be syncing to a SD 744T. The camera is an Alexa mini. I have a workflow in mind but I wanted to run it by some pros to see if I'm forgetting something.

 

  • Make sure 744, slate and Tentacle are all using the same frame rate as the Alexa
  • Use freerun mode on the 744
  • Using a 5 pin LEMO to 3.5mm TRS, jam the Tentacle to the 744
  • Attach the Tentacle to the Alexa mini using a 3.5mm TRS to the Alexa's 5 pin LEMO (and leave attached)
  • Lastly, jam the slate to the 744 with the same 5 pin LEMO to 3.5mm but using a 3.5mm to 1/4" adapter (slate takes 1/4" I believe)

 

Any thoughts or advice appreciated.

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I’ve used that exact same (without the 1/4in adapter, just a regular 5pin lemo to 1/4in) setup with success many times. Although I have experienced some TC oddness with the mini so do a workflow test if you can.

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Sounds like a good plan. Rejam everything at lunch to be sure. 

 

My other piece of advice is to keep in mind that 5-pin Lemo jacks are bi-directional but the cables are not necessarily so. For example with the wrong cable you might accidentally jam your 744 from the tentacle instead of the other way around. You’ll need to keep track of which Lemo to 3.5mm cable is which and they’ll need to be wired differently.  

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6 hours ago, Trey LaCroix said:

Although I have experienced some TC oddness with the mini so do a workflow test if you can.

 

The Mini is regularly 2 frames off, but Arri claim to have fixed this with the latest firmware 

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10 hours ago, Constantin said:

 

The Mini is regularly 2 frames off, but Arri claim to have fixed this with the latest firmware 

That was the oddness! Hope it really is fixed.

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Hi Brian,

I just got a Tentacle myself and tested it with my 744T. So far the plan sounds good, but as Derek stated you have to be careful with the cables. I don't think that you can accidentally jam your 744T to the Tentacle by just using the wrong cable. You would need to be in the wrong TC mode on the 744T ("Jam once and Freerun" instead of "Freerun") and you would need to be in green mode on the Tentacle instead of red mode. Also you have to press "Jam" manually on the 744T, so there is no way that could happen. But the way you described it you cannot use the same cable (5Pin Lemo to 3,5mm) for both 744T and Mini, because you would send TC from the 744T (Freerun) to the Tentacle and then theoretically send TC from the Mini to the Tentacle. You would need the 3,5mm to 5Pin Lemo and Tentacle in green mode for the mini instead. If you'll only have the 5Pin Lemo to 3,5mm, the Tentacle is basically useless. The other way would be using just the 3,5mm to 5Pin Lemo by jamming the 744T ("Jam once and Freerun"-Mode) to the Tentacles TC and let the 744Ts internal generator hold it and then connect your Tentacle to the Alexa Mini and keep feeding TC. I don't see any difference between both methods, as both Tentacle and 744T have stable TC generators. The only difference is that the 744T switches to a less accurate clock after being turned off for 2 hours and the Tentacle doesn't have to be turned off at all due to long battery life. So with the first method lets say you turn your 744T off for 2 hours (maybe driving to a different location) and lose the TC, you have to send TC from 744T to Tentacle again, switch cables and switch Tentacle mode and then connect to the mini. While with the second method the Tentacle keeps running all the time, you do a quick re-jam on your 744T to the Tentacles TC, keep the green mode and keep the cable and just plug into the mini. Saves you one cable switch and one mode switch (yey). I hope that helps. Also correct me if I'm wrong as I got my unit just today and I have no "real world" TC experience either.

 

Edit: I just realized that I mixed up your sentences (the one with the slate and the one with the mini), I think your plan seems solid then.

 

SoundSide

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Another suggestion:

 

Use time of day on your recorder then it's easier to check on the slate or camera during shooting

 

mike

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