PDA

View Full Version : Protecting your Dragon in extreme conditions



Nawaf Alsabhan
08-11-2014, 12:58 AM
Hello all,
I'm filming a corporate video soon with my Dragon, and there is a scene where I'll be filming cement mixed with some materials to become concrete, and I'm told that when that happens a lot of dust comes out.
One way I was thinking of filming this is with a zoom lens far away, but it wouldn't be the same effect.
Another idea was covering the Dragon with plastic when filming, but I'm worried the fan would overheat or the camera would get damaged.
I'm filming this in Saudi Arabia, the temperature here is currently 37 Celsius (99 Fahrenheit) and goes up to 48 Celsius (120 Fahrenheit)

Any ideas? Anyone filmed in a similar extreme condition? I'd love to hear your opinion, and any tips are appreciated.

Phil Holland
08-11-2014, 01:03 AM
Use an optical clear in front of your lens via matte box or screw on if you are using still glass to protect the lens from potential harmful particles.

Use a bag to protect the general camera body with a bit of gaffers tape and don't cover up the vents.

Every so often blow out the vents if things get really hairy.

120 degrees is pretty hot. If you have the chance to do so, I'd recommend shading yourself and the camera via some sort of overhead shade.

Drink lots of water.

Nawaf Alsabhan
08-11-2014, 01:15 AM
Use an optical clear in front of your lens via matte box or screw on if you are using still glass to protect the lens from potential harmful particles.

Use a bag to protect the general camera body with a bit of gaffers tape and don't cover up the vents.

Every so often blow out the vents if things get really hairy.

120 degrees is pretty hot. If you have the chance to do so, I'd recommend shading yourself and the camera via some sort of overhead shade.

Drink lots of water.

Those are good tips, thanks Phil!

For not covering the vents, do you mean the front fan and the top fan?

Phil Holland
08-11-2014, 01:18 AM
Those are good tips, thanks Phil!

For not covering the vents, do you mean the front fan and the top fan?

Correct. You want a clear path for the cooling system and it can intake a bit of dust. Just every now and again blow it out with a blower if you notice build up.

Nawaf Alsabhan
08-11-2014, 01:23 AM
Correct. You want a clear path for the cooling system and it can intake a bit of dust. Just every now and again blow it out with a blower if you notice build up.

Ah, scary, I guess I'll go buy a blower lol.
Thanks :)

Phil Holland
08-11-2014, 01:29 AM
Ah, scary, I guess I'll go buy a blower lol.
Thanks :)

The fan path doesn't lead to the important "innards" of the camera. It's just a cooling system.

Chris McKechnie
08-11-2014, 10:32 AM
Like Phil mentioned, shade, shade and more shade will be your best friend. I just shot out in palmdale recently where temps were above 100 degrees, Epic performed flawlessly as she always does. Adaptive fan setting will also do a great job of keeping the camera at the right temp. If the cam gets too hot and the fans kick on, in my experience, the cam actually cools down quicker on than off, with fans at 100%.

Chad Lancaster
08-11-2014, 10:45 AM
I've been shooting all summer on my dragon in the southwest wilderness. Keep your fans on adaptive so it can adjust itself to the heat and out of the direct sun for long periods and you'll be fine.

Stirling Bancroft
08-11-2014, 10:52 AM
I've put a pack of dry ice ahead of the fan to cool the air before it enters the camera. This is pretty useful when you have the camera bagged and recirculating hot air becomes inefficient for cooling. Be careful about dry ice contacting skin or camera directly, the former could leave you with burns and the latter could lead to condensation on the inside of the camera.
Epic, is built solidly but lacks weather sealing, so definitely bag the camera to keep the dust out of it.

Nawaf Alsabhan
08-11-2014, 02:35 PM
Those are great tips, what temperature do you set for adaptive if the weather is more than 100 Fahrenheit?

Chris McKechnie
08-11-2014, 02:42 PM
Those are great tips, what temperature do you set for adaptive if the weather is more than 100 Fahrenheit?

I normally run at 65 degrees, which still gives you over 10 degrees before the cam will really start to get fussy. Adaptive fan mode is prob one of the best firmware update benefits that RED has ever released.

Kevin Marshall
08-11-2014, 03:13 PM
My only issue with filming in the heat and the Adaptive setting is that it only considers the core temperature, and not the sensor temperature. The latter is what's relevant to the black shade calibration. This summer, in weather ranging from 80-95F, it has meant that setting the camera to Adaptive/65 has yielded a calibration at 45-46 degrees (done at home base) and operating temps (in the heat) of 50-51 degrees, which puts the calibration out of spec (yellow T+) and has the fans running at a fairly loud ~40%. Interestingly, setting the Adaptive target temp to 70 made no difference in fan speed/noise, though of course made the temperature jump. This experience has been the same on both MX (old fan) and Dragon (new fans).

So if you can, find a way to black shade on location to avoid the camera running out-of-spec.

Nawaf Alsabhan
08-28-2014, 10:02 AM
My only issue with filming in the heat and the Adaptive setting is that it only considers the core temperature, and not the sensor temperature. The latter is what's relevant to the black shade calibration. This summer, in weather ranging from 80-95F, it has meant that setting the camera to Adaptive/65 has yielded a calibration at 45-46 degrees (done at home base) and operating temps (in the heat) of 50-51 degrees, which puts the calibration out of spec (yellow T+) and has the fans running at a fairly loud ~40%. Interestingly, setting the Adaptive target temp to 70 made no difference in fan speed/noise, though of course made the temperature jump. This experience has been the same on both MX (old fan) and Dragon (new fans).

So if you can, find a way to black shade on location to avoid the camera running out-of-spec.

True, here's what I did and found to be the best setting:
I chose Adaptive fan at 70, then Blackshaded on site under shade.
After half hour filming, the fan speed went up, so first I changed the setting to AUTO and the fan kicked high, in 2 minutes the core temp went down to 60 (from 72) then chose Adaptive again, and changed it to 65.
Adaptive at 65 is actually better than 70 from what I experienced this week.
Adaptive at 70, the sensor temp went up to 72, i couldn't believe it (it turned orange).
But Adaptive at 65, it kept the sensor temp around 55-59.

Brooklyn M. Juliana
08-28-2014, 11:39 PM
And if all else fails, use something like a Blackmagic as your crash cam

Robert Hart
08-29-2014, 12:34 AM
The fan duct may safely pass chemically active dust without it getting in onto circuit boards etc. I would want to clean out the duct afterwards as a hedge against corrosion working in through joints and then finding its way into circuit boards and parts over time.

Fan bearing life may be reduced by particles getting onto the lube and working in onto the wearing surfaces.

I would be concerned about the lenses. The fly ash in cement dust is fairly hard. Cleaning may damage coatings unless carefully done. It may also chemically damage the coatings if not cleaned off. If you can use screw in filters, do so to protect the front elements of your lenses.

If you can conveniently wrap the lens barrel against dust getting into the joints, do so.

Within those caveats, enjoy the assignment. It is sometimes a privelidge that being a cameraman gives to gain access and learn new things.