Thread: Helium boot disaster on an amaizing location.

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  1. #1 Helium boot-up disaster on an amaizing location. 
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    I got involved in a cool passion project, the writer/producer who financed the project flew me in to Egypt to shoot a short based on a visually inspiring script. I came with my DSMC2 Helium for the shoot, we rented a set of Cooke anamorphics, a steady cam with technician, and the midsize crew + talents. Last night we did a full gear check and everything was perfectly fine, we drove down 7 hours to one of the most amazing location I have ever been, I would attach more images but the internet is extremely slow. We set up the rig ready to shoot and my helium never turned on again. we spent hours trying to strip it down and various versions of 30sec power button resets, no luck. Its far the most frustrating Red experience I have ever had. We are back in a base camp and about to do an other 9 hors drive, so quickly I got on a forum and hope to get some help. As I said its extremely frustrating the entire project costed a lot to the producer and he was preparing at least 6 months to get all together . This location is very difficult to get permit to, but he managed to do so, I flew over from Thailand for this project and we have still 4 days shoot scheduled ahead of us. I just hope some one can come up with a lifesaving solution.
    Just quickly about my set-up, we had the brain and a base expander which has the yellow light on when I connect power source, I paired it with V-mount to lemo plate (non-Red, generic) and I had V-mount battery belt clip (from Red) as a back up, now we are back in civilization and trying to run from main power adapter, but the camera is totally non responsive apart from having the power feed light on the base expander. I upgraded few weeks ago to the most recent firmware but it was running fine since then. I tried to replace/unmount olpfs as some old 2017 threads recommended. no luck whatsoever.
    Total frustration.
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    Last edited by peter richweisz; 10-22-2019 at 02:52 PM.
    Director, Cinematographer, Photographer. www.richweisz.com
    DSMC2 Helium S35.
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  2. #2  
    Hmm.

    I woulf check connection pins between brain and power module. and spray them with electro spray to make sure connection is good there.

    Then take everything of from the camera mount, side module monitor etc. Then try to power on with both battery and AC power connected.

    Im not sure it makes a difference but I would try both the factory firmware boot and try boot with a new firmware on mag.

    And if you can find a rental house or such that has another powermodule to test with. That would be my next step.
    Björn Benckert
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  3. #3  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Björn Benckert View Post
    Hmm.

    I woulf check connection pins between brain and power module. and spray them with electro spray to make sure connection is good there.

    Then take everything of from the camera mount, side module monitor etc. Then try to power on with both battery and AC power connected.

    Im not sure it makes a difference but I would try both the factory firmware boot and try boot with a new firmware on mag.

    And if you can find a rental house or such that has another powermodule to test with. That would be my next step.
    Thanks so much Bjorn, I really appreciate your help. We did exactly all these except I am not sure how you do factory firmware boot. I am googling it now. We did the 30 sec reset boot and tried firmware boot from mag but the fans doesn't spin up. We are about 500km from civilization. So the closest rental house in Cairo, anyhow we try to get an other power capable module over to meet us half way tomorrow somehow. Thanks again.
    Director, Cinematographer, Photographer. www.richweisz.com
    DSMC2 Helium S35.
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  4. #4  
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Have to ask, is this the only camera body you brought with you to the middle of nowhere? I've been on shoots with four cameras and three went deep six. Usually it's cables.

    Best of luck to you and hope you get things sorted out.
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  5. #5  
    Senior Member Nathan L Collett's Avatar
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    sorry to hear that! did you get a resolve? good to learn /know what was the fix all the best
    Nathan Collett
    cinematographer & filmmaker
    EPIC-W Helium #3790

    nathancollettfilm.cargo.site
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  6. #6  
    Following up on this as I had something happen to my Epic-W on set - though luckily it rebooted after a 5 minute "let's make everyone panic" rest. Mine was related to not updated firmware :)
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  7. #7  
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    Sorry I was away on an other shoot but here is what happened and we learnt from it.

    When we got back to Cairo we found a self taught technician who seamed to be pretty well skilled and fixed the camera in a starbucks with a screw driver, a volt meter, and a soldering rod. He diagnosed the problem: my base expander power and SDI socket and the board was toasted, he even find the faulty cable which caused it. It was a V-mount battery module' lemo cable provided by the rental house. Normally I have xl battery module and V-mount battery belt on it so I can swop batteries without shutting the camera down. But I needed to travel light so I only brought my base expander to power the camera and rented batteries locally. We had a few days shoot without SDI out, on our return to Cairo we met him again he came with the same battered supermarket plastic bag, he established one of the transistor was faulty on the board hence we had no SDI out, He happened to have a new one with him and replaced it. He said if I send it to red they would exchange the entire board, so he charged $200 at the end. since then I had two shoot with the camera without problem. Lesson learnt as the technician put it, always use your own cables. We did have gear check though and I find it odd how this could all happen.
    Mark the decision to travel with one camera did not come from naivity or negligence, but simply economic reason. As I said it was a self founded project by the producer/writer of the script so for him to fly me in , renting a set of cooke anamorphics , riggs, lighting and a crew were already stretching financial resources. We actually did have a GH5 with a PL mopunt as a back up but we ended up skipping that scene as we could not complete it properly by the time we gave up using my camera and we will reshoot somewhere else. Thanks for all the support guys and thanks for the Red support team as well who followed up on the issue without me even open a support ticket.
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    Director, Cinematographer, Photographer. www.richweisz.com
    DSMC2 Helium S35.
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  8. #8  
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    Great lesson learned about cables. Thanks for sharing.
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    Nikhil Kamkolkar
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  9. #9  
    Now that it has been resolved, I can say this- The image of a complete stranger soldering on your RED in a Starbucks in Cairo is awesome.
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  10. #10  
    Senior Member Karim D. Ghantous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John David Pope View Post
    Now that it has been resolved, I can say this- The image of a complete stranger soldering on your RED in a Starbucks in Cairo is awesome.
    Hell yes. I love those kinds of people. I wonder if he can fix that old Commodore 64 that I got really cheaply earlier this year. It was working just fine and then one day it stopped working. :-)
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