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Thread: Compatibility of Field Monitors

  1. #1
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    Default Compatibility of Field Monitors

    I'm looking at getting a (budget) field monitor to use with my Canon XF100 and Panasonic HC-X1 and I've been looking at the Lilliput A7s which has had some good reviews and their recently release 5" A5. Both monitors will accept UHD input and downsize them to 1920x1080 - the resolution of the screen as well as pixel = pixel (where it'll show 1/4 of a UHD screen)

    However the specs are resolution/Hz whereas my camera manual suggests it can output in resolution/fps.

    My question boils down to "If I shoot in ****** will the monitor work?"

    ****** will be 1080P/25, 1080P/50, UHD(3840x2160)/50 and UHD/25P


    The A7s has a table, as shown here: which clearly shows 1080P/50 being OK, but the A5 spec only has:

    HDMI Video Input HDMI 1.4 (Compatible with UHD 4K 3840 x 2160 @ 30Hz)

    I am trying to understand if that means it will only work with 30p footage.


    I've tried to get the answers from Lilliput themselves:
    (Me)
    1. I'm unclear whether the unit will accept UHD 25p could you clarify?
    2. I believe the A7s DOES accept UHD 25p, can you confirm?

    (Answer)
    1) HMDI 1.4 at 24Hz
    2) It accepts 4K 30Hz

    (Me)
    I apologise for my ignorance but I am still unclear about the compatability with my camera (Panasonic HC-X1)
    The camera manual specifies HDMI output in terms of resolution and frames per second. Your specs are specified in Hz (I am uncertain if theme two need to relate)

    What I want to know is if I shoot UHD (3840x2160) at 25p or 50p will it work properly, with some degradation or not at all. (For both monitors)

    (answer)
    The monitor accepts 3840*2160(*30/29.97/25/24/23.98*Hz)via HDMI...
    using a converter (Hz to fps) this means the A7S should accept:

    *12 fps = 24 hz

    *13 fps = 26 hz

    *14 fps = 28 hz

    *15 fps = 30 hz


    The monitor is not compatible with the below: as this is a limitation of using HDMI 1.4.

    *25 fps = 50 hz*

    *50 fps = 100 hz*


    (Back to me here & now)

    What ?... I have written back for more information as the above, but it seems to have gone a bit quiet. If the above was true would mean the monitors won't work with any popular camera format!

    I freely admit i don't understand the significance of specifying the Hz , but the above suggests to me that the respondent doesn't either!


    Anyone care to explain this to me (or even just say it'll work or it won't) I'm tempted with the A7s but the smaller size/weight of the A5 appeals.
    Tim

  2. #2

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    Well that's thoroughly confused me too! At the risk of sounding flippant, why don't you buy from Amazon - free return if it's not what you need!

    On a related note, I had a lilliput monitor a few years ago. Build quality was awful and came with an asian plug and adapter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Peters View Post
    Well that's thoroughly confused me too!
    I've subsequently had a response from an engineer at liiliput rather than a sales person and indeed it seems we are good to go (although it appears not if I shoot UHD in 50p).

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Peters View Post
    At the risk of sounding flippant, why don't you buy from Amazon - free return if it's not what you need!I
    At the risk of coming across as holier than thou

    1. That's a bit like fixing it in post - better to get as much right up front as possible
    2. Waste of packaging
    3. Waste of transport/carbon cost etc
    4. Hassle

    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Peters View Post
    On a related note, I had a lilliput monitor a few years ago. Build quality was awful and came with an asian plug and adapter.
    I'm anticipating poor build quality though reviews have suggested it's good for the price.
    Plug won't be an issue - it doesn't come with one
    Tim

  4. #4

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    Following closely. I don't shoot with a dedicated monitor and totally should - if for nothing else to confirm focus. Kick myself over it every time. I bought a 10" tablet that hooks up to the Canon and Panasonic software, etc, but the day of the shoot I usually don't go for it because of the extra steps. I need an easy, plug and play solution.

    However, those cheap monitors never quite look good enough after inspection. I hope this works out for you.

    RE: your question about resolution
    My expectation is that you'll get delay and lose smooth playback if you are in a resolution that is not supported natively. So I think you are doing it right by trying to figure out the native res supported. However, these cheaper monitors tend to have delay and dropped frames anyway (and less than faithful colors as well).

    Looking forward to your results.

  5. #5

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    So, Tim, any updates?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jochicago View Post
    So, Tim, any updates?
    No progress as yet. I'm ready to flash the cash but the financial controller is telling me I need to be more efficient and make more pocket money in order to fund this.

    Also now looking at the Andycine A6 as it's a bit smaller (5.7") and also getting good reviews. What we really need is somewhere you can go and look at these products and compare them in the flesh (in addition to research on-line). However, retail outlets are so 20th century.
    Tim

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    Well, you know my opinion on monitors at a shoot... Idiot magnets. Best avoided.

    They attract every idiot with an opinion.

    In my humble opinion, location monitors should be there to show framing and... er... um... that's about it. And even then, they will only give you a rough guide. Televisions will show different framings to monitors etc. etc.

    I have made the mistake of "correcting" to a monitor.
    "Yeah, broadcast quality, graded and set-up perfectly Boss."
    Only to have the editor go ballistic and the colorist wet himself in post and me looking a right berk. Should've trusted my own white balance and viewfinder.

    But they are nice to have around, just don't rely on them.

    Why don't you PM Andy Lockwood? With his jibbage and drones, he must have researched this deeply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rembrandt Rob View Post
    Well, you know my opinion on monitors at a shoot... Idiot magnets. Best avoided.
    They attract every idiot with an opinion.
    Good point, and I do remember you having made it before. However, the purpose here is as an addition to the cameras LCDs on shooting theatre (school) productions, primarily for focus/framing. The larger size will help me avoid looking like Mr Magoo as I peer at the on-camera LCD and that plus the higher resolution should make for improved focus. The other benefit is that I can mount it on another stand or clamp it to a tripod leg. My wife is generally operating a wide view camera which is on a tall tripod, necessary to see over an audience - she gets neck ache looking up all the time so this might help.

    I have absolutely no expectations of colour accuracy on monitors of this price, but setting that is usually a one off before the show where I get the lighting guys to give me their "maximum white" setting and manually balance to that.

    Another benefit is I can have the camera's LCD displaying waveform and other info permanently whilst I can still see an uninterrupted image on the field monitor.

    I doubt very much that Andy will have looked into anything within my budget, but it's a good idea - he may even have some old kit he wants to offload.
    Tim

  9. #9
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    Aaaah. Now I understand.

    Yeah, absolutely, for what you want, a monitor is a great asset. If your budget stretches to it, you can have a second monitor so that you can see what the other camera is shooting.

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