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Old 12-03-2012, 06:44 AM   #11 (permalink)
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It's too big. People complained the GoPro's profile is too big for paintball.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:50 AM   #12 (permalink)
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The hardest part would be educating paintball users what they get with an action cam/vs a ZoomCam system. Guys realize it once they buy an action cam and then have an awesome kill on the field, only to go home and you can't see anything... That is why most paintball videos have words on the screen "telling" the viewer what they can't see...

Action cams are only good to about 40 feet. And at 40 feet you still can't see the person you are shooting at...

Look at my video, as that is combining the action cam with my ZoomCam, and you can't see a single person I am shooting at (with the exception of the last guy and him only barely) as that is what an action cam can do... And that is pretty worthless for paintball.

Sure you can zoom in a little post production with the action cams, but nothing like what you need for paintball. You have to have a minimum of 5x zoom to get in there (most of my shots are at 10X or more), and then you have a whole range of issues to deal with, and none of the action cams (or ragecams) can do what I want. As focusing while zoomed becomes a huge issue, as well as image stabilization...

You have to have a camera with auto focus, and NONE of the action cams do this. They just give a fixed focus that stays the same for all their footage, that is why they don't have zoom.

Then if you do have a camera with zoom, it is a digital zoom, not an optical zoom. And all a digital zoom does is zoom in on the existing picture. So you lose resolution each time it zooms in.

So to get the best, you need a camera with great zoom and a high end lens, as well as a very fast auto focus (which at distance, snap shooting still can't keep up, as you are focused on the bunker, and then you pop out and shoot distance, and tuck back in within a second... no camera can handle that...).

So your options are a fixed focus, which will give you soft images on everything except what you set it at... So the majority of your shots will be soft.

Or a camera with auto focus that is FAST, and it can handle the long range stuff, or short range. As long as you give it a second to rack focus before you fire.


Then image stabilization is a huge deal, most cameras fail on this part, but technology is getting better. I picked Sony originally because they have by far the best image stabilization without sacrificing quality (as their high end cameras have a larger than normal image size so when they zoom in to "center" the shot and stabilize it, you end up with a true 1080HD video signal, instead of compressed, like most lower end cameras. The harder the "shock" of your paintball gun, the more the image stabilization has to work to keep it steady when firing.


Clearly this isn't for everyone, but for anyone wanting to actually CAPTURE on film what they see on the field, this is the ONLY solution so far that actually works at multiple distances without having to touch the camera during the game. The rage cams force you to have different lenses and each one has to be manually focused for the distance, which is completely impractical while playing. And the scope mounted cams while having a massive amount of Zoom, have such a small window that it is very hard to capture what you are seeing without a really steady hand...

It is really cool technology, and some of the action I have captured since I started has undoubtedly gotten others to buy action cams thinking they will be able to see what I can on my video... Not realizing that it was only because of my ZoomCam that the viewer can see those shots...

I've been filming paintball first person since 2009, and I would gladly have paid $650 in 2009 to be able to capture what I can today with my ZoomCam back then...


Over the years, I've made a few testing videos that show normal "action cams" vs a zoom system like this. Here is my first prototype mount, which I used for a while, before I changed to the current prototype.

Paintball Action Cam Test, HD Sony SR with Zoom Capture the Best Action Video Test - YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcMw3TEDNpk



Here is the last ZoomCam version, when I first made it, and I have the widest angle Contour Roam on screen at the same time, so you can compare the field of view as well as what you can see on both. Clearly the Zoom makes a huge difference. Even with something as close as that pole which is 60 feet away.
ZoomCam Test 1 Custom build for gun cam, FPS Paintball - YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcYdlaihnnQ

Last edited by FreeEnterprise; 12-03-2012 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 12-03-2012, 09:16 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CCMachinist View Post
I like the idea.

At the shop we have discussed a camera-scope/laser range finder set-up.

This would only appeal to a small group. And we know about niche markets

The go-pro style of cameras are "look at me" doin ma thang camera.

There is always room for another idea because they lead to better ideas.

I have been half hearted working on one for our sniper rifle and using my old camcorder.

Your idea has a place. Keep working on it.

Always trust your instincts. You only need your own approval.

I have people that want to buy my failures.

Just look what has come before us. Good guns or bad guns they are all part of paintball history.(anything paintball)
Best answer!!

While I would have no need for it since I play pump -I know quite a few people that would like to film their hits better at a clearer "downrange" aspect.

Mind if I cross post this on my Team site? A few games being planned for next year might require such a device! Reid at Skyline Nation is bringing in Drone Planes to film one of the big games, heck even he might want something like this!

If you want to post on there as well, just click the Project Mayhem in my sig!
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:40 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Yeah, go ahead and pass it around, as I'm sure there are crazy guys like me that would love this tech, but clearly it isn't for everyone...

My channel has lots of footage showing the capabilities of my ZoomCam. The new "production" one I am working on is going to be pretty amazing!


Trails Of Doom's Awesome Woodsball Paintball FPS Channel HD Zoom - YouTube


The cool thing is, you can actually film an event in a way that the viewer can tell what is happening, and this is with just 3 cams (two contour roams on my helmet and Henry's helmet) and my ZoomCam. The first few shots are at over 300 feet away, and the viewer can SEE the guys I am shooting at!

Scenario 1 Bloodbath 11.24.2012 Awesome Woodsball Game at Trails of Doom - YouTube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3R80b8nFY20

Last edited by FreeEnterprise; 12-03-2012 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 12-03-2012, 11:04 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I love your videos, specifically for the gun cam. You can actually see who you are shooting at, rather than assuming there is a guy over there in the woods somewhere. I couldn't agree with you more that the standard GoPro helmet and gun cams simply don't tell the whole story. Helmet cam plus a zoomed gun cam is by far the best video out there IMO.

I think where you are really getting hammered is that you are using a full size camera. Its big, its heavy, and in comparison, its pricey.

People seem like they are blowing you off, but I bet if the little Greg Hastings camera, or GoPros came out with a zoom lens, we'd start seeing a lot more videos like yours.
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Old 12-03-2012, 02:53 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CCMachinist View Post
I..The go-pro style of cameras are "look at me" doin ma thang camera...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackops View Post
... I bet if the little Greg Hastings camera, or GoPros came out with a zoom lens, we'd start seeing a lot more videos like yours.
Looks like you guys missed my post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by uv_halo View Post
... It's basically an GoPro Hero2, with a 50mm lens (made by ragecams), and a picatinny mount (mounted to my adjustable riser). The only thing I'm missing- a lens protector- I'm kicking a concept around that will use the stock waterproof case... The 50mm lens is ridiculous zoom- reading street name signs over 100yds. Here's a video showing the difference between it and the standard GoPro:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40feZ5hq4Ks
You guys should really check out that video, to get even a glimpse of what the zoom provides. The Ragecam lens is a working product. It does what it says. It's not fully plug and play as it requires opening the camera, removing the lens, cutting a plastic lip off, and then threading in the lens until you get your desired focus distance.

I personally set my focus to 75yds (measured via a rangefinder). I'll see if I can post my test footage (purely good for evaluating the lens as it's not gameplay but simply down my street). As you get closer or further from the focus, there is some degradation but, the zoom appears to compensate well enough to make out paintball impacts at any feasible impact distance beyond 75yds. On the short range side of the focus, I think your target needs to be at least 10-15yds away to make out anything (I'll review my footage to confirm) but then, if your targets that close, the helmet cam at 1080P will pick it up.

Possibly Tomorrow or Wednesday, I may be able to do a dual Contour HD and the GoPro with the zoom lens so you can directly compare.

In my opinion, FreeEnterprise's system will most likely blow the GoPro (even with the zoom lens) out of the water in terms of video quality. However, he and I have different operational concepts. In my videos, the helmet cam is (and will be) the primary, while the gun cam is secondary, and only visible during a shot. In my opinion, this reduces the importance of high quality video on the gun cam, and resolution/zoom is key.

Here's a video I did with a fully custom setup which did a decent job but, while the camera head was small (A lipstick/bullet camera with a 30mm wide zoom lens), the recording unit and battery pack was about the size of the bible left in hotel rooms and, the wire between it, and camera head was prone to failure. The camera also only recorded at 480P and, had didn't have the greatest auto white balancing. But, the video illustrates the concept (the crosshair will not be carried forward, and I didn't set my helmet cam for 1080P):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03EGHalXISc


Quote:
Originally Posted by ta2maki View Post
It's too big. People complained the GoPro's profile is too big for paintball.
In regards to the size of my setup or even FreeEnterprise's, when you're doing this type of long range shooting (he's using an apex a lot of the time, and I'm always shooting FS rounds), I have never felt the need to worry about the size of my setup and I suspect FreeEnterprise is having a similar experience.

Finally, I was just answering why I specifically wouldn't buy FreeEnterprise's product and sharing my concept with him and the rest of us. I honestly think he's building a system with a lot of potential and it will probably make at least a few folks very happy.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Kaye -in response to FS price critics
Unfortunately all of you have played the one "speedball" game of paintball for so long you can't conceive of other ways to do this and hence any new ideas seem stupid.
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Old 12-03-2012, 03:24 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by uv_halo View Post
Looks like you guys missed my post:


You guys should really check out that video, to get even a glimpse of what the zoom provides. The Ragecam lens is a working product. It does what it says. It's not fully plug and play as it requires opening the camera, removing the lens, cutting a plastic lip off, and then threading in the lens until you get your desired focus distance.

I personally set my focus to 75yds (measured via a rangefinder). I'll see if I can post my test footage (purely good for evaluating the lens as it's not gameplay but simply down my street). As you get closer or further from the focus, there is some degradation but, the zoom appears to compensate well enough to make out paintball impacts at any feasible impact distance beyond 75yds. On the short range side of the focus, I think your target needs to be at least 10-15yds away to make out anything (I'll review my footage to confirm) but then, if your targets that close, the helmet cam at 1080P will pick it up.

Possibly Tomorrow or Wednesday, I may be able to do a dual Contour HD and the GoPro with the zoom lens so you can directly compare.

In my opinion, FreeEnterprise's system will most likely blow the GoPro (even with the zoom lens) out of the water in terms of video quality. However, he and I have different operational concepts. In my videos, the helmet cam is (and will be) the primary, while the gun cam is secondary, and only visible during a shot. In my opinion, this reduces the importance of high quality video on the gun cam, and resolution/zoom is key.

Here's a video I did with a fully custom setup which did a decent job but, while the camera head was small (A lipstick/bullet camera with a 30mm wide zoom lens), the recording unit and battery pack was about the size of the bible left in hotel rooms and, the wire between it, and camera head was prone to failure. The camera also only recorded at 480P and, had didn't have the greatest auto white balancing. But, the video illustrates the concept (the crosshair will not be carried forward, and I didn't set my helmet cam for 1080P):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03EGHalXISc




In regards to the size of my setup or even FreeEnterprise's, when you're doing this type of long range shooting (he's using an apex a lot of the time, and I'm always shooting FS rounds), I have never felt the need to worry about the size of my setup and I suspect FreeEnterprise is having a similar experience.

Finally, I was just answering why I specifically wouldn't buy FreeEnterprise's product and sharing my concept with him and the rest of us. I honestly think he's building a system with a lot of potential and it will probably make at least a few folks very happy.


No I saw it. I think it looks and works great. I'm in.

Can you get crosshairs on the lens that don't change the POI when you zoom?

I am waiting for a scope/rangefinder/camera for paintball.

I can mount my camera to a scope now but the crosshair changes when you zoom.Which will change the POI.



I always like to encourage people to "go for it" and not get discouraged.

If it doesn't sell , make a better one.
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:18 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CCMachinist View Post
No I saw it. I think it looks and works great. I'm in.

Can you get crosshairs on the lens that don't change the POI when you zoom?

I am waiting for a scope/rangefinder/camera for paintball.

I can mount my camera to a scope now but the crosshair changes when you zoom.Which will change the POI.



I always like to encourage people to "go for it" and not get discouraged.

If it doesn't sell , make a better one.
In my previous setup (used for the paintball video I posted), the crosshairs were a feature of the camera and the camera wasn't inline with my scope (a Lucid HD7) so, the impacts would not coincide for any distance other than what I set it to, and it's a fixed zoom. I will not include such a crosshair going forward unless I feel it adds to the value of the video (I got mixed reviews in the past). With a high zoom system, it becomes pretty obvious what you're shooting at for the most part but, I could add one in in post processing.

You're saying that if you have a zoom capable lens on the back of a scope, that the point of aim changes when you zoom in? If so, that's an issue of alignment. With a red dot and a flip out magnifier, the reticle will shift it's position if the magnifier is not properly aligned.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Kaye -in response to FS price critics
Unfortunately all of you have played the one "speedball" game of paintball for so long you can't conceive of other ways to do this and hence any new ideas seem stupid.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:58 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I have found that trying to put a dot or reticle on your video at the front end just doesn't work for paintball. We aren't shooting guns where you can dial it in, and that is why I use an Apex for almost all of my stuff. The apex allows a flatter shot, than a regular barrel but the drop of a paintball is part of the issue with zoom systems, and the reason you can't go crazy and go full 10X zoom and expect to see your hits.

I film at 5X or 6X (unless I am doing something with a fixed distance like revolutionary war). So I may shoot and if I am close (75 feet) the shot may be at the top of the screen.

Then if I shoot at 200 feet, the shot is at the bottom of the screen.

If I am shooting at 300 feet, the target is often below the screen and you can't see them... Because we are "lobbing" paint. Especially at that kind of range. You guys don't "See" that as I edit it to put it in the center of the screen in post production. (I also zoom in even more than the native files...)


The cool thing about my system is you have a nice video camera that you can use for your family... Or anything else you need. When you are ready to play paintball, drop it in the ZoomCam enclosure, and go play. Afterwords, take it back out and it is your normal videocamera.

So $350 of the cost is in the videocamera by itself. The technology is changing so fast, that you could buy one on sale or "refurbished" and save quite a bit of the cost off that piece right off the top...



Good discussion btw. Thanks for all the input!
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:35 PM   #20 (permalink)
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So, here is a dual cam setup with my ContourHD and, a GoPro Hero2 witha 50mm lens. They were both recorded at 1080P/30 with the GoPro inset cropped to maintain resolution. I also applied medium stabilization and rolling shutter reduction.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtMYXHE-D1g

The GoPro is focused at 75yds
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Kaye -in response to FS price critics
Unfortunately all of you have played the one "speedball" game of paintball for so long you can't conceive of other ways to do this and hence any new ideas seem stupid.
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