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VIDEO : Tips on Common Video Problems

September 08, 1990|From Video Magazine

In video, as with everything else, there are two ways to do something: The easy way and the hard way.

Knowing this, the current issue of Video magazine offers some simple solutions to everyday video problems.

Have you ever watched a home video and wondered where it was shot and when? A great way to establish location and time is to start off with a close-up shot of the masthead of a local newspaper. Shoot the whole front page and you'll also be able to tell what was going on in the world the day the video was shot.

Expensive video equipment should be protected from the sun. The cables used to connect equipment are particularly sensitive to sunlight. Ultraviolet rays can turn these expensive cables stiff and brittle to the point where they can break. To prevent this, a coating of Armor-All or some other vinyl restorative solution will keep the cables soft and flexible no matter how long they lie in the sun. If the cables are already stiff, wipe on the solution once a day until flexibility returns.

The bright green glow from your bedroom-located video equipment keeping you up at night? A piece of smokey gray translucent plastic can be cut to the size of the display and taped over it. This plastic mask will reduce the glow to that of a dim night light and still allow the numbers to be seen during the day.

Finally, people who show their homemade videos on TV sets other than their own sometimes are disappointed by the color balance. To avoid this, insert color bars for 30 seconds at the beginning of each video. Color can then be adjusted as needed. To get a set of color bars, a VCR should be programmed to start recording from a TV station 30 minutes prior to the station's sign-on time.

Distributed by AP Newsfeatures.

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