Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

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PhilOz

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Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 03, 2018 5:33 am

My Pocket Cinema 4K doesn't recognise the timecode input through the 3.5mm mic from my Tentacle Sync does anyone know why it doesn't. If Blackmagic could advise the pin layout for the LTC timecode input that might be useful. Also it is unclear how to jam sync the pocket cinema 4K camera. Thank you for any assistance with this.
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Chris Gosling

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 03, 2018 8:59 pm

Used mine last week and it worked fine with the normal 3.5mm cable.

As far as I know you can't jam sync - you have to leave it attached while shooting. To check if it's working, attach the tentacle then tap the 00:00:00 clock on the back screen - it should then switch to TC.

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John Brawley

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostTue Dec 04, 2018 2:44 am

PhilOz wrote:My Pocket Cinema 4K doesn't recognise the timecode input through the 3.5mm mic from my Tentacle Sync does anyone know why it doesn't. If Blackmagic could advise the pin layout for the LTC timecode input that might be useful. Also it is unclear how to jam sync the pocket cinema 4K camera. Thank you for any assistance with this.


I've been using various TC clocks, the Moze and Ambient just fine. PLug in the TC clock and it flips to "EXT" on the right of the TC clock in the display as long as the external source is present.

JB
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PhilOz

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostFri Dec 07, 2018 6:14 am

Thanks Chris & John, it is now working - I'm not sure why it didn't initially. I've noted that if you change the date and time internally the camera doesn't recognise the change until you turn the camera off and on again - I think the timecode is a bit buggy still. It holds very well though once it recognises it which is good. Thanks again
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 8:30 pm

Really, no jam sync? Bummer.

Page 34 of the manual seems to imply that it can be jam synced. Can anyone confirm?
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 8:48 pm

joe12south wrote:Really, no jam sync? Bummer.

Page 34 of the manual seems to imply that it can be jam synced. Can anyone confirm?


It jam syncs.

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Gavin_c_clark

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 8:48 pm

My pocket does jam sync, just tried it.

It shows ext when the tentacle is connected and int when you disconnect it.

Although from personal experience I wouldn’t want to rely on any timecode on any camera that doesn’t have a box connected at all times
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 8:57 pm

Thanks for the confirmation.

Next up is to confirm the amount we can expect it to drift after being jammed. If I can sync it with an F4 twice a day and not have to spend $500 on a Tentacle pair, I'll be a happy camper, indeed.
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Chris Gosling

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 9:25 pm

I've recently run for around 7 hours straight without a resync with no problems. Usually I'll resync after lunch (when we shut everything down). Also using an F4.

Tentacles are supposed to drift 1 frame per 24 hrs I think.

Chris
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:07 pm

Like with other cameras try to change the voltage of the time code signal for optimal reliability.
The Tentacle Sync has an option in the control app to do that.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:11 pm

Chris Gosling wrote:I've recently run for around 7 hours straight without a resync with no problems. Usually I'll resync after lunch (when we shut everything down). Also using an F4.

Tentacles are supposed to drift 1 frame per 24 hrs I think.

Chris

Thanks, Chris. That's what I wanted to hear. The Tentacle is an elegant product, but it's hard to justify spending almost as much on it as a good recorder.
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Chris Gosling

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:25 pm

No problem - been using them for 2 years now (have 3 of them), and when I think of the time and hassle they have saved it's not hard to justify then at all :-)

I'm just glad that the pocket 4k now accepts/writes the TC input as timecode and not as an audio track, don't need the tentacle sync software anymore - well at least not when doing 2 camera shoots (UMP & P4K)

C
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:35 pm

I’d second the tentacle recommendation, they’re great and so simple to use. The only real downside are frame rate changes, but that’s been a null issue for me so far.

Good to hear the pocket clock is pretty robust, I’ll have a remeasure of mine tomorrow night and see if any drift has happened 24 hours later.

Also going to try and see if it’ll take the time code through the xlr once the cable turns up
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:39 pm

Gavin, if you're referring to the P4K, as far as I know the mini jack is the connection to use for TC in if you want it written to the file and not an audio track
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:52 pm

Yes that’s what I’ve been using so far. Was just interested to see if it also did the same trick through the xlr. Although I think they are on different circuits so not likely but always worth trying
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostWed Dec 12, 2018 10:59 pm

Gavin_c_clark wrote:Yes that’s what I’ve been using so far. Was just interested to see if it also did the same trick through the xlr. Although I think they are on different circuits so not likely but always worth trying


You can record LTC code on the audio track (think fax machine) and Resolve can read this as AUX or as a secondary tc. (So can AVID)

From Page 281 of the Resolve Manual

"Select this clip, or clips, in the media pool, then right-click on one of the highlighted clips and select “Update timecode from audio - LTC.” DaVinci Resolve automatically and instantly updates the clip timecode using the LTC it finds on the audio tracks. You can now use the clips as though they were synced on set."

Or you can feed LTC or ASCII TC through the mini jack in and it will continuously re-jam the internal clock for as long as it's connected. This would always be the preferred way and I've always found that it's the most accurate when you leave the clocks connected (on all camera systems)

JB
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 12:11 am

The URSA Mini Pro looses TC when you power down or swap battery. Is this what the new pocket does? In the Ursa, it's too bad there isn't a little lithium clock battery - that would solve a lot of TC problems for multi-cam without requiring a constant external clock source.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 1:23 am

I had a couple of ENG cameras that little lithium batteries inside of them, they lasted about 4-5 years, then it was a $200-400 job to send the camera back to Sony and replace the battery. Later on they put the battery behind a little door on the side of the camera for user replacement. These cameras would not even finish booting up without the battery being good, and having a TC signal going.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 8:03 am

John Brawley wrote:
Gavin_c_clark wrote:Yes that’s what I’ve been using so far. Was just interested to see if it also did the same trick through the xlr. Although I think they are on different circuits so not likely but always worth trying


You can record LTC code on the audio track (think fax machine) and Resolve can read this as AUX or as a secondary tc. (So can AVID)

From Page 281 of the Resolve Manual

"Select this clip, or clips, in the media pool, then right-click on one of the highlighted clips and select “Update timecode from audio - LTC.” DaVinci Resolve automatically and instantly updates the clip timecode using the LTC it finds on the audio tracks. You can now use the clips as though they were synced on set."

Or you can feed LTC or ASCII TC through the mini jack in and it will continuously re-jam the internal clock for as long as it's connected. This would always be the preferred way and I've always found that it's the most accurate when you leave the clocks connected (on all camera systems)

JB


Thanks John.

In my head I was thinking that if it took the timecode through the xlr input the way it does through the mini jack input ie without using an audio channel I could input dual channel through the mini jack.

But, having spent a great deal of time in silent contemplation overnight (rocking our baby back to sleep) I cannot conceivably think of any reason why I would actually want to do this :lol: this rendering my curiosity a misadventure
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 8:10 am

Greg Huson wrote:The URSA Mini Pro looses TC when you power down or swap battery. Is this what the new pocket does? In the Ursa, it's too bad there isn't a little lithium clock battery - that would solve a lot of TC problems for multi-cam without requiring a constant external clock source.



After testing the jam syncing last night I powered the camera down and disconnected it from power.

This morning booted it back up and the camera clock is off by quite a bit. Although that was quite an extreme gap ( 12 hours without power)

I’m at my desk today so I’ll do some further tests on timecode this morning whilst I work and see if I can establish some general guidelines
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 11:02 am

Ok, so I’ve had a play around this morning.

Using 2 tentacle sync e, pocket 4K, zoom f4 and sennheiser 416.

When the tentacles are synced and connected to both camera and the f4, there is a 2 frame offset.

Interestingly, when the pocket is disconnected from the tentacle and is in jam sync mode the offset is gone and it lines up perfectly.

Any power down on the pocket, tested with internal, v mount and a combo of both,no matter how small, causes a large drift straight away.

In jam sync mode it stays in step for as long as the internal battery lasts, I don’t have time to test a whole v mount battery but as Chris stated earlier it should hold.

Pretty impressive bit of kit
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 11:30 am

Funny about the 2 frame offset.

I ran 2 of the old tentacles - 1 on UMP and 1 on P4K - after using the one on the UMP to jam sync my F4.

Had 6-7 hours recording in studio so everything stayed turned on, and had 0 frames offset.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 12:07 pm

That’s encouraging to hear.

I plan on using mine outside for guerilla shooting, and with the tentacles, some wireless lavs and a pocket h4n I can be pretty discreet.

One thing I don’t like is that the phantom power option stays on after a power cycle. Preference I’m sure, but I’d rather have to go in and turn it on than the other way round.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 13, 2018 5:10 pm

joe12south wrote:Thanks for the confirmation.

Next up is to confirm the amount we can expect it to drift after being jammed. If I can sync it with an F4 twice a day and not have to spend $500 on a Tentacle pair, I'll be a happy camper, indeed.


Jam sync the Tentacle from the F4 and leave it connected to the Pocket. Then you only need one Tentacle.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostFri Dec 14, 2018 9:00 am

Chris Gosling wrote:attach the tentacle then tap the 00:00:00 clock on the back screen - it should then switch to TC.



Oh?
The manual doesn't say anything about tapping and that an icon should appear next to the timecode all on it's own.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostFri Dec 14, 2018 9:20 am

Sorry - the little icon does come up all on its own - but if you tap the numbers it will switch to show the timecode.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSat Dec 15, 2018 8:24 pm

Rakesh Malik wrote:
joe12south wrote:Thanks for the confirmation.

Next up is to confirm the amount we can expect it to drift after being jammed. If I can sync it with an F4 twice a day and not have to spend $500 on a Tentacle pair, I'll be a happy camper, indeed.


Jam sync the Tentacle from the F4 and leave it connected to the Pocket. Then you only need one Tentacle.

I doubt the F4 can hold time code.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSat Dec 15, 2018 8:44 pm

F4 had held TC for me for at least 7 hrs when comparing to the tentacles.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSat Dec 15, 2018 9:12 pm

Chris Gosling wrote:F4 had held TC for me for at least 7 hrs when comparing to the tentacles.

How do you compare? Also did you change battery?
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSat Dec 15, 2018 9:31 pm

The comparison was easy - my video was in sync at the end of the day shooting.

Ok that was the smart-ass answer, ;-) but I also ran a cable into the camera as a backup - and didn't notice any drift in relation to the TC synced audio track.

Didn't change batteries or turn it off - ran off external power bank the whole day. If you turn it off then you have to re-sync. Have had to do that before - no biggie.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSat Dec 15, 2018 9:41 pm

The Zoom F4 has an excellent TC clock. I run it off a V battery d-tap for a whole day with 60-70% power left. I sync my Ursa Mini Pro 4.6K to the F4 every time I power down to change a battery, about 4-5 times a day. Perfect TC every time, files sync perfectly in Resolve or PP, no need for any extra gear. I have not been able to get the proper cable for the Pocket yet (they are suddenly in short supply also), but I would expect it to be the same. Don't doubt the F4 until you use one. It's a great device for $350 (now).
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSun Dec 16, 2018 8:01 pm

"syncs perfectly" "Excellent TC Clock" Jamming 4-5 times a day??
And the URSA has perfect clock as well? Wow...
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostSun Dec 16, 2018 8:45 pm

Rado Stefanov wrote:"syncs perfectly" "Excellent TC Clock" Jamming 4-5 times a day??
And the URSA has perfect clock as well? Wow...


The UMP has a very good TC clock. It's good for at least 8 hours.

The Ursa 4.6K isn't quite as good, but can still generally hold sync for a couple of hours.

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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 17, 2018 4:37 am

John Brawley wrote:
Rado Stefanov wrote:"syncs perfectly" "Excellent TC Clock" Jamming 4-5 times a day??
And the URSA has perfect clock as well? Wow...


The UMP has a very good TC clock. It's good for at least 8 hours.

The Ursa 4.6K isn't quite as good, but can still generally hold sync for a couple of hours.

JB

What is an UMP?the Zoom? What happens when power is disconnected?
How do you measure and what are your tests? What temperature is the camera and recorder running at? 36F?105F? There are a lot of factors to proper time code and to design and manufacture it is expansive. In my experience only the original ARRI alexa could hold Time code "considering the Ambient time code module inside".
But maybe I am just too particular about time code. (:
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 17, 2018 6:56 am

UMP is short for Ursa Mini Pro.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 17, 2018 7:59 am

Rado Stefanov wrote:I doubt the F4 can hold time code.


It holds timecode quite nicely. It was solid for a 12 hour shoot.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostMon Dec 17, 2018 4:43 pm

Perhaps I was not clear,

I use the Zoom F4 as my TC source. I start it once at the beginning of the day and never power it down. Because I run it off a V Mount battery rather than the internal AA's, I never have to power it down during a days shooting, so it remains accurate throughout. The V-mount battery I use will power the F4 for 2-3 days without recharging. I usually run time of day TC on the F4 so if someone does turn the F4 off for some reason, when I restart the F4 I just reset the Ursa to the F4 and there is no chance of repeating TC in the same reel (day).

The BM Ursa Mini Pro 4.6K "follows" the F4, but does not maintain accurate TC when powered down for a battery change, so each time I change a battery on he Ursa, I reconnect a BNC to BNC cable from the F4's TC out, to the Ursa's TC in. The TC on the Ursa re-syncs to the F4 which is still running TC. It takes a few seconds for the Ursa to pickup the TC from the F4, then it can be disconnected if needed and the Ursa and F4 will remain in sync until the next battery change. If I am working on sticks with setups I sometimes leave a snake connecting the the Ursa and the F4 for the F4's mix to be recorded on the Ursa audio tracks and leave the BNC cable connected although it's not actually necessary. The Ursa will maintain accurate time code in sync with the F4 for many hours if not connected and not powered down.

This eliminates the need for the Tentacle Sync, which is a great product, but I just don't need another set of boxes, batteries and cables. The above setup works fine for me. Your results may vary.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostThu Dec 20, 2018 4:52 pm

Got my BNC to 3.5mm TC adaptor cable from B&H today and hooked it up to the Zoom F4 and the PCC4K. As with the Ursa Mini Pro the EXT icon lights up and the F4 TC shows up on the PCC4K window. When the cable is disconnected the icon on the camera switches to INT, but the TC stays consistent with the F4. Although I am not in a position to actually run a full length battery test at this time, I think we can safely assume the 2 units will stay in sync until the next battery change. That works for me! I am now looking for a cable to go from the Ronin-S 12V power out to the PCC4K 12V Power In so I can run both off the Ronin rechargeable battery grip. At that point my B-cam is ready to roll.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostFri Dec 28, 2018 5:37 pm

Ric Murray wrote:Got my BNC to 3.5mm TC adaptor cable from B&H today and hooked it up to the Zoom F4 and the PCC4K. As with the Ursa Mini Pro the EXT icon lights up and the F4 TC shows up on the PCC4K window. When the cable is disconnected the icon on the camera switches to INT, but the TC stays consistent with the F4. Although I am not in a position to actually run a full length battery test at this time, I think we can safely assume the 2 units will stay in sync until the next battery change. That works for me! I am now looking for a cable to go from the Ronin-S 12V power out to the PCC4K 12V Power In so I can run both off the Ronin rechargeable battery grip. At that point my B-cam is ready to roll.

Thanks for confirming this. Because the P4K's internal amps are so weak, I'm afraid I'm going to be forced to go external. In weighing the differences between the Mix_Pro and Zooms, the F4's timecode out looks like it will tip the scale. Dedicated TC hardware is stupid expensive for what it is.
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Re: Pocket Cinema 4K Jam Sync with Tentacle Sync

PostFri Dec 28, 2018 5:49 pm

Plus the Zoom F4 has been on sale recently for $349.00, an extraordinary deal for a really top notch recorder. I have been totally satisfied with it, even using the much maligned limiters. For any kind of professional cinema work you are going to want a 2nd sound setup anyway. Camera sound is for scratch track recording only in my book.
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