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Gravis! @gravislizard
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sorry i've been really far off my brand for a bit, let's get this back on track. hello
In the 80s and early 90s Japan had an absolute obsession with this kind of just-under-candy-apple red. i've spoken of this before. hey so let's look at the control panel though.
it sucks that modern industrial design eschews colored buttons. they're easy to make and they draw attention. camcorders tended to use blue and red for things that you REALLY NEEDED TO KNOW ABOUT - in this case power and record, on one i had, eject and record.
(note: i am not talking about back to the future, a movie i adore but which i didn't intend to "refer to" by posting this camcorder)
anyway. the buttons are interesting because they're mounted on the front face of the camera, but they're uniquely shaped. You could identify every one of these by touch, conceivably. Most camcorders can't claim that.
It's interesting that every button except play and the button below play are labeled. Play is "obvious" but by that logic so are the others, so why not label it? And what's below it? Pause? why isn't that labeled?
Anyway I just think that's neat, I'm not here to obsess over this particular machine. It is beautiful but let me move on.
This one wouldn't be that stunning until they added the wood-esque handle. DAMN that looks cool. And the whole thing has the affect of an 8mm movie camera.
I think I want this beast. That color is to die for. B4 lens mount though so mmmmgoooooooooooooooooooooooood luck getting one.
This is the Ideal, btw, the platonic Professional Camcorder that I've wanted my entire life. It's something about how modular the design is; it screams of activity and excitement from the core of its industrial design.
i found this one last night and it's just such a General Electric look. The chromesque look, off-silver paint and black plastic, the huge square chunk on the bottom. Intriguingly though, I couldn't really find more pics of it online.
Here's why: That's right, it's a dang rebadge. or, well, there are differences, but GE definitely didn't make that camera. Maybe they made the plastic chassis and Canon provided all the guts?
interesting how, as soon as you remove the silver paint and silver control backdrop, it stops looking like a relic from the 60s.
It's interesting what approaches manufacturers took to shape. So: early video cameras (and I bet I unthinkingly called them camcorders in this thread, haha) had two major shapes: shoulder-mount and pistol-grip.
The shoulder mount example above typically had a proper shoulder pad as shown here. So, we can easily recognize this as The Professional Camera Shape, and the pistol-grip one as a little less Professional. Cause size = cost right
There's definitely something to this, because those chassis weren't just for show. Inside they invariably looked like this; tons of filtering and processing circuitry. This really is a "more = better" kind of situation I suspect.
so then the betacam, the first video camera with a built in tape recorder, hit the market. I THINK this is it, the BVP-3. Actually had a hard time confirming this via googling, thanks Online. Anyway. It retains the Shoulder Cam shape
then smaller tape formats happened and shit got weird fast?
marty mcflys camera aint look all that normal either. like, suddenly it was "cubes. sell them Cube's" and, i get the why, but uh,
okay now let's look at my favorite pistol grip VTR cameras, an extremely normal category of thing for someone to have opinions about
you ALMOST can't tell this isn't a film camera. it must have a plug for a detachable VTR cable because idk how this plugs in otherwise but, Damn, it looks completely mechanical from the outside until you notice "White Balance"
This is peak 80s design. This reeks of competence, of a manufacturer that knows the future and knows it's now. I would shoot video on this like a workman uses a really good electric drill.
long lost siblings. i would play on one while being recorded with the other. the 80s still had some leftover 1970s sci fi "We Can Cast Plastic In Stark White Now, Holy Shit" and when it did that, it went hard.
Here at National, we call this the Video Gun. we got sued by the title screen of Zillion for it
The VHS camcorder only requires discussion for a moment, and here's why: The design solidified INSTANTLY and remained unchanged until they left the market.
The size of VHS made it impossible to really design around it. Being a deeply consumer format, their solution was to not even try. Every single one looked exactly like this, almost down to specific angles, from Sears to Panasonic.
Beta had different motives behind it however so it's weird in a completely different way. So here's a Beta camcorder. Looks p.much like a more expensive VHS one, a little smaller.
But here's what you get if you google "Sony BVV-5". At first glance it looks like a pair of Sony camcorders. But look at the front and back of each one. They're different.
That's because the BVV-5 is not a camera, it's a tape deck. I talked about this some a day or two ago but holy shit, it's still so weird to look at. Here is the real BVV-5:
In the first pic above, it's "docked" to a Sony camera head. In the second - and this is what FUCKS me up - it's docked to a god damn Ikegami. And here's that product.
APPARENTLY, sony developed a cross-brand STANDARD for video "heads" and recorders?????????
So of course there are certain implications to that, and this is the obvious next step. Dock the deck to other shit. And my favorite part is: I can't even figure out what this one's docked TO.
Been googling, can't find shit.
So additionally, all these cameras take interchangeable lenses, and those lenses come with their own zoom and focus motors and ALSO their own grips. So those are basically entire devices in themselves.
(that first one might not be a TV lens; it dwarfed the SLR so much I literally didn't notice it until i hit post)
anyway, it's just goddamn weird to look at these big disembodied chunks of camera, completely useless by themselves, all part of a bigger picture.
so now i get to show you the weirdest one of all, as far as i can tell
i may take a minute to research this before i post it
ok. so here's the JVC GZ-S3 / GZ-S5. a very cute, compact 1982/83 standalone camera.
along with this, JVC released the HR-C3 VTR, the natural complement. put a strap on it, do the usual
THEN, feeling that god had been too kind to us and deserved to feel remorse for the free will he granted our wretched species, they built this nightmare: The SF-P3, which PUTS IT ALL TOGETHER INTO A SHOULDER MOUNT CAMCORDER
here's a demo video. the footage is reasonable, if not incredible. I want this kit.… i'm going to need all my followers to go to my ko-fi and buy me fifty coffees so i can order this piece of shit and begin suffering
oh btw at some point in this huge bizarre timeline magnavox made this, which I will refer to as the Nihilicon. it's so hopeless. it speaks volumes of the pointlessness of bothering to shoot video at all.
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