Frequently Asked Questions – General
Do you provide global support?
In terms of world wide support, if anything happens to the unit within the warranty period, send us an e-mail via our RMA page , and we will be in touch right away (our typical office hours are between 9:30am to 5:30pm PST). We have service providers spread throughout the globe to ensure a quick turnaround on repair, replacement, and upgrades.
Frequently Asked Questions – Wireless Follow Focus
What’s the different between Single-Axis and Multi-Axis follow focus?
The single-axis follow focus controls one lens function (focus, iris, or zoom) via a single motor, whereas the multi-axis follow focus can control up to 6 motors simultaneously. With up to 6 motors, the multi-axis wireless follow focus can control focus, iris, and zoom simultaneously on two separate cameras! This is ideal for multi-camera sets, and for stereoscopic 3D film making.
The single-axis motor has an in-built wireless receiver; making it easy to install and keeping your rig clean and light. The multi-axis system has a powerful external receiver, which may connect to the remote control wired or wirelessly, that supplies power and signal coordination to all connected motors. The multi-axis receiver has an LED screen to monitor motor performance. Multi-axis motors are lighter than single-axis motors due to the external receiver unit.
Why does the Multi-Axis receiver have a wired connection feature?
Filming environments often feature barriers to wireless communication; trees, concrete, and even people act as signal dampeners. Having a wired feature allows for filming to continue quickly if environmental factors add up to create a compromised signal. The wired feature may also benefit users who are not familiar with wireless installation and operation.
Does the motor make a lot of noise?
Our motors are manufactured with German engineered parts, allowing not only the utmost in precise control, but also near-silence. As with most high-powered servo motors, at higher work-loads our motors may begin to make noise. However, using our controller presets to control the speed at which the motor transitions will help reduce any potential noise!
What kind of wireless range can I expect?
The system will work up to 100 meters. Be sure to take in to consideration environmental interferences (e.g., other wireless signals in the vicinity along the same frequency) which may reduce signal distance.
Why does the Multi-Axis motor not have internal battery?
The Multi-Axis motors are powered through the Multi-Axis receiver which comes with a P-tap cable. The receiver takes 12v-28v power, working well with any standard production battery.
What is the difference between a Single-Axis and Multi-Axis wireless controller?
The Multi-Axis controller has two additional slider controls on the side, allowing for 3 simultaneous function controls (i.e., focus, iris, and zoom). The area between the two additional sliders is made of the same material as the focus marking disk (removable on newer models), and can be illuminated for use in low-light shooting environments.
The Multi-Axis control also has a wired connection port, which the Single-Axis controller does not.
Are the Single-Axis and Multi-Axis controllers interchangeable?
Yes, the Single-Axis and Multi-Axis controllers are interchangeable.
The most common causes for disconnections between controllers and motors are:
- Interference from other electronic devices. If this is the cause, restart the motor and re-pair the controller to the motor. The controller is capable of seeking a new, more robust channel to connect on (up to 45 different channels).
- Damaged equipment (e.g., broken antenna, damaged controller). A quick test for antenna damage can be performed by attempting to rotate the antenna 360 degrees. If it goes all the way around, the soldered joint is broken. This can be repaired by the user, or sent back to us via an RMA request for repair or replacement.
- Defects. Before concluding that the equipment is defective, try testing the connection and performance in an interference-free area. Defective equipment will be replaced as quickly as possible, to ensure that our equipment does not interfere with your production schedule (or budget).
What is “Safe Mode”?
When your motor experiences a situation that might be harmful to the integrity of the mechanics of the motor, Safe Mode engages in order to protect the equipment.
If the motor functionality stops due to Safe Mode, this does not mean the motor is damaged.
You will know when Safe Mode is engaged when the indicator light on the motor flashes blue and green.
If the flashing stops within 20 seconds, then the motor is still fully functional.
If the flashing persists beyond 20 seconds, unplug the power cable and consult your installation manual for further assistance.
What Triggers “Safe mode”?
- Temperature. The temperature control chips in the motor will trigger Safe Mode when the internal temperature reaches 90°c (194°f). This feature protects both the motor and the gear the motor is connected to. Overheating typically occurs when using the motor to the peak of performance for extended periods of time, or from working in very hot environments (e.g., direct sunlight on a hot day).
- Power spikes and surges. When the power supply to the motor spikes or becomes otherwise unstable, Safe Mode engages to prevent any power-based damage. Make sure your cables, batteries, and other power supplies are in good working order to protect all your gear!
- Stuck gears. Position control chips trigger Safe Mode when gears are stuck to prevent torsion damage to the motor or to the lens. Stuck gears are often caused by overly tight contact between the motor gear teeth and the lens control teeth, dirt or other substances clogging up the internal space of the motor, or gears that have been damaged from impacts or similar deforming situations.
Frequently Asked Questions – Ghost-Eye Video Transmission System
How do you pair transmitters and receivers that are different models?
What can cause signal interference?
First and foremost, we always strongly recommend having the units above head-level (e.g., over 6ft) to prevent on-set interference. The human body is very effective at absorbing 5Ghz signals. Secondly, concrete is equally effective at absorbing signals but it also has the effect of deflecting signals off into the distance.
Thirdly, an often underestimated interference is tree leaves. Tree leaves are very effective at blocking higher frequency (i.e., shorter wavelength) signals, but are typically ineffective in blocking lower frequency signals (e.g., 2.4Ghz). Lastly, and perhaps most pervasively, are competing 5Ghz frequency signals.
Signals within the frequency range capable of interfering with 5Ghz are extremely common in modern technologies, from wifi to cell phones to smart tv-remotes.
All of these can impact your signal fidelity if present in your filming location, so be aware of wireless devices and environmental obstacles in your space!