A&E Network - Giving Each Crew Member A Personal Wireless Monitor with DP Mick Jones

Tue, Jan 16, 2018
Teradek Serv Pro gives everyone on set their personal wireless monitor with iPhones & iPads
Photo credit: Mick Jones (IG @filthylookfilms)

When Mick Jones purchased his Serv Pro, his intent was to give his clients personal monitors to see the shot and free up the precious space in the video village. It makes sense - clients always want to know what’s going on with their project, and giving them a tool to monitor from their iPhones/iPads is the perfect way to give them mobility and flexibility on set.

But one thing Mick hadn’t thought of was how useful Serv Pro would be for his crew too. Working on an A&E 2018 TV commercial, Mick’s crew was able to tune in using their iPhones to see the shot, essentially giving each person his/her own personal monitor. So how did they use it? Let’s check out the project:

New Year, New A&E

Check out the awesome promo video.

With a new year of programs lined up for 2018, the A&E channel wanted a TV commercial containing their most popular shows. Mick Jones, who owns his own production company Filthy Look Films and works consistently with big TV networks, was brought on as DP.

“The goal was to feature all of their big titles like Swamp People, Forged in Fire and Pawn Stars in one commercial,” said Mick. "Of course, time is money. So we wanted to get this done as soon as possible.”

A&E commercial production with Teradek Serv Pro and Mick Jones
On set of A&E's 2018 program reel. 

Mick’s setup:

  • Sony F55 camera
  • 17” Panasonic Monitor
  • 17” Sony Trimaster
  • Teradek Serv Pro
  • 2x SmallHD 17” Monitors
  • 5x iOS devices (iPads/iPhones)

The F55 sent a feed to the 37” Panasonic Monitor through SDI. Since the Serv Pro just needs is an SDI feed to broadcast to nearby iOS devices, Mick mounted it to the side of the 37” Monitor and connected them via SDI. This allowed all iPhones & iPads within a 300 ft. range to pick up the shot using Serv Pro’s companion app, VUER.

A Monitor for Every Member

Serv Pro offered a function for every member who used it, which included the gaffer, hair & makeup, boom operator and client.

Teradek VUER offers wireless monitoring on iOS devices
Monitoring the feed on iPhone using VUER app. 

“Our hair & makeup woman really liked it because she could check the shot from her phone without having to leave the makeup room. She worked on the next talent while keeping an eye out for adjustments of the talent on set.”

At the same time, the gaffer was able to adjust lights without having to do the tedious run back & forth from the monitor by using his phone. The boom operator checked the framing from his phone without needing to ask the team if his mic’s in the shot. Clients viewed the progress from iPads and stayed further away from production.

Efficiency On Set

Giving other contributing members on set a way to access the shot was incredibly beneficial for the production. iOS devices are wireless, allowing the crew to be mobile and monitor from anywhere within range - thus saving space in the video village. Since many people have their own iPhones & iPads already, it saves the cost of having to buy personal monitors for every single user.

“It really helped speed up the whole production process and eased the frustrations of typical shoots,” said Mick. “We have our primary monitor that’s used by me and the 1st AC, but the Serv Pro is really good as a secondary monitoring unit. It gave us a ton of freedom to get our work done on set.”

Teradek Serv Pro in Australia film production
Serv Pro connected to Panasonic Monitor via SDI on set. 

More eyes on the shot means better cohesiveness between production teammates. With Serv Pro, Mick and his team were able to create a highlight reel that both he and his clients (A&E) were happy with.

Check out more of his setups on Instagram: @filthylookfilms

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