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Thread: Photographing a conventional monitor screen.

  1. #1
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Photographing a conventional monitor screen.

    Can this be successfully done with a good digital camera or is it just impossible or next to impossible? There's one image on a DVD I have that I would like to lift off the disk. I can't copy a commercial disk, I know, which is why the idea of using a good camera occurred to me.
    I've created my own website...a collection of moving, sad and happy and humorous poems which I would like to share with others. They come from stories my dad used to tell me when I was a kid. If you could glance at my site and if you know of others who might enjoy it and perhaps tell them of it, I would be most appreciative. Thank you. The address is www.metrocast.net/~wumply/exper-1.html

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    Techzonez Governor Super Moderator Conan's Avatar
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    Yes it can be done.

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    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    That's good to know. To get a GOOD resulti...s it apt to be a question of many shutter clicks and experimentation with shutter speed/lens opening? And what about the horizontal black bands with normal picture parts between them that I see when I look through my viewfinder...will they show up on the print or monitor display once I have the picture on my HD?

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    Techzonez Governor Super Moderator Conan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wumply
    That's good to know. To get a GOOD resulti...s it apt to be a question of many shutter clicks and experimentation with shutter speed/lens opening? And what about the horizontal black bands with normal picture parts between them that I see when I look through my viewfinder...will they show up on the print or monitor display once I have the picture on my HD?
    It'll definitely be trial and error to find the right shutter speed. The black band might show up.

  5. #5
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    You should be able to calculate the correct shutter speed... determine the actual refresh rate of the monitor (60 Hertz or perhaps 75Hz etc) .... so I think you need at least a 1/60th second speed??

    But your best bet, if its a DVD movie, would be to take a screen capture of the paused movie in your software dvd player such as PowerDVD... ?!

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

  6. #6
    Techzonez Governor Super Moderator Conan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cash_site
    But your best bet, if its a DVD movie, would be to take a screen capture of the paused movie in your software dvd player such as PowerDVD... ?!
    Yep you're right Cash.

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    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    My thanks to you both---Damn, I should have thought of your suggestion, Cash_site!!!
    wumply

  8. #8
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wumply
    My thanks to you both---Damn, I should have thought of your suggestion, Cash_site!!!
    wumply
    No Probs wumply - dont worry, its an easy missed feature on dvd software... I havent used it before, err.. except for tomb raider movie

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

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    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Cash_site...just happened to think of another point--after rereading your suggestion. I'm not up on DVDs. I just have an inexpensive one and all it does is let me play DVDs. Now to do a screen capture would I need a higher level DVD player. What exactly is a screen capture...where is the image captured?

    And what about the of taking a digital snapshot of the my TV screen once I've paused the player

  10. #10
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Ok, first tell me your setup... do you have a DVD drive in your PC or a stand alone dvd player like a VHS to watch on your TV? .... do you want the image from a TV or from you computer screen?

    Now, if the DVD player is inside your computer, then a cheap or expensive is good enough. What software are you using to watch the DVD... is it just windows media player, or PowerDVD or WinDVD etc...

    I have PowerDVD, so to take a screen shot simply view the DVD and pause the movie, then there is a screen capture toolbar button that you should click. It will then save the image to your Harddisk, possibly My Documents, but check the software preferences to find the location.

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

  11. #11
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Cash:

    I've a standalone DVD player connected to my TV. That's it. No DVD drive in my computer. However, my son in NJ does have a DVD player in his computer--I've written him to find out just what he can do with it _does it have screen capture and what software he uses to view DVDs.

    I'd like to go with whatever will give me the clearest picture which I would expect to be a computer monitor rather than a TV screen. So assuming my son can't help, and I have to use my everyday DVD-TV setup, how do I go about doing thatr and taking a picture with my digital camera?

    How much longer will you be around whatever time it is in Australia?

    Then if my son can help, I'll contact you again...k?

  12. #12
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Sorry wumply for not seeing your post earlier...

    Oh ok, so you are using a stand alone dvd player and normal TV... in this case, your Best bet would be to get your son to help out and use his computer - that would give you your best results...

    Now, Im not sure about your current PC setup in terms of video capturing capabilities, so I wont go there - unless you tell me otherwise...

    Ok, if you can't get your DVD to your son (sorry I know where New Jersey is but not where NH is - is that New Hampshire? Upstate NewYork?? I have no idea lol)... Depending on the quality of your TV a digital photo should give a result (not great but good enough) ... Simply watcht the DVD, then pause it at the point you like, then take your photo - get close enough to the TV to fill the viewfinder, turn off flash, and any lights that may reflect onto the TV, then snap the photo... dont be suprised if you see your reflection, but the photo should be good enough to see what the image was.

    hope it works.

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

  13. #13
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Well, if you are at the to of NJ and you go NNE (driving) 260 miles, then you're at the bottom of NH--it's due North of Massachusetts. (Or DID you know this?) Have you lived all your life in Australia or did you grow up in the US? And how outback are you? You do have a computer!!

    No problem re not seeing my last post. I figured you had other things to do. As you realized my son couldn't help me--his computer DVD just plays DVDs on his monitor--that's all.

    I exerimented with a tripod in front of my TV--it's a 31" TV, but could not get a print (on my monitor) sharp enough to satisfy me. Shutter speed and aperture appeared to make little difference. Oh I got an OK picture. Too many factors like [U]when[U]when you snap the shutter and perhaps how long it takes the camera to save the image--not sure. Of my 1st. 6 pics, 1 only was any good and it was a simple scene. A close-up of a face filling the screen didn't work well at all. Interestingly, on a 2nd. try I snapped 5 of 1 screen real fast--and all were =equally good--but still unacceptable to me. I suppose part of the problem is that up close TV screen pictures begin to blur in real life--I was only 3 feet away. Sharpening the image with my camera did not help, nor did increasing the f-stop. I finally gave up. Often the pictures had no equally spaced black bars (I get those when I look at my monitor through the viewfinder) but I did get skewed wiggly wavy lines in many shots. And of course how much I enlarge the 'print' with my viewer changes the quality.

  14. #14
    Security Intelligence TZ Veteran cash_site's Avatar
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    Oh ok, I thought above NJ was NY... I lived in San Jose, CA on/off for 4years, stayed with my folks living their during my summer vacations... wish I had of known TZ more back then, cos I would have visited Phish's Petting Zoo

    Anyway, I think your son could still help you, since he does have a DVD inside computer...

    But, the photos will be really tough to get perfect, they will lack lots of detail. I think the wiggly lines are the moire effect from the TV screen...

    Probably, your next best bet would be to take the dvd to a computer shop and ask them for help, or go to a friends place with Computer/DVD...

    LOL, Im sure you could post the actual DVD disc to me, and I could do it for you

    Good Luck.

    --- 0wN3D by 3gG ---

  15. #15
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Cash: I think you're right about how to get that picture.
    Hey, you forgot to tell me where in Australia you are. Actually, I'd like to know what time zone you're in or what city you're in the same time zone as. I'm playing around with 2 programs that show me the time at various places around the world...just having fun.

    wumply

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