ROV video time code and data issues
Project Manager: Nancy Jacobsen Stout
Lead Scientist: Jim Barry
The video system of the ROV Ventana and R/V Point Lobos is "operationally
incomplete" with no way to accurately measure the video level and color
accuracy of the video systems. MBARI does not presently own the equipment necessary to ensure the
accuracy of video systems as regards video levels, gamma and color.
The video system (primarily the High Definition camera system) of the Ventana/Point Lobos
has given satisfactory service for two years. Initially, the
video system was purchased and set up by manufacturers representatives, with
settings stored within the camera. The system provided good service, but there have been problems with significant
lack of consistency of video levels, and to a smaller extent with color
This project aims to establish a regular monitoring and calibration program
and recommends the purchase of two categories of equipment.
- Make the Ventana/Point Lobos video system operationally
complete by adding a video waveform monitor and vector scope. The second
item will provide "patching" of all
video signals and related timecode, and audio signals and
enhance maintenance and flexibility.
- Acquire the equipment necessary to build out the video measurement and
calibration capability at MBARI. This equipment can be set up as a portable test suite to be available when needed
for most of MBARI video systems.
Video Time code
Time code is presently recorded on ROV video tapes as continuous video frame
code, generated internally on each recording deck as tape runs,
with no direct relation to date and time of day. Video frame code is linked to
each dive by GMT and date only after correlating the appropriate data logger
files post-cruise. In addition, dives can presently be referenced by dive number only after
these numbers are manually entered into the Expedition Database during
post-cruise processing. Without definition of dive start/end times, data are
stored by year dates, which very often contain more than a single dive.