Wishlist Archives

Sometimes The Best “New” Is Something Old

There is something that I think has been completely lost on the younger generation.  It’s the fact that just because something is new does not make it a better or even a good thing.  For example every once in a while I waste an hour or two of my time trying to convince people that what J.J. Abrams did to Star Trek is wrong and that not only is it wrong, he did all the wrong things for he wrong reasons.

Yes, that alleged “movie” has done great at the box office and later it’s done great in DVD sales.  People have bought a lot of copies of it and they’re not done yet.  That still doesn’t make it right.

I keep hearing how Star Trek needed to have new life breathed into it and I can’t find any way to agree with that statement other than it was time for younger actors to take up the roles and carry them forward.  However just as you don’t rewrite Shakespeare, you don’t create a Star Trek story that destroys the entire original time line.

A the very least, it’s disrespectful.

There are too many possibilities that have never been explored in that original to even come close to justifying it’s destruction.

Anyway, to get back on point, as you can probably tell I’ve just come from such an argument.  One that I consider myself to be the victor even though the other parties are too interested in flash, noise, sex and chrome plated warp nacelles with a Homer Simpson wannabe in the captain’s chair to realize it or care. (oops, there I go again.)

That’s why right now I’d just absolutely love to sit back with something like this copy of The Shining Special Edition.  I want to do this because it’s a classic.

It’s a classic that some young punk hasn’t come along and decided to strip it down and flush it’s original vision down the toilet as they “reboot” it.

This movie was directed by Stanley Kubrick, a master film maker that KNEW what he was doing and settled for nothing less than exactly what he needed.  It was the film in which Jack Nicholson gave his absolutely legendary performance as Jack Torrance, a Vermont schoolteacher working as a winter caretaker at the Overlook hotel.  A resort that is so socked in and isolated during the winter weather that it is all but totally unreachable.

Watching it you get to see how he slowly loses his grip on sanity and becomes the legendary madman who calls out “Heeeere’s Johnny!” as he merrily hacks his way through a door to kill his family.

At least I think I’m safe in expecting that won’t be “rebooted” by some idiot who doesn’t even understand the story.  Now all I have to do is convince somebody that they really need to buy me a copy of it.

Technorati Tags: star trek, wishlist, argument, movies, tv, jack nicholson, the shining, classics

The Sounds of Success

In my ongoing quest to become a youtube partner and reach the point where I am earning a livable income from my videos one of the things that has repeatedly been a source of untold headaches is sound.  I am especially talking about music in particular.  Sound effects can be troublesome at times but there are fairly easy to deal with ways to handle that.

Music on the other hand can be a major royal pain.  Especially when it comes to finding something that works for the project at hand and is also free of copyright restrictions that would prevent it’s being used for commercial purposes such as in a youtube video that is part of their revenue sharing program.

I have spent a LOT of time scouring the net for solutions and I think I have finally found something that not only will take care of the issue but also will run on the computer equipment I’ve got instead of forcing me to buy something more modern (and not to mention expensive!).

Sony ACID Music Studio looks to be for all the world like it is exactly the program I’ve been looking for.  What’s more, it also looks like I have a good shot at being able to get it on sale as well, making an already good deal a heck of a lot better.

This program comes with literally thousands of music loops that can be mixed and matched into thousands of combinations that can then be edited and tweaked in several ways to not only make certain that it results in a completely unique piece of music but also it can let you be totally satisfied that the music is *right* for the scene you’re using it for.

I have wanted exactly this kind of a software package for a long time.  I am not a musician and haven’t got the first clue about composing original music.  With this program I don’t have to be able to read music or know a bunch of stuff about music theory or anything else.  I will simply need to pick the loops that suit what I’m doing and start tweaking them and adding more loops, tweaking everything until it’s dead on for what I’m doing.

In short, I think this thing is tailor made for people wanting to do a lot of serious stuff on YouTube or anywhere else.

Technorati Tags: software, solution, wishlist, video, music, youtube, i want this

Three Legs To Stand On

I remember that we had been wanting a camcorder for a long time when, in the summer of 2008, my wife found a good one on sale and jumped at the deal.  She also bought an extra memory card for it and most importantly, a tripod.

That tripod has become quite an issue in the nearly two years since then.  You see, it was what I call an “El Cheapo” model.  An inexpensive (about $8 I think) light duty model that I seriously doubt was intended to be put to as much use as I have asked of it.

Over time it’s broken down, several of the locks that hold the legs in their extended position have broken and two of the legs have completely fallen off a couple of times.  I was able to reattach the legs and once I was able to fix the locks, however since the legs fell off I have had a really hard time getting the camera level.  I have had to resort to putting things under one or more of the legs to try and get it at least close to level.

I’ll admit that being completely level isn’t quite so important for vlogging but when it comes to more involved productions like my new Star Trek Parody series, I think it’s important to have the most professional look to my videos that I can manage.  It’s bad enough that I can’t afford to buy or make anything approaching proper costumes, the least I can do is have a level picture.

To that end I’ve been looking around for an affordable replacement tripod and I think that I may have finally found one in the Sunpak PicturesPlus 6060XL Tripod pictured above.

It has the advantage of an affordable price, good construction and it’s got some excellent reviews from people that have bought it.  Some day I’ll eventually get a higher end professional tripod but until then, this one should do nicely.

Technorati Tags: broken, tripod, video, crooked, angled

Past Time For a New Camcorder

Now that I have finally gotten the laptop that I have needed for at least the last two years, I have been giving a lot of consideration to what I should do as the next logical step toward putting together the home production facility that I’ve been wanting.  Something that will be lightyears better than what I’ve got now.

The answer is of course obvious.  Anyone can tell you that probably THE single most important part of any production facility, professional or home, is the camera.  While I do have a decent camera (at least in terms of amateur productions anyway) however it is very much a lower end model.  My wife got it on sale a couple of years ago. Because it’s a lower end model it is lacking most features that the more advanced (professional) models have and some of these are, in my opinion “must have” features.

The most important of which just has to be the ability to accept sound from an external microphone (or other source, depending on the situation).

One example of something that could easily be a good choice for the next camera would be this Panasonic HD Camcorder. The first thing I liked about it without even reading any of the specs on it was the fact that it has a straight body design instead of that thrice damned seven degree tilt that is built into the camera body that entirely too many “cheap” HD cameras have. This unit has a much more standard, professional look and feel to it. It’s very obviously made for doing more than shooting home video of your kid’s birthday parties or school plays.

It’s a feature packed unit that could easily be used to produce professional quality video in full 1080i High Definition. And yes, it sports that all important external microphone input along with it’s many other features.

Technorati Tags: professional, production facility, camcorder, professional quality, home production

Star Trek TOS Remastered!!

I can not believe that I have only just found out about this in the last few days!  I have been a fan of Star Trek since 1966 when I watched the original series on it’s first run and since then I have always made it a point to at least keep track of what’s going on when it comes to things being done with Star Trek.  I’ve seen all of the movies and I knew about each one when they were in the “let’s talk about this idea” phase and the rumors were flying around at warp speed.

I’ve seen all of TNG and Enterprise, a fair amount of DS-9, and some Voyager (I’d have seen more but for a long time I didn’t live in an area where it was carried on broadcast tv) and yet this thing pops out of nowhere.  I mean, seriously, it’s already on sale in full sets for crying out loud!

So what’s so extra special about the Star Trek Original Series 3 Season Pack Remastered DVD set?  Well, the key word is “Remastered”.  The original footage was processed and all of the visual effects, especially the exterior shots in space and viewscreen images, have been completely redone with the kind of visual effects that Gene Roddenberry & company would have given assorted non-essential body parts to have access to but was not even possible in 1966.

I’ve found a brief “effects reel” type clip on YouTube that shows some excellent examples of what I’m talking about.  It features a collection of scenes from the second season episode, “The Doomsday Machine”.  These scenes tell me that this set is what the original Star Trek *SHOULD* have been if only the technology to do it had been available at the time.

Have a look at this video.  If you’re a fan of Original Series Trek then like me, you’re going to want this like you haven’t wanted anything in a long time.  Truly, this is an absolute GOTTA HAVE!

Technorati Tags: tos, dvd collection, i want it, star trek, remastered, stunning visuals, visual effects, wishlist, original series

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