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class="style5" Two Way Mirrors

>Published : 10th July 2005

>I am looking for two way mirrors that are optically as clean as possible. I am also hoping for glass that is as opaque as possible on the mirrored side with the most possible light transmission to the other side. A fine balance...I know. I am shooting video with small Toshiba ice cube cameras and Sony xc-777 & xc-999's. The art dept is currently using glass that requires a lot of gain. Not so bad with the Toshibas, but the Sony’s are getting grainy. This is not about the video cameras though...its about the mirrored glass.

Thanks,


Raoul Germain
DP
NY, LA, NY, LA


>Try Tommy at Pancro Mirrors Inc

>Tel. 818 834 2926.

>Carey Duffy
South London Filter Ltd
http://www.camerafilters.co.uk


>Raoul Germaine writes :

class="Paragraph">> I am looking for two way mirrors that are optically as clean as possible.

>If you mean a mirror that you can shoot through they're usually referred to as transparent mirrors.

>Try :

>Torstenson Glass Company
3233 North Sheffield Avenue
Chicago Illinois
Phone 773-525-0435
Fax 773-525-0009

class="Paragraph">>I am also hoping for glass that is as opaque as possible on the >mirrored side with the most possible light transmission to the other >side. A fine balance...I know.

>It seems like you conflicting requirements. More light on the subject side may be the answer.

>Brian Heller
IA 600 DP


>Raoul wrote :

class="Paragraph">> I am looking for two way mirrors that are optically as clean as possible.

>At the risk of sounding obvious, its also about the difference in light level on either side of the 2-way-mirrors. I'm sure you've thought of all this before - your post indicates you know that a really efficient mirror is not that good of a mirror.

>For clarity :

>"Mirror Side" = the bright side that's being spied upon from behind the mirror.
"Hidden Side" = the dark side that's spying through the mirror.

>As you know, the "Mirrored Side" of the space should have high light levels. the other "Hidden Side" needs to be much darker (dark walls are a big help to hide things, and you light only the characters there). With a large enough space, good art direction and proper lighting, you can achieve a reflection that disguises the dark side with just clear glass ! a partially silvered mirror is necessary only when you need it to look like a mirror, or when the space is tiny and lighting options are limited.

>if you need to be shooting in the Hidden Side, the light levels there need to be at whatever level avoids excessive gain, and therefore the "mirror side" needs to have the lighting boosted even more in comparison (all depends on the percentage of your partially silvered mirror). unless of course you can play the people in the dark side as silhouette’s against the window.

>Art Direction and gimballed mirror may help in getting rid of unwanted reflections and allow you to either maximize the reflections to hide the dark side or tilt down into the darker furniture so you can see through it better, but still feel a reflection. Brighter walls in the Mirror room will help a lot, or very hot spots of practicals or light on the tables and walls if its to feel moodier.

>If you need to be seeing THROUGH the mirrored side into the dark, then that's the toughest shot for light-loss, and requires the light to cue down in the brighter/mirror side (or cheat the light cue up really high on the dark side, but if this is "live/reality" and you don't want the others to see into Hidden Side, then that's not an option).

>Wonder if I did more to confuse the issue, this really requires a CAD fly through with narration.

>Mark Doering-Powell
LA based DP


>A quick transparent mirror solution is to use the glass out of an autocue, approximately 2/3 stop loss through the transparency.

>Cheers

>David Wakeley
Sydney


>I love this place...a question on where to find a great two way mirror turns into a lesson in cinematography...

>As some of you gathered, this is a hidden camera deal...so a 407 hanging from the ceiling might give it all away, and because we are in places that our "marks" are very familiar with, aside from swapping the 60 Wratten’s with 75 or 100's....there is not too much we can do with the light levels. That being said, I appreciate the tips on where to find a nice piece of transparent glass, partially mirrored glass...and two way mirrors

>All best,
Raoul Germain
DP LA, NY


>When I was actively involved in manufacturing Front Projection rigs (I converted a Mitchell BNC and a Vistavision camera into projectors) I found that by far the best and most reliable supplier of two-way mirrors was Balzas of Liechtenstein, the scientific optical glass manufacturers who actually make them.

>Sincerely

>David Samuelson


>Raoul wrote :

class="Paragraph">> I love this place...a question on where to find a great two way mirror >turns into a lesson in cinematography...

>My bad... that had to be me. I wasn't trying to give a lesson, just clarify re :

>2-way mirrors and my hasty post, although cautious in its suggestions, just sort of grew and then I hit send. Just like someone else suggested that perhaps the subject side could use more light.

>You're obviously aware of all this. I was only trying to help and cml-general does get some "newbie" questions at times.

>But I'm filing this under no good deed goes unpunished - damned if you do or don't.

>Mark Doering-Powell
LA based DP


class="Paragraph">> but I'm filing this under no good deed goes unpunished - damned if >you do or don't.

>I appreciated your thorough answer.

>Sam Wells


>Sam, you wrote:

class="Paragraph">> I appreciated your thorough answer.

>Me too. Mark's reply was excellent.

>Not for nothin' as they say around here, but the original question could have easily been interpreted as indicating the questioner was not all that familiar with shooting transparent mirrors.

>Brian Heller


class="Paragraph">>but I'm filing this under no good deed goes unpunished - damned if you >do or don't.

>Damned if you don't!!!

>Like I said...I love this place.

>All best,
Raoul Germain