3.58MHz The approximate frequency of the sub carrier used in NTSC to carry colour information.
4.43MHz The approximate frequency of the sub carrier used in PAL to carry colour information.
4:2:2 Denotes the ration of sampling frequencies of the single luminance to the two colour channels. For every four luminance samples, there are two samples of each colour channel.
4:2:2:4 As above, with the addition of a key channel which is sampled four times for every four samples of luminance.
A/B Roll The use of alternating scenes, recorded on separate video tapes, to perform dissolves, wipes or other types of video transitions.
ADC or A/D Converter Analogue to digital converter.
Aspect Ratio Ration of picture width to height. Present standard is 4:3, though there is a move to change to 16:9 for HDTV.
Assembly Editing Sequential editing where the edit replaces all previously recorded material with new audio, video, and control track.
Back Timing Calculating the edit in point by subtracting the duration of the edit from the edit out point.
Bandwidth The complete range of frequencies over which a system can function with minimal signal loss, usually less than 3db. For PAL it is 5.5MHz, NTSC, 4.2MHz.
Betacam SP ½" component tape system developed by Sony. The industry broadcast format.
Black Balance To balance the black level of the RGB camera signals so that black has no colour.
Black Burst A video signal composed of sync pulse and colour burst sub carrier, followed by black chroma signal.
Black Level The lowest transmittable luminance level. On a monitor, this represents the colour black.
BNC Bayonet Neill-Concelman. The coax cable connector used extensively in video.
Boom A pole used to position a microphone close to the actors.
Bumping Up Transferring material recorded on a narrower video tape to a wider video tape, or to a higher quality format.
Buy Out Music in which a one-time fee enables the buyer to legally use the music without paying additional licensing or "needle drop" fees.
C.C.D Charged Coupled Device. An integrated circuit which captures video images. Has replaced tubes in most video cameras.
C.G Character Generator. An electronic typewriter used to create titles for video. (aka Chyron, Aston, Inscriber )
C.U Close-up.
Chroma Chrominance. Portion of the video signal that carries information on the colour content of the image.
Colour Bars A standard video test pattern which includes samples of primary and secondary colours. Used to adjust the colours in video monitors, playback VTRs and other equipment.
Component Video Video signal in which the luminance and sync information are carried and recorded separately from the colour information. Also known as CAV (Component Analogue Video), YUV, Y Pb Pr, Y Cr Cb, Y R-Y B-Y. Three cable system.
Composite Video Video signal containing both picture and sync information. Single cable.
Continuity Insuring scenes flow smoothly and produce a coherent story.
Control Track Portion of the video recording used to control longitudinal motion of the tape in playback.
Cutaway Shot of a related object outside frame used to hide an edit. e.g.. cu. of hands during an interview.
Cut-to-Cut Simple editing with no transitional effect between scenes.
Dissolve A video transition in which the existing image is partially or totally replaced by superimposing another.
Dolly A camera platform on wheels. To bring the camera closer or move farther away from the subject.
Dropout A tape defect which causes a brief flash on the screen.
Dub To make a copy of a video, or a means of signal transfer which carries chroma and luminance separately.
D.V.E Digital Video Effects, generic term for effects such as, page turns, ripples, waves, etc., (aka ADO, Abekas - â )
E.C.U Extreme close-up.
E.D.L Edit Decision List. List of time code numbers for each shot in an off-line, used to create the final on-line edit master.
Establishing Shot Wide shot revealing much of the location so the viewer can "orientate" themselves.
Fade Video which gradually increases or decreases in brightness to or from black. Sound can also fade to or from silence.
Fill Light After the key light is set, the fill light softens the shadows created by the key light.
Flare Fogging effect caused by aberration or stray light.
Freeze Memory storage of a frame or field of video information.
Focal Length A measurement of the magnification of a lens indicated in millimetres. A zoom lens has a variable focal length which allows the camera to film closer or farther from the subject without moving the camera or subject. A 9mm - 100mm lens can makes its widest shot at 9mm, its closest at 100mm.
Foley Sound effects, like footsteps, used to heighten realism.
Format Describes the video equipment and tape used. E.g.., VHS, Hi8, Betacam, DVC.
Gaffer The technician responsible for placing, rigging and adjusting lights.
Gaffer Tape Very heavy duty, cloth based, adhesive tape.
Generation Loss The signal loss incurred when copying one videotape to another. The more expensive the format, the less loss.
Genlock Synchronising equipment to a master reference signal.
Genlock / Encoder Device which allows computer text and graphics to be recorded or superimposed over a video signal.
Gofer Production assistant sent to "Go for" items, usually coffee. The original Film School.
Grip Crew member who carries, sets up and strikes equipment.
Hi8 Sony system based on Super 8 but utilising advanced technology and offering much higher resolution.
High-band/BVU SP Broadcast quality 3/4" format. SP indicates extended frequency response.
Insert A close-up of a detail used to hide an edit, or to emphasise a detail.
Insert Editing Editing in which the control track is not replaced, allows video and/or audio to be inserted in already recorded video.
Jump Cut An edit which jars visually. A jump cut is caused by the choice of shots rather than a technical imperfection.
Key Light The primary light used to illuminate a subject.
Kicker / Backlight Light placed behind the subject. Helps separate the subject from the background.
Lavaliere / Neck mic A small microphone clipped to a person's clothing.
Location Any place filming occurs except a studio.
Log A listing of the time code addresses of shots, scenes and takes. The log is an efficient way to find shots during editing.
Low Band Commercial 3/4" format introduced in 1971. Used for low budget non-broadcast productions and for off line.
Luminance The brightness of the picture. Amplitude (strength) of the grey scale portion of the video signal.
MHz (Megahertz) Unit used to measure frequency. A hertz equals one cycle per second, a Mhz, one million.
Monitor A video display similar to a TV but having superior visual quality and without a tuner. A audio monitor is a speaker.
NTSC National Television Standards Committee. Colour television standard used in America. NTSC consists of 525 lines scanned at a rate of 30 frames per second. Commonly interpreted as "never twice the same colour" due to hue shifts.
NLE Non-linear Editing. A system where images are digitised to computer, and then edited in the digital domain, so allowing instant access to material, and the compilation of clean, computer based EDL’s.
Off Line Preliminary post-production, used to establish editing points and to prepare EDL (Edit Decision List) for use in on line editing.
On Line Final editing session, the stage at which the master tape is edited from the original production tapes using the decisions reached in the EDL.
Oxide Magnetic coating on video and audio tape that stores picture and sound information. Sometimes called rust.
PAL Phase Alternating Line. Colour television standard used in Australia, Britain, etc. PAL consists of 625 lines scanned at a rate of 25 frames per second. Commonly interpreted as "perfection at last".
Pan Movement of the camera on a horizontal axis.
Paper Edit A list of edits compiled entirely on paper by viewing / editing Window Dub copies of the original camera tapes.
Post-Production The complete editing process.
Preproduction The phase of production in which the script, budget, locations, actors and props are planned.
Preroll Time required for equipment to attain working speed. Usually 5 to 7 seconds for a camera. In editing, the amount of time the decks require to perform a stable edit.
Production The actual filming and creation of the elements described in the script.
Protection Master / Safety Dub A high quality copy of the master tape. Inexpensive insurance in the event that the master is lost or damaged.
Pseudo A / B roll Also known as 2 Machine A/B or A/X Roll. System which mimics A/B Roll by using an effect from a freeze frame.
Reaction Shot A shot of a person reacting to dialogue or action.
S/N Signal to Noise ratio. The ratio between the strength of the signal to the accompanying interference, the noise. The higher the better!
SECAM Sequential Couleur Avec Memoire. Colour television standard used in France, Russia, and their colonies.Similar to PAL in technicalities. Commonly interpreted as "something entirely contrary (to) american method".
Shotgun Microphone A highly directional microphone, usually mounted on a camera or boom.
Slate A board on which information, such as scene and shot number, or program title is written.
Soft Light Light which is diffused and creates only soft shadows.
Storyboard / Animatics A series of drawings to indicate different shots to be filmed, or to give the client an idea of how a project will look without the expense of employing cameras, actors, etc.,
SVHS Improved version of VHS producing much higher picture quality.
T.B.C Time Base Corrector. A device to correct timing errors which can cause unstable playback. A TBC can "clean up" almost any material to make it "broadcast quality".
Tilt Movement of the camera on its vertical axis.
Time Code Electronic indexing method used for editing and timing video programs. Denotes hours, minutes, seconds and frames elapsed on a video tape.
Transition Any form of visual effect between two sequential scenes that is not a cut, e.g.., dissolve, wipe, or fade.
Trucking / Tracking Shot A camera move which films the subject from side to side.
U-Matic Trade name for the 3/4 inch video format.
V.C.R Video Cassette Recorder - used to denote "consumer" grade equipment.
V.T.R Video Tape Recorder - used to denote "professional" grade equipment.
Video 8 Introduced in 1984 as "Handycam" format.
VHS Video Home System. Standard format ½" domestic video tape. Still the most popular domestic format.
VHS-C Variation on VHS utilising the same technology but in a compact cassette. Also available in SVHS.
White Balance Professional camera function which determines how much red, green and blue is required to produce a normal-looking white. Shots made with improper white balance will have an abnormal colour tint.
Wild Sound Sound recorded after the visuals in order to improve sound editing and enhance realism.
Window Dub Also called a "burn in." A copy of the original camera tape with time code numbers visually displayed. A window dub that is usually made in the VHS format to be viewed, logged and/or edited on paper with a domestic VCR to save editing expenses.
Wipe Special effect transition in which a margin or border moves across the screen, wiping out the image of one scene and replacing it with another.
Y/C, SVHS, 4 pin DUB Input/output connections that carry a Y/C or S-VHS component signal.
Zoom To vary the focal length from one size to another. Use sparingly!