Remote equipment can be easily adapted for use in
tactical situations. Should a commander require a special look at a given
area, remote television equipment will record terrain and other features
that can be used to support a maneuver or other deployment of troops.
ENG/EFP is the most flexible of remote operations.
One person can
handle a complete ENG/EFP assignment, as long as the signal can be
videotaped with a portable VR.
But even if the signal has to be relayed
back to the station or transmitted, ENG/EFP requires only a fraction of the
equipment and people of a big remote filming.
The major disadvantage of
ENG/EFP is that the pictures are of lower quality than when using studio
equipment. This is of little consequence in news, where we generally deal
with brief, one-time news stories.
However, ENG equipment and production
methods are often considered not good enough for productions that require
top quality picture and sound.
a. Because ENG/EFP equipment is so compact and self-contained, you can
get to an event and videotape or broadcast it faster than with any other
type of television equipment. One of the important operational differences
between ENG/EFP or big remotes is that in ENG/EFP you do not need
The ENG/EFP system is specifically designed for
immediate response to a breaking story.
b. The major production features of ENG are the readiness with which
you can respond to an event, the mobility possible in the coverage of an
event, and the flexibility of the ENG/EFP equipment system.
equipment can go wherever you go. It can operate in a car, an elevator, a
small kitchen, or a military helicopter.
You do not need an expensive
studio pedestal to get smooth dolly or trucking shots; riding in a shopping
cart with the ENG/EFP camera can often accomplish the same thing. Low angle
shots, with the camera looking up at the object from below eye level, are as
easy to accomplish as the high angle shots, or shots from above eye level
with the ENG/EFP camera. The operator simply lies on the floor and points
the camera up for the low angle shots, or climbs a ladder and points the
camera down for high angle shots.
c. With ENG/EFP equipment, you can videotape an event or transmit it
You can also use the ENG/EFP camera and the VR as a single
independent unit or as part of a multicamera system.
Video recorder. The portable camera and recorder (VR) offers a whole
new concept in television production, ENG and EFP.
The advantage of
videotape over film in news gathering is that videotape is a much faster and
more flexible production device. Videotape does not have to be developed in
a processing lab and it can be edited much more quickly than sound film.
The VR is one essential component of the ENG/EFP system.
a. The portable video cassette recorder (VR) works on the same
principle as audio cassettes. Although VRs are more complex electronically
than audiotape recorders, they are not more difficult in operation.