MAC – multiplex analog components.
MB – See megabyte.
MBPS – also MBps. MegaBytes Per Second. Digital transmission speed in millions of bits per second.
MC – See multicoating.
MCI – media control interface. A multimedia specification designed to provide control of onscreen movies and peripherals like CD-ROM drives.
M/E – mix/effects.
MICR – Magnetic Ink Character Recognition. Automatic sorting method used, e.g. on checks, based on the printing of numbers in magnetic ink.
MIDI – Musical Instrument Digital Interface. A communications standard for relaying information about a sound from an application or digital musical instrument to a synthesizer chip. MIDI commands contain all the information a sound board needs to reproduce the desired sound. MIDI is a specification for the types of control signals that can be sent from one electronic music device to another. 2. System of communication between digital electronic instruments allowing synchronization and distribution of musical information. 3. A standard digital language that allows synthesizers to control and be controlled by other MIDI synthesizers, sequencers and computers.
MIDI clock – A timing reference signal sent over a MIDI cable at the rate of 24 clock pulses per quarter-note (ppq).
MIDI mapper – A Windows applet that automatically maps (shifts the value of) channel, program change, and note numbers. For example, a map could cause all notes coming in on MIDI channel 3 to go out on MIDI channel 7.
MIDI mode – Any of the ways of responding to incoming MIDI data. While four modes – omni off/poly, omni on/poly, omni off/mono, and omni on/mono — are defined by the MIDI specification, omni on/mono is never used, and at least two other useful modes have been developed — multi mode for multi timbral instruments and multi-mono for guitar synthesizers.
MIDI Out/Thru – A MIDI output port that can be configured either to transmit MIDI messages generated within the unit (Out) or to retransmit messages received at the MIDI In (Thru).
MIDI thru – There are two types of MIDI thru. One, a simple hardware connection, is found on the back panels of many synthesizers. The thru jack in this case simply duplicates whatever data is arriving at the MIDI in jack. Sequencers have a second type, called software thru. In this case, data arriving at the in jack is merged with data being played by the sequencer, and both sets of data appear in a single stream at the out (not the thru) jack. A software thru is useful because it allows you to hook a master keyboard to the sequencer’s MIDI input and a tone module to its output. You can then play the keyboard and hear the tone module, and the sequencer can also send its messages directly to the tone module.
MII Format – A second-generation component video format invented by Panasonic for use in videotape recorders. The signal set consists of separate Y, scaled R-Y, and scaled B-Y signals. The M refers to the way in which the tape is routed through the recording mechanism.
MOS – Mit Out Sound, Minus Optical Stripe, Motor Only Sync. Stands for “mit out sound”, a slang term for silent shooting; a take that is filmed without recording sound at the same time. It is purported that director Erich Von Stroheim couldn’t pronounce “without sound” correctly due to his accent.
MP – abbreviation for “megapixel.”
MP3 – 1. A digital audio encoding format, predominant in portable audio devices. 2. Part of the MPEG-1 video format, MP3 refers to the audio layer. Used on its own for audio files, MP3 is a compressed audio format widely used in portable music players and InterNet. MP3 is a widely supported non-proprietary format, making MP3 files easily portable between devices.
MP4 – See AAC. A popular container format, which can carry the H.264 codec for very high quality video at low bitrates. Audio files recorded with the AAC codec are listed as mP4 files. This is since the audio encoding is part of the MPEG-4 standard.
MPEG-1 – a is low quality video encoding and compression standard used primarily on Video CDs, specified by the Motion Pictures Experts Group. A standard method of compressing audio and video data down to 1/50th of their original size. See VCD.
MPEG-2 – 1. a video encoding and compression standard specified by the Motion Pictures Experts Group, hence the acronym MPEG. The most prominent use of MPEG-2 for video in DVDs and HDTV broadcasts. 2. A very popular encoding format for both standard definition and even high definition. MPEG-2 is the standard for DVDs, and is used extensively by digital television for distribution over broadcast, cable and satellite services. Although not used as much as H.264 and VC-1 because MPEG-2 is not as efficient, it is one of the three standards mandated for Blu-ray.
MPEG-4 – an audio/video encoding and compression standard specified by the Motion Pictures Experts Group, hence the acronym MPEG. Compared to MPEG-2, MPEG-4 delivers higher quality with lower space requirements, making it ideal for high definition content. MPEG-4 AVC is used on Blu-ray Discs and HD DVDs as well as satellite television broadcasts. The audio portion is used for AAC digital files. See AAC, AVC.
ms – See millisecond.
MTC – MIDI time code. mTC is a way of transmitting SmPTE timing data over a MIDI cable. See SmPTE time code.
m-format – A component video format invented by Panasonic for use in videotape recorders. The signal set consists of separate Y, I, and Q signals. The m refers to the way in which the tape is routed through the recording mechanism.
macguffin – also called a weenie. A term used by Alfred Hitchcock to refer to an item, event, or piece of knowledge that the characters in a film consider extremely important, but which the audience either doesn’t know of or doesn’t care about.
machine speed – rate at which film moves through the processor.
Macintosh – an Apple-brand computer used in desktop video production.
macro – 1. a function that provides a one-key stroke streamlined operation in place of a procedure having many keystrokes. 2. A range for close-ups that has ratios, from 1:10 to life-size (1:1). 3. A small program within a larger application that performs a set routine of operations, also called a “script” or an “action.” 4. Lens capable of extreme closeup focusing, useful for intimate views of small subjects.
macrograph – A photograph that is the same size as or larger than the subject.
macro lens – A lens with the ability to focus from infinity to extremely closely, designed specifically for close-up work. Macro lenses focus very close to the subject, allowing them to capture images of tiny objects in frame-filling, larger-than-life sizes, and feature low distortion from corner to corner. Macro lenses can be used for general photography, as well. Sometimes called a “Close-up lens”, but a close-up lens is usually a lens attachment for close-ups and does not generally have the ability to focus on infinity.
macro mode – digital camera setting which configures the lens for close focusing and optimizes exposure settings for close-up photography. Macro mode is usually represented by a flower icon.
macrophotography – photography of a subject where the image is recorded in the same or larger than actual size.
macroscopic – Visible to the naked eye, as opposed to microscopic, which means so small as to be invisible or indistinct without the use of a microscope.
magazine – A light-proof metal container for 35 mm film, also known as a cartridge.
magazine take-up – in the united kingdom it is known as a spool box. It is the device, which winds up the film after photography (in a camera), copying (in a printer), and after projection (in film projection).
magenta – a color also known as fuchsia and hot pink; a moderate to vivid purplish red or pink, named after the town of spheres of cyan, magenta, yellow, and blackMagenta, in northwest Italy. Magenta is one of the four colors in the four color process for reproduction color in print called CMYK. The CMYK process creates the color spectrum using cyan, magenta, yellow, and black. The dominant wavelength of magenta is c530 nm. Note that magenta is an additive color, that is, one used in electronics (screens, computers, graphics), and not a subtractive or “natural” color. For example, in paint, magenta cannot be mixed and must be bought. Note also that, some A/V or Multimedia glossaries will tell you that green is the opposite of magenta,or vice-versa, and they are wrong; and not wrong once, but wrong 2 or 3 times when they say that. First, color relationships are 60 degree relationships on a wheel, and no color has an opposite. Second, red is the complement of green, not magenta. Third, is the same way that magenta is not red, cyan is not blue. If you have computer graphics in RGB, they will not translate exactly to CMYK. Orange, a secondary color, is the complement of blue, a primary color; and violet, a secondary color, is the complement of yellow, a primary color. Cyan is not the same as either turquoise or aqua.
MagicGate – Copy-protection system developed by Sony and supported by MagicGate memory sticks and supporting devices such as the PlayStation 2 and Sony laptop computers. Most currently produced memory sticks support MagicGate. See memory stick.
Magic Hour – The minutes just around sunset and sunrise, where light levels change drastically and quickly, lending a warm orange glow to earlier shots, and a clearer blue in later minutes that allows a crew to shoot night scenes while light still remains.
magnetic sound – Audio signal recorded on a magnetic oxide tape.
magnetic soundtrack – a magnetic print. A composite print in which the soundtrack is recorded on the attached strip of magnetic tape. Largely obsolete due to high cost and maintenance difficulties.
main light – the same as “Key light”, it is the principal, dominant source of light, usually in a studio, and generally the brightest light on a subject or scene.
maintenance engineer – A person responsible for general maintenance and repair.
majors – The major Hollywood movie producer/distributor studios, MGM/UA, 20th Century Fox, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros, Paramount Pictures, Universal, and Disney.
makeup – also make up, make-up, Makeup Artist, Makeup Supervisor. the decorations placed directly on the skin or hair of an actor for cosmetic or artistic effect. Practitioners are called artists or supervisors. See also body makeup, special makeup effects, prosthetic appliances.
make-up artist – A person who specializes in applying and touching up a subject’s make-up for photography sessions.
mandatory managed copy – a component of AACS which ensures users will be able to make copies of Blu-ray and HD DVD content for use on a home network pr personal use. See AACS.
manipulation – In a digital picture manipulator, the various processes used to alter a video image, such as transformations and programmed effects.
manual mode or manual exposure mode – A camera’s mode that allows the photographer to over-ride automatic exposure settings, determining shutter speed, aperture and ISO as specifically selected by the photographer.
manufacturer identification code – the letter that identifies a film manufacturer. K = Eastman Kodak Company.
manufacturers information – includes information such as year code, printer number, roll and part number, emulsion number, product code, film manufacturer.
map – A table in which input values are assigned to outputs arbitrarily by the user on an item-by-item basis.
mapper – A device that translates MIDI data from one form to another in real time.
mark up – copy prepared for a compositor setting out in detail all the typesetting instructions.
martial-arts – martial arts, chop-socky, chopsocky; also known as ‘hand & foot films’. A film which features hand to hand combat, usually using various Asian combat systems like Karate and the Chinese fighting styles popularly known in the west as Kung Fu. “Chop-socky” is a slang term for martial-arts movies.
martini shot – The last shot of the day’s shoot… because the next “shot” is in a martini glass. See also Abby Singer.
mask – 1. Opaque material (usually thin plastic) placed in front of the lens like a filter to block some of the light entering a lens. The mask may have a cut-out shape (a keyhole or heart-shape, for example) or may block half of the image frame to facilitate a double-exposure. 2. Opaque frame used to hold down the edges of photographic paper when making a print. Since the margin area beneath the mask is not printed, the print will have a white border. 3. opaque material or masking tape used to block-off an area of the artwork.
masking – restricting the size of a projected image on a screen by the use of black borders around the screen. Also the restriction in size of any projected image or photographic print by the use of undercut aperture plates or masks and borders.
master – 1. The original of an item, such as a photograph, from which copies are made. 2. To become an expert in a field, e.g. a master photographer. 3. the final negative or intermediate film from which subsequent prints are made. 4. original recorded videotape footage; “edited master” implies original copy of tape in its edited form. Duplications constitute generational differences.
master control system – the switching link for video and audio sources used between a television facility and a transmitting
master positive – timed interpositive print made from an original and from which a duplicate negative is made.
master/slave – 1. In editing, the process in which one or more VTRs (slaves) are controlled by another VTR (master). 2. In sync generators, the process in which several sync generators (slaves) are controlled by one main sync generator (master).
master video/audio – a master video or master audio is the uncompressed end result after post processing. Related to video, it contains the full movie from start to end in its highest quality. Master videos can contain sound and voice over, but if it is a mulit-lingual movie, voice over and text are separate from the master, so that native version can be created from the master. With the master video, you can create numerous compressed formats of videos without changing the master video itself. The same goes for master audios. It is the full audio from start to end, but it might have separate voice-overs for multi-lingual use. You could create a podcast from the master, or a CD native format without changing the master itself.
match – In editing, a command that calculates the match frame for the time specified in the R-VTR’s mark table IN column.
match frame edit – edit in which the source and record tapes pick up exactly where they left off, and often used to extend or correct a previous edit. Also called a “frame cut.”
matched dissolve – dissolve from one image to another that’s similar in appearance or shot size. See dissolve.
matrix – A logical network configured in a rectangular array of intersections of input-output leads. In routing switchers, a signal switching frame configured such that any frame input may be selected at any frame output. In a color television set or an encoded chroma keyer, the section that combines the luminance and color signals and transforms them into individual magenta, green, and cyan signals. In the TV set, these signals are then applied to the picture-tube grids. In the encoded chroma keyer, these signals are used to generate a chroma key.
matrix meter – an exposure meter that measures light in several areas of a scene and analyzes the measurements to determine proper exposure. Also called a “multi-segment meter”.
matrix modulation – a method of connecting modulation sources to destinations in such a way that any source can be sent to any combination of destinations.
matrix Surround – Surround sound process that records out-of-phase signals on a stereo track. The out-of-phase signals are extracted by the surround sound processor circuitry and sent to the appropriate speakers. Dolby Pro-Logic, Dolbly Pro-Logic II,and DTS Neo 6 are all examples of matrix surround formats.
matte – 1. a frame surrounding an image often made from card stock or other stiffened material, intended to enhance the viewing of the image. 2. a paper’s finish, especially paper for photographic prints, that is not highly-reflective but reflects light in a diffused manner. 3. an opaque outline that limits the exposed area of a picture, either a cut out object in front of the camera or as a silhouette on another strip of film.
matte art – a coated printing paper with a dull surface.
Matte Artist – also ‘mattematician’. A person who creates artwork (usually for the background of a shot) which is included in the movie either via a matte shot or optical printing.
matte shot – A photographic technique whereby artwork, usually on glass, from a matte artist is combined with live action. Contrast this with back projection or a traveling matte.
maximum density – D-max. portion of the shoulder of the characteristic curve where further increases in exposure on negative film or decreases in exposure on reversal film will not produce any further density increase.
measure (noun) – In typography, the length of a line, even if the line is not filled with characters (such as a centered or partial line), designated in picas. When the text is set in columns, the line length is called column measure
medium – Any space through which light passes.
medium format film – 120 roll film is the most popular medium-sized format film, and provides negatives or slides (transparencies) that are 2″ by 2″ (6 x 6 cm), 2″ by 3″, or 6 x 7 cm in size. 220 roll film is used to make the same negative and slide sizes, but has most of the paper backing that is found on 120 film eliminated, so the roll is longer than a 120 roll and provides twice as many frames as 120 film.
medium shot – 1. a camera shot from a medium distance, usually showing the characters from the waist up, that allows the audience to see body language, but not as much facial expression. 2. any camera perspective between long shot and closeup, whereby subjects are viewed from medium distance. See closeup, long shot.
megabyte – 1. One million bytes (actually 2^20 or 1,048,576); one thousand kilobytes (actually 1,024 kilobytes). A megabyte is the standard unit of measurement for a computer’s memory. Abbreviated as MB, mb and sometimes Mbyte.
megahertz (mHz) – One million hertz.
megapixel – Abbreviated as “MP.” Megapixel refers to a million pixels, and is used in describing the number of pixels that a digital device’s image sensor has. A digital camera’s resolution is measured and rated in megapixels. The higher the megapixel rating, the higher the resolution of images produced by the camera. A Nikon D3000, for instance, has 10.2 MP, and a Nikon D810 has a whopping 36.3 MP.
memory – 1. the storage capacity of any data-recording media, such as a computer’s hard drive or a camera’s media card or 2. a system or device for storing information; in the case of musical devices, information about patches, sequences, waveforms, and so on.
memory effect – power-loss phenomenon of NiCad camcorder batteries, attributed to precisely repetitive partial discharge followed by complete recharge, or long-term overcharge. considered misnomer for “voltage depression” and “cell imbalance”.
Memory Stick – Memory card format developed by Sony and and used primarily in Sony products, though some Samsung products have used Memory Stick as well. See MagicGate, memory Stick Duo, memory Stick Pro.
Memory Stick Duo – memory Stick with smaller form factor, memory Stick Duo cards are shorter than regular memory Sticks. An adpater is used to make them compatible with devices requiring the long memory Sticks. See Memory Stick.
memory Stick Pro – Faster, higher capacity version of Sony’s Memory Stick. Memory StickPro was developed in conjunction with Sandisk.
memory adapter – Another name for a memory card.
memory card – A removable device for storing images taken by a digital camera, sometimes also called a “Picture card”. Names of common memory cards include CompactFlash, Smartmedia, SD memory Card, Memory Stick and XD memory Card.
merger – A MIDI accessory that allows two incoming MIDI signals to be combined into one MIDI output.
metadata – 1. data about a digital image that explains, describes or locates the image and is embedded in the image file, but is not data forming the image itself. The information includes such items as camera model, lens type, exposure settings and more. Some metadata can be edited, permitting the addition of, say, copyright information, keywords, and more. 2. metadata is the data that cannot normally be seen or heard. EDLs, timecode, and sync/blanking information are metadata. 3. additional data about a file or how it should be processed.
metal tape – magnetic tape coated with fine metallic particles, noted for its high recording density.
metering – Using a light meter (exposure meter) to measure the amount of a light falling on or reflected from a scene.
method acting – a style of acting formalized by Konstantin Stanislavsky which is believed by some to create more realistic performances. Essentially,the theory requires actors to draw experiences from their own personal lives that correlate to the character they are playing – an extremely demanding process emotionally. In some cases, “method” actors take the theory even further by arranging events in their private lives to resemble the lives of their characters.
metrocolor – Term used by MGM for color motion picture film developed in their own labs. Though branded as Metrocolor, it was actually Eastmancolor (Kodak) film.
mezzotint – For a halftone, a special screen that produces connected, dusty-looking dots.
mic – “mike”, short for “microphone.”
Micro DV – Proprietary digital camcorder format developed by Sony, MicroDV used a tiny tape and heavily compressed MPEG-2 video. Introduced in 2001, quality was noticeably inferior to MiniDV and other digital formats and the format never caught on and was discontinued in 2006.
micro-monitors – Term given to small, very high quality bookshelf speakers (usually of British origin) that are extremely accurate with very precise imaging, but usually with limited bass response due to the small size. The lack of bass is a trade-off for the highly accurate midrange and the precision imaging; and one can add a sub-woofer for the bass.
microphone – mike, mic. A device which converts sound into electrical impulses, usually for recording or amplification.
microprism collar – Focusing aid in a viewfinder screen composed of small glass or plastic multiple prisms. An image that is in focus appears sharp and clear. An out-of-focus image has a broken-up, shimmery appearance. It’s called a collar because it is ring-shaped and encircles the center area of the lens (which may have a split-image screen in it) like a collar.
microprocessor – An IC package incorporating logic, memory, control, computer and/or interface circuits.
midtone – 1. area of an image or a scene that displays average tonal values, midway between light and dark. 2. a midrange tone, or in the range of midrange tones, in audio. 3. the colors between black and white that occur on the straight-line portion of the characteristic curve.
mid-roll rewind – Feature on some cameras that permits the film to be rewound before the final frame is exposed.
middle gray – Average gray tone halfway between lightest and darkest. Found on a gray card.
millisecond (ms) – One one-thousandth (0.001) of a second.
miniature camera – Camera with a film format smaller than APS film.
minidisc – Optical-magnetic disc storage system developed by Sony. It is popular in Japan and with musicians who make their own recordings. Minidiscs are smaller than CDs and can record up to 80 minutes of audio.
miniDV – Digital camcorder format employing small cassettes to record 60 minutes of DV video at up to 520 lines of resolution. MiniDV image quality was the best of the standard definition consumer camcorder formats and was easily edited by computer using any number of editing programs. All miniDV camcorders use a FireWire connection to transfer information to a DVD recorder or computer. MiniDV cassettes can be used with HDV camcorders to record high-definition video. See DV, FireWire, HDV.
mini-majors – Studios which are large but not as large as the majors – Embassy, Gramercy, etc.
mini-monitors – See micro-monitors.
minimum density – D-min. constant-density area in the tone of the characteristic curve where less exposure on negative film or more exposure on reversal film will produce no reduction in density. Sometimes called base plus fog in black-and-white film.
mini-series – also miniseries. A television series with a set number of episodes which tell a complete story, usually filmed at the same time. Contrast with serial.
MIP mapping – ‘Multum In Parvum’ (Latin) means ‘many in one’. MIP mapping is technique to improve graphics performance by generating and storing multiple versions of the original texture image, each with different levels of detail. The graphics processor chooses a different mip-map based on how large the object is on the screen, so that low-detail textures can be used on objects that contain only a few pixels and high-detail textures can be used on larger objects where the user will actually see the difference. This technique saves memory bandwidth and enhances performance.
mirror lens – Lens with an internal mirror or mirrors that are usually curved, enabling comparatively-light lenses that are shorter than similarly-designated long focus lenses.
mirror lock – or “mirror Lock-up”. found in a camera with the ability to keep its mirror in the up position to prevent vibration from mirror movement in a long exposure. Locking up the mirror may also permit certain specialty lenses to be attached that would otherwise come into contact with the mirror, and in some digital cameras, keeps the mirror out of the way when cleaning the image sensor.
mise-en-scene – Literally translated as “what’s put into the scene”, this is the sum total of all factors affecting the artistic “look” or “feel” of a shot or scene. These can include shot selection, shot composition, production design and set decoration, as well as technical camera properties such as shutter speed, aperture, frame rate, and depth of field. Mise-en-scene is often contrasted with montage, where the artistic “look” of a scene is constructed through visual editing.
mix (dissolve, crossfade) – 1. a transition between two video signals in which one signal is faded down as the other is faded up. 2. in audio, combining two or more sound sources, with various channels controlled to achieve desired balance of single audio signal output, executed with an audio mixer. 3. Combining video signals from two or more video sources.
mix/effects (m/e) – A subsystem of a video production switcher where a composite of two or more images can be created. Each m/e typically includes crosspoint buses, keyer(s), and mixer.
mixer – 1. European term for production switcher. Complete term is ‘vision mixer’. A circuit which can mix two or more video signals. 2. An audio console for combining audio sources. 3. An electronic device for combining the outputs of several sound sources, with separate control over the volume or quality of each. 4. A device that adds two or more audio signals together.
mock-up – the rough visual of a publication or design.
mod – 1. modulation. 2. modification.
mode – 1. A particular functioning arrangement or condition of a camera or of software. 2. A manner of acting or doing; a method; a way. 3. A particular type or form of something. 4. A designated condition or status, as for performing a task or responding to a problem. 5. A particular functioning condition or arrangement; “switched from keyboard to voice mode”.
modeling light – A tungsten light built into a studio flash that remains on while the flash is in standby mode, permitting the photographer to assess highlight and shadow areas that will be created when subsequently exposing the film or the digital sensor in the brighter light of the flash. The modeling light also provides enough light to permit focusing.
modeler – A person who develops any three-dimensional object (either inanimate or animate) via specialized software in 3D computer graphics.
modem – A device (modulator/demodulator) for converting digital data into audio signals and back again that allows computer information to be sent over a telephone line. Transforms a typical two-level computer signal into a form suitable for transmission over a telephone line. Also does the reverse, transforms an encoded signal on a telephone line into a two-level computer signal. MODEM is an acronym for MOdulator/DEModulator. Primarily used for connecting to a dial-up internet service but can also be used for a direct connection between remote computers using telephone lines.
module – 1. A printed circuit board or assembly that contains electronic components and slides into a cell. 2. A hardware sound generator with no attached keyboard. A module can be either physically separate or integrated into a modular synthesizer, and is designed to make some particular contribution to the process of generating electronic sound.
modular synthesizer – a synthesis system comprised of self-contained modules. These modules are specialized electronic circuits useful to producing and shaping sound. Modules are manually linked together using patch cords. Modular systems allow for extreme flexibility and customizability of your system but requires extensive patience and programming knowledge.
modulation – The process of sending a control signal to a sound source so as to change the character of the sound.
modulation transfer function curve – indicates the ability of a film to record fine detail. The curve results when light transmission is measured with lines that are successively more closely spaced.
modulator – A circuit that modifies a carrier wave by amplitude, phase, or frequency.
mod wheel – A controller, normally mounted at the left end of the keyboard and played with the left hand, that is used for modulation. It is typically set up to add vibrato. See modulation, vibrato.
moiré (pronounced ‘mwa-ray’) – 1. a pattern of light and dark colors or bands created when two repetitive patterns that differ in orientation or frequency are superimposed in an image. 2. Irregular plaid-like patterns that occur when a bit-mapped image is reduced, enlarged, displayed, or printed at a resolution different from the resolution of the original.
monitor – 1. a device that directly displays a video picture from a camera, videotape recorder, or special-effects generator. 2. a verb meaning to watch or listen to a signal. 3. video display similar to a TV, but having superior visual quality and without a tuner. 4. an audio monitor is a speaker.
monitor calibration – Changing a monitor’s adjustment to accurately display colors.
mono – using just one color. Normally black, but can be any colour.
mono mode – One of the basic reception modes of MIDI devices. In mono mode, an instrument responds monophonically to all notes arriving over a specific MIDI channel.
monochrome – 1. painting or photo done in a range of tones and shades of a single color. 2. A monochrome (B and W) information display using just black alphanumeric characters on a grey or green background LCD. 3. Black and white video. 4. A video signal that represents the brightness values (luminance) in the picture, but not the color values (chrominance).
monolithic – A single slice of silicon substrate on which an integrated circuit is built. Elements or circuits formed within a single semiconductor substance.
monophonic – 1. capable of producing only one note at a time. A synthesizer that can only play one note or sound at a time is said to be monophonic. Some monophonic synthesizers use note priority, such as lowest note or highest note priority. For example, in the case of lowest note priority, when holding down one key, the next note will not be heard unless it is a lower note than the one being held.1. 2. also single-channel. Designating sound transmission or recording or reproduction over a single channel. 3. consisting of a single melodic line.
monopod – a single-leg camera support that functions like a tripod. Also called a “unipod.” See tripod.
montage – 1. combining elements from various sources, such as parts of different photographs, in a single photographic composition; a single pictorial composition made by juxtaposing or overlapping many pictures or designs; a single image formed from the assembling of several images. 2. the art or process of making such a composition; an image produced by this technique. 3. An artistic device for creating the artistic “look” or “feel” of a scene, through the use of visual editing. Often contrasted with mise-en-scene. 4. rapid sequence of video shots assembled to communicate a particular image or mood, or a rapid succession of different images or shots in a movie. Juxtaposition of seemingly unrelated material can conjure a new idea or message; or, of related materials can, but still to show a new idea, which emerges from the pattern of juxtaposed images. 5. In particular, a paste-up made by sticking together pieces of paper or photographs to form an artistic image; “he used his computer to make a collage of pictures superimposed on a map”. See also collage.
mosaic – 1. a digital video effect where the displayed video appears as though it is were composed of many small square or rectangular tiles, as though there were far fewer pixels in the complete image. 2. transducer formed by the light-sensitive surface on a television camera tube. 3. assemblage of aerial photographs forming a composite picture. 4. a plurality of non-overlapping images, arranged in some tessellation. A photo-mosaic is a picture made up of various other pictures (pioneered by Joseph Francis), in which each “pixel” is another picture, when examined closely. This form has been adopted in many modern media and digital image searches. 5. tile mosaic is a digital image made up of individual tiles, arranged in a non-overlapping fashion, e.g. to make a static image on a shower room or bathing pool floor, by breaking the image down into square pixels formed from ceramic tiles (a typical size is 1 in × 1 in (25 mm × 25 mm), as for example, on the floor of the University of Toronto pool, though sometimes larger tiles such as 2 in × 2 in (51 mm × 51 mm) are used). These digital images are coarse in resolution and often simply express text, such as the depth of the pool in various places, but some such digital images are used to show a sunset or other beach theme. Recent developments in digital image processing have led to the ability to design physical tile mosaics using computer aided design (CAD) software. The software typically takes as inputs a source bitmap and a palette of colored tiles. The software makes a best-fit match of the tiles to the source image. See DVE.
motherboard – a circuit board that accommodates plug-in cards or daughterboards and makes interconnections between them. May also provide cable input/output connections.
motion artifacts – 1. Artifacts in a video image created by moving objects. Motion artifacts are caused by poor video processing or the inability of a display device to properly render the moving object. 2. The visual interference patterns between a shot’s frame rate and a filmed object’s periodic motion or change. If a shot is filmed with a frame rate R, any images of periodic events of a frequency greater than R/2 (the “Nyquist Limit”) will be misrepresented on film. A commonly-occuring example of this artifact is the illusion of spoked wheels appearing to turn in the wrong direction or at the wrong rate. Incorrect frame rates and synchronization can also cause strobing during shots of projected movies or of television screens. See 120 Hz, motion blur. See also strobing, Nyquist limit, artifact, judder.
motion blur – 1. blurring of fast-moving objects caused by the physical properties the LCD panels in an LCD TV. The 120 Hz scan rate feature was developed to combat motion blur. See 120 Hz. 2. Shots of objects that quickly move in the camera’s frame, and/or shots with a slow shutter speed are likely to produce a “smearing” effect, since the object is in a range of positions during a single exposure.
motion capture – an animation technique in which the actions of an animated object are derived automatically from the motion of a real-world actor or object. External devices can be used to capture movement data from
various live sources. This data is then transmitted to the computer, where 3d simulation software displays it in real-time applied to a virtual actor. Or, 3D animation software records it in real-time and creates function curves from it. The capture devices are usually divided to two categories according to how they sense the movement: electro-magnetic, where the sensor continuously scans its position and orientation in relation to the static field transmitter; and photometric systems, where 1-3 cameras scan the movement of reflective or fluorescent pads. 2. a 3D signal can be created on a system with three cameras. Motion capture is most often used to sample movement of human body, such as dance. The sensors are attached to the body near the joints, and connect to channels, links from data capture devices to entities in computer 3D software. A typical entity is a joint of a skeleton, receiving information through six channels (position and orientation in xyz) from one sensor pad. Note that, it is known that 7 channels (“dimensions”) are needed to exactly and uniquely specify any human body movements, especially dancing. See also rotoscoping.
motion control – a camera setup which records the motion of a camera during a shot so that visual effects can be easily synchronized with the photographed scene. Motion control is similar to motion capture, except that motion control is a two way system – data can be output from computer software to hardware devices. Often used by special effects houses to match live and software camera motions to get perfect line-up. Zoom may be transmitted through one channel, pan through another, etc. Motion control requires special hardware to carry the tasks given by the computer. For example, a motorized camera head, a ‘memory head’, uses little servo motors to adjust zoom, pan, etc. according to the stream of commands coming from the animation or simulation software. Motion control applied to mechanical skeletons or other supportive structures of puppets or miniature models is called ‘go motion’. At the joints of the skeleton there are steppers, tiny servo motors running with little fast steps rather than in continuous fashion. Computer feeds step-by-step animation data to the servos in real-time, while the film camera records the movements. Often used in conjunction with the motion controlled camera. Computers are not obligatory in go-motion; the mechanical skeletons can be driven by hand using special controller devices. Go-motion methods are used by special effects houses. Stop motion is the older brother of go-motion. Mechanical structures, puppets or miniature models are animated and filmed by hand, frame by frame. Requires extreme skill, and even then the output easily looks jerky. Jerkiness is further emphasized by the fact that, because of the frame by frame nature, stop motion cannot produce motion blur.
motion picture – movie, film, flick, picture.
motion tracking – matching computer animation to live action on the frame by frame basis. Often used to line-up software camera action to the live camera. Laborious and time consuming method because almost every frame has to be tweaked and keyframed separately on the computer. Used as a last effort if there is no motion control system available. used by special effects facilities.
motor drive – camera accessory (either built in or attached as a separate unit to some cameras) that automatically advances the film when an image has been taken and continues to recock and fire the shutter continuously, taking a rapid sequence of exposures at a predetermined rate of frames per second. A motor drive usually also rewinds the film when the roll has been completely-exposed.
motor winder – camera motor that automatically advances the film when an image has been taken, and usually also rewinds the film when the roll has been completely-exposed.
mount – frame or backing used to support and protect prints and transparencies. A transparency is called a “slide” once it is in a mount.
mounting board – a heavy board used for mounting artwork.
movematch – also matchmove, matchmoving, camera tracking. The use of computer programs to combine and synthesize real footage with CGI effects. The person that makes the integration possible between CG with live action footage is called “Matchmove Artist”, “Matchmover”, “Integration Artist” or “Camera Tracking Artist”.
movie – In the context of podcasting, a movie is a digital video. The words movie and video are almost interchangeable, they mean basically the same thing, strangely enough. See also video for more info.
moving coil – Phono cartidge that uses a coil generator attached to the cantilever. The lightweight moving coil cartridges are the top choice of audiophiles for their detailed, precise sound. Voltage output is lower than moving magnet or moving iron designs, so a special high-gain phono preamplifier may be needed.
moving magnet – Phono cartidge that uses a magnet generator attached to the cantilever.
multichannel analog inputs – Inputs on a stereo or receiver that supports 5 or more channels, configured to a single input selection (usually “multichannel In”.) Multichannel analog inputs are meant to be used with surround-sound disc players containing internal surround-sound decoders and multichannel audio outputs. Examples of such players are Blu-ray players, DVD and DVD-Audio players, HD DVD players, and Super Audio CD players. Most multichannel input channels are for five channels: left front, center, right front, surround left, surround right, and subwoofer. Multichannel analog inputs allow a receiver to be used with surround-sound formats introduced after the receiver. For example, an older receiver may not support Dolby TrueHD decoding, but has multichannel analog inputs. A Blu-ray player that supports Dolby TrueHD and has multichannel analog outputs can be connected to the multichannel analog inputs to provide full Dolby TrueHD sound quality. See multichannel analog outputs.
multichannel analog outputs – analog audio outputs on disc players equipped with internal surround-sound decoders. Examples of such possible players are Blu-ray players, DVD and DVD-Audio players, HD DVD players, and Super Audio CD players. Most multichannel outputs are five channel. Left front, center, right front, surround left, surround right, and subwoofer. See multichannel analog inputs.
multi-coating – multiple coatings applied to optical lens surfaces to increase light transmission and contrast, reduce flare and improve color rendition. Some companies have branded their multi-coat processes, such as SMC (Pentax) and T* (Zeiss.)
multi mode – A MIDI reception mode in which a multi-timbral module responds to MIDI input on two or more channels and maintains musical independence between the channels, typically playing a different patch on each channel.
multi-mode effect – an effect that results from the difference in time required for different light signals to traverse the length of a multi-mode optical fiber.
multi-mode fiber – An optical fiber with a relatively large core diameter anywhere in between 25 and 200 microns in which more than one mode of light propagation takes place.
multiple exposure – more than one exposure on the same frame, called a “double-exposure” when there are two exposures on a single frame.
multiple flash – simultaneous use of more than one flash unit.
multi-focus or multi-spot focus – a camera’s ability to focus on objects in different areas (spots) within an image frame.
multiplex – In switchers, the duplication of wipe patterns. Instead of one pattern, multiple patterns all of the same shape appear on screen. Signal mixing that takes place within a multiplier circuit.
multiplexer – device for mixing television signals to a single video recorder.
multiplicity photography – similar to multiple exposure photography. An individual subject (typically a person or a pet) is photographed a number of times in different poses; then, the subject’s images are copied using the clone tool in a digital editing program and pasted into a single image so that the subject appears more than once in the same scene.
multi-sample – The distribution of several related samples at different pitches across the keyboard. Multi-sampling can provide greater realism in sample playback (wavetable) synthesis, since the individual samples don’t have to be transposed over a great distance.
multi-segment meter – see “matrix meter” above.
multi-timbral – 1. capable of making more than one tone color (timbre) at the same time. 2. a synthesizing instrument that can play two or more timbres (also called sounds or patches) at the same time. A typical multi-timbral tone generator can play, for example, the winds, guitar, and drum parts all at once. This allows for ensembles of instruments to be played from within one synth. Most digital synths and many analog string and ensemble synths are multi-timbral.
Music Arranger – Someone who adapts a musical composition for voices, instruments, or performance styles other than those for which the music was originally written.
Music Editor – A person who, in collaboration with the music supervisor and composer, performs editing on the score, live vocals, songs and source music of a movie.
music preparation – person who prepares printed parts from the composer’s score for the musicians to play from at the score recording sessions.
Music Supervisor – Musical Director, Musical Direction, Music Director, Music Direction. A person who coordinates the work of the composer, the editor, and sound mixers. Alternately, a person who researches,obtains rights to, and supplies songs for a production.
musical – A movie whose dramatic story structure includes unrealistic episodes of musical performance and dancing.