Last year, Wooden Camera announced the Zip Box, a lightweight mattebox-style solution that clips to the front of your lens for 4X4 and 4X5.65 filters. They have now extended their lineup to include 138mm round filters, a dual filter version and clip-on flags.

The new 138mm Round Zip Box comes in 4 sizes- 110-115mm, 100-105mm, 90-95mm and 80-85mm. These measurements relate to the front diameter of your lens, the varying size is reserved for cine lenses. If you’re a stills lens shooter then you’ll want the smallest 80-85mm Zip Box, and step all your lenses up to the same front diameter with adaptor rings.

The new 138mm round filters that the Zip Box lightweight mattebox now supports is great news for compact anamorphic shooters seeking a good solution for conventional diopters.

 

 

Another newcomer to the line-up is the Zip Box Double, which, as its name implies, will hold two filters. The Zip Box Double are available for 4X4 and 4×5.65 filters, and again each respective Zip Box is available in 4 diameter sizes.

The final new announcement is the Zip Box Flag Set. This shows Wooden Camera’s clear intentions of having the Zip Box compete in the lightweight mattebox market.

The flag set comes as a set of 3, one top and two sides. They work with all three types of Zip Box – 4X4, 4X5.65 and 138mm round. They are tool-less and made of lightweight plastic.

Here are the dimensions of the flags:

Side Flag:
Weight: 18g (0.04 lbs.)
Dimensions: 203.2 x 101.6 x 2.54 mm (8 x 4 x 0.1 in)

Top Flag:
Weight: 24g (0.05 lbs.)
Dimensions: 254 x 114.3 x 2.54 mm (10 x 4.5 x 0.1 in)

All:
Weight: 70g (0.155 lbs.)
Dimensions: 25.4 x 177.8 x 330.2 mm (1 x 7 x 13 in)

Zip Box Lightweight Mattebox

The Zip Box concept is a clever design that enables you to use filters otherwise reserved for more conventional and usually bulky mattebox solutions, adding very little weight and footprint to your rig. Wooden Camera initially announced the 4X4 and 4X5.65 Zip Box back in September, and these new additions to their line-up are certainly a welcome expansion.

Why Would I Want A Wooden Camera Zip Box?

There are two main audiences the Zip Box will target. The first is seasoned professionals that seek a very lightweight mattebox solution for their filtration. They have a large filter collection in industry-standard sizing and are looking for something that will work with a weight-conscious rig, such as for a gimbal setup or drone camera.

The second is the filmmaker advancing from either screw-on style filters such as fader NDs or ND sets for photography, or a camera that doesn’t have in-built ND, or both. These are filmmakers that perhaps aren’t looking for the other advantages of a true mattebox system and would benefit from keeping their rig small.

The Zip Box will allow filmmakers like this to advance to professional filtration, without the added bulk of a full mattebox. It’s a smart move: if you buy the right filters in these sizes you really won’t outgrow them.

Pricing varies according to what package you go for. The nice thing with these is that you can buy them in sets to ensure you filters work on every type of lens. I’ve provided a few buy links below.

What’s your favourite lightweight mattebox solution? Let us know in the comments below!

The post Wooden Camera Zip Box Line Extended – Ultra Lightweight Mattebox appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DTim Fok

Last year, Wooden Camera announced the Zip Box, a lightweight mattebox-style solution that clips to the front of your lens for 4X4 and 4X5.65 filters. They have now extended their lineup to include 138mm round filters, a dual filter version and clip-on flags.

The new 138mm Round Zip Box comes in 4 sizes- 110-115mm, 100-105mm, 90-95mm and 80-85mm. These measurements relate to the front diameter of your lens, the varying size is reserved for cine lenses. If you’re a stills lens shooter then you’ll want the smallest 80-85mm Zip Box, and step all your lenses up to the same front diameter with adaptor rings.

The new 138mm round filters that the Zip Box lightweight mattebox now supports is great news for compact anamorphic shooters seeking a good solution for conventional diopters.

 

 

Another newcomer to the line-up is the Zip Box Double, which, as its name implies, will hold two filters. The Zip Box Double are available for 4X4 and 4×5.65 filters, and again each respective Zip Box is available in 4 diameter sizes.

The final new announcement is the Zip Box Flag Set. This shows Wooden Camera’s clear intentions of having the Zip Box compete in the lightweight mattebox market.

The flag set comes as a set of 3, one top and two sides. They work with all three types of Zip Box – 4X4, 4X5.65 and 138mm round. They are tool-less and made of lightweight plastic.

Here are the dimensions of the flags:

Side Flag:
Weight: 18g (0.04 lbs.)
Dimensions: 203.2 x 101.6 x 2.54 mm (8 x 4 x 0.1 in)

Top Flag:
Weight: 24g (0.05 lbs.)
Dimensions: 254 x 114.3 x 2.54 mm (10 x 4.5 x 0.1 in)

All:
Weight: 70g (0.155 lbs.)
Dimensions: 25.4 x 177.8 x 330.2 mm (1 x 7 x 13 in)

Zip Box Lightweight Mattebox

The Zip Box concept is a clever design that enables you to use filters otherwise reserved for more conventional and usually bulky mattebox solutions, adding very little weight and footprint to your rig. Wooden Camera initially announced the 4X4 and 4X5.65 Zip Box back in September, and these new additions to their line-up are certainly a welcome expansion.

Why Would I Want A Wooden Camera Zip Box?

There are two main audiences the Zip Box will target. The first is seasoned professionals that seek a very lightweight mattebox solution for their filtration. They have a large filter collection in industry-standard sizing and are looking for something that will work with a weight-conscious rig, such as for a gimbal setup or drone camera.

The second is the filmmaker advancing from either screw-on style filters such as fader NDs or ND sets for photography, or a camera that doesn’t have in-built ND, or both. These are filmmakers that perhaps aren’t looking for the other advantages of a true mattebox system and would benefit from keeping their rig small.

The Zip Box will allow filmmakers like this to advance to professional filtration, without the added bulk of a full mattebox. It’s a smart move: if you buy the right filters in these sizes you really won’t outgrow them.

Pricing varies according to what package you go for. The nice thing with these is that you can buy them in sets to ensure you filters work on every type of lens. I’ve provided a few buy links below.

What’s your favourite lightweight mattebox solution? Let us know in the comments below!

The post Wooden Camera Zip Box Line Extended – Ultra Lightweight Mattebox appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DTim Fok

Good on-camera monitors are hard to find, are usually expensive, but are very, very necessary for shooting properly exposed, in-focus images. The HDMI Cinemartin Loyal LT 7″ FHD or UHD monitor has many of the features you may need with a great price-tag of only $99. All the details including availability below: 

Cinemartin Loyal LT

The Cinemartin Loyal LT has false color, histogram, peaking, waveform, zoom and more, while being priced at an impressive $99. Lets get this one fact out of the way quickly: No, this is not an SDI monitor (you can’t have everything!). This HDMI-only on-camera monitor is available in FHD (LT) or UHD (S4K) resolution versions for the same price, but the FHD version is brighter (600nits), when compared with 550 nits for the UHD version.

 

Along with a headphone jack, the 0.75 LBS Loyal LT has two 1/4″-20 mounting points on the top and bottom. It should be noted that for $99 you are getting a bare bones package here, and if you want a sunshade, Sony battery plate, HDMI cable and cold shoe arm, you’ll be shelling out another $50.00.

You can the Cinemartin Royal LT or LT 24K directly from their website HERE.

Cinemartin Loyal LT – Tech Specs: 

  • Size: 7″ inch
  • Weight: .75 LBS. without battery plate.
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080 (LT Version) or 2160p (LT 24K Version) 
  • 1200:1 Contrast Ratio
  • Input: HDMI 
  • Power: Input of 12V with 14W consumption 
  • Tools:  False color, Histogram, Peaking, RGB Parade, Waveform, Zoom, Audio Levels 

Availability: Shipping now
Monitor price: $99.00

Perhaps understandably so, major camera manufacturers have been devoted to the recorded image quality, and haven’t exactly provided us great built-in camera monitors. This has created a gap that has been easily filled by companies such as Zacuto, SmallHD and Marshall. These 3rd party monitors are generally fantastic, feature-rich and provide many tools filmmakers regard as a necessity such as histogram, peaking, waveform etc. They are usually on the expensive side, but the Cinemartin Loyal LT seems to be the exception.

Personally, however, I would for more reviews of this monitor before jumping to buy. At a price of $99, there are certainly a few corners cut on the manufacturing side, but cheap doesn’t always mean bad and the feature list certainly makes this a monitor worth looking at.

Have you tried the products from Cinemartin yet? Let us know in the comments below!

 

The post Cinemartin Loyal LT – A Full HD Field Monitor for Just $99 appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DGraham Sheldon

 

Apple Photos is the successor to both the popular iPhoto and the powerful Aperture. It inherits the best of both, and yet it is something more. 

But to get the most out of it, you'll need to understand how it works and learn a few tricks for managing your images effectively. 

So in this video tutorial from my course, Apple Photos for Photographers, you'll learn how to use albums, which are a great tool for grouping images. You'll learn to create and add images to an album, and then, we'll use Smart Albums as a "rules-based search" to find images based on a list of criteria.

Working with albums in Apple Photos

Watch the Full Course

Why not try the full course, Apple Photos for Photographers, in which you'll learn how to unlock the surprisingly powerful workflow, data management, image processing, and sharing tools included in Apple's exciting Photos program. It's available to watch from start to finish if you sign up for a free trial with Envato Tuts+.

All credit is given to author Envato Tuts+ Photo & VideoAndrew Childress

4 years ago, the Canon C500 was announced as a top level Cinema Camera. What value does it have in today’s market? Here’s a few thing I’ve found out.

Our industry is moving so fast these days, that it seems every month there’s a new camera out. However, sometimes there is value in taking a step back and re-evaluating what’s already available out there.

The C500 was announced in late 2012, and back then Canon considered it as their top-of-the-tree Cinema solution. Its price has since then fallen so drastically, that it may have just found a new use. Once a flagship $20k cinema camera from Canon, it is only the industry around it that has changed since its release: the camera still provides 4K Raw/Half Raw up to 60/120 fps, 2K 12bit 4444, impressive dynamic range and color rendition. The difference? You can now find it new at a fraction of its original price, and buying one second hand is frankly a steal.

I’m not going to sit here and pretend I’m the first one to notice this little old gem hidden under the big, steaming pile of new cameras growing seemingly every month. Do a bit of research and you’ll find the plenty of forum topics where filmmakers romanticise owning their very own cinema camera that was used for that blockbuster film, by that top DOP.

I had my own reasons for my love affair with the Canon old boy. I bought a C500 with Odyssey 7Q+ recorder a couple of months ago to operate as a decent in-house body that doesn’t have protected investment when I need to get the likes of an Alexa Mini, Amira or RED EPIC in.

I thought I’d share a few thoughts for those considering a similar purchase. I won’t go into detail on aspects like image quality – this sort of thing has been covered many a time by people much more qualified than myself. These will be a more practical and hands-on set of observations.

I will give you a quick list of reasons as to why you SHOULD consider a C500, as the bulk of this article may otherwise seem like a list of reasons to NOT buy it. This is absolutely not the case! There are just quite a few considerations most blogs won’t tell you.

Canon C500 Highlights

  • Cost (2nd hand C500 and Odyssey 7Q+ was same price as FS7)
  • 4K Raw/Half Raw via output up to 60/120 fps
  • 2K 12bit 444 via output
  • Affordable internal media – Compact Flash
  • Easy and widely accepted post workflow (C log)
  • Built-in pro mod-cons (time code sync, multiple SDI outputs, genlock)

With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the aspects of this system that you’ll want to consider.

Without an External Recorder, the C500 is a C300 Mark I

Simply put, without an external recorder, you get nothing worth noting spec-wise in the C500 that you don’t already get in a C300 Mark I. The internal recordings are the same 50Mbps CBR (4:2:2) MPEG-2 MXF files that cap out at 1920X1080 30p. All the 2K and 4K benefits come via the output modes of the C500.

Limited Selection of Compatible External Recorders

At the time of its release, the C500 was Canon’s flagship cinema camera, and lots of third-party companies offered external support for both high resolution and frame rate recordings.

These recorders still exist: the AJA Ki-Pro QUAD, Codex-S onboard recorder or the Convergent Design Gemini 4:4:4, for example. These were all designed to target the C500 market at that time, and as a result they’re big, they’re heavy and they’re expensive.

If you’re looking to purchase a C500 in today’s market as a single-operator style camera system, you really only have one choice: the Convergent Design Odyssey 7Q+.
Superseding the Gemini 4:4:4, the Odyssey 7Q+ takes on the guise of a modern recorder – light and compact, and also doubles up as a monitoring aid.

The Atomos Shogun Inferno should, in theory, support the C500 over time. Currently, however, it only converts the raw signal at standard frame rates to Apple ProRes, with no high frame rate support or Dual 3G-SDI support, which you need for capturing Half Raw 100-120 fps or Raw 50/60 fps on the C500.

High Frame Rate Support in High Capacity Raw Format Only

The previous two points highlight why the C500 can only really be considered in today’s market with the addition of an Odyssey 7Q+. Here’s an aspect that is unique to this camera/recorder combo: there is no support for high frame rates (50-120 fps) in any resolution in a compressed format*.

The Odyssey 7Q+ has the ability to convert the Raw C500 signal to a variety of Apple ProRes formats. In fact, this is one of the system’s major strengths. But what it can’t do is do so with any high frame rate options, at least currently. Instead, we are left with a data-hungry .RMF (RAW media format). Just how hungry? 1TB for 23 minutes of 120p Half Raw or 60p Raw.

It’s funny that we complain when something is too compressed, then go ahead and complain when it’s not compressed enough. That said, filling 1TB in just 23 minutes means you’re left with some serious offloading time before you can shoot on the same cards again.

Add to that that there is no support for incremental frame rates. The C500 onboard menu boasts 1-120p in 2K, but the Odyssey 7Q+ doesn’t support any of this. It’s crying out for an update to enable high frame rate recording in 2K and 4K resolution to Apple ProRes.

*.RMF is still compressed, but not in the same league as the likes of Apple ProRes.

Fan Noise

Despite a firmware update in 2014 that enabled the fan of the C500 to turn off when recording starts, after 8 minutes or so of 4K recording, the fan will come back on. Is it loud enough to be heard by your sound recordist? If your location is a good and quiet one, then the answer is “yes, they will”. In fact, Shane Hurlbut wrote this camera off for any documentary or interview use, and apparently it was his use of the C500 on Need For Speed that led Canon to implement the firmware update in the first place. I, for one, was less hasty to dismiss the camera.

There are a few workarounds, some more graceful than others. You can replace the fans with better and quieter ones. There’s even a guy in the U.S that sells bolt-on upgraded fan units, but they come at a bit of a price.

I made a quick on/off solution with a cheeseplate using some desktop fans powered via D-Tap. Yep, it’s big but it’s cheap, and is great for throwing on quickly for interviews. Quiet interviews for me are 99% on the tripod, so this allows me to put the fans back in the case when I need to be more nimble and sound is not as critical.

Testing my solution I got over an hour and a half of no-fan 4K recording. The fans never actually kicked in, I just got bored and figured the test was conclusive enough.

Consider The True Size And Cost

My DIY fan solution rolls straight into my last point. Truly consider the size and cost of your C500 system.

In 2K and 4K modes, the camera eats batteries, i.e. you’ll get less than 1 hour on a BP-955. I’m well stocked on Canon BP batteries, but usually run off V-lock as well to give me longer stints, as well as to provide power for the Odyssey and fans. With all this rigged up, the camera gets pretty big, particularly considering how tall the camera is to start with.

Next is the cost. It is an affordable system compared to other camera packages: cheaper than the C300 Mark II, and cheaper second hand than an FS7 with extension unit and respective card media. Still, there are a lot of accessories you need in order to get it up to scratch.

A top handle, battery solutions (lots of BPs, V-lock plate or both), the Odyssey 7Q+, the extra SSDs to handle the 4K raw workflow, fast on-site hard drives for offloading rushes… It’s a list that, like with any camera system, can rack up pretty quick.

Going back to the original question, is the C500 still worth? I think there’s definitely a place for it in the market still, more than some will think. But it relies so heavily on a good external recorder, and it seems that Convergent Design has moved on from continued support; I ambitiously hope they find value in the old system, revising the feature list & offering 2K high frame rate and 4K high frame rate capture to Apple ProRes.

I personally feel it has the edge on the Sony FS7 in terms of color rendition, SDI output options, and 2K 12bit mode. It’s also a much faster, reliable and available system than some of the Blackmagic options, and cheaper than the C300 Mark II, although you do miss out on Dual Pixel AF, dynamic range and better internal recoding options.

It would be interesting to hear what filmmakers in general think of the Canon C500, how do you feel it holds in the context of today’s market? Would you get one if the price was right?

The post Canon C500 – Still Worth It? 5 Things I’ve Learnt appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DTim Fok

4 years ago, the Canon C500 was announced as a top level Cinema Camera. What value does it have in today’s market? Here’s a few thing I’ve found out.

Our industry is moving so fast these days, that it seems every month there’s a new camera out. However, sometimes there is value in taking a step back and re-evaluating what’s already available out there.

The C500 was announced in late 2012, and back then Canon considered it as their top-of-the-tree Cinema solution. Its price has since then fallen so drastically, that it may have just found a new use. Once a flagship $20k cinema camera from Canon, it is only the industry around it that has changed since its release: the camera still provides 4K Raw/Half Raw up to 60/120 fps, 2K 12bit 4444, impressive dynamic range and color rendition. The difference? You can now find it new at a fraction of its original price, and buying one second hand is frankly a steal.

I’m not going to sit here and pretend I’m the first one to notice this little old gem hidden under the big, steaming pile of new cameras growing seemingly every month. Do a bit of research and you’ll find the plenty of forum topics where filmmakers romanticise owning their very own cinema camera that was used for that blockbuster film, by that top DOP.

I had my own reasons for my love affair with the Canon old boy. I bought a C500 with Odyssey 7Q+ recorder a couple of months ago to operate as a decent in-house body that doesn’t have protected investment when I need to get the likes of an Alexa Mini, Amira or RED EPIC in.

I thought I’d share a few thoughts for those considering a similar purchase. I won’t go into detail on aspects like image quality – this sort of thing has been covered many a time by people much more qualified than myself. These will be a more practical and hands-on set of observations.

I will give you a quick list of reasons as to why you SHOULD consider a C500, as the bulk of this article may otherwise seem like a list of reasons to NOT buy it. This is absolutely not the case! There are just quite a few considerations most blogs won’t tell you.

Canon C500 Highlights

  • Cost (2nd hand C500 and Odyssey 7Q+ was same price as FS7)
  • 4K Raw/Half Raw via output up to 60/120 fps
  • 2K 12bit 444 via output
  • Affordable internal media – Compact Flash
  • Easy and widely accepted post workflow (C log)
  • Built-in pro mod-cons (time code sync, multiple SDI outputs, genlock)

With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the aspects of this system that you’ll want to consider.

Without an External Recorder, the C500 is a C300 Mark I

Simply put, without an external recorder, you get nothing worth noting spec-wise in the C500 that you don’t already get in a C300 Mark I. The internal recordings are the same 50Mbps CBR (4:2:2) MPEG-2 MXF files that cap out at 1920X1080 30p. All the 2K and 4K benefits come via the output modes of the C500.

Limited Selection of Compatible External Recorders

At the time of its release, the C500 was Canon’s flagship cinema camera, and lots of third-party companies offered external support for both high resolution and frame rate recordings.

These recorders still exist: the AJA Ki-Pro QUAD, Codex-S onboard recorder or the Convergent Design Gemini 4:4:4, for example. These were all designed to target the C500 market at that time, and as a result they’re big, they’re heavy and they’re expensive.

If you’re looking to purchase a C500 in today’s market as a single-operator style camera system, you really only have one choice: the Convergent Design Odyssey 7Q+.
Superseding the Gemini 4:4:4, the Odyssey 7Q+ takes on the guise of a modern recorder – light and compact, and also doubles up as a monitoring aid.

The Atomos Shogun Inferno should, in theory, support the C500 over time. Currently, however, it only converts the raw signal at standard frame rates to Apple ProRes, with no high frame rate support or Dual 3G-SDI support, which you need for capturing Half Raw 100-120 fps or Raw 50/60 fps on the C500.

High Frame Rate Support in High Capacity Raw Format Only

The previous two points highlight why the C500 can only really be considered in today’s market with the addition of an Odyssey 7Q+. Here’s an aspect that is unique to this camera/recorder combo: there is no support for high frame rates (50-120 fps) in any resolution in a compressed format*.

The Odyssey 7Q+ has the ability to convert the Raw C500 signal to a variety of Apple ProRes formats. In fact, this is one of the system’s major strengths. But what it can’t do is do so with any high frame rate options, at least currently. Instead, we are left with a data-hungry .RMF (RAW media format). Just how hungry? 1TB for 23 minutes of 120p Half Raw or 60p Raw.

It’s funny that we complain when something is too compressed, then go ahead and complain when it’s not compressed enough. That said, filling 1TB in just 23 minutes means you’re left with some serious offloading time before you can shoot on the same cards again.

Add to that that there is no support for incremental frame rates. The C500 onboard menu boasts 1-120p in 2K, but the Odyssey 7Q+ doesn’t support any of this. It’s crying out for an update to enable high frame rate recording in 2K and 4K resolution to Apple ProRes.

*.RMF is still compressed, but not in the same league as the likes of Apple ProRes.

Fan Noise

Despite a firmware update in 2014 that enabled the fan of the C500 to turn off when recording starts, after 8 minutes or so of 4K recording, the fan will come back on. Is it loud enough to be heard by your sound recordist? If your location is a good and quiet one, then the answer is “yes, they will”. In fact, Shane Hurlbut wrote this camera off for any documentary or interview use, and apparently it was his use of the C500 on Need For Speed that led Canon to implement the firmware update in the first place. I, for one, was less hasty to dismiss the camera.

There are a few workarounds, some more graceful than others. You can replace the fans with better and quieter ones. There’s even a guy in the U.S that sells bolt-on upgraded fan units, but they come at a bit of a price.

I made a quick on/off solution with a cheeseplate using some desktop fans powered via D-Tap. Yep, it’s big but it’s cheap, and is great for throwing on quickly for interviews. Quiet interviews for me are 99% on the tripod, so this allows me to put the fans back in the case when I need to be more nimble and sound is not as critical.

Testing my solution I got over an hour and a half of no-fan 4K recording. The fans never actually kicked in, I just got bored and figured the test was conclusive enough.

Consider The True Size And Cost

My DIY fan solution rolls straight into my last point. Truly consider the size and cost of your C500 system.

In 2K and 4K modes, the camera eats batteries, i.e. you’ll get less than 1 hour on a BP-955. I’m well stocked on Canon BP batteries, but usually run off V-lock as well to give me longer stints, as well as to provide power for the Odyssey and fans. With all this rigged up, the camera gets pretty big, particularly considering how tall the camera is to start with.

Next is the cost. It is an affordable system compared to other camera packages: cheaper than the C300 Mark II, and cheaper second hand than an FS7 with extension unit and respective card media. Still, there are a lot of accessories you need in order to get it up to scratch.

A top handle, battery solutions (lots of BPs, V-lock plate or both), the Odyssey 7Q+, the extra SSDs to handle the 4K raw workflow, fast on-site hard drives for offloading rushes… It’s a list that, like with any camera system, can rack up pretty quick.

Going back to the original question, is the C500 still worth? I think there’s definitely a place for it in the market still, more than some will think. But it relies so heavily on a good external recorder, and it seems that Convergent Design has moved on from continued support; I ambitiously hope they find value in the old system, revising the feature list & offering 2K high frame rate and 4K high frame rate capture to Apple ProRes.

I personally feel it has the edge on the Sony FS7 in terms of color rendition, SDI output options, and 2K 12bit mode. It’s also a much faster, reliable and available system than some of the Blackmagic options, and cheaper than the C300 Mark II, although you do miss out on Dual Pixel AF, dynamic range and better internal recoding options.

It would be interesting to hear what filmmakers in general think of the Canon C500, how do you feel it holds in the context of today’s market? Would you get one if the price was right?

The post Canon C500 – Still Worth It? 5 Things I’ve Learnt appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DTim Fok

In this talent feature we’re looking at the work of filmmaker Raphael Rogers, who shot an inspiring short film about melting glaciers in Alaska and gives us some useful tips on filming in cold environments. The choice of story elements, the human perspective, filming angles and choice of music caught our attention. (Intro by Sebastian Wöber)

A couple of months and on a whim.. we decided to go and experience Alaska. Being the people that we are we always bring our camera gear on trips. You never know what you’ll find in the wild lands of an alien place. Plane tickets this time of year were incredibly cheap, something like $300 roundtrip from LA to Anchorage. That was for a reason. Almost nothing was open as far as tourist expeditions go. And… it was cold.

We are filmmakers that live in LA. We do all kinds of productions, from sci-fi shorts to music videos and commercials.
Check out Aura’s other work here: www.weareaura.net

Filming in cold environments like Alaska - Shooting with a Sony a7S II on a glacier

Filming in Cold Environments – Preparation

Preparing ourselves meant many layers of thermals and enough snacks that we could hike a glacier for hours and trudge through mud, water, snow and ice. Also batteries… lots and lots of batteries. You should know that most batteries loose capacity in the cold, so you should also make sure you store them in a way to keep them warm.

As a general rule, if your body can take it, most of the time your camera can take it. I’ll go into the details of the gear below and how we made it work, but I learned that if you’re smart about how you use your gear and where you place it, it will work perfectly.

Shooting in cold Alaska, filming the glacier

The Gear & the Challenges

We shot mainly with a Sony A7S II as well as a Sony a6300 on a Beholder DS1 Stabilizer. For drone work we shot with a DJI Phantom 4.

Pro tip: We also own the ikan EC1 Beholder – soooooo much better.

The A7S and the a6300 never went down in the cold. No issues with batteries or anything of the like. There were a few times with the Phantom when it wouldn’t launch and gave me warnings that the battery was too cold. To fix this I would hold the battery up to the car heater and then launch it after a minute or so. Another tip would be to tuck the batteries inside your coat next to your skin while hiking.

Pro tip: For drones, if you’re serious about filming in cold environments, you can get a drone battery heater for the DJI Phantom 3 series. There’s also a DJI inspire 1 battery heater and the new DJI Inspire 2 has self-heating batteries out of the box. Unfortunately there’s no heater for the Phantom 4.

Pro tip 2: Do not heat batteries beyond 104°F (40°C) as they might break.

The most challenging part of filming in Alaska at this time of year turned out to be the rain rather than the cold. My Phantom handled it fine (not recommended!) but we were all soaked by the time it returned home. And I was constantly wiping the lens!

Shooting with a drone in cold environments - Phantom 4 aerial shot

What we learned

Honestly, I would take the ikan EC1 Beholder gimbal to get more stabilized shots. I would also rent real crampons when hiking on the glaciers! So slippery. A lot of this was run and gun so being prepared for it was a guessing game. I think we guessed fairly well even though we had to deal with the weather.

Post-production was all done in Adobe Premiere, including coloring in Lumetri! I’m a fan of the ease of having it all in one place. Our rock star editor killed it. It was definitely a process figuring out how to handle the issue of climate change without twisting the story in any way. We just wanted to tell a real first person story and I think we accomplished that.

The genesis of this film happened on a random road in Seward Alaska and was quite a piece of luck or fate or whatever you want to call it. We didn’t know Rick before we went but it turns out it’s pretty easy to ask someone to tell their story. Most people want to. I hope you enjoy the piece!

Do you have experience and more tips on filming in cold environments. Let us know in the comments.

The post Filming in Cold Environments – The Challenges of Shooting in Alasaka appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DRaphael Rogers

In this talent feature we’re looking at the work of filmmaker Raphael Rogers, who shot an inspiring short film about melting glaciers in Alaska and gives us some useful tips on filming in cold environments. The choice of story elements, the human perspective, filming angles and choice of music caught our attention. (Intro by Sebastian Wöber)

A couple of months and on a whim.. we decided to go and experience Alaska. Being the people that we are we always bring our camera gear on trips. You never know what you’ll find in the wild lands of an alien place. Plane tickets this time of year were incredibly cheap, something like $300 roundtrip from LA to Anchorage. That was for a reason. Almost nothing was open as far as tourist expeditions go. And… it was cold.

We are filmmakers that live in LA. We do all kinds of productions, from sci-fi shorts to music videos and commercials.
Check out Aura’s other work here: www.weareaura.net

Filming in cold environments like Alaska - Shooting with a Sony a7S II on a glacier

Filming in Cold Environments – Preparation

Preparing ourselves meant many layers of thermals and enough snacks that we could hike a glacier for hours and trudge through mud, water, snow and ice. Also batteries… lots and lots of batteries. You should know that most batteries loose capacity in the cold, so you should also make sure you store them in a way to keep them warm.

As a general rule, if your body can take it, most of the time your camera can take it. I’ll go into the details of the gear below and how we made it work, but I learned that if you’re smart about how you use your gear and where you place it, it will work perfectly.

Shooting in cold Alaska, filming the glacier

The Gear & the Challenges

We shot mainly with a Sony A7S II as well as a Sony a6300 on a Beholder DS1 Stabilizer. For drone work we shot with a DJI Phantom 4.

Pro tip: We also own the ikan EC1 Beholder – soooooo much better.

The A7S and the a6300 never went down in the cold. No issues with batteries or anything of the like. There were a few times with the Phantom when it wouldn’t launch and gave me warnings that the battery was too cold. To fix this I would hold the battery up to the car heater and then launch it after a minute or so. Another tip would be to tuck the batteries inside your coat next to your skin while hiking.

Pro tip: For drones, if you’re serious about filming in cold environments, you can get a drone battery heater for the DJI Phantom 3 series. There’s also a DJI inspire 1 battery heater and the new DJI Inspire 2 has self-heating batteries out of the box. Unfortunately there’s no heater for the Phantom 4.

Pro tip 2: Do not heat batteries beyond 104°F (40°C) as they might break.

The most challenging part of filming in Alaska at this time of year turned out to be the rain rather than the cold. My Phantom handled it fine (not recommended!) but we were all soaked by the time it returned home. And I was constantly wiping the lens!

Shooting with a drone in cold environments - Phantom 4 aerial shot

What we learned

Honestly, I would take the ikan EC1 Beholder gimbal to get more stabilized shots. I would also rent real crampons when hiking on the glaciers! So slippery. A lot of this was run and gun so being prepared for it was a guessing game. I think we guessed fairly well even though we had to deal with the weather.

Post-production was all done in Adobe Premiere, including coloring in Lumetri! I’m a fan of the ease of having it all in one place. Our rock star editor killed it. It was definitely a process figuring out how to handle the issue of climate change without twisting the story in any way. We just wanted to tell a real first person story and I think we accomplished that.

The genesis of this film happened on a random road in Seward Alaska and was quite a piece of luck or fate or whatever you want to call it. We didn’t know Rick before we went but it turns out it’s pretty easy to ask someone to tell their story. Most people want to. I hope you enjoy the piece!

Do you have experience and more tips on filming in cold environments. Let us know in the comments.

The post Filming in Cold Environments – The Challenges of Shooting in Alasaka appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DRaphael Rogers

 

For many photographers, printing photographs is a mysterious process. In this video tutorial from my course, From Pixel-Perfect to Print Ready in Photoshop, we'll start to demystify it for you. You'll learn about different color spaces and how they come into play with printing, as well as some specific printing scenarios like using a desktop printer, sending your images out to be printed, or using offset printing.

Inkjet printer

Watch the Full Course

The full course, From Pixel-Perfect to Print Ready in Photoshop, will take you through every aspect of getting your work ready for print, from calibration and color profiles through to image resolution and print settings. You'll learn how to solve common printing problems and the adjustments you need to make to get the best from a variety of print processes.

All credit is given to author Envato Tuts+ Photo & VideoChamira Young

As mentioned in my previous blog post, when I decided to invest into an electronic GoPro gimbal I was torn between the Removu S1 and the GoPro Karma Grip to stabilize my new Hero 5 Black. They both sport similar features, but which of the two will prove to be the best GoPro gimbal?

The features of the Removu S1 are quite impressive, as Nino pointed out in his blog post. Being able to use it in wet conditions is a real plus, not to mention other neat features like the remote controller or exchangeable batteries.

The GoPro Karma and the Removu S1 gimbals in their respective cases, side-by-side.

As you may remember, I ended up pulling the trigger on the GoPro Karma Grip mainly because of its neat integration with the GoPro Hero 4, 5 and Session action cams. However, funnily enough, when I mentioned to Nino that I was planning to write about the Karma Grip, he asked if I could include the Removu S1 in the review, as he had one lying around at cinema5D HQ in Vienna. So I took both GoPro gimbals for a head to head comparison, the result of which you can see in the video above. Again, the test featured my dog as a main character, a role he seems to be getting more and more used to.


GoPro Gimbals – Observations

Both GoPro gimbals are about the same size and weight, and both come in a nice case. The Removu S1 gimbal in particular looks and feels like a quality piece of high-tech, and it made me wonder if had made the wrong decision purchasing the Karma Grip.

However, the head-to-head footage comparison clarified everything, with a clear win for the GoPro Karma Grip. As usual, putting priducts into real-world use reveals how good they really are, regardless of what the specs say on paper.

With respect to their respective carry cases, the Karma Grip’s is light-years more practical for me, as it accommodates the whole gimbal + cam assembly. The Removu S1 has to be disassembled to fit into its case, and it takes a little while to set everything up. The Karma Grip case is perfect for taking along on a mountain bike trip, but the same can’t be said of the the Removu case.

Although I did find some issues with the Karma Grip, I would rate the problems I found with the Removu S1 as quite severe:

  • First and foremost, the major task of stabilizing the footage does not work as well as with the Karma Grip. There are micro jitters all over the footage of the Removu S1.
  • The Hero 4 Black bumps into the Removu body at certain angles, which sometimes causes the gimbal to lose the horizon (see the test footage above). However, it auto readjusted during recording a little later.
  • At one point, the Removu went completely mad for no obvious reason, oscillating vertically and hitting the hard stops quite heavily. I felt I had to immediately turn it off to prevent damage. I could not restart it afterwards, as it would always oscillate heavily from side to side. I thought it was destroyed. Then, I went online and found the “calibration” feature in the manual of the S1. I performed the calibration having to use a small screwdriver, after which it functioned properly again. Not nice, as this never happened at all during my Karma Grip testing so far. If that happens in the field, you can forget the gimbal for the rest of the day. By the way, the test footage above was shot after this calibration process.
  • Strangely enough, when I fitted my Hero 5 Black to the Removu to check if the sound was better than on the Karma Grip (where you can hear the brushless motors), I found the footage to be completely unusable (see test footage around the 1:39 mark). Some housing vibrations (possibly of the brushless motors) were spoiling the audio on the Hero 5 Black video file. Luckily, I was using the “RAW” audio feature, which separately records individual WAV files from each of the 3 mics, and the front stereo track was OK and proved usable.

Unimpressed with me looking stupid comparing gimbals: My dog.

Conclusion

Hats off to Removu for offering such a rich, innovative feature set on the Removu S1 gimbal. Unfortunately, it doesn’t perform as well as the Karma Grip on the major task of stabilizing the footage. That’s why I am glad I purchased the Karma Grip. Despite some small firmware glitches, the Karma Grip performs amazingly overall AND comes in a very usable carry-on case that fits the whole assembly perfectly.

One issue which is not resolved yet, however, is audio. Here, the Removu has potentially an advantage, as this GoPro gimbal supports the Removu M1 and A1 microphone package. But this may be a story for a separate post.

If you are a video blogger, sound is probably more important to you than a rock-steady image, so I would recommend the Removu S1 and the Hero 4 Black, as this combo gives you much better sound than the Karma Grip. For everything else, I would definitely recommend the Karma Grip.

Will either of these be your new favourite GoPro gimbal? Have you had any experience with other similar products in the market? Let us know in the comments section below! 

The post GoPro Gimbal Shoot-Out: Removu S1 vs. GoPro Karma Grip appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DNino Leitner