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    Go-to rigs for longs days of handheld work?
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    I'm operating a C70, which weighs about 7lb with lens, battery, and shotgun mic. I currently have a couple of improvised solutions that are great for controlled situations where I can periodically take the thing off and give my shoulder a break. But for continuous shooting, I'm pretty sure I'd be hating life by lunchtime. Some options, like Zacuto, that involve placing the camera on one's shoulder are not workable for me because of my height (6'4"). I'm also a little leery of the added height of the EasyRig for this very reason. I'd get stuck in every doorway. What are others are using with smaller cameras (C70/BlackMagic Pocket/FX6/etc) for extended periods of time?


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    As someone who's tried everything, I can't help but always go back to the monopod for continuous running-and-gunning.

    Pop on a lightweight head (or no head) and use one that has a swivel base and you're really in good shape for practically anything, IMO.

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...5_monopod.html


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    #3
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    Another vote for a monopod. Really under rated, simple and relatively cheap bit of kit. Not perfect for some types of shot - but in seconds you can take the cam off and go back to handheld.


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    #4
    Resident Preditor Matt Gottshalk's Avatar
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    My easyrig is a lifesaver for this.
    Matt Gottshalk
    Director of Production
    BPI.tv


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    #5
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    I have the ErgoRig and SteadyGum(which I used a lot last week doing handheld on one of the real estate shows), both of which are mainly for shoulder use. I hate the EasyRig, BUT I shot a few days on a reality show last summer and their cameras were C300/II's in a handheld configuration with 18-80 and 70-200 compact servo's and it would have been impossible for the "standing around talking" situations without them. I was actually still in pain even with them. But there was no reason on God's green Earth that the producer should have let them go for several hours sitting and talking while you had three camera guys standing and shooting. That was piss poor producing. 2nd rant of the day over...

    Anyway...

    Monopods aren't bad, depending on how quick and agile you need to be. And like a few other said, they're relatively cheap.

    Just looking, SteadyGum actually has two new rigs for smaller cameras and one looks like it's for small handycams, so it could work with your set-up. But, it's not cheap... This new, smaller version is a little over $1K. But hey, I paid like $1900 for my big boy version a few years ago and I don't regret it(they've knocked like $400 off since then).

    https://steadygum.com
    https://steadygum.com/producto/eng-l/
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...me%3Asteadygum


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    #6
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    I'll have to jump in on the monopod bandwagon. I actually used a really cheap one I found lying around on my last shoot and it was really helpful getting those quick run and gun shots (Blackmagic 6k Pro). Didn't have any fancy features like a swivel and I just hard mounted with a Manfrotto QR baseplate but it really helped steady my hand after doing some gimbal work!


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    Thanks for all of the great responses so far. I have a Benro monopod with a swivel base and it performs well enough. Definitely transfers the weight. I've shot two weddings in my life and the monopod got me through both. The one thing I don't like is being able to make smooth move laterally without the camera dipping. And they don't "wander" like the shoulder rigs do. That's really the only reason I'm still looking for/hoping to find a true handheld solution.

    I've still never used an EasyRig. I have a feeling that I would probably love it. I just don't like how much attention that they draw.

    The SteadyGum is new to me, but very shoulder-oriented (EDIT: I see now that the ENG-L is for smaller cameras). I wish I'd had one of those in my Varicam 2700 days. It does make me wonder if the Steady Stick, which can now be found for peanuts on eBay, is worth a try. It would get the camera out in front of me. Or the old monopod in a tool pouch would be even more versatile. Thinking out loud.

    Has anyone used a Dougmon?
    Last edited by QuickHitRecord; 04-08-2021 at 11:57 PM.


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    #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuickHitRecord View Post
    I've still never used an EasyRig. I have a feeling that I would probably love it. I just don't like how much attention that they draw.

    The SteadyGum is new to me, but very shoulder-oriented (EDIT: I see now that the ENG-L is for smaller cameras). I'd had one of those in my Varicam 2700 days. It does make me wonder if the Steady Stick, which can now be found for peanuts on eBay, is worth a try. It would get the camera out in front of me. Or the old monopod in a tool pouch would be even more versatile. Thinking out loud.
    If you've never used an easyrig, I recommend renting the minimax asap. It adds about 6 inches above my head. I'm sure you would easily develop a system to duck through doorways. If you mean doorways you don't see while shooting, if you'd hit it being 6'10", chances are you'd still hit it being 6'4". Even with the camera attached, when walking (not shooting), I always hold one hand at the end of the bar for easier navigation. Or for extended walks when not shooting, you can fold it down and tuck it across your chest with the chest strap holding it in place. If you're shooting and need to track someone walking and don't want the bounce you just unhook it from the camera and hold the camera in your hand for that shot, then hook back in and continue shooting.

    Easyrig is amazing for instant height adjustments from extremely low to the highest position the rig will allow, I'm a huge fan. Also, it frees up your hands for other things e.g. buying a train ticket or quickly drinking water etc.

    The steadygum looks great IMO.

    Another option is a cinesaddle and you wear it like a messenger bag then the camera rests there. While this takes the weight out of your hands, your neck can be sore after staring straight down for a long time.

    If by attention you mean it's compromising a shoot where you need to be discreet then fair enough but if it's a vanity thing I would say get over it and also what are you talking about it looks awesome.

    EDIT - I don't mean get over it in an aggressive way but more that it's a small detail if it's contributing to preserving your back/neck. I find even holding a c-series camera draws attention, so at that point adding an easyrig is not much different.
    Last edited by rob norton; 04-08-2021 at 06:34 PM.


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    #9
    Senior Member Run&Gun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuickHitRecord View Post
    Thanks for all of the great responses so far. I have a Benro monopod with a swivel base and it performs well enough. Definitely transfers the weight. I've shot two weddings in my life and the monopod got me through both. The one thing I don't like is being able to make smooth move laterally without the camera dipping. And they don't "wander" like the shoulder rigs do. That's really the only reason I'm still looking for/hoping to find a true handheld solution.

    I've still never used an EasyRig. I have a feeling that I would probably love it. I just don't like how much attention that they draw.

    The SteadyGum is new to me, but very shoulder-oriented. I wish I'd had one of those in my Varicam 2700 days. It does make me wonder if the Steady Stick, which can now be found for peanuts on eBay, is worth a try. It would get the camera out in front of me. Or the old monopod in a tool pouch would be even more versatile. Thinking out loud.

    Has anyone used a Dougmon?
    Yeah, I wish the SteadyGum would have been introduced around 2007 when I was doing ludicrous amounts of handheld work. Have you ever shot a "group interview session"(to be politically correct) with your subject standing above you and going for sometimes upwards of 20+ minutes? I would have bought one in a heartbeat back then.

    The Steady Stick looks to be the same basic idea, but without the super-duper elastic band to allow for some shock absorption and movement.

    I remember seeing the Dougmon or similar things years ago. I'm not sure how much it would really do for increasing long-term shooting stamina. You're still going to have the weight on your bicep and shoulder. It only looks like it reduces strain on your wrist.

    The Easyrig is probably the most un-cool shooting support system ever created. I rented one and tried it for a week to give it a fair shake and it was nothing but in my way for the way I usually shoot, but it does take the weight. I think it's best use is for those that shoot a lot around hip height.
    Last edited by Run&Gun; 04-08-2021 at 07:22 PM.


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    #10
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    This is like the Cinesaddle but with shoulder straps and velcro straps on the back. In practice, the weight is distributed between shoulders and lower back / hips.
    https://www.amazon.com/OPENMOON-Came.../dp/B079QX23SC


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