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    Would appreciate rig photos from DOCUMENTARY shooters

    I'd like to ask a favor: a photo of your setup. I just bought an AF100 and have explored and searched this forum. I'm about to spend a lot of money on glass so I can't afford to make costly mistakes when tricking out the rig and would like to learn from your experience. Most of my work as a freelance DP is FAST moving docs, corporate and non-fiction TV. I need a rig that can quickly go from sticks to shoulder to jib to hovering at stomach level, plus change lenses quickly. So I was hoping you could post (or email me) some shots of your "fast shooting" rig and which model components you have? I have explored this forum and most of the rig shots are too extreme and unwieldy for my kind of shooting. I often film children for education videos and don't want to draw their attention to the rig itself, or the authorities when I'm out and about. I wish there was a thread of just rig pics with model names.

    Dear Erik Naso, Nate Haustein & Richard Nelson: It appears we have the same kind of clients and shooting style, and you guys have bought and then sold many parts so you could customize the most efficient doc shooting rig and that's what I need to do so if I could see photos that'd be great. Some of my work is as a one-man-band so I may have a shotgun onboard and a BEC receiver box for the radio mic(s). I'd love a rig that has a rod going to the tummy or belt buckle, so both hands are available to work the lens rather than hold the support.

    In the next week or so I need the shoulder component, rods, focus wheel, receiver box, perhaps EVF (do most AF100 shooters use one in bright daylight?), perhaps a matte box if there's money left. Being a former film guy I'd like to get a wooden Aaton handgrip. Maybe a AB Gold Mount on the back for ballast. Lastly, I hope it is all so modular that if I rent a F3 or C300 I can use this new rig for those models also.

    I'm putting most of the budget in the glass so I don't think I can afford the most expensive/best components until the AF100 starts bring home some bacon.

    Thanks!
    Ned Miller
    Chicago-based Freelance Videographer
    www.nedmiller.com

    #2
    I built something myself, ( http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread...light=homemade )
    but with your specs it would be difficult to beat one of the Westside AV rigs - http://www.unicamrail.com/
    They're reasonably inexpensive and about exactly what you're requesting. He also sells Aaton-style handgrips.
    Pudgy bearded camera guy
    http://mcbob.tv

    Comment


      #3
      I plan on building a Tilta based rig when funds allow.
      www.jonfilms.com
      jonfilms(at)me.com
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        #4
        As for a rig. Tilta works great for me. You could get a baseplate and grow out from their. Tilta handgrips are big and heavy so I only use one on the right side and keep my left hand on the follow focus.

        When I got my AF-100 I used mainly Nikon manual lenses and then bought Lumix pancakes and a 7-14. Love that lens.
        My first rig was a spider brace. It works great. I still have it in the production van. It works!

        If you want to stay small and light I would go with Lumix lenses. They are small, sharp and they also have some fast ones as well. Oh and the pancakes are tiny. I now have PL lenses but I didn’t sell off the Lumix’s. I did sell some Nikon mount lenses. (not the ziess 85mm) I also have a GH2 that i like a lot so owning MFT lenses serves me well.

        Rigs can turn into beasts fast. The more you add to front the more counter you need in the back. If you put the camera on your shoulder then you will need a EVF or a monitor in front by the lens. No way around it. More stuff. I only use a mattebox for my cine lenses because I cant screw filters in or attach a lens shade. Not an issue with still lenses.
        The Tilta has two interesting options. It uses a Sony professional broadcast style tripod connection. That is great for me since I also use ENG cameras. The camera mounts to the base plate with a Monfrotto style clamp. Easy to get the camera off the baseplate/rig and onto a jib or slider that has a Monfrotto QR system.

        The EVF is one aspect I have’nt been all that pleased with. I have Olofs adapter and it works but it’s not perfect. I’m spoiled in some ways because of all the years of shooting with ENG cameras. Viewfinders suck on all these cameras. People seem to like the C300 a lot more than any other in terms of viewfinder and LCD quality.

        Thats my $0.02.
        YOUTUBE: https://www.youtube.com/user/ErikNaso
        VIMEO: http://www.vimeo.com/eriknaso
        BLOG: www.eriknaso.com
        TWITTER: eriknaso https://twitter.com/ErikNaso?lang=en

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by nedcam View Post
          I need a rig that can quickly go from sticks to shoulder to jib to hovering at stomach level, plus change lenses quickly.
          -The bottom of the rig has a dovetail to enable fast move to sticks
          -The camera is on a dove tail - Id take the camera off the rig to put it on a crane
          -Holding the 'triangulation bar' with the right hand and the hadlebars with the left enable shooting from a stomach height
          -Using no follow focus lens changes are fast (I focus with my right hand)

          Not on your spec..
          -having a decent monitor means I can focus.. critical in doco where things only happen once.. and the shade enables operation in the sun
          -I have a space fo a Lav
          -The mic is on camera but quickly comes off to hand to a reporter
          -VLock batts will run it all for a six-eight hour shift


          My FS100
          fs_01.jpg

          More on my BLog.. http://dslr4real.tv/index.php?option...id=98&Itemid=1

          Good luck

          SamMM
          http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Erik Naso View Post



            Rigs can turn into beasts fast. The more you add to front the more counter you need in the back. If you put the camera on your shoulder then you will need a EVF or a monitor in front by the lens. No way around it. More stuff. I only use a mattebox for my cine lenses because I cant screw filters in or attach a lens shade. Not

            The EVF is one aspect I have’nt been all that pleased with. I have Olofs adapter and it works but it’s not perfect. I’m spoiled in some ways because of all the years of shooting with ENG cameras. Viewfinders suck on all these cameras. People seem to like the C300 a lot more than any other in terms of viewfinder and LCD quality.

            Thats my $0.02.
            Alister Chapman ( http://www.alisterchapman.com/)has played with the Alphatron EVF-035W, and he say:'I’ve used Cineroid and Zacuto finders and they are not nearly as clear or as sharp as the Alphatron'

            Cheers!

            Menno Mennes

            Comment


              #7
              Thanks guys! I think I will have to get a dp4 or 6 vf with a Hoodman and that's what I don't get: where to put it when handheld yet be able to see where I'm going.

              And I agree with Eric, I don't see how I can be swinging a mattebox out of the way to switch lenses when moving fast, so at first I may just go with lens shades.

              From what I've read the opinion is 50/50 as whether the Chinese products are built poorly. SO I will narrow it down to Zacuto, Cavision or Red Rock.
              Last edited by nedcam; 05-05-2012, 06:18 AM. Reason: bad grammar
              Ned Miller
              Chicago-based Freelance Videographer
              www.nedmiller.com

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Menno Mennes View Post
                Alister Chapman ( http://www.alisterchapman.com/)has played with the Alphatron EVF-035W, and he say:'I’ve used Cineroid and Zacuto finders and they are not nearly as clear or as sharp as the Alphatron'

                Cheers!

                Menno Mennes
                Saw it at NAB. It’s pretty sweeeeeeet! I don’t have issues with EVF’s in general. Its how they get mounted and adjusting them as you go from shoulder to tripod.

                Lets say your shooting hand held. You have the EVF in the perfect position with a Noga type arm. Then you take the camera down low to your waist for a hero perspective. Well you have to readjust the Noga arm now because the EVF’s viewfinder is pointing down to the ground.
                The adjustable EVF bracket Olof makes wont clear the body of the AF-100 so it cant tilt up. Another issue is just that tier is to much stuff in a small place. The follow focus and the EVF with the cable blocks me out from the iris on the lens. That’s my frustration with EVF’s. I ended up getting a DP6 and using it instead. Its bigger but the image is fantastic and I don’t have to mess with it as much. This is how I shoot handheld most of time now for promo shoots I do.

                AF100 Tilta Rig wide.jpg

                Check this out. I’m sure it’s not cheap but the build quality looks good. Really good.

                YOUTUBE: https://www.youtube.com/user/ErikNaso
                VIMEO: http://www.vimeo.com/eriknaso
                BLOG: www.eriknaso.com
                TWITTER: eriknaso https://twitter.com/ErikNaso?lang=en

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by nedcam View Post
                  From what I've read the opinion is 50/50 as whether the Chinese products are built poorly. SO I will narrow it down to Zacuto, Cavision or Red Rock.
                  The Tilta is very nice. I have the base plate, grips and a monitor arm. Solid. As for just the baseplate the other guys don’t make anything like the Tilta and they should.
                  YOUTUBE: https://www.youtube.com/user/ErikNaso
                  VIMEO: http://www.vimeo.com/eriknaso
                  BLOG: www.eriknaso.com
                  TWITTER: eriknaso https://twitter.com/ErikNaso?lang=en

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by morgan_moore View Post
                    -The bottom of the rig has a dovetail to enable fast move to sticks
                    -The camera is on a dove tail - Id take the camera off the rig to put it on a crane
                    -Holding the 'triangulation bar' with the right hand and the hadlebars with the left enable shooting from a stomach height
                    -Using no follow focus lens changes are fast (I focus with my right hand)

                    Not on your spec..
                    -having a decent monitor means I can focus.. critical in doco where things only happen once.. and the shade enables operation in the sun
                    -I have a space fo a Lav
                    -The mic is on camera but quickly comes off to hand to a reporter
                    -VLock batts will run it all for a six-eight hour shift


                    My FS100
                    [ATTACH=CONFIG]53134[/ATTACH]

                    More on my BLog.. http://dslr4real.tv/index.php?option...id=98&Itemid=1

                    Good luck

                    SamMM
                    Our rigs in the end look the same with different parts.
                    YOUTUBE: https://www.youtube.com/user/ErikNaso
                    VIMEO: http://www.vimeo.com/eriknaso
                    BLOG: www.eriknaso.com
                    TWITTER: eriknaso https://twitter.com/ErikNaso?lang=en

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by nedcam View Post
                      Thanks guys! I think I will have to get a dp4 or 6 vf with a Hoodman and that's what I don't get: where to put it when handheld yet be able to see where I'm going.

                      And I agree with Eric, I don't see how I can be swinging a mattebox out of the way to switch lenses when moving fast, so at first I may just go with lens shades.

                      From what I've read the opinion is 50/50 as whether the Chinese products are built poorly. SO I will narrow it down to Zacuto, Cavision or Red Rock.
                      well if budget does not meter..... maybe zacuto is great (their new rig that i saw in nab 2012 clips - looks interesting ), but Tiltas base plate + 4 rods(front and rear) + handles + monitor arm + dhl shipping = 671$ - u just cant go wrong. Before spending a fortune on something i would suggest to try something cheaper 1st. i did same mistake and spent HUGE amount on Edelkrone - that is now in its box waiting for a resell if i get lucky i ll get some back. and if its not what u want it always easier to resell .....

                      Tiltas base plate is just 268$ and it includes shoulder pad under it and 4 rods + there is no any one else who does it this way - its just the easiest way to put the rig from tripod on your shoulder and then put it back - 2 sec really! Also with that setup your cam is almost right above your shoulder.... well at least very very close to it..... so the wait is not totally just on your hands.....

                      well maybe in general china stuff not the best quality, but u definitely cant say it about Tilta - its just great and solid, i was extremely surprised!
                      the articulating arm i got from here (http://www.coollcd.com/7-articulatin...itor_p709.html) - is kind of junk really. but the 1 from Tilta is perfect in every way!

                      its much lighter then the RedRock i used before. the quality of redrock - is very questionable, - the rig i had - i just could not adjust some of the components - i had to use my leg to move the base plate on rods..... each time i tried to move handles on rods, after the lock was fully opened, its still was hard to do, and handles were always leaving terrible scratches all over the rods... what i hated ...... each time to lock something like handles for example - i always had to break my fingers to lock it and then brake my fingers again to open it, but still they were moving from time to time..... imagine u filming something and your handle starts driving somewhere...

                      i just love the way my Tilta rods are sliding in its locking mechanism , no crazy sound or scratches.... just like butter, and how easy to lock it..... small turn and thats it, no needs to push anything. handles u can turn almost any direction, and thks to rosette locks nothing is moving after its locked.....

                      about monitor holder , i am also not a fan of Articulating arms for that purpose! solid camera unit looks interesting - http://solidcamera.com/SCI/Sony-FS700_%26_100.html, but its 495$ plus as i understand u have to buy the rest of accessories in order to use it... so + few more 100sss $. what i would suggest is - Edelkrone monitor holder - i have it and its works great for me, its the only their product that is worth mentioning and only 150usd! here is link: http://www.edelkrone.com/e-store/37-...177980071.html
                      its just great peace and holds my small HD dp1x 8.9` no problem..... u can just move your monitor with only 1 finger and it will stay where its left , u dont have to lock anything!! small hd now resell it too as i understand!
                      i love it!

                      another china company that does some nice stuff - lanparte, but i dont like their rig as its same kind that everyone has - all the weight just on your hands! but the quality seems to be very nice. and if u need a counter weight, then i would suggest to kill 2 rabits and get their Power and Hdmi Splitter - its 1 unit, it comes for V mount or Golden mount batteries. - it can power your cam, monitor, external recorder, light..... nice!!
                      Tilta also has 2 units like it, one is more expansive with pro connectors , 2nd is cheaper one with regular connectors - but i did not try it, so cant tell.....but based on rig quality should be good as well!
                      Last edited by anatusa; 05-06-2012, 07:52 AM.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Erik Naso View Post
                        Our rigs in the end look the same with different parts.
                        Nice looking rig

                        Yes exactly the same layout just my VLock is under the rails - IMO this lowers the CofM of the device for a smore stable shot.. and I have a nice space above the VLock to place may lav receiver

                        I also focus right handed (when operating handheld)- took a while to learn but feels more stable

                        I would not have an EVF because IMO you cant focus like you can with a DP6 - however the new generation of high res EVFs are interesting..

                        The OP should note that two people have the same solution from different parts of the world.. not a solution peddled by those who spend their time at NAB but shooting

                        S
                        Last edited by morgan_moore; 05-06-2012, 07:59 AM.
                        http://www.sammorganmoore.com View my feature Film

                        Comment


                          #13
                          For documentary shooting I prefer a light, & compact, camera setup, so minimize add-ons.

                          I don't normally use a baseplate (unless shooting thru PLs) as it raises the center of gravity, while increasing bulk, & weight.

                          I do use a Zacuto EVF (will likely switch to Alphatron's when it's available) with Olof's EVF mount. Unlike Erik I have no problem rotating it because mine doesn't need to extend down in order to compensate for his baseplate's thickness. This also allows the LCD to remain open as an additional framing aid, plus access the buttons located beneath. And though there's no shoulder pad it's still possible to swing the camera up on the shoulder.

                          I also own Olof's body-mounted wood handle, & his Nano Flash bracket, the later mostly used to mount a wireless receiver.

                          A light rig makes shooting all day easier on my body, & transporting the gear around the globe much simpler. Plus I move the camera more when it's compact, & doesn't need to be reconfigured often.
                          Last edited by Bern Caughey; 05-08-2012, 08:31 PM.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Thanks anatusa & Bern. Can you send a photo of your setup?
                            Last edited by nedcam; 05-06-2012, 09:45 AM. Reason: spelling
                            Ned Miller
                            Chicago-based Freelance Videographer
                            www.nedmiller.com

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Erik Naso View Post
                              Saw it at NAB. Itís pretty sweeeeeeet! I donít have issues with EVFís in general. Its how they get mounted and adjusting them as you go from shoulder to tripod.

                              Lets say your shooting hand held. You have the EVF in the perfect position with a Noga type arm. Then you take the camera down low to your waist for a hero perspective. Well you have to readjust the Noga arm now because the EVFís viewfinder is pointing down to the ground.
                              The adjustable EVF bracket Olof makes wont clear the body of the AF-100 so it cant tilt up. Another issue is just that tier is to much stuff in a small place. The follow focus and the EVF with the cable blocks me out from the iris on the lens. Thatís my frustration with EVFís. I ended up getting a DP6 and using it instead. Its bigger but the image is fantastic and I donít have to mess with it as much. This is how I shoot handheld most of time now for promo shoots I do.

                              [ATTACH=CONFIG]53139[/ATTACH]

                              Check this out. Iím sure itís not cheap but the build quality looks good. Really good.

                              Hey Erik,

                              The other AF100 opp i just worked with recently had the Zacuto EVF mounted on his with this strange Israeli arm that he bought at Filmtools. I asked him how he liked it and he said it was one of the best things he's ever bought.

                              I think this was it:
                              http://www.filmtools.com/ul8vimomo.html

                              Not sure why he loved it. But the cranks are large and it seems to loosen and tighten much quicker than any arm he'd ever had.

                              Also, i'm poised over the trigger button on the whole Tila rig! It's just the shipping that will kill me! It's $400!!
                              www.jonfilms.com
                              jonfilms(at)me.com
                              Follow me:
                              Twitter: http://twitter.com/jonfilms
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