by Kevin Alexander | 15th July 2015
The Lumenati CS1 Kickstarter campaign hopes to provide a simplified solution for cinematic shooting on a smartphone and could as well turn out to become the ultimate retro-style iPhone 6 camera case. As smartphone cameras become more powerful it seems as if more and more companies are developing products to get the best results out of them. Just this past weekend we posted an article about a Kickstarter campaign for an impressive rig for your smartphone. If this is something you’re into then here’s yet another crowdfunding campaign for you to consider. The Lumenati CS1 isn’t exactly a “rig” for your iPhone. The company is pitching it as more of an iPhone 6 camera case with a retro design. It’s currently only planned to work with the iPhone 6, but the company might support other models if the campaign is successful. Setup seems to be pretty simple – just slide the phone into the case. It uses a small portion of the phone screen to work as a digital viewfinder to eliminate sun glare, and a record trigger on the front of the unit. It has a built in f/2.2 lens, but auxiliary lenses can be attached to change the focal length. Take note we’re not talking about DSLR lenses here – these are 58mm auxiliary lens attachments that attach to the front of the built in lens of this iPhone 6 camera case. Other features include a standard thread for tripod mounting and a cold shoe accessory to add other accessories such as a handle, microphone or lights. They’re still developing the app which will control recording, manual exposure, and also allow for in camera editing. Now, to be fair, there’s one feature that shooters might find annoying. The record trigger must be held down while shooting. So if your finger slips… Well, you lose your shot. Shooting projects on a smartphone certainly doesn’t appeal to everyone. But for those just starting out with limited resources, or even pros who just like to experiment, there are a growing number of options available to take the cameras in our pockets and transform them into something a bit more useful. The Kickstarter campaign lasts until August 12 and the eventual retail price has yet to be decided. For early backers the Lumetri CS1 iPhone 6 Camera Case will cost $199 and includes a .45 wide angle lens.Read more
by Kevin Alexander | 12th July 2015
IndieVice turns your smartphone camera into a handheld camera complete with lens adapters for your DSLR lenses. It’s no secret that smartphones are now capable of taking some pretty great looking videos. Sure, they have their limitations. But what if you could actually use one and get some professional results? Well, here’s an interesting Kickstarter campaign to check out. IndieVice allows you to handhold your smartphone camera to get stable, professional shots. Your smartphone slides into this unit and it allows you to get stable handheld shots. Of course, the viewfinder eliminates sun glare, but since you can’t touch the phone’s screen they have added a BlueTooth zoom and record button controller to the unit. But IndieVice also allows the phone to swivel out and allow you to make adjustments to the camera app when necessary, or simply to use the screen instead of the viewfinder when shooting. IndieVice also has various lens adapters available, allowing you to use virtually any lens you already own. And you can also attach a GoPro to the unit, allowing you to shoot handheld while using the BlueTooth record button controller. Granted, there are no professional audio inputs on this device. You can certainly use adapters to connect your mic to your smartphone, but it’s definitely limited in its audio capabilities. Still, we live in an era of rapid democratization of video production gear. Not only can a newcomer easily gain access to gear, but professionals have many more options open to them for their projects. This device looks like it might inspire newcomers to use their smartphone to start making their own videos. And perhaps professionals might have another option for gathering b-roll on the fly. Regardless, it’s always nice to see some innovative ideas coming to fruition. IndieVice has already met its funding goal and will begin shipping in March 2016. But you can still pledge and preorder your own unit for around $145.Read more
by Kevin Alexander | 12th June 2015
The Pandora DSLR Optimizer is a one stop camera rig for sound, power, and stabilization for your DSLR. Let’s face it. Shooting with a DSLR can be challenging. It’s a never ending pursuit of that perfect balance between quality images, a decent camera rig for stable shots, high quality audio, and an efficient power solution. Well, a team from Argentina have a solution you might want to consider. The Pandora DSLR Optimizer is currently in the crowdfunding stage, but the information available on it certainly catches the eye. This unique camera rig promises to be a solution for all sound, power, and stabilization needs for your DSLR. On the audio front, it features dual-channel preamps, headphone outputs, dual XLR inputs, and phantom power. As a power solution, it packs quite the punch. It has the capacity of 14 Canon LP-E8 batteries, features outputs for camera and accessories, a separate audio battery that can be charged via an on-board solar panel, and even USB connections to charge your cell phone because… heh, why not? The device can be handheld and pressed up against your shoulder for quick and easy stabilization. But you can also attach a shoulder mount or even a handle for alternate configurations. There are even slots for your SD cards. This barely touches on all of the promised features, so be sure to check out the full list below. Now, needless to say this camera rig looks… well, odd. It doesn’t really have the ergonomics of virtually anything else on the market. But then again, most people shooting on a DSLR have accepted the fact that the ergonomics are unique. The Pandora DSLR Optimizer is currently in the crowdfunding stage with a current delivery date of December 2015 (September if you want to buy a working prototype), so for now check out some of these videos. Be sure to check out more info visiting their Indiegogo page. FEATURES Audio: Dual-Channel Preamps Audio bracketing on Camera Headphone Output for direct monitoring Headphone Amplifier with volume control Dual-Channel Vu-meter In-Line Attenuator -20db Dual XLR Balanced Inputs Dual 1/4″ jacks (6.5mm) Dual 3.5mm Stereo MIC inputs Phantom Power +48v for Left & Right Channels Gold-Plated Connectors Microphone (Stretch Goal) Power: More than 14000 MaH Lithium-Ion Power One DC 7.4v output for camera Two DC 7.4v outputs for accessories Switch to DC to 12v output Two USB 5v outputs Solar charger Micro USB 5v output Dual Voltmeter Replaceable battery pack External battery USB charger (Add On) Stabilization Shoulder Mount Handle Tripod mounts 1/4-20 & 3/8-16 Argentinean leather hand strap Anti-sliding rubber grip Optional extra weight re-positioning Approximately 1 Kilo (2.2 pounds) w/ batteries Extra Interchangeable camera model grip Incorporated front LED light SD Holders Accessories port GPS Tracker (Stretch Goal) Charge your phone Modular design for add-ons Internal Intervalometer (Stretch Goal) Rail support system (Add On)Read more
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