Arri just announced several new accessories for their smallest camera body: A broadcast plate for ALEXA mini as well as a newly designed low bracket which accompanies the already available shoulder pad CSP-1. The ALEXA mini can be thought of Arri’s answer to the RED lineup of cameras. It eliminates several downsides of its big brother, the ALEXA, in terms of seize and weight. But of course, that doesn’t come for free. You’ll need some kind of remote control – like the dedicated Arri ALEXA mini viewfinder for example- in order to operate the mini as it lacks decent controls such as dials and buttons apart from very basic operation. Plus, as the camera body comes more or less as a bare cube with nothing to it, on the one hand you are totaly free in mounting it the way you want or the shot requires it but on the other hand it can be challenging to operate it as a decent shoulder rig for example. For that, Arri just announced some very handy accessories which give its users the ability to operate the camera in more ways more comfortable. Broadcast Plate for ALEXA mini The new broadcast baseplate for ALEXA mini acts as a bridge between the camera body and a standard VCT style tripod plate. With it attached to the camera you are now able to switch very fast from shoulder mount operation to tripod work. A shoulder pad is included as well as 15mm rod support and standard rosette mounts for handgrips. With this the mini transforms into a versatile handheld camera rig for documentary style of shooting. Broadcast Plate for ALEXA mini Low Bracket for Shoulder Pad CSP-1 This tiny new accessory was desinged in order to let the user choose between the ‘standard’ bracket which comes with the CSP-1 shoulder pad and this new low bracket. With this, the center of gravity of the camera body is lowered by 15mm in comparison to the standard bracket. Dependent of your given rig, this might make it easier to work with the camera when shoulder mounted. The CSP-1 shoulder pad is not designed to put it on a tripod, it’s a true-bred shoulder mount rig. That said, it is lighter in weight than the broadcast baseplate of course. Low Bracket for ALEXA mini Pricing and availability There is no word on pricing and availability, yet. But you can be sure about one thing: These accessories, no matter how small they might be, won’t come for free. As we are speaking of pro cameras from a top of the game manufacturer, they will be expensive. I think, at least the broadcast plate for ALEXA mini will increase the usability a lot for that camera (when shooting documentary style). With it you can enjoy the comfort of an AMIRA at the seize and weight of the mini. Sounds good to me! UPDATE: cvp lists the broadcast baseplate for ALEXA mini as a bundle with 15mm rods and the quick release plate QRP-1 for nearly 1.550 € (exc. VAT) which equals something like 1.700 US $.Read more
The Panasonic AJ-PX230 AVC ULTRA was announced yesterday, a handheld camera which shares similarities with its predecessor—the AJ-PX270. In fact, it seems the AJ-PX230 has been designed to be a carbon copy of the PX270 for users who do not require networking, proxy recording, and genlock/timecode; and that means one thing. It costs less! Not only does the Panasonic AJ-PX230 share the same body design as the older model but, according to Panasonic, it shares the same image quality too. Basically, if you’re not that interested in networking, proxy or genlock/TC, you can save yourself a fair bit of cash by opting for the Panasonic’s new offering. Seems fair enough to me! Panasonic PX230 Overview This camcorder offers 10-bit 1080p recording in AVC-intra and AVC-LongG codecs, a 22x zoom lens. Also featured are an OLED viewfinder and 1.56MP QHD LCD for monitoring. Two XLR inputs allow for recording up to 4 channels of 48 kHz, 24-bit audio and the interfaces included are HDMI, HD-SDI, and 3G-SDI. Meanwhile, 2 microP2 card slots help to keep the camera’s operating costs down. The AJ-PX230PJ features 1/3″ 2.2MP 3-MOS sensors, apparently capable of delivering high sensitivity, low-noise performance in low-light. Minimum illumination: 0.02lx Gain control: -3dB-18dB Super gain: 24, 30, 36dB The AVC-ULTRA codec allows for 100Mbps recording in AVC-intra100 and 200Mbps recording in AVC-intra200 while the three available AVC-LongG levels—LongG50, LongG25, and LongG12—offer 10-bit, 4:2:2 recording at 50Mbps and 25MbPS, and 8-bit 4:2:0 at 12Mbps; producing smaller files while maintaining decent image quality. The Panasonic AJ-PX230 supports 1080/60i, 1080/24p, 30p, and 60p. 720p and SD recording are also options, with 50i, 50p, and 25p support as well. So too are variable framerates, in 25 steps—1fps through 60fps. The 22x zoom lens of the Panasonic PX230 provides a zoom range of wide 28mm and tele 616mm and features three manual operation lens rings (zoom, focus, and iris). While the manual rings eliminate the need for interchangeable lenses, its multi-step zoom control ensures a smooth and responsive zoom. The AJ-PX230 comes with Panasonic’s Chromatic Aberration Compensation for optimum lens performance, Dynamic Range Stretch function to improve scene image contrast and improve human skin rendition, a flash band detection and compensation algorithm, Optical image stabilization, and a four-position optical ND filter. The camera also delivers seven-mode gamma selection and various digital image settings, such as 12 + 3 Axis Matrix Control. Panasonic PX230 First Impressions Without talking too much about the camera itself, since it has only just been announced and we’ve yet to test it, I do like the direction that Panasonic have taken with this model. I think independent filmmakers and smaller studios that are working on a budget could really benefit from more manufacturers stripping features (and subsequently dollars) from various models in their ranges. Then again, I’m a dreamer. I’ve always envisioned a world where filmmakers select the features they want and then get their own tailor-made cameras…Read more
For a limited time only, Edelkrone are offering free worldwide shipping to orders over $100. This offer ends on October 23rd, and provides a decent discount (particularly for international buyers) for people looking to buy the latest Edelkrone products. Speaking of latest products, they recently brought out a new ultra compact camera rig – the PocketShot. When packed down, it’s looks like an oversized Swiss Army Knife, and offers a similar number of configurations to the utility blade. Extremely compact (158x35x46mm), very light (0.35kg/0.77bs) with a payload of 2kg/4lbs in most configurations. Whilst it’ll take the weight of a 5D mark iii with standard lens, it’s recommended for use with cameras around the 0.7kg (1.5lbs). So perhaps more suitable for Micro Four Thirds cameras or the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema. Clearly designed for the consumer market, with a price to match at $199.99. However use with the above mentioned camera setups could get you some use in the professional field if you were travelling extremely light, and/or working in very restricted areas. I’ve used Edelkrone’s previous ultra compact rig – the PocketRig, and was quite disappointed with its stability. Hopefully the PocketShot with all Delrin plastic design and adjustable tension supports offer a better, more stable solution.Read more
“Mountkestrel”, is this Turkish? No, it’s from Ireland and made by industrial design student Ben Millett from Curve Creative. The special thing about this rig is that’s not only a handheld rig, but also a steadycam. That’s an amazing concept but how well it serves our needs is a whole different story since the device that was merely a design concept at first is yet to be released.Read more
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