The Sony FS7 is a very popular camera which comes in a shoulder-mount shape and form, straight out of the box, which often isn’t the case with cameras that didn’t get the third party rigging treatment.
However, the built-in shoulder pad and handle aren’t perfect. The shoulder pad can’t be moved much to adjust for different balance points depending on the type of lens you use – a movable baseplate with built-in shoulder rig is required. Many manufacturers, including Shape, have come up with great solutions. My current baseplate of choice is the Zacuto Recoil baseplate for the FS7.
The handle is another story – while the shape of the grip is actually perfect for larger hands like mine, the handle itself has always felt like something that was built before the design was perfected. The two big issues: a thumbscrew to attach the angle of the handle is cumbersome to operate while you have the camera on your shoulder, and having to use a screwdriver for the adjustment of the length of the handle is a downright usability nightmare.
Canadian camera accessory maker Shape discovered this problem early on (and yes, this product has already been on the market for a while, but I just found it too good not to cover!). They made a replacement part for the upper part of the handle that gives you a push-button adjustment of the handle angle plus a thumbscrew for the length adjustment. And just like that, it becomes something you don’t want to miss from your FS7 ever again.
The Shape FS7 Extension Handle allows for toolless handle adjustments.
Shape FS7 Extension Conclusion
If you have a Sony FS7 and film from the shoulder frequently, you should get the Shape FS7 handle extension. It’s as simple as that. It makes this great camera just more usable by thinking the concept until the end, something that Sony wasn’t able to do when they released the camera.