The only thing cooler than a 6-axis motion control rig is a DIY 6-axis motion control rig. And the only thing cooler than that is an open-source one that anybody can build and modify to suit their own needs. And that’s exactly what this is from Chris Desrondiers at Do It Whenever? An open-source 6-axis motion control rig that’s made entirely from 3D printed and off-the-shelf parts.
I’m going to open this post with a very subjective, but completely honest, opinion. The Zhiyun Crane 2S (first look review here) instantly became my favourite gimbal as soon as I took it out of the box. Ever. That’s it. Review over. Ok, not really review over, but it really has become my new go-to gimbal for DSLRs and mirrorless cameras.
The Crane 2S is the followup to Zhiyun’s extremely popular Crane 2 (review here), launched in September 2017. Although already a very capable gimbal, the Crane 2S offers some very noticeable upgrades over its predecessor. So, let’s talk about those.
Sometimes, you need to go a little “extra” with your gimbal rig. Sometimes, you need the two-handed holding power that only a solid frame can provide. Digitalfoto’s new Magic Ring II, is one of them. But it’s a little different to most. It allows you to attach a V-Mount battery to its base that passes power through the frame to devices up top.
This means you can attach monitors, transmitters, audio recorders or other devices onto the top of the frame without having to worry about how you’re going to power them or monitoring a bunch of separate smaller batteries. Being able to mount a V-Mount battery underneath also helps to lower the centre of gravity as it takes some of that extra weight away from up high.
Hot on the heels of yesterday’s Hollyland Mars 400S Pro announcement, Vaxis has now announced their new Atom 500 SDI wireless video transmission system (which still supports HDMI, too) and on paper it looks pretty impressive, offering less than 80ms latency and a 500ft range with internal antennas. The new release is an update to the company’s previous Atom 500 HDMI wireless transmitter, which didn’t offer any SDI support.
I’ve been a big fan of Hollyland’s Mars 400S ever since getting one last year and you can read my review on that model here. But now Hollyland has announced the new Mars 400S Pro, with improved latency, the silent fan feature found in the Mars 300 Pro, and new live streaming capabilities straight out of the receiver into software such as OBS.
If you’ve shot video, or even sometimes if you’ve shot stills, you know what a hassle practical lighting can be. It’s always too bright or too dim to easily balance with the rest of your lights for the ISO you want to shoot at. Or, it’s completely the wrong colour. So, you have to get tricky with white balance, or gel things, or have a bunch of different types of bulbs on-hand to match to other light sources.
Well, no more. Now you just need one type of bulb to match with everything. Aputure has finally launched the Accent B7c, an RGBWW colour-mixing practical LED light that lets you simulate just about any colour or brightness you’ll ever need.
For some of us, especially when we’re just starting out, we’re limited on gear. Maybe we can only afford a single light or perhaps we can afford more, but we want to experiment with just one before laying down a huge amount of cash. Either way, having just a single light for our work is not uncommon. It is possible to make one light look like many though.
In this video, filmmaker Brandon Li shows us a technique for multiplying a single light using multiple takes and compositing. It’s a technique that we’ve seen used a lot in photography, particularly product photography, but not that often with video – especially when you’ve got a moving camera.
There was a time when it was hard to even give Canon FD lenses away. I remember picking up a Canon A-1 and 50mm f/1.8 FD lens about 12 years ago at auction for £3. Both camera and lens worked flawlessly, too. Now, though, FD lenses have become a big hit with filmmakers. Their prices have gone up a little bit in the last few years, but many can still be found for bargain prices.
In this video, Media Division spends almost an hour and a half walking us through the Canon FD lens lineup to see how they perform and compare to the rare and expensive Canon K35 cine lenses, which were used to shoot everything from Aliens and Her to Westworld and The Handmaid’s Tale. Can Canon FD match the look of K35?
Zhiyun has today announced an update to their ever-popular Crane 2 gimbal. Not surprisingly, it comes in the form of the Zhiyun Crane 2S. Over the original, it offers increased load capacity, a more extensive camera compatibility list, axis locks, an improved follow focus wheel, larger OLED screen, more shooting modes to match the rest of the gimbals in Zhiyun’s current lineup and greater accessory connectivity.
I’ve had one here to play with for a couple of days so far, and we’ll have a much more extensive review coming in the near future, but here are some of its major features and differences over the original Zhiyun Crane 2.