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Evan A Olson

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Everything posted by Evan A Olson

  1. Maybe a shoulder rig if you don’t have one? Rests on your shoulders and gives you one hand for support and the other for follow focus. Smoother than handheld. Not bulky. One with side handle arms on those rosettes. SmallRig and LanParte are not crazy expensive for a system like this. Not a lot of risks buying used either.
  2. This morning I saw a video related to this. Newton Thomas Siegel explains how he uses different focal lengths to get different emotions across. A wide angle up close is generally more intimate with the viewer while a telephoto is more voyeuristic and disconnected. A clean medium shot of a character in conversation with another, OTS style (clean not dirty), if shot on a wide angle lens, will exaggerate the sense of space between the two characters. The style of the wide angle enhances the separation that a normal lenses wouldn’t get across. A telephoto lens could be used to show 2 characters, who are standing far apart, as the same size on the screen (with telephoto compression and all that).
  3. All 3 of the below micro four thirds cameras have the same sensor and mount type. Pros and cons are listed. They are all very small. Panasonic GH5S - Pros: Weather sealed and most reliable, low noise image, great battery life, fast menus, and takes photos if needed as well - Cons: Color takes work, not the greatest dynamic range, no ProRes internally Black Magic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K - Pros: ProRes internally, raw footage, fast menus, nice color straight out of camera, decent dynamic range - Cons: Battery life is awful (20-30 minutes per battery), software is buggy, focus peaking is not good Z Cam E2 - Pros: ProRes internally, 4K 120fps H.265, great color, accepts Sony NP batteries, good dynamic range, and has very good battery life - Cons: New company with unproven track record (seems to have good customer service?), is just a brain to start The BMPCC4K and Z Cam have the high-end look that you're going for. And the GH5S is just a solid, reliable option. I'd be comfortable using a GH5S without a backup, where with a BMPCC4K with its bugs and the Z Cam with its unproven record, I'd be sweating. These are just the cameras that came to mind from my experience. Other people could have completely different opinions about these cameras. I'm curious to know what other people think. Last thought... If you're talking about a camera that can literally fit in your pocket, then maybe a Sony Cybershot RX100 VII? The new one can shoot supersampled 4k in log and output a 422 signal (funny thing that this little camera can do that while Sony's other cameras can't). They also claim 14 stops of dynamic range if shot with S-Log 2.
  4. This is such a hard question. "What's the vacuum in your market that you can fill?" I think the biggest issue for me is location. It's easy to find people who work "locally" in Connecticut out of Boston or NYC. Cameras, lenses, grip trucks, whatever are mostly out of the state. Will definitely have to think more about this.
  5. Hmm. I looked into this just now. It definitely has a cost factor to it. Base models for 1080p at 1k fps start at $29,000. To get 4k, the cost approaches $100,000. Maybe someday. The Z-Cam E2 can do 160 fps at 4k and 240 fps at 1080p for around $2000. Footage is pretty clean, too. Maybe a good start.
  6. Thank you, Tyler. Responses like these are the reason why I joined this forum. This is so helpful for me, and I hope your response will be helpful for other members later on. I don't live in a media town, so Sharegrid and the general occasional email with "We need a camera for an indie pilot of a TV show that we're going to pitch to networks" as its gist are what comes through. Theft is also a concern... I do know a rental house in Boston that rents out other peoples kits for a percent of the daily rate. Based on what you said, if I do end up getting a camera, that might be the route. It's a bummer because I'll be in CT for another 2 years right in the middle between NYC and Boston. Oh, and with damaged rentals? Someone I know rented a set of Sigma cine lenses for an industrial type shoot. He got the camera/lens too close to I think a saw blade cutting through stone. Some of those stone fragments chipped the lens glass.
  7. Everyone always needs an extra light. Or that one flag to give a little negative fill. A few months ago, I bought an Aputure 120D II with a bunch of Bowens light modifiers. That light has given me so much value. Interviews before and after that light are like night and day. Before I was using a 2-panel setup through a silk-type cloth. With the 120D, I just put on a 48" beauty dish to get great soft and controllable light. A new camera couldn't have made the shots before the light look any better.
  8. I see what you mean by not having the equipment available if it is rented out. That's a good point. The marketing advantage of "I have a camera package with X" is lost, especially if an agency calls looking to book it for a date that it's rented out. And if they call and realize that it is rented out, would they call back? They might just think, "Let's find someone more reliable." Not sure. Do you know of any unique accessories that would give a marketing advantage (I know you said you couldn't think of any at the moment, but maybe one has popped up since then?). Buying a gimbal has gotten me work. I also put together a cine-modded Contax Zeiss set, but I have been very protective of that.
  9. What is your reasoning with that wedding photographer who uses Leica rangefinder cameras? Is it sharpness that you are worried about with zoom lenses? Wedding photographers, or really any photographer, need their photos to be tack sharp. For event photos, I use 3 lenses with an A7RIII: a 25mm, 40mm, and 135mm. I don't use zoom lenses because they just don't have that crispness at 100% zoom. So, I get that. But, for video, how important is a sharp image to you and how often will you need that image to be sharp as if done with a prime lens? Each video frame isn't a 47-megapixel photo. Most corporate and music video content is 1080p. Is there a noticeable difference for that kind of work to you? For work when sharpness matters, could you rent what works? If you really want that 135mm focal length without spending much money (more to see if it is worth spending money on one), you could go vintage with an adapter. Find a 135mm prime, Contax, Nikon, or Canon FD. Those vintage lenses will be very sharp and have a very nice aesthetic. If sharpness and good color rendition are important and money isn't much of an issue, the Canon 70-200 f/2.8 II with image stabilization is shockingly sharp (if kept at f/4 or above). It's big and heavy, but it competes with prime lenses at f/4. That will give you reach all the way to 200mm if you need it.
  10. I've been thinking for a while about financing or leasing a camera and then renting it out to agencies to pay for the monthly cost. I know at least 3 people who do this, but I'm unsure if it is a good idea. Do you rent out your camera? Did you purchase your camera with renting it out in mind? A little ranting and thinking out loud here: The hardest thing for me getting in to film these last 2 years has been dissociating personal cost impressions from business cost impressions. $100 in my personal account is a ton of money. But, $100 in my business account is now seen as next to nothing. I don't wait a couple of days to purchase a few hard drives for a project because of the sticker shock. The difference makes sense because business expenses are not expenses after revenue has been accounted for. In other words, it's not an expense on profit in my personal account. With personal cost impressions in mind, people don't flinch when buying and making payments on a new car, even when that car is $12,000 on up. Why should I flinch when buying a cinema camera in the same price range, especially if it is a business cost, rather than a personal cost? To add to that, aren't higher budget cameras more likely to get rented out? And, if they are more likely to get rented out, does the money gained from renting it out offset the cost of leasing it to the point that it ends up being less expensive than a lower budget camera? I'm torn between getting an Eva-1 or C200 or jumping and getting the recently-price-slashed Varicam LT or a Red. This is not about "expensive camera = more work." It's about making work less like work. Shooting on durable cine cameras that have great color and are easy to edit in post makes me happy. I hate messing with loose Metabones mounts, poor codecs, gross colors, and "fixer" LUTs. All those issues are just barriers to the fun of camera work. Having a camera that pays for itself in renting it out to people while also giving me the joy of filming (that I'm guessing everyone here shares) sounds worth it to me. Have you made this jump? Was it worth it? What should I be considering when thinking about this?
  11. I've found that optical adapters with built-in ND filter rings heavily reduce the image quality of the shot. The bloom is unbelievable. But, I have a Lens Turbo and a straight glass-free adapter. The image quality of the Canon 50mm FD lens converted through the Lens Turbo is very good, suitable for 4K work, and is indistinguishable in sharpness at around f/2.8 compared to the adapter without the glass. I agree that most of the time adapters with glass reduce the quality of the shot, but I think with the case of the Lens Turbo, the compression of the light onto a smaller sensor compensates for a decrease in sharpness as a result of a second layer of glass. I could be wrong here. Just my thoughts from using the 50mm on both types of adapters.
  12. Canon's line of FD lenses are good for that vintage look while retaining sharpness. They can also be modified with focus rings and cine rings. A good set would be a 28mm, 50mm, and 85mm. You can mount a Lens Turbo to the GH4 and then swap out the three lenses as if the camera is an FD mount camera. https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1218399-REG/mitakon_zhongyi_mtkltm2fdm43_canon_fd_lens_to.html I'd recommend getting lenses from the same brand (all Canon or all Pentax, etc.) because the appearance of your shots will vary by lens brand. Canon has a different coating on their glass than Pentax.
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