After putting one together for my own use, I'm toying with the idea of developing a product that I have found to be very useful for some situations on set. It is a small box that mounts on the back of the camera and connects to various inputs/outputs of the camera/evf. It then has a jack for a simple, relatively thin and light umbilical cord that goes to a bag (I use a small sound bag) that contains teradek, timecode, camera hop, battery, etc. This bag can be worn on the back of the operator, held by the ac, etc. The cord can be easily connected/disconnected with one hand. It's as easy as plugging in a microphone cord. Advantages of this approach to rigging include:
1. Reduced time building/tearing down camera on set. The bag of accessories can be easily pre-built and, much like sound kits, can really stay wired up permanently if someone owns all of it.
2. Time, money, and back pain savings due to lighter, simpler, and smaller camera rig. Sliders, jibs, etc. can all be smaller, less expensive, easier to transport, etc. Multiple cord lengths are possible for different scenarios. The camera can also be more easily rigged in difficult to reach places while allowing access "on the ground" to many of the things that might require adjustment. Very light-weight shoulder setups become possible. My own go-to kit for small jobs is an Fs5 with a Fujinon MK 18-55. Without all of the accessories, it is a feather that I can carry on the shoulder all day without discomfort. Also, the camera without all of the accessories can much more easily be thrown into a bag for mid-day transportation.
3. Easy camera switching for shoots that contain alternate camera options, or even just multiples of the same camera for fast switching from one rigging scenario to another. Rather than building two entire rigs, or switching every accessory over one by one and rewiring, you simply disconnect the umbilical from one rig and plug it into the other. Done.
4. Instant transition from rigged to un-rigged camera setups. You don't have to choose between the ultra light weight of, say, a naked fs5 or c200, and the capabilities of a fully rigged system. One plug can make the transition. So If the operator needs to run grab a quick shot in a car alone, say, they can pull the plug, grab the newly tiny camera, and go.
I would love to hear your thoughts. Thank you in advance!