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Tim Ford

What camera would you recommend to a film student?

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just a comment on the cheap-o Chinese accessories kits: the matte boxes and follow focuses are usually complete garbage which does not last even in hobby use.

It is possible to use Chinese or Indian camera accessories with SOMEWHAT good results but one really needs to buy all the parts separately and assemble the kit by themselves. The rod parts and the rods themselves are for example not ideal and have to be tuned.

I myself use couple of rod adapters custom attached to a cheeseplate and a Manfrotto long quick release plate again custom attached to r15mm rods. needs milling and drilling and couple of hours of work but works way better than any Chinese stuff out of the box, I can use it with for example dslr:s, bolex, Kinor2m and FS7.

The rods are from different manufacturers, as well as the handgrips, cheeseplate, various rod parts, shoulder pad, etc.

 

I recommend buying a used Chrosziel etc. professional mattebox and not bother with the all-plastic Chinese stuff. most of the rods parts can be Chinese if needed but the cheap matteboxes just are not worth it. the Tilta stuff is more usable but is also much more expensive so you could probably get a used quality item cheaper

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I use a Film City rig that has served me very well. The matte box is metal and built strong, the rods fit nice as well. The base plate needed a little adjustment, and I bought a more comfortable shoulder pad - but the entire kit cost less than $300 after upgrades. I spent a little more on the follow focus, only because cheaper follow focuses tend to have a lot of play in them - but I still only spent $120 on mine and it has performed flawlessly over a lot of abuse. I still use a 7" Freeworld monitor that cost $140 on Amazon, and it has served me great as well. Super sharp and good colors.

 

Frankly, as long as you pay attention to what you are buying, and are willing to return something that doesn't work right - there is no issue at all with cheaper equipment. Frankly, I think companies like Chrosziel are over-priced for what they offer. Yeah, built quality may be a LITTLE better (but not always), but you're mainly buying the fancy name and street cred that goes along with it.

 

Just the opinion of someone who has used that 'cheap junk' a lot.

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Frankly, I think companies like Chrosziel are over-priced for what they offer. Yeah, built quality may be a LITTLE better (but not always), but you're mainly buying the fancy name and street cred that goes along with it.

 

Just the opinion of someone who has used that 'cheap junk' a lot.

I've had my Chrosziel mattebox since the lens adaptor days. It was $2000 at the time and has lasted over 8 years through 5 different cameras. You buy more than quality when you spend money on better name products. You also buy resale value. You can't resell crap knockoffs but you can always resell an Arri Follow Focus and get a pretty good price for it.

 

Same holds for lighting and lenses. Investing in better names means paying less because you can turn it over for closer to your purchase price. You don't really own the gear you buy. You're always just holding it till you decide to sell it. Unless you buy crap nobody else would want.

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