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chris walker
shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 1:27:33 am

I'm about to make a switch from a mini-dv camcorder (dvx100a) to the panasonic gh2 for video and I've been doing some research about budget (under $500) steady camera solutions. I do run-and-gun shooting mostly (weddings etc.) and I need to be able to quickly switch from a tripod to some kind of shoulder brace that leaves my hands free to make exposure adjustments during filming. I'm leaning towards getting a Manfrotto tripod in the $300 range with a quick release plate, so I'd want the brace to accept the plate. Shoulder brace rather than a steadicam device such as the Hague, even though a shoulder brace doesn't provide as much stability, because I would often be shooting hand held for more than 10 minutes at a time and would get too tired. The main requirements are the $500 budget and that the switch from a tripod to the brace take just a few seconds. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


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Michael Sacci
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 4:35:26 am

You are going to have to buy a new receiver for the release plate, so when you get the tripod, get a receiver/plate and then you have a backup plate.

Look at Jag35.com and indisystem.com for $500 braces.


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chris walker
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 4:13:33 pm

Thanks for the info, but I should have clarified that the $500 budget includes the $300 for a tripod. I've seen some shoulder rigs advertised for well under $100, such as the Adorama model, but it's not clear from the ads whether I could use a quick release plate that would also fit on my tripod. Just wondering what people have tried..


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Peter DeCrescenzo
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 5:07:48 pm

"Hands free" is the tricky part of your request, especially in your price range.

But you raise a good point: Most shoulder-style camera rigs only rest on one shoulder. This can make it difficult to keep the camera steady while recording when you change from supporting the cam/rig with both hands, to one hand supporting the cam while the other hand start/stops recording or adjusts lens focus or cam settings.

This "hands-free" 2-shoulder rig from Norman looks interesting, but I haven't used it myself. I wonder if the camera operator's breathing causes it to move?:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/588886-REG/Norman_810611_GP100_GoPod_...

---

http://www.peterdv.com


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Steve Crow
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 7:02:42 pm

Hi Peter, that brace you linked to looks interesting but I think what the original poster wanted was something more along the lines of a rail system which could stay mounted on the tripod so that when he's ready to go handheld he can simply release the unit from the tripod, swing it onto his shoulder and continue shooting.

With a solution like the one you linked to, he would have to drag that around with him everywhere, then release the camera from his tripod and mount it again, that's going to take more than the couple of seconds he was looking for.

On the other hand he's going to have a challenge finding any kind of solution in his price range.


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Sohrab Sandhu
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 7:50:54 pm

I have been using a monopod with my T2i for sometime now and i am very happy with the results.

I'll suggest you buy a monopod alongwith a manfrotto 501 head. The head is about $ 170 from B&H and monopods too are very cheap. You can mount this head on your monopod and switch between your tripod and monopod.

Great thing about using a monopod is that once its rested on the ground it frees both your hands, so you can play around with the camera!

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chris walker
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 7:59:30 pm

Yes, this sounds better than the other alternatives mentioned, in my price range. But I saw this video (link below), and it looks like the cheap rig it shows will suit my needs, IF I can switch to it quickly from my tripod. Has anyone tried this one? I suppose if I can attach to this the same kind of quick-release-plate-holder that is on my tripod, but I don't know how to search for that. Thanks for all the help guys.


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chris walker
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Dec 11, 2010 at 9:12:21 pm

Whoops I forget to include the link:
http://review.planet5d.com/rigs/adorama-hands-free-shoulder-support-bracket...


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Whitney Angstadt
Re: shoulder brace/monopod/tripod advice for panasonic gh2 video
on Apr 22, 2011 at 9:23:31 am

Just saw this. Looks like something that might be what you're looking for:

http://www.eoshd.com/content/631


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