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Matthew Sonnenfeld
New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 4, 2012 at 8:02:01 am

Wooden Camera announced a bunch of new accessories. Frankly, this is the cage that I will want. Among many other pieces.

http://woodencamera.corecommerce.com/New-Releases-BMC

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Marco Solorio
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 4, 2012 at 5:38:31 pm

I love that Wooden Camera is coming out with a BMDCC cage to add to the competition fire, but I have to admit, out of the available ones out there, this is actually the least one I like. To me its the bulkiest of all of them and looks like there's a lot of added weight that doesn't need to be there. A major pet peeve of mine with cage design is when some designers don't make the side of the cage flush with the top and/or bottom plates (in this case both). That means if you want to add a plate or box of some kind (cheese-plate, wireless receiver, whatever), it doesn't sit flat against the cage's side. Just something I've experienced with in the past.

I have both the Viewfactor and Shape cages on their way to me. I like both cages for different reasons, but I'll probably use the Viewfactor the most; very flush and contoured to the BMDCC's body itself.

And FWIW for anyone looking at the Wooden Camera accessories, the $200 A-Box (XLR to 1/4" adapter) are passive and nothing more than an XLR to 1/4" cable with a mount on it. Frankly, I'd just get a pair of $10 XLR to 1/4" TRS cables and call it good. Just my 2 cents.

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Eric Santiago
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 6, 2012 at 4:25:02 am

Sounds great that we have all these options.
The Wooden one does look bulky but I cant write it off till I see it with a BMCC intact.
Now the VF Im worried about in regards to adding a Follow Focus.
As far as looks go I like the VF and it almost looks solid compared to Wooden.
Again, Id have to see it in action even in videos before biting.


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Marco Solorio
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 6, 2012 at 4:56:14 am

I was worried about the Viewfactor cage being in the way of the follow focus as well, but looking at the profile, the camera's bayonet sticks out *really* far, more so than any Canon DSLR by miles, so even with the cage, it looks like there will still be more room for a FF than any DSLR body. My image from my article last April shows the comparison:



Looking at the profile, if you align the lens release button of both cameras, the BMDCC sits wayyyyyy back further, allowing for any follow you could image with plenty of room, even with the Viewfactor cage installed.

Both my BMDCC and cages should be arriving soon. Pics will be released the same day.

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Marco Solorio
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 7, 2012 at 12:58:20 am

Bebob also has a BMDCC cage. Probably the bulkiest of the bunch that I've seen, but I really do like the built-in rosettes on the bottom front. At any rate, you can see how far this cage pokes out (much further than the ViewFactor cage).

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=226695140786366

I still like the ViewFactor cage the best with the Shape at a close second! ;-)

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Matthew Sonnenfeld
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 8, 2012 at 5:40:17 pm

Marco, I definitely see what you're saying about the Wooden Camera cage not being flush. Personally I do wish it were too. But to me, the protection that a cage will give the camera is equally as important as the mounting points and just about everything else. The cage from Wooden just looks like the most protective to me. God forbid it fell, barring the protruding lens mount and the lens itself of course, the cage looks to be hitting the ground before the camera. No cage will protect the lens of course, but especially with the touch screen, I want to know that's as safe as it can possibly be. The Wooden just seems to be the most comprehensive cage I've seen, certainly not the most elegant and is not without design flaws, but comprehensive. On top of that, the range of additional accessories such as the top handle and baseplate make it feel Iike a good ecosystem to me.

On the other hand, there is a lot to be said of lightness and speed and the Viewfactor and the Bebob seem to be the best combination of those. I think at the end of the day it comes down to your specific needs. As I've said before, it's great to have so many options.

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Marco Solorio
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 10, 2012 at 6:38:15 am

Yeah, I totally agree, Matthew, that the WC cage definitely looks like the toughest in terms of camera protection. I guess for me it's always been form and function first and protection secondary. I guess I figure if I'm going to drop the camera, stuff is going to still break no matter what. But it sounds like the WC is the best option for your needs and you're right, it's really nice that so many options are already out there.

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Peter J. DeCrescenzo
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 11, 2012 at 9:49:29 am

I can understand why a camera cage is useful in certain situations, but I'd rather use a camera relatively "naked", at least at first.

There are other things I might want to add to a camera before considering a cage, especially more/better lenses, mic, basic rod & support system, and possibly a FF, or EVF/monitor, Blackbird or other stabilizer, and such. For me a cage is far, far down the list.

John Brawley was able to use a "bare" BMCC to shoot clips for a TV series. I don't know if he would have preferred to use the cam with a cage if one were available. Unlike a lot of posters online, buying a camera cage doesn't seem to be his first priority. (Although it appears he's at least checking them out as manufacturers send him items to review.)

Meanwhile, I admit I enjoy "window shopping" for gear, even when I'm not buying! ;-)

---

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Marco Solorio
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 11, 2012 at 6:45:00 pm

Personally speaking from experience from my other camera rigs of years past, my BMDCC will never be "cageless". Fortunately, I have all the accessories you list in multitude, so I'm not starting from scratch in that regard. But even if I were, I would still get a cage first. For me, the cage on a camera is the first building block for making it truly functional in a professional production environment. The very biggest thing for me is that any camera rig needs to have a top handle on it. When you're pulling setup from one scene to the next, the quickest, safest, and strongest way to do so is with a camera that has a top handle on it, otherwise you're asking for trouble...

It's not so much the cage protects it if you drop it, it protects it from getting dropped in the first place.

But again, only if you have a top handle on it.

Secondary, the 1/4-20 taps on it obviously allow for mounting much needed accessories. What I typically do is mount a cheese bar on the top rods, then mount an LCD or EFV on the left of it, and sometimes a boom mic on the right of it. This is very strong, and easy to use and manage. In a compact setup, I've also mounted a wireless lav receiver (or two!) on the cage as well. And since the BMDCC doesn't have internal phantom power, I'll probably use my Denecke 2-channel phantom power supply and mount it to the cage. The possibilities are endless.

As for John, he couldn't use a cage during his BMDCC shoots because none existed, and some are still not available. He just started getting cages delivered to him (Viewfactor and Bebob so far at the least). He's pretty stoked about getting them so I'll wager he'll be using them from this point on. But in the end, do what's right for you, caged or cageless, no matter what John, me, or anyone else thinks is great for the greater majority; everyone's projects, production setups, requirements, and budgets are all different. ;-)

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Peter J. DeCrescenzo
Re: New Wooden Camera Accessories
on Aug 11, 2012 at 10:06:05 pm

I hear you, Marco. I agree options & flexibility are good, but of course, are rarely free.

I've been handling video cameras of all shapes & sizes for >25 years, including a full-size shoulder-mount cam out on the ice shooting an interview at the halftime break during a pro hockey game, and haven't dropped or seriously bumped a camera yet. But I guess there's a first time for everything.

If I find my BMCC doesn't have enough mounting points I plan to configure a very compact, lightweight shoulder rig based on 15mm rods. Including a secure way to mount the SD MixPre I've had for years, and also my AB or possible replacement V-mount batts. Still researching parts. But as you say, adding some sort of sturdy top handle is a good idea, and probably sooner rather than later.

Cheers.

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