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Magic Arm and Flycam 6000 - good with the EX1

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Olly Lawer
Magic Arm and Flycam 6000 - good with the EX1
on Jan 18, 2009 at 12:33:20 pm

Hi,

I am seriously thinking of buying a Sony EX1 and need to find a affordable steadicam for it. thecincity seem to offer the perfect solution - with a tripod as well - all for a mere $1000.

Has anyone had any experience of using this steadicam? The others I have looked at are the Merlin range, but they are too expensive and not suitable as the EX1 weights a fair bit - unless you go to a Pilot. The Glidecam 4000 is also far to expensive.

It will mostly be used for filming weddings, but some corporate filming too.

Thanks



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Rick Wise
Re: Magic Arm and Flycam 6000 - good with the EX1
on Jan 19, 2009 at 7:24:22 pm

Thanks for drawing our attention to this Indian company. Very interesting.

Any kind of body-vest, Steadicam-like system adds a fair amount of back strain and needs lots and lots of practice to use well. It also takes time to get into, and to get out of. You might consider the much cheaper shoulder mount by the same Indian company. It looks like you can adapt it to be as minimal or complete as you like. There is one thing this shoulder mount will not do: let you make smooth tracking shots. To do so, I've found that the simplest solution is the best, barring using a full-up Steadicam device: remove any shoulder support, zoom out to the wide end of the lens, hold the camera with both hands lightly and loosly in front of you letting your arms act as shock absorbers, and stay CLOSE to the subject. This works only if the subject is moving. If you want to walk up to a stationary subject, you will definitely want to use a full-up type steadicam -- or lay down track and use a dolly, probably not an option during a wedding.

If you add a quick-release plate to the shoulder system, you can quickly move back and forth from shoulder mount to fully-free handheld, or to a tripod. Just make sure you get a plate that works with both support systems.

Rick Wise
director of photography
Oakland, CA
http://www.RickWiseDP.com
email: Rick@RickWiseDP.com


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Olly Lawer
Re: Magic Arm and Flycam 6000 - good with the EX1
on Jan 19, 2009 at 8:06:24 pm

Great. Thanks for your reply.

I can see from other posts that any steadicam system takes a lot of practice and getting used to. Interesting, I was also thinking it would help not to strain the back and the vest supports you. Considering the EX1 is quite a heavy camera then, I need to consider something - I think the shoulder mount is the best thing. In all reality, I won't be doing a lot of tracking shots and the weddings I will concentrate on in the first part will be the market that wants inconspicuous filming - although I am told others like all the equipment out to show off their status!

Just out of interest, the shoulder mount with quick release you mentioned - have you a good make that you have in mind? Same with the tripod. My budget is low and I am willing to consider buying used equipment if I could only find a decent site that delivers to the UK.



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Rick Wise
Re: Magic Arm and Flycam 6000 - good with the EX1
on Jan 19, 2009 at 10:00:20 pm

I suggest you find your tripod first and then find quick-release systems to fit it and the shoulder mount. My favorite source of gear is bhphotovideo.com. When I'm looking for more expensive items, I check daily their used equipment section.

Note that there are many, many shoulder mount systems, and a huge range in price. The Indian one looks pretty slick, but I've never used it, nor any of the others you can find by searching both bhphotovideo.com and a general, google serach for shoulder mount camera. Here are a couple that have caught my eye:
--http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=product&A=ShowProduct&Q=&...
--http://www.dvtec.tv/
--http://www.studio1productions.com/vsb1.htm

I think the qualities to look for are: comfort to wear, lightness, durability, ease of mounting camera in different configurations, ease of free movement.

A moderately cheap tripod I'd consider is the Cartoni SPD2 (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/569363-REG/Cartoni_SPD2_SPD2_STATUS_P...) for $950. Below that I'd consider the Manfrotto 701 HDV and legs for $300 (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/591118-REG/Bogen_Manfrotto_701HDV_547...)

Rick Wise
director of photography
Oakland, CA
http://www.RickWiseDP.com
email: Rick@RickWiseDP.com


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