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Old November 21st, 2008, 11:09 PM   #1
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How practical is to shoot handheld with a Letus DOF lens attached?

I am sorry if this is a ridiculous question because I am not even sure if it is even usable when not on a tripod and extra support. Is it possible to go out in the world with a Letus attached and shoot without a tripod?

As you can see, I am no where near ready to venture into DOF lenses so I decided to start somewhere and ask this question.
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Old November 22nd, 2008, 03:01 PM   #2
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Monopod

I use a monopod with rails attached to support the lens. It is then much easier to move around. Hope this helps. The Letus extreme itself is freaking Heavy to say the least. I would not dare using the adapter without the rails support and forget hand held. Just too heavy. A monopod will do the trick if you want to freely move around, and obviously best on a tripod.
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Old November 22nd, 2008, 08:04 PM   #3
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Do wedding videographers use it on a monopod? Thats is something I'm interested in doing.
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Old November 22nd, 2008, 09:38 PM   #4
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depends on what works best for you. shoulder mount is also an option.

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Old November 23rd, 2008, 06:39 PM   #5
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No Letus use for weddings

Sorry to say, buy shooting weddings with a 35mm Adapter is a royal pain in the butt.
Can't imagine fooling with an adapter when you are constantly on the run at weddings. You have to constantly fool with the focus and needs tons of light. Now, unless you shoot pre-ceremony with the adapter then might be okay, but forget about the reception. I shoot with 2 XHA1's with a 2 man crew and I can honestly say, I dont have time to fool with it. Too cumbersome. But there are guys out there that do so maybe they can shed some light.
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Old November 23rd, 2008, 08:42 PM   #6
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I use the RNG35 with Brevis Flip so about the same weight as the Letus and have rails with shoulder mount and handle, I shoot non wedding stuff with A1/DOF and weddings with HV30/DOF. the A1 is pretty heavy but worth the effort, I personally don't like mono pods as I got more to carry around, and if I want a tripod shot, then I use a tripod which I have in standby, in saying that if I could afford 2 A1's then I would have one on the DOF always.

But definitely Yes you can do hand-held no worries. here is Stillmotion in action ||StillMotion||BehindTheScenes|| on Vimeo and you'll see them using the Brevis unit with the shoulder mount setup.
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Old November 27th, 2008, 05:24 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Peter Szilveszter View Post
I use the RNG35 with Brevis Flip so about the same weight as the Letus and have rails with shoulder mount and handle, I shoot non wedding stuff with A1/DOF and weddings with HV30/DOF. the A1 is pretty heavy but worth the effort, I personally don't like mono pods as I got more to carry around, and if I want a tripod shot, then I use a tripod which I have in standby, in saying that if I could afford 2 A1's then I would have one on the DOF always.

But definitely Yes you can do hand-held no worries. here is Stillmotion in action ||StillMotion||BehindTheScenes|| on Vimeo and you'll see them using the Brevis unit with the shoulder mount setup.
What rail system is Michael using in this?
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Old November 27th, 2008, 10:38 PM   #8
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I think its the Cinevate rails but the shoulder mount would be from another company as it doesn't look like the one Cinevate are selling but I could be wrong. I have the Cavision rail/shouler with single handgrip.
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Old December 4th, 2008, 03:00 PM   #9
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If Im not mistaken, Casey (the person who shot that video) uses a DOF lens on a steadicam.

http://images.vimeo.com/72/62/88/726...628862_300.jpg
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Old December 4th, 2008, 06:33 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Arif Syed View Post
If Im not mistaken, Casey (the person who shot that video) uses a DOF lens on a steadicam.

http://images.vimeo.com/72/62/88/726...628862_300.jpg
You may want to ask him that because doing pull focuses couldn't really be done on a Steadicam Pilot whilst moving around with it.
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Old February 24th, 2009, 01:51 AM   #11
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Still Motion

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Handheld brevis work, steadicam brevis work. It can be done.

Specifically with steadicam, there's no need to pull focus if you keep the same distance between the lens and the subject as you move (e.g. travel in an arc), or if you open up the aperture a bit to deepen the focus.
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Old March 7th, 2009, 11:06 AM   #12
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I've tried using my EX1 with Letus and Zacuto rails handheld a couple of times. Works okay for shorter periods of time. With my Chinese el cheapo shoulder mount it is almost accaptable. A bit front heavy though. I shot this without the shoulder mount.

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Old March 8th, 2009, 10:48 AM   #13
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for planned, repeatable well-lit shots - fine

for elaborate multi-camera shoots - fine

but for solo run and gun - you must be looking for a challenge, a chance to show that you can pull off something most operators wouldn't even attempt. Like running the Boston marathon in a business suit.
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Old March 8th, 2009, 11:05 AM   #14
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One thing you're forgetting about trying to shoot run-and-gun with a Letus, is the lenses. In my experience, trying to capture random stuff means you're going to want to zoom in and out quite a bit. This means changing lenses when using the Letus (Nikon doesn't make a 17-200 f/2.8) so you'll be constantly changing between wide, standard and telephoto. This may or may not be a problem.

When ever I have to document an event, where I have no control of what I have to shoot (I just try and capture it live) I take the Letus off. But when I have control, I will always choose to shoot with the Letus (hand held, tripod, what ever)

The real challenge recently was filming a bunch of babies for a hospital shoot. We set up a large cloth backdrop and let the babies crawl around and interact with each other. I wanted shallow DOF for that soft look, but they were moving around so much it was tricky to keep them in sharp focus. In hindsight, I should have shot at a higher f-stop than f/2.8. (maybe f/4.0 or something)

I'm still learning. :)
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Old March 9th, 2009, 03:46 PM   #15
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mitchell - most professional camera ops cut their teeth on prime lenses. It's not the issue you think it is. It requires planning and practice.

Going handheld makes using prime lenses easier - think about it
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