Zacuto Rapid Fire or RedRock theEvent DSLR 2.0 rig? at DVinfo.net

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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old December 3rd, 2009, 10:22 PM   #1
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Zacuto Rapid Fire or RedRock theEvent DSLR 2.0 rig?

Hi everyone,

I've got a budget of $700 to get me a nice support kit for the 7D.

I'm stuck between both the Zacuto Rapid Fire and Redrock's theEvent DSLR Rig

DSLR Rapid Fire - Zacuto
theEvent DSLR 2.0 hybrid rig

I can't see or test the kits before purchase, so all i can rely on are pictures from the net. lol

Is the Redrock theEvent DSLR rig's microbrace bodypad as customisable (in terms of adjusting height and length of the pad to suit your body) as the Zacuto's Rapid Fire?

I'd love to hear some comments and suggestions from ya all?

Thanks in advance :)
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Old December 3rd, 2009, 11:06 PM   #2
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Hi Alvin, I took a look at both of the manufacturers you asked about, what I found was that by the time I got everything I wanted both of these camera supports cost way more than the camera. I'm a bit old school and just couldn't justify it.

So I tried something else: Shape WLB - Camera supports
I purchased the Spider II because not only do I use it with the 7D but also an EX1 and its very adjustable to accommodate both. I have to admit though that since getting my 7D I haven't picked up the EX1... The Spider II came with the telescopic support arm, shape box video accessories holder, back pad, and counter weight. All of that is extra on the Zacuto and Redrock.

This is a larger shoulder mount support, the build quality is very good and it works great.

I got a rod system, viewfinder and matte box from: LCD Viewfinder Set with Plate for Canon 5D Mark II with Battery Grip

Good luck.
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Old December 4th, 2009, 02:15 AM   #3
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i honestly would not ever buy most of zacutos stuff, simply because i cant justify paying so much for their rigs. especially when you could use that money for something more usefull.

also, i read someones review on zacutos dslr rigs and the conclusion was that it wasnt all that great.. especially not for the price. I wish i could find it so you could read it but i dont remember where it was

now the redrock stuff however, i am thinking about the captain stubling for myself since it comes with what seems to be a stable rig and also the convenience of a follow focus

so in conclusion, i would recommend redrock gear because their prices offer much more bang for your buck, more customizable in terms of add ons yada yada yada

just my 2 cents..
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Old December 4th, 2009, 06:10 AM   #4
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Hi Chuck, Shape WLB looks really good! I also found another support manufacturer, Indifocus: IndiSYSTEM - Studio 4 Productions.

I'm thinking they're a good way to build up any rig. I'm looking at either the Rapid Fire or Redrock's theEvent DSLR system simply because of the shoulder pad. I prefer shoulder pads to shoulder mounts for my workflow, although an interchangeable system that allows me to use both would be great (if only i had the money! :P )

AJ, thanks for sounding out, appreciate it :) I agree, Redrock does give more bang for our bucks.
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Old December 4th, 2009, 06:46 AM   #5
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Digital SLR shoot rig by Cinevate
Cinevate: DSLR Rigs, Camera Sliders, Follow Focus and More
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Zacuto Rapid Fire or RedRock theEvent DSLR 2.0 rig?-new_dslr_rig.jpg  
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Old December 4th, 2009, 08:34 AM   #6
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Camera support equipment that I bought 20yrs ago are still in use today.

The cameras are not.

I have demo'd the Zacuto Rapid Fire and was very impressed with the flexibility they provide. I plan to buy either the Rapid Fire or the Tactical Shooter, since I do not plan on using matte boxes or follow focus units that would require rails.

Many of the posts I have read on several forums regarding Zacuto's equipment question whether or not the build quality justifies the price, ignoring the advantage of excellent flexibility.

A modular approach - such as Zacuto's system - is much more likely to be at least partially usable for a future camera or application.
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Old December 4th, 2009, 09:22 AM   #7
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The great thing about the redrock system is it is modular just like zacuto's, but at a different price point. If you look at "theEvent" rig, you can see they use 2 - 15mm rods so you can add a follow focus or other equipment later on if you want... unlike the zacuto rapid fire which is single 15mm rods.

Let's size up the two to get a real look at what you get out of each one.

Zacuto Rapid Fire (taken from http://store.zacuto.com/DSLR-Rapid-Fire.html):
Manfrotto Low Profile Quick Release adapter
Zicromount III with camera mounting pin
Z-mount II
6.5" Female/Female Rod
4.5" Female/Female Rod
Gunstock with 1/2" thread

The Zacuto rig is super simple and more light weight.

The bogen quick release zacuto uses is not really standard to all the bogen video tripods, so if you need the ability to switch quickly from the rapid fire to your bogen tripod or other equipment, I recommend you purchase some of these in addition: Manfrotto by Bogen Imaging | 357 Pro Quick Release Adapter | 357

I have three of these bogen quick release plates... one on my slider, one on my glidecam, and one on my redrock rig. Totally worth it.

The Zacuto rapid fire does not come with any hand grips and is not modular enough to add a follow focus or mattebox later on without having to buy a whole new kit.

From what I have read, the build quality from zacuto is really good and this rig is about a pound lighter.

Now on to the redrock rig...

Redrock theEvent DSLR 2.0 Hybrid rig (taken from theEvent DSLR 2.0 hybrid rig)
DSLR baseplate
2x 6" 15mm carbon fiber rods
microBrace body pad accessory kit
handlebar rod clamp
2x 4" handlebar rods
2x rubberized handgrips
microFinder loupe accessory (loupe not included)

This does not come with a standard bogen release plate either, but the DSLR baseplate is pretty nice in terms of switching between different rigs with 15mm rod configurations without having to reconfigure everything. I still recommend getting the bogen plates in addition if you need them.

This has carbon fiber rods, aluminum rods, and hand grips. This makes the whole rig about a pound heavier, but for the ability to add a follow focus or other pieces to theEvent makes it more appealing to me. It looks like you could make it just like the Zacuto by removing some things and that would make it more light weight... but I'm not sure.

Holding hand grips is more comfortable that holding the camera, but that is just my opinion.

The micro brace body pad looks adjustable just as the Zacuto. This also comes with the microfinder loupe holder, so if you decide to get a hoodman loupe, you can mount it without using velcro or rubber bands.

Redrock's build quality is top notch as well.

Taking all of that into account, I can only say from personal experience that the redrock equipment that I have owned has held up for the last 4 years or so. I have had nothing but good experience with them as well. I cannot speak for the Zacuto stuff at all since it does not fit into my budget for what I shoot, but that doesn't mean they don't make a good product! The use of a follow focus for me is invaluable, and I would have to have a rig that could accommodate that. If you can get to a store or a rental facility that has both, try them out and see what works best for you. I would say thing about what comes with each rig and weigh out the pros and cons as to what you think you would realistically need/want and factor in your budget.
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Old December 4th, 2009, 10:16 AM   #8
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Hi guys, thanks for all the input :)

Jason : Yeah, i know about Cinevate's range of products, we had a Brevis unit in the office and it was good!

Jay : I agree with your point, camera supports stay with you all the way and it's important to choose one which has a good build and flexibility. This was the point of my dilemma, as Redrock and Zacuto both have good products.

CodY : My sentiments exactly, for 100 bucks more, i could get 15mm rails and 2 handgrips from Redrock. I don't think the Redrock's kit could be fitted like the Rapid Fire, but i think it's close. I'm also planning to buy the quick release adapters too, as i have a Manfrotto 501 fluid head. Thanks for the detailed advice :)
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Old January 6th, 2010, 08:39 PM   #9
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Jason, thanks for posting that link :-) Alvin, you should check out Proteus Uno, something we just launched for folks in your budget window.

Cheers,
Dennis Wood
Cinevate: DSLR Rigs, Camera Sliders, Follow Focus and More
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Old January 8th, 2010, 10:34 AM   #10
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Ha ha too late Dennis, Alvin has made a choice but the Uno is lookin' good. Would LOVE to check it out.
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Old January 8th, 2010, 11:04 AM   #11
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Hi Dennis,

Thanks, i saw the new Proteus Uno after i made my purchase with Redrock. If I had known earlier, I would've had to tear more hair out deciding between 3 types of rigs instead of 2.

No doubt that all of you make great products. Before your recent announcement of the Proteus Uno, I felt that the Digital SLR rig was slightly too bulky for my usage (mainly run and gun style of shooting, as well as I preferred a rig with a shoulder brace rather than shoulder mount.)

Now that you have the Proteus Uno, it seems as if you have covered everything :)

I like the articulated handlebar, its something new!

I'd like to check if the Uno could be expanded to fit additional rods or clamps to fit something like a Ikan monitor?
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Old January 8th, 2010, 09:09 PM   #12
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HI everyone.

I did lots of research and wondering, and I'm very prone to acquire this setup:

* Shape WLP Sumo Pro II: around 700 bucks
* D focus followfocus: 135 (yeahh, thats what I call an affordable FF!)
* LCDVF viewfinder: 159

Lets sum it and we get 994 bucks for such a rig! Zaccuto's DSLR Sniper costs 3400 and doesnt have that telescopic thing!

I found out that FF and viewfinder in Phil Bloom blog.

Hope this information can help someone. (It took me a lot of time to discover)
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Old January 8th, 2010, 10:37 PM   #13
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Alvin, yes, the kind of cool thing about Medusa and Uno is that they both use our new link system that allows anything with a 1/4" threaded hole, to be mounted pretty much anywhere. This would include transmitters, monitors etc. We also manufacture a 3 slot "shoe" mount that can be fitted to mount a flash or other shoe mount accessory virtually anywhere on a rig. With regard to your grip comments, that all started nearly a year ago as we began work on a grip system that would affordable, light, tough and most importantly, comfortable. We rapid prototyped many versions, then ended up using modeling clay to "tune" the final prototype for our mold master. It's kind of ridiculous when we consider how much time/effort/$$ went into this, but our sponsored shooter crew made it clear there was a need for this. The ball system alone reflects nearly 2 months of testing to find the material balance between grip, durability and strength. I'm also happy to say that 100% of the manufacturing remains in the US and Canada for these products.

The whole Uno concept came from a suggestion at a Canon/New Jersey PVA event in September. A fellow by the name of Simon Scheiner there echoed your desire for lighter, more compact rig for his Canon MKII 5D. He also suggested something else which has resulted in the Durus focus ring lever. This fits to our focus rings to create what is essentially a budget focus pulling device.

Cheers,
Dennis Wood
www.cinevate.com
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Old January 11th, 2010, 10:07 AM   #14
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Hi Dennis,

Thanks for sharing :) It's good to know the rigs can be customised to include the add-ons. I echo the sentiment for a moveable (at least like Redrock's) handlebar grips. I kinda like the option of angling them to my liking.

Seems like a Cinevate product is next on my list :)
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