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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 May 18th, 2010, 07:04 AM   #31
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hi Scott (and all)

yeah the small amount.... and i notice that you have to use fingertips on gimbal in the easy touch... even when u are stop and start walking, there is a slight movement of the merlin, and from what i'm trying now, u have to counterpart this movement with the left hand fingertips.... the same when u stop (but opposite of course)

Last edited by Alessandro Pasini; May 18th, 2010 at 01:41 PM.
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Old May 25th, 2010, 12:08 AM   #32
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ok here is the point i was looking for.... do u have any tips on this?

4. When I start moving, the camera tilts down and when I stop it tilts up. How do I prevent this? (Is it related to my horizon going off when I go around a corner?)

Good question. First understand that if the Merlin is neutrally balanced at the gimbal, what you describe would not happen. However we have found that neutral balance creates many other problems -- it is way too touchy. If a mosquito landed on your lens, it would theoretically tilt straight down! So we employ an invaluable compromise––we balance for slight bottom heaviness, which allows Merlin to be trimmed to hang level (or at any angle you choose). The downside is a slight tendency to be a slow pendulum when you start, stop or go around a corner. You will learn to counter this tendency with an equally slight, opposite pressure from your fingers. If this tendency is extreme, your Merlin is too bottom-heavy. See the manual to check ‘drop-time’ and re-adjust so it takes at least one full second.
from here

http://www.tiffen.com/steadiFAQs.html

personally i notice that is the same with a small L+R starting and stopping moving....
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Old May 25th, 2010, 03:17 AM   #33
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Edit...sorry, wrong thread.
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Old May 25th, 2010, 07:54 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessandro Pasini View Post
ok here is the point i was looking for.... do u have any tips on this?

4. When I start moving, the camera tilts down and when I stop it tilts up. How do I prevent this? (Is it related to my horizon going off when I go around a corner?)

Good question. First understand that if the Merlin is neutrally balanced at the gimbal, what you describe would not happen. However we have found that neutral balance creates many other problems -- it is way too touchy. If a mosquito landed on your lens, it would theoretically tilt straight down! So we employ an invaluable compromise––we balance for slight bottom heaviness, which allows Merlin to be trimmed to hang level (or at any angle you choose). The downside is a slight tendency to be a slow pendulum when you start, stop or go around a corner. You will learn to counter this tendency with an equally slight, opposite pressure from your fingers. If this tendency is extreme, your Merlin is too bottom-heavy. See the manual to check ‘drop-time’ and re-adjust so it takes at least one full second.
from here

Welcome to Tiffen - Tiffen.Com

personally i notice that is the same with a small L+R starting and stopping moving....
Yes, I've noticed this too, the slight tilt up/down on starting/stopping. One thing that I've found which helps a lot (and is sort of obvious) is to ease-in and ease-out smoothly on starts and stops. I've also come to realize that I won't use the beginning/end of any Steadicam shots...just the smooth stuff inbetween! :-)

I think another big thing to work on (I'm still working on it!) is to develop a "6th sense" about where the Steadicam naturally wants to go (e.g. how it will naturally react to the forces on it), and try to use that motion in a shot. This can sometimes minimize the amount of finger control you need at the gimbal.

For example, sometimes you'll be tracking a subject, and the Steadicam will begin to drift around (rotate) slightly. If this happens, I will often just go with it...and reposition myself—like begin tracking around the subject. This results in a smoother shot than if I had tried to stop the rotation wth my fingers.

It's definitely a never-ending learning process! :-)

Scott
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Old August 9th, 2010, 03:40 AM   #35
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Took me an hour to balance the T2i with the battery grip on Merlin. I have to use the battery grip as the plate blocked the battery door. Steadicam works better with the additional weight.=)
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Old August 12th, 2010, 08:54 PM   #36
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totally different

I'm the opposite of most people. I found my merlin really hard to use on the fx1 and hv20. However, on the 550d+18-55 it has been a dream. Its a great weight to give you a solid image but also not wear your arm out. I feel like its the first time i've had a viable "steadicam" solution i could use in production.

We tend to use steadicams only when other gripping solutions fall through, especially in forward tracking shots.

Its all pretty quick, but the "zooming into the face" effect on pretty much everyone in the entire series is done on the merlin. In the first video specifically the zoom in on the main girl and the "chasing the girl between two containers" shots (all quite quick) were done on the 550/merlin.

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If you balanced it but are still having push/pull problems, I reckon you need to change your weights/arm height and rebalance. When its properly in balanced in both top/bottom and front/back its a whole different world.

Cheers!
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Old August 25th, 2010, 09:51 PM   #37
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T2i, battery grip and the Merlin.

Taky.

I have the exact same situation, can you give me your settings, since I am new to Merlin, I am having a bear of a time trying to balance it. I have the battery handle that has the sliding drawer with 2 batteries.

Thanks in advance.

Gerry G
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Old August 25th, 2010, 09:57 PM   #38
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Oh I don't have the same setup anymore. I installed a Tokina 11-16mm lens. The extra weight surprising balance the merlin very well. I have merlin for a few years with different config. This is the best setup ever.

If you have the same setup, let me know =)
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Old August 25th, 2010, 10:33 PM   #39
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T2i, battery grip and the Merlin.

Taky. thanks anyways.

Anyone.

If you have this set up can you please share your settings?

Thanks

GG
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Old August 31st, 2010, 04:58 PM   #40
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I'm trying right now to mount my T2i to the steadicam merlin.

The problem I'm having is that I can't use the included locating pin to attach to the t2i because there's no hole for the locating pin on the bottom of the T2i body or on the bottom of the generic battery grip I'm using. This is causing the camera to move around the mounting plate even though the mounting screw is in pretty tight.

What has everyone else been doing?
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Old August 31st, 2010, 05:08 PM   #41
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pad some robbery plastic or sticky stuff between the plate and the bottom of the camera/battery grip will do. That's what I am doing. They also talked about that in the merlin triaining DVD.
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Old August 31st, 2010, 05:12 PM   #42
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ah, interesting, thanks.

I don't have the DVD so I'm just using the manual to try and figure this out unfortunately.
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Old August 31st, 2010, 05:17 PM   #43
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The training DVD is confusing also.. not really something easy to follow. So you don't miss much.

I use those rubber stuff you can buy in bed bath and beyond, or in car auto shop. That thing you can put someone on your dash board so it won't slide away... that kind of thing...
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Old September 1st, 2010, 01:32 AM   #44
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I have to disagree - the training DVD was very helpful in getting me flying my Merlin quickly and successfully (in my case with a 7D) - after all, it's narrated by the guru himself. I also seem to remember some parts of it (if not all) are on the web somewhere - maybe the Tiffen site?

I think most of the people who have problems flying Merlins rush the learning stages and/or don't take time to understand the (albeit) very basic concepts (well to me they are, but I was scientist/engineer in a former career) of how this complex rig works and how to correctly adjust it for coarse and fine balance. Once you've got that in your head it's VERY easy to set-up. The other thing, that is much harder to learn, and can only be gained after lots of practice, is just how light and subtle you need to be with all movements/corrections when flying a Merlin Steadicam once it is fully balanced. I imagine this will be even more so with a very light T2i (compared to my heavier 7D).

I'm still learning (....you always will be with a Steadicam) but the DVD certainly got me flying - and now I'm hooked!
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Old September 1st, 2010, 01:56 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
The other thing, that is much harder to learn, and can only be gained after lots of practice, is just how light and subtle you need to be with all movements/corrections when flying a Merlin Steadicam once it is fully balanced. I imagine this will be even more so with a very light T2i (compared to my heavier 7D).
Charles Papert has posted elsewhere on this forum that the Merlin is harder to control than a 'proper' big Steadicam because of this need for such light & subtle control.
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