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Old October 31st, 2007, 08:14 PM   #1
Inner Circle
 
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ProAm Multimedia DVC200 Video Camera Crane (phew!)

Hi,

Anybody got experience, good or bad, of the grandly titled ProAm Multimedia DVC200 Video Camera Crane from Bargain-Camera (regular eBay sellers).

I have a limited budget and I'm acutely aware of the 'you get what you pay for' philosophy. I realise at this price I'm not getting the cream of the jib world, but would I be getting a lemon?

I am looking for an entry level jib that will be used mainly on corporate videos, with the odd music/drama video every now and then. I'm a freelance video production shop - quite successful, I'm proud to boast, with household names like Virgin and T-Mobile as clients - but I have yet to venture into the world of jibs and cranes. I figured that if I bought a budget model I could at least see how practical it is for me to take on shoots, and how often I would use it etc etc (given the time constraints often imposed on a corporate shoot - how often have I packed everything in the truck and used 5% of it??). If it becomes a regular fixture then I would consider investing properly in a more substantial model. What I don't want to do, though, is to make my entry into jib-land a painful experience because I've bought a pile of rubbish!

Any advice on this model would be welcomed - especially from UK purchasers, if any. Any ideas on the import tax and how long things are taking to get through customs at the moment?

Thanks.

Ian . . .
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Old October 31st, 2007, 08:27 PM   #2
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Hi Ian..............

Can't comment on the mentioned kit as I've never heard of it.

BUT, may I suggest you look a bit closer to home and check out B. Hague in Nottingham. They do a complete range of camera support gear including a great line up of cranes to suit just about every pocket.

Their workmanship is first class and the prices are reasonable, and no "lemons" in the lot.


http://www.b-hague.co.uk/camera%20su...%20systems.htm


CS

PS. I've got their J12 jib and it's a corker, you need a pretty good tripod for it though - all up with a Canon A1 and counterweights it tops out @ about 48 kilos!
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Old November 1st, 2007, 03:21 AM   #3
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Hi Chris,

Thanks for the suggestion. Actually I had already looked at B. Hague. Their offerings look great but they're three (or more) times the cost of the budget model I'm looking at. The two cheap B. Hague models won't support my camera (XL2) and the lowest spec model they offer that will support it is 650 inc VAT.

Keeping in mind I'm looking for a 'starter' jib to see how I get on with it, I'm keen to limit what I spend now. If it becomes indispensible then I'll gladly pay premium prices for premium products and, yes, they'll likely be from a more local supplier.

B. Hague clearly have the superior product, though.

Thanks again,

Ian . . .
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Old November 2nd, 2007, 07:35 AM   #4
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I have taken the plunge and bought a jib from this guy: http://www.avant-gardefilms.com/2007equipment.htm . He sells on eBay, or direct through his site.

I asked a load of (possibly dumb) questions and he answered all of them promptly and without any hint of newbie-phobia. He is extremely helpful, friendly and open to custom requests.

These jibs are made to order in the UK and I hope to take delivery within two weeks. I'll report back to let the forum know what I think of the jib after I've played around with it for a while.

Last edited by Ian Stark; November 2nd, 2007 at 04:59 PM.
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Old November 2nd, 2007, 07:53 AM   #5
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I just re-read the posting policy page and I guess I should ask whether or not we are actually allowed to mention B. Hague or Avante-Garde.

Three reasons why I think it is probably within acceptable posting guidelines as set out by Chris Hurd:

1. These are both manufacturers, not dealers. The guidelines state no mentioning or linking to dealers who are not DVi sponsors.

2. Both are in the UK whereas every listed DVi sponsor is a US company, which might make purchasing from them by non-US customers impractical or costly in terms of delivery/customs clearance/import duty/returns etc.

3. In this particular case we are discussing the merits of a piece of hardware that is (so it seems) new to the forum and would merit a user review as well as observations about the vendor.

If I'm wrong about this then I apologise for posting.
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Old November 2nd, 2007, 06:25 PM   #6
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No worries Ian. Post away. Thanks,
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Old November 2nd, 2007, 07:25 PM   #7
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Hi Ian..........

Guess we'll have to wait till you've had time to review the unit and post (well, I will at any rate - can't get any of the video to work) and pictures are sparse to put it mildly.

With the limited info I can see, my only comment so far is that the stand pictured doesn't look all that robust. Think I'll have to reserve judgment on anything else till after your review.


Good luck. I do hope it isn't a lemon.


CS
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Old November 3rd, 2007, 04:36 AM   #8
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Thanks Chris H - thought I should check rather than risk putting noses out of joint. Your forum after all!

Hi again, Chris S - shouldn't be long (couple of weeks). Keep in mind this will be a "new-to-the-world-of-jibs" review as I have very limited experience of operating one.

I also couldn't get the video to work but that might be because it requires Real Player (which I will never install again!). If you look at his eBay pages you'll see an example of the shots obtained from using the jib (Real not required) but no other stills or video of the jib itself.

I thought exactly the same as you about the stand and asked if it could be swapped out for some other equal value component. I have an old, heavy, rock solid Vinten Protouch tripod which I plan to use with the jib and he agreed (actually, he offered) to supply the Whitworth bolt (whatever that is?!) I would need to do that. In the end I decided I would take the unit as supplied, with the original stand. While it may look under par for supporting the jib I'm a firm believer in "you can never have enough stands" so I'm sure I will find a use for it.

Thanks for your good luck wishes! Likewise, I hope it ain't a lemon! We'll know soon . . .

Cheers,

Ian . . .

Last edited by Ian Stark; November 3rd, 2007 at 05:24 AM. Reason: spolling mistake
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