Manfrotto FIG RIG Stabilizer System at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Shoulder & Handheld Supports


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 29th, 2008, 10:24 PM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 65
Manfrotto FIG RIG Stabilizer System

Have anyone use this type of steadycam before?
if yes, please comment whether it is worth using it and is it any good?. Thanks.

*not sure where to post this thread.
Anthony Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 02:20 AM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Bedfordshire, UK
Posts: 863
I think you will get it, see what others produce with an actual steadicam and long for the real thing.
Danny O'Neill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 07:04 AM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 689
i think you would look like a real dope carrying around a steering wheel. even more so
considering that pos doesn't have any sort of weights to counter balance, or a gymbal.
Scott Hayes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 10:08 AM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny O'Neill View Post
I think you will get it, see what others produce with an actual steadicam and long for the real thing.
hi Danny, are those clips used Manfrotto FIG RIG to move around?
I think it is acceptable because it is steady enough. Also it has advantages over other system because of the quick plate release. Speed is the key for any event work.
Anthony Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 10:33 AM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 689
you can get a QR for just about any stablilizer. i would think the steering wheel is going to wear you out quickly, as you have to keep your arms extended during shots. Just MHO.
Scott Hayes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 10:39 AM   #6
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 65
Only use where appropriate. Not suitable for church or speeches.
Only suitable for dancing and during photos. The same plate for both tripod and fig rig is a plus.
Anthony Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 10:51 AM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Jupiter, FL
Posts: 241
I have a Figg Rig and while it's better then hand holding a compact camcorder, it's no Steadicam. It does distribute the weight of the camera across both arms and if you're subtle with your movements you can get pretty smooth shots. However, if you're looking to do Steadicam style shots (especially walking or running) you need something with a gimbal. If you want to do walking shots where some camera movement is acceptable the Figg Rig is fine. An alternate choice to the Figg Rig is the DVRigPro, it will add stability (not Steadicam) but is less expensive than a Steadicam. Personally, I think its more versatile and easier to hold steady than the Figg Rig. Also, the Figg Rig is a PITA when it comes to setting it down.
-JL
Josh Laronge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 11:35 AM   #8
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 65
looks too bulky and too much for shoot and run.
I already have a monpod and a tripod both i found really useful. Fig Rig is to replace the dolly which is useless.
Anthony Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 02:01 PM   #9
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Apple Valley CA
Posts: 4,866
Just to add about 4.5 cents worth to the discussion...

I haven't used a fig rig, but I DO use a homebrew bracket set I cobbled up from a flat flash bracket and two folding type brackets - same principle as the FR, but more compact and fine for my smaller cameras. Big cam goes on a shoulder mount or Steady stick, neither of which is very good for moving about, but good for standing in one spot with the ability to move to another location quickly.

For the following, If you don't know the meaning of roll pitch and yaw, google it, look at the first link...

SO, here's what a FR or bracket rig WILL do for you - you get WAY more control of the "roll" axis of your camera - it becomes a lot easier to keep your horizon line level (reducing tha "seasick home video" vibe), or do controlled tilts. You also will find it easier to control the pitch and yaw, making it easier to stay on a target. What you're doing is moving the center of gravity of your camera further out (and it also lowers it just enough so you don't NEED added weights - which just add to fatigue), so it becomes more effective to control its motions. Having two hands "on the wheel" helps balance out any forces that a single hand hold will tend to transmit directly to the camera with adverse effects.

There's another component when shooting handheld, and that is BOUNCE - vertical motion, also known as "walking"... by having the rig in front of you, your arms act in somewhat similar ways to the steadicam arm, and will reduce the bounce to some degree - if you practice walking smoothly, you'll find this is fairly effective until your arms tire out.

You'll find quite a few people have made "DIY" rigs out of PVC plumbing parts, again rather odd looking to me, but effective. The only advantage I see to the "wheel" is that if you do a lot of "low mode" shots, you can grip the upper rim and hang the cam low. I use a monopod with a bogen flip mount for that, so no need in my kit.

My brackets are pretty discrete, so I don't feel overly odd like I would with a big ol' "wheel". I get results I'm fairly happy with for the $ invested. Way better than just handheld, not as stable as a mini steadicam copy I have, but more versatile for some shots because a steadicam inherently is designed to keep a cam perfectly level, so tilts are easier with the bracket rig.

You still really need a tripod for locked off shots - stabilizers are designed for cameras in motion, it's a PITArms to keep the shot steady for any length of time once you stop! If you use a monopod correctly (use BOTH HANDS when moving to counteract Yaw), you CAN get pretty close to the stability of a FR or bracket rig as well, and if you're satisfied with it's stability when you are not moving, it can be an inexpensive option.

As noted, QR mounts help if you have multiple ways you are setting your camera/support/stabilizer up - makes it easier to switch between "rigs".
Dave Blackhurst is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 05:04 PM   #10
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 4,100
I had a chance to play with a Fig Rig this weekend at a conference. From what I could tell, it was good for what it's designed to do. Personally, I wouldn't mind having one at all for doing some "handheld" shots. I think that's what it does well. Basically, if you don't WANT a steadicam look, but want the look of handheld, but slightly more smoothed out, I think this unit would work well.

I do agree that it would be tiring to hold for any length of time. But I could see doing a 1 minute room pan, or a 30 second walk and talk with it. As for looking "foolish", well I don't worry too much about that as long as I come back with the goods.

Steadicam vests aren't exactly stylish either, but I doubt anyone could argue with the results.
__________________
DVX100, PMW-EX1, Canon 550D, FigRig, Dell Octocore, Avid MC4/5, MB Looks, RedCineX, Matrox MX02 mini, GTech RAID, Edirol R-4, Senn. G2 Evo, Countryman, Moles and Lowels.
Perrone Ford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 06:49 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: New York
Posts: 204
I recently worked on a 10 minute short that was comprised of 7 single-shot scenes. We were on a dolly for 3 scenes and a Fig Rig for the rest. Used this way, the rig really did the trick, smoothing out the moves a bit (though not nearly as good as a steadicam might have been). I have to say, though, I was very eager to put it down whenever possible. Luckily, we had a baby adapter on the bottom and a grip standing by with a C-stand at the end of every take. I don't know that I'd like to use it for event or doc work. I just can't imaging holding it up for looooong periods of time, but for short bursts, it's a nice tool.

~~Dave
Dave Dodds is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 30th, 2008, 09:30 PM   #12
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Ireland
Posts: 579
i have a tripod, a monopod, a figrig and a steadicam merlin and all four get used on a typical wedding at different times.
Fig rig gets used on outdoor photo shoots when there is wind (and very few people around to laugh at my steering wheel). Its great for a 15- 20 minute photo shoot.
You'll finish up with about 7-10 minutes of good stuff.
Lots of rotating shots etc.
I have the XHA1 on it and its heavy but very stable because of this.
I have been thinking of getting a hacksaw to the upper and lower portions of the wheel to give it the x-wing steering wheel look (if ye know what I mean).
Ger Griffin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 20th, 2008, 03:33 PM   #13
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Madison
Posts: 330
I know I'm almost a month late to the discussion...

But we have one of these at the tv station where I work and after spending 45 seconds with it, I think I'd like to have one. Would make those 'dutch rolling' shots a little prettier & smoother...
Blake Cavett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 21st, 2008, 01:02 AM   #14
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Piper City, IL
Posts: 341
I have one and use it all the time. It's not a steady-cam, but I think the handheld look is generally desirable right now, and you can get very stable shots on it if you take the time to practice. It's much better than just trying to hand-hold the camera with no stabilizer.

I recently shot a short trip doc and shot 8-10 hrs a day for a week, swapping back and forth between sticks and the fig-rig. I still have some pinchy nerves in my back, but the footage turned out great (-:
Philip Gioja is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Shoulder & Handheld Supports

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:12 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network