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Sony ENG / EFP Shoulder Mounts
Sony PDW-F800, PDW-700, PDW-850, PXW-X500 (XDCAM HD) and PMW-400, PMW-320 (XDCAM EX).


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Old November 4th, 2006, 09:47 AM   #16
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Michael.

I haven't been able to interest Seven in any stuff I've shot. All the stations here now use a single stringer service to source their night news and weekends.

You would remember Lou Belci I guess. You might recall Seven had an Auricon which they sold to me for a while, then bought it back for their little museum in the foyer.

The Miller came from Armstrong's in Bennett Street. Filmlab 7 has been gone for several years now. Group Colour also has gone so any processing now has to be done over east.

Regards from here in the west.
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Old November 4th, 2006, 11:40 AM   #17
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It dosn't matter how tightly you pull down your tripod or how you weight it down, it may help a little, but if the legs cannot take the torsional and flex loads generated by the camera and head you will get wobble.

A simple test is to set up your tripod and then push gently on the center of the extended leg, while watching the picture. Also with the tripod locked off use the pan bar and see how much you can twist or move the head. Properly designed broadcast tripods are not cheap, but thats because it's very difficult to get a suitably rigid structure that dosn't weigh a ton.
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Old November 5th, 2006, 01:03 AM   #18
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It seems after further tests today that it may be that the Arrow 30 (Miller) head is a bit light for this size camera.

We had the good fortune of a visit today by Guy Cochrane (DVe-store and DVCreators) from whom we bought the tripod (which I should have correctly stated as being a SoloVJ).

He had read these posts prior to his visit, so he was up with the play.

The carbon fibre legs are sturdy enough.

We checked all connections, fittings, screws nuts and bolts, and tightened everything way beyond what I personally had been doing.

This mitigated the problem somewhat. However, there is still some jiggling in the shot if one is not extremely EXTREMELY gentle when gripping the VariZoom - or the regular handle. (We even shortened the handle as far as possible to see if this would reduce the shake. It did a little...but the shake is still there).

Next thing is to try the heavier Miller head, since it seems to be an issue with the hollow aluminum handle torquing the head and transmitting movement through the head and that is then magnified by the lens.

(YES...it stands to reason and many of you know that at full zoom one has to be super gentle....and even then there may be some shudder in the shot....but we are getting it doing close-ups in the studio...which has four plywood walls to keep the wind out:-)


Will keep you posted on the heavier head test (which may be a week or two away).

Alister...we did the lock-off twisted head test....and the head flexes.

Seems likely that in my quest for light weight, I may have opted for a tripod that is robust enough to support this weight of camera - but with a head that this combination of camera and lens is just a little too much for (specially since the lens lacks any optical stablization).

Michael.

(PS - apart from the shudder, the full moon shots we put up on our HD screen for the first time today look just awesome...including the time-lapsed (4sec interval) one with the inadvertant dutch tilt:-)

The sound track with coyotes howling in the background is a nice touch too although it was done with the Sony issue stereo mic so it's not BC quality by any means - hence our switch to the AT shotgun mic since then.
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Old November 5th, 2006, 09:12 AM   #19
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Some Varizoom control's rocker switches require a substantial press on the rocker button to activate. Mine is very difficult to activate without shaking the camera, if the control is mounted on the tripod pan arm.

I shoot with an XL H1, with a Sachtler DV8-100 head mounted on Sachtler Speed Lock-II carbon fiber legs. These are very stable for my setup, but pressing the very stiff rocker switch at the end of a long pan arm is a problem.

While the zoom rocker switch on my Varizoom is a problem, the other switches require only a feather touch and are not a problem.

If you have a static situation, such as shooting the moon, I would recommend dismounting the Varizoom from the tripod pan arm and hand holding it. You can easily obtain an extension cord for the varizoom, if necessary.
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Old November 5th, 2006, 10:06 AM   #20
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Dan....

I am stunned:-)

Some ideas are so simple you just have to ask yourself "what was I NOT thinking..."!!!

Of COURSE it makes sense to dismount the Varizoom for shots like that!

So why didn't I think of it?

Guess I was waiting on you:-)

Pans and tilts will be ruled out by doing that....but I totally love the idea since I like to start and finish with five to 10 seconds of stationary image (CU - zoom out - WS [hold it] - zoom back in to CU) so the editor, which is often me these days, has at least four editing choices.

It means he/she can use the full zoom (either the zoom out or zoom in) or sacrifice the zoom and cut directly from WS to CU or CU to WS.

The VariZoom we have is actually very sensitive, and I like it a lot. The speed of zoom can be instantly dialed in with a little finger-wheel right under the handle, which is great, so there is no sudden stopping.

BTW - the F350 comes with a little remote control unit too - which I have yet to actually play with.

Michael.
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Old November 5th, 2006, 10:14 AM   #21
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Dear Michael,

I am happy you like the idea!
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