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Sony NEX-EA50 (all variants)
Including NEX-EA50UH / EA50EH / EA50H / EA50UK / EA50EK / EA50K


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Old April 16th, 2013, 10:56 AM   #16
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Also I recommend the Steadicam Operator's Handbook for any and all flyers of gimbaled stabilizer, handheld or body mount. It's the result of 30 years of combined knowledge and it covers everything, including the tried and true practice exercises.
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Old April 16th, 2013, 11:15 AM   #17
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Thank you Charles. I will SEARCH to find out where to get it. Does it include tips for a retired firefighter that has had two discs cut out and his spine glued and screwed back together?

Besides that, my real problem is finesse. I can't dance, I don't sing, and I used to kick doors open. This is going to be tough for me.

Steve
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Old April 16th, 2013, 07:01 PM   #18
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Hi Steven,
I fly a Tiffen Steadicam pilot with a Panasonic ac160A (occasionally , so not a main source of income.). This is a vest designed system. These rigs are quite heavy and will play havoc with your back if you haven't mastered the basics of fitting and stance- but don't despair, there is good news!!

The book you must get is the Steadicam Operators handbook by Jerry Holway and Laurie Hayball- published by focal press. The ISBN no is : 978-0-240-81165-9. This book , although aimed at Tiffen products will give you the essential info on fitting, stance and movement (plus an insight into the world of steadicam work).

Many new operators (including me) have experienced back pain, hip discomfort etc. All of which are caused by fitting and stance- the book gives you all the answers to these issues. While a certain fitness is required, rest assured that if you can walk in straight line without the rig, you will with practice be able to fly a properly mounted and fitted Steadicam rig without discomfort.

I hope this helps, all the best
Rod.
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Old April 17th, 2013, 01:34 AM   #19
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Thanks Rod,

I am looking forward to this. Not as a specialty at all, but to put another arrow in my quiver. The EA50 might be too heavy for me until I get a vest. I am going to check out the Blackbird with a VG20 I have here because they share the same sensor. That might be just the fix I need.

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Old April 17th, 2013, 02:24 AM   #20
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

you're very welcome Steven. Once you have the book, horizons, headroom,starts, stops, transitions, whip pans, static balance, dynamic balance, missionary position (don't ask!) , walking the line etc will all take on very new and important meanings for you!

But it is worth understanding these aspects, as an out of control steadicam is the mark of someone who hasn't studied ther fundamentals and it will be very obvious. Personally, I do put in some practice but probably not regularly enough. (I lie, actually nowhere near enough!!)

But it is an engaging and very interesting tool in our kit. Just to encourage you, I am 68, fairly overweight and have a creaky left hip. I initially struggled with a full rig until I read about what was causing the discomfort and back pain.
The book has the answers, so get stuck in and we are all looking forward to seeing some of your work.
all the best.

By the way, if you want to see steadicam perfection in action, seek out the steadicam sequence from the film "atonement" It was on the net and is the most incredible event. There is also an account of the shoot from the steadicam operator- well worth watching. I will also see if I can find the link and will post it in the interests of education (it may have been removed because of copyright issues). Also the making of American pie video- again an incredible sequence shot in the USA.
Have fun! .
Rod
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Old April 17th, 2013, 04:43 AM   #21
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Hi Steve

This might help too for some basic terms ..and no the Don Juan position has nothing to do with Kama Sutra ...it's a nice move actually!!

http://www.steadicam.com/manuals/JR/Page%2040.pdf

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Old April 17th, 2013, 04:46 AM   #22
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Hey the Blackbird works a treat hand held.
Best way to learn is get out there and use it.
I'm all self taught, no books nothing....
Don't use the friction control unless windy.
The rest is all in that left hand of yours.

Sony VG30 and the NEX10-18m works really well.
Will never use a DLSR again for video for many reasons.
You can see it in action here.
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Old April 17th, 2013, 01:12 PM   #23
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

I use a Merlin with my VG-20 - initially difficult to set up - I almost gave up on it but other systems also drew similar criticism so i stuck at it - it works a dream for me - but I only use it for a few basic moves.
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Old April 18th, 2013, 11:43 AM   #24
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Re: Blackbird, Rookie pilot goin flyn!

Small progress.

First, I have a VG20 here on loan for a short while. I switched to that and everything got better. I am not saying you cannot fly the EA50 with the Blackbird. I am saying I cant. I am a retired firefighter/medic. A 20 year battle with back problems resulted in major surgery 2 years ago. The 50 is just to much weight for me to fly handheld.

I have plans to get two more EA50s, I have always had three matching cameras of whatever model I shoot with at the time. In the next couple of days I hope to find the time to shoot an image comparison test with the EA50 and the VG20. I think that match will be an unexpected advantage of owning the EA50. Since I now plan on adding flying shots to my list I think my final three cameras may end up being two EA50s and a VG20. I had previously viewed the VG 20 as too much of a consumer camcorder for pro work. If my test proves to be a reasonable match it will become a great thing to have.

I am buried in post right now. When I do get the time to practice flying (and it will take a lot of practice) I have leaned a couple of things. I generally keep data info on a lot, you can live or die by what the camera is telling you. When flying I turn it off, I'm not reading it so I give myself a clear image to concentrate on.

I am only doing eye level shots, baby steps, one thing at a time. Tilting the LCD viewfinder down a little bit is helping to keep me from dipping down on the boom.

Thanks for the input guys. I will get the book soon.

Steve
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