Glidecam V8 SALE ends 5/21/04 and Cody Deegan? at DVinfo.net

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Old May 16th, 2004, 08:09 AM   #1
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Glidecam V8 SALE ends 5/21/04 and Cody Deegan?

Glidecam is currently offering a pretty good deal on the V8.

CLICK HERE for the Glidecam page!

So what I'm wondering is... and I hope Charles P will reply... how do you RATE the V8? I've used it a few times with substantially improved shots, but it didn't really do what I expected it would. In reality I should say that *I* wasn't skilled enough to get the results I wanted... but it wasn't bad.

So where does it fit in on the REAL stabilizer scale? If I build the Cody Deegan stabilizer perfectly... how would it compare to the V8?

I saw another thread where a member says he DID build the Cody Deegan project for $500! and he says he's quite happy with the results... If ANYBODY has some footage from a homebuilt system that really shows off their system/skills I'd be more then happy to host it for the forum!
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Old May 16th, 2004, 01:18 PM   #2
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I too am interested in this response. I am about to purchase a v-8. I currently have enough money to do it. I would love to pick it up on sale but I am afraid that it may not do what I am expecting. Looking for the "professional" opinion too.

Thanks,
Scott
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Old May 16th, 2004, 07:22 PM   #3
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I think Charles King may be able to chime in on the performance characteristics of the homebuild vs the V-8. I can say that I've seen Cody's footage and consider it to be absolutely comparable to results that one can get from a commercial unit, in fact it's some of the better operated material I've seen from any DV-sized stabilizer, regardless of cost.

The lesson there, as I think Matt was suggesting, is that a skilled operator can do more with a lesser rig than a novice with the best rig available. Both of you have experiences or concerns that the v8 can't or won't do what you want it do do...could you elaborate on those? If it's "can it make a smooth shot", well yes, it does that. But only if the operator is has the patience to put in the practice time and learn the skill, 'cause no mechanical stabilizer is plug-and-play by their very nature.

Overall, the two components that particularly impact the performance of a stabilizer are the gimbal and the arm. There have been a few posts here about the need to shim the Glidecam gimbals, and the V8 uses a single section arm which limits its travel and isolation capabilities, so there are potential setbacks in these two important areas. I do not necessarily endorse any one rig in this class over the other, although I have found that the Magiqcam does incorporate a good value since it offers a dual arm for a similar price point as most single arm rigs. From a pure performance point of view, I cannot say which is the BEST flying rig since I have never evaluated them all side by side. The new Tiffen Flyer has the best arm in this class, but will also be the most expensive at $6K+.

As far as building versus buying--this does assume that you have access to and proficiency with machining tools and supplies, as well as considering the time involved to be worth the money saved. If one is attempting to improve on the design and incorporate other features, this is definitely a way to go. Again, Charles K. is the man on this subject.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 03:56 AM   #4
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Matt, the other thing to consider at the moment is that Glidecam are on the verge of releasing the V10 and V35. I don't know anything about the V10 other than the fact it was mentioned in a NAB press release but the V35 I know has a dual section arm which uses cables and pulleys which are commonly found in the more expensive arms, don't really know how they affect the performance of the arm but perhaps Charles P or Casey can help us out with that, but casey has already said this new arm has surpassed their expectations on performance. The new rig also has a fully machined gimbal which should eliminate any balance problems, it might be worthwhile dropping David at glidecam an email, the V10 I would imaging would be a V8 replacement so there may be some improvements that would be worth waiting for. Perhaps Casey can tell us more about the V10?

I did have a V8 before I went to the V16, the V8 definately worked but as Charles P said a lot of practice is required to get good results.

Charles P have you seen any of the pics of the new V35 stuff? Just wondering what you think of it?

John.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 11:26 AM   #5
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I have seen this picture of the V35. From a purely visual design standpoint, the arm is a near-replica of the Steadicam arms circa 1983-1995 (Model 3/EFP). The cables and pulleys help to eliminate some of the springiness found in most lower-end arms which means smoother operation.

The sled (on which the camera sits) is much like a Steadicam Mini (circa 1999) with the added bonus of tool-less gimbal and post adjustment. The camera platform adjustments for fore-and-aft and side-to-side still require multiple actions to fine-tune, an action which is implemented many times a day in normal operation. There is no apparent adjustment for arm pitch at the socket, which means that it cannot be fine tuned for the operator's body attitude, a very important feature that is finally being adopted on some lower-end rigs (has been standard on rigs that use the original Steadicam socket block design since the 70's). This greatly contributes to operator comfort and fatigue. Overall, the components look solid and robust and yet more streamlined than the earlier Glidecam products.

Haven't seen anything on the V10 yet. One can assume that it will cost more than the sale price of the V8, so that alone may be the deciding factor for those who have a specific budget regardless of the feature set.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 01:11 PM   #6
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Just to clarify, the sled in the photo posted by Charles above is not really representative of the final sled at all. Infact the gimbal was just about the only thing that's accurate on it. It's still very much under development. Also worth nothing is that the actual vest will most likely, if I recall correctly, have pitch adjustment at the arm connection. This is easier done on the vest due to how the V-Series socket is designed.

Also, you'll likely be able to special order the V-35 with a standard socket block connection as well.

I apologize but I do not have any information on the V-10 yet, but i'll keep you posted as things roll along with it.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 02:27 PM   #7
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Good to know, thanks Casey. Glad to hear the pitch adjustment will be in place. I believe that the lack of of this feature is responsible for much of the operating discomfort that is reported. Will the new sled have more precise controls on the camera stage? And what are the planned power/video jacks on the rig, both top and bottom? Gimbal and handle does look good. Has the linearity issue been addressed in this version (i.e. not having to use shims)?
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Old May 17th, 2004, 02:47 PM   #8
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Charles, the new V-35 gimbal is completely machined like the Gold gimbal. The linearity issue came about mainly because it utilized some parts that were punched and bent metal, which lacks the tight tolerances that machining has. So this, thankfully, will no longer be an issue.

I'm have not yet seen the new camera stage for the sled, so I can't comment on that. However, in terms of connectivity, I believe the plan is to have at least a composite video line (BNC) for sending signal to the monitor, and a 12V power line (probably Lemo connector) from the base.

This could ofcourse, all change! I'll post what I can, as I hear more...sadly I'm not directly involved with the development of this particular product, so I can't account for ALL of the details.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 02:55 PM   #9
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Also John, the V-35 is a good deal farther along in development than the V-10, so you'll probably see that come to market first. The V-10 will be the replacement for the V-8, but as I said, I don't yet have any information on it.
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Old May 17th, 2004, 04:58 PM   #10
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Just to clarify for other readers: when I said the above:

Glad to hear the pitch adjustment will be in place. I believe that the lack of of this feature is responsible for much of the operating discomfort that is reported.

...I was referring to ALL manufacturers of stabilizers that don't have a pitch adjust, not just Glidecams. The discomfort complaints I've heard were from operators who were using different brands of rigs, and my belief is that part of this is the natural soreness one experiences from using this type of device, but it is greatly compounded by having the rig "pulling" away from the operator as is the case with a non-adjustable arm socket.
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Old May 18th, 2004, 11:22 AM   #11
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"...I think Charles King may be able to chime in on the performance characteristics of the homebuild vs the V-8. "

...and not a moment to soon. Well Matt, Charles P. did say it pretty much the way I see it.

Can a homebuilt perform just as well as the a commercial rig of the same calibre? The answer is yes. I've said this many many times. You have to know what your criterias are and how far you are willing to go to pay for that extra perfection.

If you look at Cody's system, which by the way was not machined at all, proves it can be done without precision tooling. Of course this has strongly to do witht he fact that Cody has grasp the key to operating. Like Charles P. said, it all boils down to the operator.

One thing I'll like to add about Cody system. Just because his plans call for no machining doesn't mean it can't be done using hs plan. If you have a chance to machine the parts than do it.

I say if you have access to a machine shop and someone who knows what he or she is doing than a professional can be achieve regardless of what other people might think.

If you are impress with cody's non-machined rig than can you imagine what a machined rig will give you. Then again, a rig is worthless if the operator behind it hasn't a clue on how to use the system. My take on this issue. :)
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Old May 18th, 2004, 04:29 PM   #12
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Charles K... if you're really really happy with your stabilizer and you want to show off the results then I'd be happy to host a minute or two of video for you.

No pressure, but please take me up on it if you get the notion.
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Old May 19th, 2004, 12:53 AM   #13
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No problem Matt. As soon as I am done with my arm, I'll put a clip up on HBS. One thing though. Have you checked out the clips on HBS website? These are all clips done with homemade stabilizers. You said you wanted clips shot with a homebuilt stabilizer, right?

Well I'm surprise you didn't check these out. Have you seen cody's clip? He has several. How many clips do you want to see?
Like everyone been saying, in the end it's the operator who decides the end result. You can look at as many homemade stabilizers to see the result but the fact of the matter if you don't know how to use a stabilizer and you see a bad clip it should not ultimately be decided that the result is from a badly built stabilizer, right?

A good example is the clip they had on the magiqcam website(if it's still there). Most people complianed it wasn't very good but it was due to an inexperience operator handling it.

Like Charles P. said:

"...is that a skilled operator can do more with a lesser rig than a novice with the best rig available.
...But only if the operator is has the patience to put in the practice time and learn the skill, 'cause no mechanical stabilizer is plug-and-play by their very nature..."
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Old May 19th, 2004, 07:35 AM   #14
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King, I'll go to HBS right after this post. Thanks for reminding me of the obvious!

My enthusiasm for this forum, and the people in it, makes me curious to see the skills and output from fellow members. Cody's work is perhaps the best steadiwork I've seen... but I don't know one thing about Cody's personality other then what I've seen and read on his site. You guys are more like friends so I want to see what you're doing just like I would want to see it if you lived next door... If we were neighbors and you knew that I was as much into this hobby/profession as you wouldn't you be curious about how I personally handled different situations?

My request to see some of your footage is out of curiousity about YOU as an operator and my desire to build Cody's rig.
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Old May 19th, 2004, 11:18 AM   #15
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I find the GC 'sales' to be funny, they just keep extending the sales, so don't feel pressured into anything. I thought a special sale was going to end over a year ago when I got mine, but the 'sales' continue to this day.
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