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Old May 9th, 2005, 01:16 PM   #91
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Just a quick update for those who are interested. I got a chance to use my Magiqcam IIa this weekend for a real shoot and things went pretty well. I have to say that since the gimbal was repaired, my balancing problems seem to be gone and now it's just (LOL) technique I have to worry about. I was actually pretty pleased with the shots I got and the way the unit performed. Not having tried other rigs, my opinion is obviously quite limited, but it seems that the IIa is a great bargain in the stabilizer world.

One operating problem I had was dealing with the unit swinging around in the wind. Even a slight breeze seemed to cause movement. In this case, do I simply need to fly it closer to a neutral balance position? I had it set up for a 2 second drop which worked well when there was no wind.

Ed, I hope you get your unit back soon. I really think that you will be pleased with its performance. I still have the pogoing issue, but shooting moving people seems to mask the issue quite well.
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Old May 9th, 2005, 05:55 PM   #92
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hi matthew,
great to know that everything work out at your end. will be waiting for mine to come back.

ed
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Old May 20th, 2005, 06:34 PM   #93
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Hi there all..
Just shot a wedding this day. Used the Magiqcam II a total of 3.5 hours today. 1.5 hours on ceremony and photographes, 1.5 hours church and some I still have the pogoing issue.

Charles, did you mean that the lower arm (near to the gimbal) should be down below the horizontal postion

On this point I want to throw this RIG out of the window !!!

Greetz, Erik
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Old May 21st, 2005, 03:03 AM   #94
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Erik,

I fly a DVX-100a on my Indicam so I'll jump in as I have had to do all the things that Charles P. has suggested.

I believe he means that both arms (providing you have a dual arm system) are below their own horizontal positions so your own arm holds the sled at a regular height i.e. just below head height for many shots. This of course depends on the type of shot you are going for of course.

When I had my rig set "high" my human arm didn't do much lifting and hence couldn't dampen my footsteps very well. When I set it lower I had to do some of the lifting (not much thought) which smoothed out the shot. The human arm is isoelastic and works very well. It just needs some help with the heavy stuff or long shots.

I also found when I practiced with my lens in full telephoto mode I could see much better the things I needed to work on. Trying to get and keep a smooth shot in full telephoto mode is a real chalange! One thing I learned from it was to walk with my legs bent more. This really helped.

Interesting post to read.

Thanks to all.

Tery
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Old July 29th, 2005, 06:09 PM   #95
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Hi all,
Just shoot a real commercial for travel agency last tuesday. I have pulled down both springs to the minium so had to do some of the lifting of the arm with mine own arm. As far as the 2 hours shoot let see, no more pogoing seen on the footage. Seems like this is the only way to prevent this killing effect.

But, in a couple of weeks the IBC is in Holland. There will be all the Steadicam / Glidecam and others present.. seems like a good idea that this guy will exchange his Magiqcam for a real one !

So, maybe in 2 months you will see mine complete package with low mode etc on ebay

Keep you posted,

Erik
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Old July 29th, 2005, 07:12 PM   #96
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The Magiqcam is a "real one" unless you are talking about an actual Steadicam. The only real one there is a Steadicam brand.

I've seen and used a lot of different stabilizers and the one basic thing I have learned is that the operator makes the biggest difference. You can give a Stratovarious to a learner and it won't sound very good. You can give a cheap violin to a master and he can make it sing.

When Charles Papert gets with it and actually produces his video - then (with practise) many of us will be able to make our stabilizers "sing".

I have a Word document with many of Charles' suggestions and insites and have found it to be of great worth.

Charles, We hope you get well soon and will start on your video soon.

Tery
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Last edited by Terry Thompson; July 30th, 2005 at 01:58 PM.
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Old July 29th, 2005, 09:18 PM   #97
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Thanks Terry!
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Old July 30th, 2005, 01:29 AM   #98
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Hi Erik,
I did sell my Magiqcam and changed to the Flyer. I haven't had more than an hour or so on the Flyer yet but I can give you a few observations.

1) The biggest difference (and no suprise) is in the arm. The Flyer arm is just much smoother and more adjustable, though the newer Magiqcam IIP has roughly the same type of adjustments. The Flyer arm just feels better. Booming and moving it are easier and it is more fluid.

2) The gimbal feels better on the Flyer. The handle is a little smaller and a little different feel, but overall I'd say that the gimbal is just smoother, again no suprise.

3) I think I actually preferred the Magiqcam vest. I'm 6' 3" 230 and so the Flyer "one size fits all" doesn't fit me great. The Magiqcam vest felt more secure and comfortable since it was made with my size in mind. I'm actually a little suprised at the construction of the Flyer vest. It isn't too impressive, especially given the cost of the system.

4) I liked the Magiqcam's telescoping post, but the Flyer doesn't have one. It is a fixed length which makes me think that the Magiqcam is a little more versatile in terms of the setup; however, the boom capability of the Flyer arm makes up for a fair part of that.

5) Pogoing for me is significantly reduced with the Flyer; however, there are still plenty of signs of it and I can now see how much it has to do with technique and operation. Terry is right. You can't just buy your way to better operation. So I know I've got to practice practice practice... but it is fun! I'm sure with time and proper technique the pogoing I still see now can be reduced much more. I too am looking forward to Charles P's project and hope he heals well.

BTW Charles, I noticed on another post that you mentioned that you needed someone to produce/organize/help with that project. I'm not sure if I can meet your needs, but I would certainly be willing to lend whatever help I could with this project. I'm in the Valley.


Regards,
Matt
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Old July 30th, 2005, 01:44 AM   #99
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Matthew:

Thanks for the offer, I'll let you know once the time comes.

Regarding item 4 on your list: the adjustable gimbal on the Flyer is generally more preferable as a way to change top-bottom balance than a telescoping post (more advanced rigs have both capabilities, but it is a known preference that one adjusts the gimbal first). Telescoping the post changes the relationship of the masses. Also, without a keyway keeping the post aligned, one might end up with a slight rotation of the lower sled any time the post is extended, which requires extra tweaking to compensate.
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Old July 30th, 2005, 06:11 AM   #100
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Hi all,
Let be clear that I'm not complety satisfied with the Magiqcam but it gives better results then expected. I have already tried some shots with a flyer and it handles the pogoing much better. I practice almost every day for a hour or longer.. including the famous line walk through the living room into the garden. So to me it seems that the mine operator skills goiing to be more advanced then 2 months ago. I really walk in the limits of the Magiqcam system.

As far as I Known i'm not the only one with this problem even when those guys did some shoots and lots of practice with the system.

Regards, Erik

nb. but practice is the way to go.. that's for sure..
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Old July 30th, 2005, 08:51 AM   #101
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Hi Erik,
Which version of the Magiqcam do you have? They've made some significant changes over the last 6 months or so.

Charles, I did notice that the Flyer's sliding gimbal provides quite a range for the unit. The Magiqcam incorporates a sliding gimbal in addition to the telescoping post, which I thought might be more versatile; however, I do notice that since the post on the Flyer is shorter, I have less tendency to hit it with my leg.

As a stabilizer newbie, I don't have enough experience to really critique either of the unit's performance that much. I certainly never reached the limits of the Magiqcam's ability, but overall, I would have to agree that the Flyer is a significant step up and just feels sweet, but I liked the Magiqcam as well and think that it is a tremendous bargain and think that it is great for the market.
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Old July 30th, 2005, 09:10 AM   #102
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Matthew,

I have the most used one so far I think, the IIA. I saw on Ebay there is a new one available. Seems to me a nice rig, but have to pay about 1500 dollars to upgrade. John offered something like a 1000 dollar refund for a upgrade. But like you mentioned, the arm is for me the reason to do the switch to for example the Flyer. But I'm also on a tight budget, so have to save for it. So the mentioned 2 months can also be 12 months..

Regards, Erik
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Old July 30th, 2005, 09:17 AM   #103
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Hi Erik,
I was considering the upgrade to the IIp before I got the Flyer and they said that I just had to pay the $800 difference. I'm not sure if their arm is any better other than carrying extra weight. I asked if there were any improvements beyond that in the arm and they didn;t really respond, so I kind of assumed there isn't. But the other new features look pretty nice. Anyway, you must be getting pretty good if you have been practiving that much.

Matt
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Old July 30th, 2005, 12:54 PM   #104
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Matthew, thanks for the info on the Magiqcam gimbal--I haven't seen the rig for a couple of years so I'm not up on many of the improvements John has made. Unless I remember wrong, it used to be fixed , requiring one to telescope the rig to make top to bottom adjustments in balance.
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