XHA1 with Steadicam Merlin? at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Stabilizers (Steadicam etc.)


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old January 17th, 2007, 06:01 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 404
XHA1 with Steadicam Merlin?

Can anybody comment on whether the A1 is compatible with the Merlin? Many thanks.

Kevin
Kevin Janisch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18th, 2007, 06:13 PM   #2
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
At 4.5 lbs, you are half a pound away from the upper end of the Merlin's weight range, so if you aren't planning to run accessories with the camera (wireless mike receivers, onboard light, external hard drive, wide angle lens etc) you should be OK. It will be on the heavy side, contributing to operator fatigue, but then again there was an arm and vest shown for the Merlin at CES which will be available soon.

Bottom-line, it's doable--but if you intend to load up the camera, consider the Flyer.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18th, 2007, 06:25 PM   #3
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: NJ, USA
Posts: 169
We have a Merlin that was tried with a Z1. It was too heavy for it with the standard weights. The Gl1 was better, but it gets pretty taxing on the wrist after a short while. I think that the A1 is about the same weight as the Z1. Once you get your battery and ANY other accessory on there it is going to put you over the limit IMHO. I know that Merlin sells additional weights, but it is heavy already with a camera like the A1 on it.
Jeff Rhode is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18th, 2007, 07:47 PM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Austin Texas
Posts: 52
yep its compatible - i have it

its right about at the weight limit for the merlin, you could probably add a mic and still work - a harddisk would probably weight too much to add on

be aware that it IS a handful - about 6 pounds total weight to hold up, so consider the length of shots you want to make and if you can hold the weight for that long
Rick Hensley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18th, 2007, 09:57 PM   #5
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Kansas City, MO
Posts: 64
I am curious about this set up myself as I'm very interested in getting the Merlin/Steadicam vest and arm that was just announced if it works for the product. My girlfriend keeps pestering me to invest in one. If only I had a dollar for every time she mentioned it! I'd have...um....12 dollars. Okay, maybe $100 dollars for every time. ;)
__________________
Byron Huskey
Rhapsodist Productions
"Film as dream, film as music. No art passes our conscience in the way film does, and goes directly to our feelings, deep down into the dark rooms of our souls." - Ingmar Bergman
Byron Huskey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18th, 2007, 10:16 PM   #6
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
That's a good girlfriend! Maybe she wants to play around with it too?

The design of the Merlin arm, incorporating the same concepts as the Flyer arm, means that it will have a far smoother operation than any of the competitor's lightweight arms. Should be a really sweet little combo.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 20th, 2007, 10:26 PM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Monterey, CA
Posts: 404
Thank you all for your feedback!

Kevin
Kevin Janisch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 12:36 PM   #8
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Incidentally, will be testing the Merlin vest and arm at the factory on Monday, so I will post my thoughts on it here shortly thereafter.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 06:21 PM   #9
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 173
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Hensley
yep its compatible - i have it

its right about at the weight limit for the merlin, you could probably add a mic and still work - a harddisk would probably weight too much to add on

be aware that it IS a handful - about 6 pounds total weight to hold up, so consider the length of shots you want to make and if you can hold the weight for that long
I saw a bracket people use to mount their harddisk as counterweight at the buttom of the Merlin. I think that's a great idea for adding stuffs but not adding weight.
Paul Leung is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 06:34 PM   #10
Trustee
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Lipa City Batangas, Philippines
Posts: 1,110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Leung
I saw a bracket people use to mount their harddisk as counterweight at the buttom of the Merlin. I think that's a great idea for adding stuffs but not adding weight.
Hi Paul. Sounds like a great idea. Where did you see this?

Richard
Richard Hunter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 06:38 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Toronto Ontario Canada!
Posts: 353
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Leung
I saw a bracket people use to mount their harddisk as counterweight at the buttom of the Merlin. I think that's a great idea for adding stuffs but not adding weight.
I beleve this is what you mean Paul:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ccessory_detai

I would love to buy this for my Merlin but its so EXPENSIVE! Also i think the plate would have seriously benefitted from a standard cold shoe adapter.

The Merlin does work well with the XH-A1, but you do have to make sure hte upper spar is screwed on TIGHT to teh baseplate since I notice that the upper spar easily gets loose from all the weights required to balance the camera. (This is a very annoying design flaw). Other then that I did find it a little tough to get used to compared to my HC1 which is a dream to use with the Merlin even with a large battery, wide angle adapter+ lens hood + Video Light/Video Mic.

When I first tired the XH-A1 + Merlin I thought that I woud never be able to use the 2 2gether successfully for extended durations of time but the last time I used the XH-A1+Merlin I think i shot maybe 25 mins of footage consequtively wile filming family Xmas party/dinner.

Thus, it takes a while to get used to but provided you are in physically good shape (meaning work out regularly and take care of urself) I am sure you can use it for extended periods of time.

You WILL need to use the G-Platz & if i recall correctly you need like 5 mid weights (no finishing weight) for a VERY WELL balancing, I have NOT mounted my 10/20 video light on top of the camera however with the Merlin, nor do I use my 970 series mammoth battery, just the stock 950. Ugh I keep on forgetting to put these settings into the Merlin cookbook itself.

I have a ton of XH-A1+Merlin footage so I'll be sure to post some stuffs up this week.
__________________
dreaming hobbyist + storyteller
www.michaelywong.com
Michael Y Wong is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 07:40 PM   #12
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: NJ, USA
Posts: 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Y Wong
I beleve this is what you mean Paul:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...ccessory_detai

I would love to buy this for my Merlin but its so EXPENSIVE! Also i think the plate would have seriously benefitted from a standard cold shoe adapter.
Hi Michael,

That is expensive. Doesn't look like a terribly complicated a device. Just need the right size thread attached to a base plate and a hunk of velcro.
Out of curiosity, where would you put the cold shoe on the plate ?


Jeff
Jeff Rhode is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2007, 11:32 PM   #13
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Juneau, Alaska, USA
Posts: 624
As mentioned allready, yes the A1 does fly just fine on the Merlin.

Somsone said they had trouble with the Z1? I've flown the Z1 on my Merlin somewhat without any trouble. The camera, a large battery and the shotgun mic. Balances just fine with even a little more capacity to spare. (not much)


I have the above mentioned Merlin accessory plate and I love it. (http://www.jimfarrell.com/merlin/)
Very usefull for using radio mics, with for example the Z1. I've also used the plate to mount a small LCD monitor on the bottom with great success.

I feel the price is fair, the plate is really ridged, and is tapped so that you can add the regular merlin weights back to it to get the weight trimmed.
I've spoken with the guy who developed it (Jim Farrell), and apprently it took quite some time to find a material which not only was solid and could be made to weigh the same as one counterweight. But also a material that would grip threads on the spar so the plate doesn't spin!

It's well worth it's price if you want to fly certain accessories with the larger cameras. Not a tool for all, but way usefull if it's the tool for the job.

- Mikko
Mikko Wilson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 27th, 2007, 10:32 AM   #14
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: London, England
Posts: 127
I too am looking to purchase the Merlin for my XHA1.

At present my A1 has a Senn G2 receiver, a SWIT 2010 light and battery adaptor and a Rode NT1 shotgun mic (which means a BP950 & BP970 battery on it together)

I'm assuming the weight is too much for the Merlin to handle.

What's the best way of adapting (adding more counterweight etc) the Merlin to achieve smooth operation?

Thanks in advance :-)
__________________
Sunny Dhinsey
Director - www.filmlore.tv
Sunny Dhinsey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 27th, 2007, 12:20 PM   #15
Trustee
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Burbank
Posts: 1,811
Here is an accessory plate for the Merlin that will let you use your receiver as a counter weight:
http://www.jimfarrell.com/merlin/Plates%20Only.htm

Regarding all the other accessories you have, because you can eliminate some for your Merlin shots to bring the weight down. Do you need a light, extra batteries and big shotgun along with the wireless for the Merlin shots?

You also might look at the Pilot instead of the Merlin. the pilot goes up to 10 pounds:
http://www.steadicam.com/pilot.html
Jack Walker 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 > Stabilizers (Steadicam etc.)

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:43 PM.


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