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Old November 21st, 2014, 08:17 PM   #1
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What are you using for a safety camera?

I have been using action cams in conjunction with my two Sony EA-50's at wedding ceremonies and sometimes the image isn't that great so I don't use the footage ... I was thinking about Sony's NX30 on a lighting stand instead of a GoPro but I'm not too sure if it would cover a decent wide angle like around 120 degrees

What is everyone else using as a high up camera on a lighting stand to give a semi-aerial shot of the ceremony ? OK, A Hero Black would give a good image but they are almost the price of a conventional video camera?

Roger was also looking at Panasonic FZ1000's but I'm not sure what the wide coverage would be like?

Chris
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Old November 21st, 2014, 10:51 PM   #2
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

I use a Canon G20 as my safety camera because it has decent dynamic range, shoots in 24p native, has manual controls but can also be set to full auto, and it matches very well with my other Canon cameras. It also does surprisingly well in low light but not like a DSLR with a prime lens would. I've found that the auto-iris is very helpful when shooting outdoor ceremonies because if the lighting changes then it will adjust itself as needed. I got it for $900 and it's done a great job for me.

If I wasn't using all Canon gear then I'd probably get the Sony FDR-AX100 because it's 4K and has a nice 1" sensor. Being able to get a wide shot and a tight shot from the 4K image would be quite helpful for a safety shot. I'm not sure if it would give you a super wide shot but I think you could do some pretty cool stuff with the 4K image (pans, zooms, tilts, reframing, etc).
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 12:02 AM   #3
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

I use a Sony RX100 on alight stand in the back as my safety camera. It's very small and discreet and matches the look of my 70D.
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 02:09 AM   #4
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

I am using my ax100 as safety cam now, I point it towards the front to have the altar and lectern in one shot so I can reframe as needed afterwards, I point a second unmanned camera (cx730) towards the lectern so I have a close up of all readers and then I walk around with a rx10 on a velbon ultratstick L50 with a manftotto 234rc head, folded in that's a really tiny and light monopod but extends to full length. with the rx10 I film closeups from people in the church and to get some other views.
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 05:22 AM   #5
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Always use the Gopro 3 Silver as an overall view, plus the SJ4000 for a different angle. I also have a pair of Panasonic SD 700/800s that are also good in fairly low light. I always carry a LumixFZ200 for various stills and video clips where I can use the long zoom.

I haven't yet been able to find a stockist of the Lumix FX1000 close enough to do some test recordings and check the field of view, but reports seem to suggest that the FOV is not as wide as my 200s.

Roger
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 06:22 AM   #6
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

I have 2 Sony CX730 on light stands, one at the front and one at the back for the ceremony and one wide and one on the B&G for speeches.

They come packing a relatively wide Zeiss lens and the image is nice and sharp and colours can easily be tweaked to match my EA50.

A bit off topic but I wanted to go even wider for smaller venues so after looking at the recommended accessories bought a VCL-HGA07B wide adapter - wrong move - it vignetted BADLY - like looking down a tube!I got in touch with sony support and asked about this only to be told this was the correct adapter - I told them they were wrong and they never got back to me... It's still listed as a compatible adapter!

...I'm still looking :(
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 06:38 AM   #7
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Thanks guys

Much appreciated!

Roger? There is a new SJ4000 called the SJ5000 Plus - New 16mp sensor and chipset so that might be the one to go for as I'd still like a wide view (with the 4000 I go to digital zoom 1.5 and it makes the angle magic but sucks in low light!!) List price in the USA is $179.00 ... I wonder if the new simple GoPro Hero has a similar sensor?? I got tired of Hero's locking up on me!!

Camcorders still have the same problem as Peter has ..just not wide enough!!! My brides love the wide view so I really don't want to have the normal wide and a DSLR plus wide lens is too much money for me to justify the usage!!

Chris
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 08:36 AM   #8
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Chris, I'm not sure about the SJ5000 as I seem to recall a couple of dodgy reviews, but I'll do a bit more research. I'm not sure what GP you've got, but my GP3 silver seems to hold up quite well in moderately low light, I've also never had a lock up with it.

I don't know about the chipsets, but there is probably a limited number available so they may well be the same. I think the GoPro probably uses a much better quality lens, with the cheaper cameras using plastic ones, which would explain the much lower prices.

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Old November 22nd, 2014, 11:03 AM   #9
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Chris, there's quite a bit of discussion on the RC forum about the SJ5000 and it seems there there are fake versions of this camera just as there are with the SJ4000. Even worse, there seems to be a fake SJCam website which is sjcam.com. The genuine SJCam website is apparently sjcamhd.com, although why they didn't reserve the other domain name is a mystery.

The whole SJCam situation seems to be a bit of an unknown at the moment, with some saying that the genuine SJCam SJ5000 hasn't been released yet and that the fake SJ5000 is the same as the current SJCam SJ4000. So if you can get your head round it all you are a better man than I :-)

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Old November 22nd, 2014, 02:56 PM   #10
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Rush View Post
A bit off topic but I wanted to go even wider for smaller venues so after looking at the recommended accessories bought a VCL-HGA07B wide adapter - wrong move - it vignetted BADLY - like looking down a tube!I got in touch with sony support and asked about this only to be told this was the correct adapter - I told them they were wrong and they never got back to me... It's still listed as a compatible adapter!
Peter, does it vignet if you disable the balanced optical steadyshot?
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 05:56 PM   #11
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Hi Roger

That's interesting! The fake site has the more realistic domain name. On sjcam.com, they are showing the 5000 plus as on pre-order only at this stage. It's hard to know what you are getting and from who? These to me look identical so I wonder if they are simply not being churned out by a third party factory and being supplied to whoever wants them. The so called "fake site" seems to provide heaps of support with firmware downloads and manuals so it might just be a marketing ploy! Even you show enough interest to any manufacturer in China they are quite happy to rebrand a product for you and they don't know the meaning of the work copyright. My current steadycam is available for nearly $400 less IF you are happy to buy it from the factory without branding ... same thing but "no name" brand!!

Oh well at the advertised price the SJ5000 Plus is still a fairly good purchase risk ...I certainly would want to fork out $8,000 for a fake main camera but I can live with a hundred bucks or so and I must admit both my SJ4000's have performed well ...a little shaky on the white balance but no GoPro lockups/freezes

Chris
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Old November 22nd, 2014, 06:40 PM   #12
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

I'm still waiting for my super cheap Novatek SJ4000 to arrive from China, it will be interesting to see how that performs.

Roger
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Old November 23rd, 2014, 06:13 AM   #13
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Sharp View Post
Peter, does it vignet if you disable the balanced optical steadyshot?
Yes Matt - first thing I tried - it improved somewhat but was still bad

Pete
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Old November 23rd, 2014, 07:08 AM   #14
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

In the back, I use a Canon XA20 for my "wide shot", which runs beside my NX5U normally.

Then for the wedding party entrance, I usually try and stick a Canon HV40 up front pointed down the aisle.
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Old November 23rd, 2014, 11:57 PM   #15
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Re: What are you using for a safety camera?

Hi Roger

Just received this cable and it works perfectly on the SJ4000 if you want to send a signal out of the unit.

Qumox USB TO AV TV OUT Cable FOR SJ4000 Wifi Action Camera CAM | eBay

Chris
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