Over the last few months, for whatever reason, I’ve started to receive emails and calls from fellow videographers inquiring about some of the equipment, software or process I use to produce our videos. After typing a few long emails and talking cross country a few times I thought it would be a lot easier to just make a few blog posts about that very topic.
My disclaimer The equipment I use is not necessarily the best nor have I tested a variety of products. What I use simply works for me.
With the recent exception of the 5D MarkII, everything I’ve shot is on the XH-A1. In the right conditions it has served me very well. I especially love the 20X zoom. The long telephoto allows me to squeeze some shallow depth of field out of the camera (I do not use a 35mm lens adapter). You’ll often see me shooting from a distance because of it. The truth is, most cameras on the market right now are awesome and have the ability to capture great footage.
On the opposite end of the telephoto spectrum I use a wide angle converter. In my opinion you can never have a wide enough shot in some locations. The Century optics adapter I use unfortunately is not a zoom through however I save some weight because of it and I love the bayonet mount.
I use the Glidecam 4000 without the vest and arm which means I hand hold the the camera and sled. The Glidecam, my camera and wide angle adapter produce very acceptable traveling shots(when balanced correctly). I shoot on the Glidecam in very short bursts, usually 10 seconds or less which is why I’m able to hold it by hand. I found the vest and arm too limiting for my typical run and gun style of shooting where I’m constantly moving between the stabilizer, a tripod (Manfrotto sticks with 503 head) and going completely hand held.
We are just starting to produce videos using the MarkII. There are tons of write ups on the video capability so I won’t reinvent that wheel. I will say that along with the stunning image quality, it will give us the shallow depth of field that’s so hard to obtain with the camcorder. So far, it’s a great supplement to the XH-A1 and as a primary camera.
That’s a quick run down of some of the major equipment I use to capture footage.
Of course, to produce a finished product there are many more tools involved, perhaps I will blog about them in the near future.