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Ultra2/Clipper Zoom/Focus


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#1 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 11:08 AM

Hey all,

I know I've seen this question brought up somewhere before, but I can't seem to find it. Here at the Golf Channel, we are demo-ing the Ultra2 and Clipper 312 for live studio working conditions tethered with fiber (they got me 2 Mohawk jumpers :P). I had planned all along to get a Stanton controller or maybe even try out the G-Zoom with the focus option on it, all the while not taking into account that the motorized stage controls on the gimbal really restrict where you can mount a zoom/focus controller.

So here's my question: What are you Ultra/Clipper motorized stage guys using in this situation? I know I could remove the remote, but I want to maintain the functionality of both (after all, that's why we're getting it).

Thanks in advance,
Mike
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#2 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 12:38 PM

Hey Mike,

You'll use and need the Stanton zoom/focus a LOT more than you will use or need the motorized top stage control in your environment.

Granted I use my tilting top stage on nearly every shot, live or otherwise but it's a manual version; set it and forget it, not motorized.

There are plenty if not a majority of the live guys using rigs without ANY tilting stage at all and I doubt you'd see them trade their Stanton for it.

Robert
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#3 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 05:09 PM

First time hearing about the Stanton controller. :unsure:

How does it control the focus on an eng lens? Through a BFD and m-one?

Also, what about 8pin vs. x number of pins? Adapters?

Thanks
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#4 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 06:11 PM

The Stanton comes from the same company that makes Jimmy Jib; Stanton.

It includes a motor and mount that screws into the side of your ENG lens... yes there's a standard hole there. It comes Canon friendly and you use an adapter for Fujinon... or it's the other way round. I'm too lazy to dig mine out at the moment. You power it off your rig and the controller attaches to your gimbal.

Instead of grasping the gimbal you grasp the controller handle and it has the zoom / focus controls. Pretty straight forward and basically the industry standard for live work. Cost is about $2000 and Stanton could care less if you buy one or not! :rolleyes: Don't expect warm and fuzzy and don't expect to get them to make it with the specific power connector for your rig; it's one-way or no way! It comes with an old Master series 2-pin Lemo for power so I had Terry West make me an adapter. Clumsy me destroyed the adapter during the AVNs so I hardwired it on the spot and then had Terry put the proper 3-pin on it last week.

Stanton Steadicam Zoom Focus Controller

Robert
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#5 Kevin Andrews SOC

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Posted 13 February 2010 - 11:35 PM

Thanks for the great info Robert.

The Stanton could be my solution for some upcoming live gigs.
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#6 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 07:59 AM

Check this out and tell me if you've ever seen it...built in focus servo (Canon HJ11ex4.7B):

Attached File  P1220031_resize.jpg   139.49KB   62 downloads

I'm using a regular tripod handle zoom right now and it's obstructively bulky. I can't live without it on on a Live show though!
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#7 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 10:56 AM

I should note, Erik's G-Zoom utilizes this connector and built in servo motor. Looks like my decision is made!

http://g-zoom.com/in...products_id=182
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#8 Robert Starling SOC

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 12:24 PM

Never seen a remote focus servo on any lens that's been given to me but that is a very good option and the Gzoom thing looks like an workable option. What would you do if you didn't have a lens with the focus servo? Or do you buy that too and move it from lens to lens?
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#9 Jason Torbitt

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 12:55 PM

It's a 20-pin connector under there. The G-Zoom does interface with this, or if you have any other system, e.g. a J7 Focus or similar, designed for the 6-pin analogue connector, Canon sell adapter cables to get you to a 20-pin. The same applies for zoom - 8-pin to 20-pin are available (but even the newest digital drive lenses still have an 8-pin connection, in addition to the 20-pin, so you should be safe)

Personally for this type of work, I either use a lens with a built in focus servo like the one pictured, or I have a Canon Focus Servo which is compatable with virtually all broadcast lenses. But, again, there can be connector issues. The servo has a 12-pin power cable for analogue lenses...so I had to buy a 12-pin Hirose to 20-pin for the digital drive lenses.

Once you've dealt with that, you then realise that a similar problem exists for Fujinon.

Also, don't forget the Bartech - best of both worlds. It has a potentiometer you can utilise for this - just hook up your usual lens motor and do it with a device on the gimbal.

A lot of the time it is good to have a focus puller as you normally would. But I've found with a lot of this type of work, it's so quick and the environment is so busy, it is often the best scenario to have a spotter or grip with you, who can concentrate 100% on your safety and the removal of obstacles, and either pull your own focus or have a Focus Puller sat by a monitor - if it's practical to do so - but they need to be quick! It's easy to develop a shot or work around focus issues when you're working with video lenses, as the depth of field is very forgiving, and you can creep the zoom in combination with your movement.
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#10 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 11:19 PM

Never seen a remote focus servo on any lens that's been given to me but that is a very good option and the Gzoom thing looks like an workable option. What would you do if you didn't have a lens with the focus servo? Or do you buy that too and move it from lens to lens?


The good news is that Golf Channel will be buying the controller, so they don't have to worry about using it on non-digital lenses. I'm in the same boat as you, in that I had no idea such a lens existed.

I've seen enough abuse on the Jib with the stanton motor/controls around the studio, so I'm happy to go with a built in option..
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#11 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 14 February 2010 - 11:40 PM

Here at the Golf Channel, we are demo-ing the Ultra2 and Clipper 312 for live studio working conditions tethered with fiber (they got me 2 Mohawk jumpers :P). I had planned all along to get a Stanton controller or maybe even try out the G-Zoom with the focus option on it, all the while not taking into account that the motorized stage controls on the gimbal really restrict where you can mount a zoom/focus controller.



Not sure what you're going to use the motorized stage for when you are doing a Video show on a stage.

I've been operating steadicam for.... oh hell WAAAAAYYYYYY to long and honestly I've never missed NOT having a motorized stage
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#12 Mike Germond SOC

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 12:18 AM

Idiot proofing :P

There are several different LitePanel/Prompter configurations that will arise on a frequent basis and saving memory presets will allow me to get the rig close to a final balance. After all, I can't be in the studio 24/7/365...If I want a day off, someone else has to come in and operate their rig!
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#13 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 01:05 AM

Idiot proofing :P

There are several different LitePanel/Prompter configurations that will arise on a frequent basis and saving memory presets will allow me to get the rig close to a final balance. After all, I can't be in the studio 24/7/365...If I want a day off, someone else has to come in and operate their rig!



So you have to have a motorized stage for that? you can't turn a side to side or fore aft knob?

The motorized stage was originally designed to take care of weight shift durning a take with a film camera, Not for setup changes. For setup changes you use a sharpie...
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#14 Brian Freesh

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 02:55 AM

Idiot proofing :P

There are several different LitePanel/Prompter configurations that will arise on a frequent basis and saving memory presets will allow me to get the rig close to a final balance. After all, I can't be in the studio 24/7/365...If I want a day off, someone else has to come in and operate their rig!


I see the appeal for this, it makes sense. There is such a thing as over-complication though, I should know, I do it all the time! Often times simplest is best, or at least equivalent and cheaper! In this case, if it saves the budget for other things, I'd think it'd be a simple matter to mark all setups on the rig. You can also make a diagram/instruction sheet/photograph of each set-up and it would cost pennies compared to that motorized stage.

The problem with assuming something like this is idiot-proof is that the act of making the assumption makes you the idiot that will prove it's not proofed! Such as, what if the motorized stage fails? And on a day you're not there! Now, since you didn't make those diagrams, mark those positions, etc... they'll just have to take the time to balance it themselves, and now they're wasting precious minutes! So now that you have to make the instructions anyway, doesn't it make sense to just leave one possible complication out of the mix? It doesn't take much longer to move the stage manually than to push the buttons on the control. Risk vs. Reward. What are you risking if you get it, vs what how great is the reward? What do you risk if you don't get it, vs what is the reward? If the money was coming from my pocket for this application, it'd be a simple decision.

The more you simplify something for someone, the less likely they are to know how to fix it if it goes wrong. Food for thought. Also, people like it when you save them money.

Brian |-)~
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#15 Markus Rave

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Posted 15 February 2010 - 04:56 AM

I was using the bebob zoom lever. Had an old one that looked a little different. For zoom it hooks onto the lens either Canon or Fuji. There was an adapter I remember. Drawback is, it only works with built in zoom motors. Still an option.

http://www.bebob.de/...e/?product=8393
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