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original flyer vs flyer LE

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#1 rafael august

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Posted 21 January 2011 - 02:03 PM

Hi Everyone,

I am looking at a used original flyer. I am trying to decide if I should buy the used rig that is new out of the box for 4k or I should buy a new flyer le. What advantage does the Le have over the original.

Thanks for the info,

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#2 John E Fry

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Posted 25 January 2011 - 04:07 AM

It depends on what cameras you are going to be using on it really. If you're flying EX3s or HVX200 size cameras then the original Flyer is still an excellent choice & will save you some dosh.

The real differences or advantages the LE has are that it will much more easily cope with heavier cameras due to it's thicker, extendable post. I've happily flown an HPX500 with a J11 on an LE & I know Tiffen specifically picture a Red on one. So unless you're shooting with heavy HDcam heads, fully loaded Reds or film cameras I think the LE would do for most TV stuff & even low budget feature work.

The LE also has a bigger knurled gimbal grip which is really nice to use, and the topstage has had a bit of a redesign which is quicker & easier to use than the original Flyer. Having said all that I still love using my original Flyer & once balanced it really is the arm that makes both versions such a pleasure to fly.

So the simple answer is, if you're going to be flying cameras a little heavier than DSRs or EXs, or at least want that option then think about the LE, otherwise an original Flyer should do you admirably. Anyone else have any thoughts?

Let us know what you decide, and why! Always useful to other operators.
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#3 Mark Schlicher

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Posted 31 January 2011 - 10:48 PM

I've flown the HPX500 on my original Flyer with no problem...close to the limit but very workable.

Stripped the viewfinder. Kit lens (Canon with doubler). Under 15 lbs. I believe I had a Hytron 120 on the bottom. The small diameter grip on the original Flyer is a bit more challenging with a heavy load, and the 3/4" post is no fun when in low mode with a heavier camera, but it can be done.
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#4 Jonathan Parris

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Posted 01 February 2011 - 01:00 AM

I really don't know why they picture RED on the LE. Unless you actually have the LE version that was specifically built for RED, it is a pain to do. I took my LE to a rental house to see what it would take to fly that camera. With the camera fully stripped down like Tiffen pictures, it is inoperable, but it does work on the LE, at least as far a weight is concerned. I did not have an HD monitor (a must with that camera), and I did not have the RED Steadicam power cable, so I could not turn the camera on. Unless you really stopped the lens down, you would also want a follow focus and a matte box, which might tip the weight scale for the LE. Even if I were to get the power and video cables to be able to fly it, I would have to run them outside the post, because they won't fit trough the hole in the top stage.

Other than that, I love the LE. It has flown everything else I have thrown at it with no problem. It is well designed and very quick to balance. The extendable post has been a lifesaver when making adjustments between takes without having to put it on the stand and pull out the wrench. I have not flown the original Flyer to really make a comparison for you, but like the other guys say, it really will just depend on what kind of weight you will be flying. Many prosumer cameras are on the low end for what the LE is designed to hold, but having the option of adding weight to them will make them that much easier to fly. The more weight you can carry, the more naturally stable the rig will be.
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