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Zephyr for Red One?

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#1 Sami Harjunen

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:59 AM

My first post! (and yes, one of those whichstedicamforme topics)!

Background:
I'm looking forward to start serious steadicam-operate training, and lack of possibilities of joining to different workshops, im planning to get used steadicam and start training at my school with help of teachers and steadicam handbook and DVD.

I have possibilities to shoot with schools Red One so I think I'm going to need steadicam which can fly such a thing. So, heres the question: Is Steadicam Zephyr good choice for Steadi-newbie like me? Is it enough to fly Red One? I have watched some youtube clips where operators fly One with zephyr.

Thanks for any advices and tips!

-Sami
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#2 James Davis

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:42 AM

Yes it can be done, it will work for you in the short term just about, but severely limit you in the long term especially when you get started as a working professional where expectations will be higher and crew will be less accomodating when it comes to dealing with your equipments limited ability to deal with multiple accessories and heavier payloads.
The zephyr sits on the edge of being able to handle an Alexa/Red One size setup, especially once you start adding the many accessories you will often be expected to have on a camera, matte box, wireless follow focus, wireless video link, cinetape etc...You will then quickly go past the maximum payload of the sled and the arm, finding yourself in a difficult situation where you are either unable to do certain jobs, or arrive finding that you have to force a compromised camera build upon production that might frustrate the DOP and AC's.

You are also very limited with regards to power outputs and your ability to power cameras and accessories from the sled.

I would recommend saving and considering an archer 2 instead which functions very well in most professional environments.

I have a modified Archer 1 and it has served me well working with the Red One, Alexa and Epic comfortably on many occasions.
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#3 Eric Fletcher S.O.C.

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:11 AM

Or you could go with PRO. With the modular style of pro and XCS you can tailor the rig to what you want and need and then just upgrade the battery base as you grow
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#4 Alan Rencher

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 12:25 PM

I would second what Eric said. I've owned a Zephyr, for about a year and a half now. I love using it, but if Pro would have had the modular system when I was looking to buy, I would have taken it in a heart beat.
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#5 brett.mayfield

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 01:19 PM

XCS or PRO would be rad, but if you are on a budget I also recommend the Archer-2. Ive been flying one for a few years now and have been able to put a whole lotta gear and very little gear on it, flying RedONE, Epic, some Sonys, etc. If there are any demo models then you may be able to get it discounted. Or used. Im a big fan of used.
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#6 Mark Baluk

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 01:44 PM

Even with the Archer, it's a jump depending on your budget. If you are at a ~10k budget, the zypher can do the job for the time being.

I've heard conflicts about powering a Red thru the Zephyr. So every time I used it, I just powered off the camera batts. If you are using a Epic or Scarlet, then you'll have no problem for the most part in terms of Accessories and weight.

With this Red setup, there was still a few pounds left of wiggle room in the arm.

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You will start to notice flex and vibrations in the upper weight limit though... Which came apparent pretty soon. So the Arm handles it, but does the sled? To a point. It's manageable, and a pretty good starting point.
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#7 Sami Harjunen

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 02:59 PM

Thank you very much for your tips!

The main problem is the budget, Im still going to be a student for a couple of years, so I really dont have possibility to work full time to pay a steadicam loan for example.

Just checked prices of Archer and PRO (used of course, no change for getting a new one) and the price was closer to 20k than 10k (if i checked right the PRO) - and ~10k is really closer to my budget. But would it be wasted money if I end up to Zephyr? I really dont want to end up antything that i have to get rid of after a couple of years.

I really appreciate your help,

Sami
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#8 John Stout

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 03:14 PM

There is a great second market for Steadicam (and other manufactures). You should not have a hard time re-selling your Zephyr. Someone is always looking to buy used.
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#9 brett.mayfield

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 06:15 PM

I agree with John.
I wouldnt consider it "wasted" money if it gets you work, experience, and on to some sets. Its an investment. Youll see that there are operators that have traded up, down, and around their rigs, so dont feel like youve got to stick with this first rig forever.
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#10 Mark Schlicher

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:17 PM

Yes the Zephyr will limit you eventually and you may need to upgrade to a big rig. But the Zephyr is an excellent student/starter rig in my opinion...affordable and capable for a wide range of light-to-mid-weight cameras, and is likely to have good resale value.If you can't afford $20k+ for an Archer, then Zephyr will provide a good training rig to get you practicing right away.

Keep in mind that you will have some extra expenses for c-stand, batteries and charger, and possibly for lowmode kit, HD monitor upgrade, and auxiliary battery hanger.
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#11 Janice Arthur

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:41 PM

Hi all;

Remember too the Red 1 is fast becoming less popular.

The scarlet and epic are much more popular these days

JA

Good luck


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#12 John Stout

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 07:43 PM

I know a lot of us sound like broken records, but before you plunk down your hard earned class, go take a workshop. It will solidify your decision even more once you have a chance to fly and learn a bit.
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#13 Victor Lazaro

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:20 PM

Maybe look around where you live and see if anyone has a sled for you to try on. Or maybe find a rental thy has a zephyr (adorama has a zephyr for rent). Use your connections (or make some). Where are you located?
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#14 Sami Harjunen

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Posted 26 January 2013 - 01:55 AM

Im from Joensuu, Finland - and im waiting for tiffen to annouce work shops in sweden. I think its the nearest workshop there is and the only one when you wouldnt have to spend hundreds of euros only to flights.

I know couple of guys with Clipper and Master series, but non with Zephyr.. Tryed to google if there was any firms who would rent it but no match.

Sami
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#15 Sami Harjunen

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 04:10 AM

One more question, is it possible to modify Zephyr to mak it carry more heavier loads? And is it worth of money? I'll start to look Zephyr and Archer (if I find a cheap one) on next month, so please tip me if you know there one for sale. Thanks for all replys!

-Sami
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