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can someone critique this rig


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#1 Brian W. Hall

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Posted 12 October 2005 - 06:54 PM

I'm in the process of buying my first steadicam rig and am still in the research phase. I plan on doing mostly television including reality,sports, and documentary. I have come up with a hypothetical rig that I think will work. Let me know if Im way off or overlooking something.

Heres what I would like to buy

-XCS ultimate rig without TB-6 monitor
-Walter Klassen back mounted vest
-G50 arm
-TBD $3,000 monitor

since Im starting out with video i dont think I need much else maybe a operator controlled zoom and focus but I think thats it right? thanks

Brian
www.brianwhall.com
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#2 Edgar Colon

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Posted 12 October 2005 - 07:19 PM

I think no matter what type of production you're gonna work on you should always have a ff unit
That's gonna put you in a professional level equipment wise at least
BFD/M One configuration is a great starter/regular ff to have. Is not that expensive, user friendly and the customer service is amazing.

Forget about zoom controls, you barely gonna need it besides it'll make your life miserable specially if you don't have much experience

A video transmitter is another must in your list, check Modulus, Canatrans, etc etc

Hope it helps

Edgar
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#3 Afton Grant

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Posted 12 October 2005 - 10:15 PM

Brian,

Nobody can tell you how to spend your money. All the gear you listed is top of the line and would make any operator quite happy.

The fact is, if you have to ask if certain equipment is good or not, perhaps you're not quite ready to be buying it. I think that was one of the underlying points made in your previous post. With prices like those in this business, research and education should really be as thorough as can be before you purchase. And that's education in addition to the necessary practical operating education.

I'll say that I'm still quite green in the industry myself, but this is some of the better advice I've learned here and elsewhere. Patience pays off, literally.

Best,
Afton
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#4 Brian W. Hall

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 01:40 AM

Afton,

I dont think I was asking if the gear was good or not but rather is it a compatible system? I've been doing a lot of research and trying to read as many previous posts on this site as possible. I feel like a lot of steadicam ops are always trying to talk new steadicam ops out of getting into the business. Not sure why that is. Fact is I'v been in the business long enough to know this is my passion and its something I want to do. ITs not like I just woke up and decided to do steadicam on impulse. I think I'm going about it the right way, sorry if you misunderstood my post.

Brian



Nobody can tell you how to spend your money. All the gear you listed is top of the line and would make any operator quite happy.

The fact is, if you have to ask if certain equipment is good or not, perhaps you're not quite ready to be buying it. I think that was one of the underlying points made in your previous post. With prices like those in this business, research and education should really be as thorough as can be before you purchase. And that's education in addition to the necessary practical operating education.

I'll say that I'm still quite green in the industry myself, but this is some of the better advice I've learned here and elsewhere. Patience pays off, literally.

Best,
Afton
[/quote]
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#5 charlesneufeld

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 01:53 AM

Hey Brian,

I must point out that while the XCS sled is amazing, it is also one of the heaver rigs out there. So it will reduce your total usable camera weight/ accs used with the G50. But I am sure you will be fine.

Good luck in your pursuit!
~C
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#6 Afton Grant

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 07:25 AM

I feel like a lot of steadicam ops are always trying to talk new steadicam ops out of getting into the business. Not sure why that is.


Hi Brian,

I've never witnessed a steadicam op trying to convince someone new against entering the business. Being relatively new myself, I've been welcomed quite warmly. I think you are misunderstanding my previous reply and any other conversations between people that you feel are discouraging. They are not that at all. I can't cite anything specifically, but I would imagine any advice you've heard previously that seems negative is really the wisdom of a seasoned operator trying to keep someone from making a costly mistake due to haste.

Very Sincerely,
Afton
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#7 bobgilles

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 11:39 AM

I think you have the right Idea by starting on the lighter side so you can fly what the indy directors will most rent, which is small DV and HD video cameras. I personally like the MK-V sled system much better than the XCS, it goes lighter and it can scale heavier, it is very well suited to a starting op as you have all the options. I have the GPI sled with a Master Series arm, for my planned running rig, I would like to try a Flyer arm and the MK-V lite.
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#8 Matt Burton

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 05:55 PM

Hello Brian

Welcome to our world !

I can see your quite an experianced camera operator and have one question to ask !

Where the hell have you been ?

I mean how long have you been operating and why havn't you been involved in with steadicam sooner ?

The only thing that stopped me getting into steadicam was the massive cost of getting a rig. After i had overcome that obstacle it was up up and away so to speak.

For many camera ooperators, a first glance at a steadicam is the only thing it takes !

Kind regards
-Matt

Hello Brian

Welcome to our world !

I can see your quite an experianced camera operator and have one question to ask !

Where the hell have you been ?

I mean how long have you been operating and why havn't you been involved in with steadicam sooner ?

The only thing that stopped me getting into steadicam was the massive cost of getting a rig. After i had overcome that obstacle it was up up and away so to speak.

For many camera ooperators, a first glance at a steadicam is the only thing it takes !

Kind regards
-Matt


that last bit was a miss edit, but i kinda like it :D
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#9 TJ Williams

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Posted 13 October 2005 - 11:51 PM

Good choices.

I think the ability of the XCS to break down quickly for shipment with the Bayonet mounts is great. and it is so rigid!!! An advanced electronics package and video distribution. at full 1V is pretty cool also. This should last you for a career. (also I understand compatable with the Alien...)

The way the Klassen vest lets you stay on your feet longer. this will keep you from hurting your back on those long video event days.

The new G arms are absolutely great, I'm also considering one. the top and bottom soft stops are especially nice and the arm is very light.

I agree with the folks up above a good follow focus is necessary. You will have better jobs that need this come as a suprise.

All The best on the move over to steadi...

TJ :D :D :D :D :D
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#10 bobgilles

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Posted 14 October 2005 - 09:08 PM

How light can you go with an XCS rig? Newer Ops will most likely be starting with student films and local commercials, indies ect ect, I really like the ability to scale for the big gigs down the road.
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#11 Charles Papert

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Posted 14 October 2005 - 09:38 PM

Bob:

I hear you, but I wonder if for these 4-6 lb DV cameras, an entirely separate sled might be more appropriate than a scaled down full size rig, since you will be carrying around plenty of stuff that won't be needed for that type of camera (i.e. the HVX100 as you pictured). However, I'm sure we'll all agree that it's HARDER to operate a super-light rig as well as a full-size, and thus I think that DV/HDV/HDPRO (exhausting distinctions these days!) cameras in this class are best suited to having a weight plate added to bring them up to "optimal" Steadicam weight, which is of course debatable but I would weigh in by suggesting a total payload of 15-20 lbs for most types of shooting, and maybe 5 lbs less for run-and-gun, in-the-rig-all-day photography (or, to hell with it, virtually anyone who is hiring us to shoot like that isn't so picky about any individual move, so the lightest possible rig is probably best with that).
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