A few of you were asking about the DSLR FILM NOOB studio, so I thought I’d give you a quick walk through. The studio is currently a disaster area right now. I’ve been in and out on a number of jobs and instead of putting things away I’ve been leaving stuff on the floor and other random places. Not exactly the best organizational strategy. Tomorrow might end up being a cleaning day.
As you probably know I often shoot on the 5d mark III or Canon c100, but those cameras are often buried in a camera bag and packed for travel. For that reason I keep a Canon t2i with a Canon 17-35mm f2.8 lens around the studio for quick bits of filming for youtube. Underneath of that is a Beachtek DXA-SLR audio adapter with a XLR splitter attached. Audio comes from either a boom mic mounted under the camera or a wireless pack.
For my own reference and framing I have a Smallhd DP4 attached. Magic Lantern provides the audio level meters and a simple Canon RC-1 is used to start/stop recording and focus the shot. This setup does a great job and it’s a reasonably affordable solution for a lot of film making applications. Here’s the price breakdown:
- Canon t2i - $300
- Canon 17-35mm f2.8 lens - $400
- Beachtek DXA-SLR - $269
- Canon RC-1 - $14
- XLR splitter - $9
The whole thing, minus a boom mic and monitor will set you back just under $1000. While that is still a decent chunk of change, it’s about the same price or a little under something like the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera which doesn’t come with anything but a camera body and a battery. While the t2i and BMPCC have a lot of differences, the t2i still stacks up pretty well in the price to value category.
There are many arguments about how much resolution the t2i actually provides, I would say the t2i is a good base line. If the image you get from a camera looks as good or better than a t2i, you’re working in a good spot. People get pretty excited about resolution, for me the first time I shot with a Canon t2i or a 5d mark II, I was impressed. Even though image quality in newer cameras has gotten better, it hasn’t changed my opinion about the Canon t2i. It’s still a great camera for the price.
If you guys like this kind of content, let me know and i’ll start putting out a few more behind the scenes bits like this on the second youtube channel.
I was looking for a fast USB 3.0 thumb drive with a lot of storage space for travel. Having a high capacity thumbdrive can be pretty handy when you are collaborating on projects and you never know when you’re going to need to share or grab media files.
After doing some research I settled on the PNY 128 USB 3.0 thumb drive. At a price of $45, the PNY seemed like a pretty decent value for a 128GB thumb drive, but I wasn’t sure if it would be fast enough for simple editing applications. After all “10x faster” isn’t actually a speed rating.
After running a few tests on crystal benchmark, I was pretty impressed with the results. The PNY 128 USB 3.0 thumb drive was delivering at or above 193MB/s sequential reads and 78MB/s sequential writes on every test. That’s pretty impressive for a sub $50 thumb drive.
I ran the test 4 times and these are the lowest results out of the bunch. While these aren’t SSD drive speeds, they’re still faster than most USB powered spinning drives. The PNY 128 USB 3.0 thumb drive is well worth considering if you are in the market for a small large capacity storage solution.
The Samsung 840 EVO 750GB SSD just showed up on ebay for $359 with 99 cent shipping. Sold by Newegg, the 750GB SSD clocks in at just under 48 cents a GB. It’s nice to see that the Samsung 840 evo is still maintaining its price to value lead. I think Samsung has a clear winner with the 840 evo. It’s still my number 1 SSD pick on the market.
I’ve been testing and using the Aputure VS-3 Field monitor for a few months now and it’s been a reasonably positive experience. The VS-3 sits in a sweet spot between higher end monitors and the sub $200 offerings. Features are pretty good for the price and it’s one of the few monitors that offers up audio level meters in its price range.
As mentioned in the video review I only really have two complaints. First, a monitor this size is a little on the large side for field work and second, the monitor never completely powers down when a battery is installed. If you leave a battery installed, it’ll drain down over night and you’ll need to recharge. Neither one of these are deal breakers, but they are items to keep in mind when hunting for a new field monitor.
The only other monitor that competes with the Aputure VS-3 in this price range is the Lilliput 663 field monitor. It has a slightly higher resolution at 1280×800 and offers up a few more battery options. The trade off is that the the 663 is around 2.4 pounds without a battery installed while the VS-3 is 0.8 pounds, the VS-3 has built in audio level meters (which is a big plus for BMPCC users) while the 663 does not, and from what i’ve seen the image quality is better out of the box on the VS-3 when compared to the Lilliput 663. Still if you need the extra bit of resolution the Lilliput 663 field monitor should probably be on your list of monitors to consider.
I’ve been writing about the VS-3 off and on for the last few months as I’ve been using it. You can check out these links for more images, firmware updates, and first impressions. Over all I think the price to value option the VS-3 offers is what makes it an attractive option as a field monitor.
The Tamron 20-70mm f2.8 is still one of my favorite lenses and right now you can pick up the Tamron 24-70mm f2.8 VC lens in a Canon mount for just $868 with free shipping on ebay. That’s about $300 less the the retail price and a pretty darn good value for a great lens. As with all of these ebay sales, this is a limited time price, so if you want one you might want to move fast.
03Mar Gopro Hero 3+ $349
The Gopro Hero 3+ black edition is on sale right now on ebay for Just $349 with free shipping. If you never made the jump from an older Gopro Hero to the 3, this might be a good time to upgrade. As with most of these ebay sales, this is only on sale for a few days and there are limited quantities so if you want one, you might want to move fast.
The Neewer DC-50 field monitor (above) looks very similar to the Viltrox DC-50, the only major difference appears to the price. The Viltrox hovers around $200, while the Neewer DC-50 is closer to $120. Are they the same monitor?
The packaging for the Viltrox DC-50 looks identical to the Neewer DC-50 and if you look close on the Amazon product photos you can actually see the Viltrox logo on the packaging. I’m not sure if the Neewer models are B stock or just a rebranded Viltrox. Any body given the Neewer DC-50 a try?
Looks like the Samsung 840 EVO 1TB SSD drives are back on sale again. Right now you can pick them up for $485 with free shipping on ebay which saves you about $25 compared to retail prices. 840 EVO drives are currently my top pick for SSDs, great value, good software, and great performance.
I’ve been running the Samsung 840 EVO 1TB SSD in my desktop for about a week now and the speeds are looking great. Transferring my OS from my old SSD to the EVO was pretty painless with free Samsungs migration software. It took a little less than an hour to clone the drive and about 15 min to install it in my desktop.
Speeds are top notch and performance feels a little bit snappier than my old SSD. The current generation of SSD drives seems to be held back mostly by SATA speeds as opposed to the drives themselves.
The only issue I’m running into right now is that the Samsung Magician software seems to think that every drive I have installed on my desktop is a Samsung 840 EVO. This little hiccup has blocked me from testing out the RAPID mode feature. It’s disappointing as the results I’ve seen on my laptop are pretty impressive and I was looking forward to testing those speeds on my desktop.
If anyone else has run into this problem and solved it, let me know. I’m waiting to hear back from Samsung tech support to see if they have an answer, if I find anything else out I’ll let you know. Even with this little problem I’m still pretty impressed the 840 evo drives in general.
The SmallHD DP4 with it’s 800×480 screen resolution will set up back $449 for the basic model or you could pick up this used SmallHD DP6 monitor with its 1280×800 display for $550 with free shipping on ebay. While the DP6 might not be quite as nice as some of the newer OLED 7 inch monitors SmallHD sells, it offers two advantages. First, it’s much smaller (5.6 inch vs 7.7 inch) and second at $550 it’s $450 less then AC7-OLED and $50 less then the AC7-LCD. I’ve had pretty good luck with the DP6 and $550 is a pretty good deal for a monitor that used be over $1200 a year ago.
It looks like someone has finally started cloning the Edelkrone rigs. This generic clone from india looks like it has most of the same features offered by the entry level Edelkrone rigs at about a 1/4 of the price. At $378, it’s still a very pricy rig for a clone and I have no idea how well this thing is made. If you feel like taking a chance and don’t have the $1200 to spend on an official Edelkrone rig this guy might be a valid option. If you decide to take the dive send me some pictures and opinions, I’d be interested to know how it turns out.