Archive for the ‘ REVIEWS ’ Category

Inspire 1 ND Filters – DJI & Polar Pro reviews

The DJI Inspire 1’s camera seems to do a really good job, I’d say it’s certainly on par with the results from my GoPro Hero 4. One thing that soon becomes apparent though is that much like shooting with the GoPro obtaining correct exposure for video involves a lot of compromise with regards to shutter speed.

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Unlike larger lenses these tiny devices don’t offer anything in the way of aperture control so the only way to reduce exposure in camera (once ISO is at 100) is by increasing the shutter speed. The general rule of thumb for video and film is that each frame of the video is exposed for half of the time it’s available. So for instance if shooting at 25p (25 frames a second) the shutter speed would normally to half that at 1/50th of a second.

It gets confusing when talking about shutter speeds because shorter amounts of time have larger numbers, 1/100th of a second for example is twice as long as 1/200th of a second. The easiest way to remember when talking shutter speeds is that the ideal shutter speed number is double the frame rate, so at 24p the ideal shutter speed is 1/48th of a second, and at 30p it’s 1/60th of a second.

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Learning to fly – The Inspire 1 arrives

I took delivery of my DJI inspire 1 this evening and thought I’d share a few pics and initial thoughts with you. Please bare in mind that this is my first Quadcopter, I can’t give comparisons to other models in the same price bracket other than the Phantom that I have looked at in the past. None the less..

The case 
The first thing that greets you after removing the outer packaging is this rather nice looking case. It’s not a particularly tough case though, it’s fairly soft and has zip closures.

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Opening up the case reveals the Inspire 1 and and it’s associated accessories. Some of the accessories are supposed to be held in place by straps with velcro closures but even before touching these some of the velcro straps had fallen away from the case and were useless.

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The case is really not very reassuring, the quality isn’t great and while it does work well as a basic container for the Inspire I can’t see it lasting very long with real use or at the mercy of baggage handlers. I’ll have to look for a more substantial alternative.

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C-Cup: Improving the C100 Viewfinder

Any C100 user is all too aware how frustrating the EVF is to use on the camera, mostly because it feels as though Canon purposefully designed the eye cup surround to be uncomfortable as well as impractical. I’ve posted before that I’ve resorted to various attachments to make using the EVF a better experience but none of the solutions have really been designed to do the job properly, that is until now!

I was recently contacted by Andrew Miller who asked me if I’d like to try out a prototype C100 eye cup he’s been working on. The prototype works very well indeed and transforms using the C100’s EVF in to a much more useful and pleasant experience. As well s being very comfortable the C-cup also fits the face nicely and blocks out surrounding light sources.

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If you’re interested in using a C-Cup on your own C100 then you need to head over to Andrews C-Cup  Kickstarter page and back the project. If a minimum of $8,500 is pledged within the next 29 days then the C-Cup will be available to all. It would be a real shame if this product doesn’t come to market as it really works well.

Visit the C-Cup Kickstarter page

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Motion tracking in FCPX with CoreMelt TrackX & SliceX

I was recently invited to try out the TrackX and SliceX FCP plugins from CoreMelt. I’ve needed to use motion tracking on a few jobs in the past and have always relied on After Effects for the task. The TrackX and SliceX plugins from CoreMelt offer up the ability to do motion tracking directly with the FCP Interface which is a real positive for me.

I’ve only been experimenting with the plugin for a couple of days now and compared to using After Effects it’s extremely simple to get great results. I’m not going to show any examples of my own usage as yet as I’m still learning the basics but here’s a video showing some of the results that can be achieved.

I’ll be posting more of a tutorial / review in the near future showing how the tools within the plugin are especially useful for me but I’d recommend watching the examples below showing what’s possible with SliceX and TrackX.

To find out more about the plugin visit the CoreMelt website

Reviewed: Shoot35 CINEfocus r3

The Shoot35 CINEfocus r3 is the latest incarnation of Shoot35’s follow focus offerings. 

I reviewed the original (r1) CINEfocus back in 2009 and although that version has worked really well over it’s lifetime the latest incarnation is a totally new design with a host of features that promise to make it more precise, more flexible and easier to use.  So lets start by opening the box and seeing what goodies are waiting inside…

 
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