Australian Image (Ray)

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    I always like to follow up, rather than leaving things hanging. If your combination is a bare-bones BMPCC4K with a lightweight lens, then just about any gimbal should work fine.

    As I noted, I was able to balance a bare-bones BMPCC4K with an Olympus 12-60mm zoom on a FeiyuTech A2000 which has a weight capacity of 2.5kg. It’s not a gimbal that I’d recommend now, given it’s age and lack of features, but it is a very lightweight gimbal. Once Amazon refunds me (hopefully no issues), I’ll have to reconsider the gimbal options.

    I don’t want to buy a DJI or Moza gimbal as they all use propriety battery solutions, I want a gimbal that uses 18650 batteries that are available anywhere and can be changed over at any time if the gimbal runs out of juice. The Crane 2s is looking like the leading contender, despite my earlier concerns. This is the video that I came across and is the only one I’ve seen that has more than just a small camera and lens on the gimbal:

    I thought I’d do a follow-up as I received my FeiyuTech AK4500 yesterday and it went back to Amazon today. First off, the hyperlink controller was clearly defective as it would not charge even after a very long period and that was my main reason. I was able to balance my rig, which weighed 3.1kg after removing the monitor, handle and microphone setup and using just an NP-F550 battery in the adapter. I did have to add some extra weight to the back of the camera so that the pitch motor could be properly balanced.

    That said, almost every time that I turned the gimbal on, whether I’d removed the camera in-between or not, the gimbal would start vibrating and at other times going completely stupid, waving the camera all over the place. Adjusting the motor strength made no difference. This all started to happen after I applied the latest firmware updates and even repeated re-installs (as suggested) made no difference.

    The BMPCC4K is a difficult camera to balance on a gimbal, but clearly there was something amiss, as I was able to balance the camera (albeit in a much lighter configuration) on a much weaker gimbal. I’m now torn as to what to do. I came across a video where the Crane 2s was loaded up with a BMPCC4K, including monitor on top, and it seemed to handle the top heavy combination quite well.

    Once again, I’d really love a gimbal that has only pitch and roll control, making the gimbal much simpler and easier to mount heavy/awkward cameras. I may just have to wait and see if Blackmagic is ever going to update their micro range of cameras using the mount and sensor that’s in the BMPCC4K.

    A BMPCC4K is easy to balance on a gimbal, cage or no cage (depending on gimbal). I was able to balance mine on an old FeiyuTech A2000 gimbal without cage and a medium sized zoom. It wasn’t the ideal gimbal for this, but was doable. The BMPCC4K is now rigged up (4.3kg) and needs a better gimbal, so I’ve ordered a FeiyuTech AK4500, which is capable of holding up to 4.6kg (but will most likely go up to 5kg given how I can exceed the weight limits of my other FeiyuTech gimbals).

    I watched a lot of videos on the new Crane 2s and decided not to go that route for a few reasons. Firstly, Zhiyun does not advertise the weight capacity of the gimbal and no one could tell me what it is. Secondly, no one was placing a heavy rig on the gimbal, often just saying that the rig was ‘pretty heavy’, which is not a recognised unit of measurement. No could tell me what their rig weighed. Thirdly, given the debacle with the Crane 3s, which is rated at 6.5kg but only when the extra battery pack is installed, otherwise it’s just 3kg, I lost all confidence in Zhiyun.

    In any case, a cage is not required if that’s not your thing. Depending on what lenses you want to use, pretty much any of the later gimbals will work fine. Just weigh your camera and then look for gimbals that will have at least that capacity. Personally, I’d go for the stick type gimbal rather than the latest fad, which is the ones with just an arm and no body, eg the likes of the Crane 3s.

    It’s an interesting development. I wonder how it works outdoors in bright sunlight? The other factor that may affect some buyers is that the maximum range is about 12m.

    I tried the preset option, but it’s as slow as a wet week applying it. It’s faster to simply manually touch the fps symbol and change the setting. There doesn’t appear to be a way to assign preset this to a button. It’s a shame that the HFR button can’t be assigned simply to change the frame rate to whatever is the assigned high frame rate.

    My concern with the 3D printed ones is whether they are a good fit, mine luckily were and it helped that one lens had an all metal barrel. With the one that had a rubber focus/zoom ring, it was a lot harder to put into place as the rubber wanted to move as well. if it were possible to buy this 0.8 mod gear ring material in long strips and slightly thinner material, like you can with 3D printer belts, I’d get a couple of metres and redo some of the rings.

    The image/link shows a blank (your post is blank). This (hopefully) will appear and show the two mounting options:

    Invisible tape perhaps? 🙂

    I updated to the Resolve 16.3 beta 2 (don’t normally install betas, but what the heck) and which seems to work OK, but for the life of me I can’t find any information as to whether I should install Blackmagic RAW 2.0, or whether it’s just for developers to play around with.

    It would appear that it’s often the quality of the wiring, connector, construction, materials and basic design that will have a significant impact of reliability and durability. Couple that with ham-fisted uses and you’re asking for trouble.

    I’m aware of that, which is why I never hot disconnect anything. The good thing is that if I have to disconnect the HDMI from my BMPCC4K or VA 12G, both start up in 2-3 sec, no waiting around (with Atomos, go make a coffee). The D-tap info is most interesting, especially the one about the safety-tap, as well as the part about SDI cable care.

    This makes for interesting reading: There’s also some very interesting information towards the end about P-tap (D-tap) connectors. It’s about Arri cameras, but clearly applies to all cameras.

    Rather than debate everything over again, to paraphrase, big budget movies clearly use the likes of Arri and all the other gear because primarily it’s about reliability, support and it’s what they are used to using for decades (even before digital). But another type of professional is quite content to use different gear and methods to produce their level of work. Yes, I’ve been inside Jindalee as well, sat on the floor of Iroquois while taking photos and lots of other interesting things, it’s been part of my job.

    With regard to predictions, I’ve had more than one correct one. Around 20 years ago I had a discussion with a group of air force pilots about the eventual adoption of pilotless aircraft for combat missions and I was met with a very vehement response that this would ‘never’ happen, there would always be a pilot in a combat aircraft. But look what did happen (and those combat pilots who later derided combat drones and those who operated them, rather quickly changed their minds as that group began to gain elite status. New technology brought new opportunities and new challenges that the professionals were willing to tackle). And drones have almost entirely replaced helicopters in big budget movies.

    I had a conversation with an engineer around the same time where I suggested that we’d be getting faster and faster internet speeds over the phone lines and he insisted that 56K was the fastest internet speeds that the copper phone lines would ever be capable of delivering. That changed rather quickly. And in another discussion with another engineer in the mid-90s, I suggested that future music, complete CDs, would be available on memory chips because much of music repetitive and could be recorded once and used again. I was told that this was impossible as the memory requirements for just a single song would be so huge that there’d be no way to record a full album on a memory chip. Something changed (at the time I knew nothing of compression technology). I have many more examples and it’s a pity I didn’t try and patent some of those ideas at the time (but they were probably well underway in any case).

    Yes, WiFi vs Ethernet is another example that could be used. Ethernet (multiple cables) does afford a greater degree of reliability, signal wise, and you can get PoE, but it’s also impractical to use in many cases, which is why the growth of WiFi is accelerating at such speed. That said the modern HDMI cable is ostensibly an Ethernet cable, there’s even an automotive HDMI coming that provides greater security and durability in an automotive environment. I currently use WiFi, WiFi extender and Ethernet over powerline, as it’s impractical to rewire my house and WiFi works quite well. How many would have believed what you now could do with WiFi, and mobile phone technology, 20+ years ago. What will we see in another 20 years? Then we have all those focus controllers (I notice that even Arri uses wireless controllers), wireless monitors (another Arri product) etc.

    But I think that at the end of the day we (John and I) will have to agree to disagree. Professionals (not just those making block buster movies) use the tools available to them, use tools that are not just effective but cost effective and are willing to adopt new technology when it arises. But I guess that context also matters, if only the gear determines what’s professional or not, then maybe John is correct. But somehow I have a feeling that others may disagree. I’m not sure what other things this guy does, but I’d call him a professional: and maybe these guys as well:, to keep the Blackmagic theme rolling along.

    I don’t know why you’re picking this hill to die on…

    Because you haven’t made a demonstrably cogent argument. Just because you say so, doesn’t make it so. And I’m still on this hill, unless you decide to nuke me because you can’t tolerate disagreement.

    Just to put things into context. I’m ex-military and I’ve stood in front of generals and told then that what they are proposing is wrong. Senior officers have retreated from those encounters and I’ve stood my ground. My career didn’t suffer, because it was my job to call things out. And I’ve been proven correct a number of times and received later calls confirming such, with hints not to be so forthright in future.

    Me, IDGAF.

    Suck it up Ray. I’ve explained the technical reasons why. I’ve explained that in actual evidence why. You’re just burying your head in the sand and sticking your fingers in your ears and saying nah nah nah.

    I’m not ignoring what you’ve said. Yes, blockbuster movies are made on Arris etc (which has nothing to do with HDMI and SDI, there’s more to these cameras which you obviously know). But why do you belittle lesser films, documentaries and the like that are made on less expensive cameras and calling the results, effectively, amateur stuff and those who make such products amateurs? That’s at least what I’m getting from what you are saying.

    I guess from your perspective, if all that you consider professional are blockbuster movies shot on $100,000+ cameras, then perhaps everything else is amateur. Like that old saying, ‘If all that you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.’ I’m not sure if this is accurate, but I wouldn’t call these efforts ‘amateur’: James Cameron is apparently going to film the next Avatar on the Sony Venice; I’d be hesitant to call him an amateur. What about those amateurs who decided to use one of the first digital cameras to film a blockbuster movie? I think some unknown by the name of George Lucas comes to mind. Then there are all of those amateurs filming TV shows, music videos, advertisements etc, etc, all earning a pretty good income and who I, personally, wouldn’t call amateurs.

    However, this is getting somewhat off-topic, as the subject was HDMI vs SDI for professional level work. I’m not debating that SDI is not the better, if not the only option (at the moment) for long cable runs and if you need/want a locking connector, but HDMI clearly does have a place in professional work. Wireless, I suspect, with be the next disruptive technology, for a number of reasons. I almost have this feeling that there’s a bit of denial going on here because cameras that cost a fraction of say an ARRI are now in the hands of film makers and giving them the ability to produce professional level work, not necessarily on major film sets.

    Perhaps the closest analogy I can come to what you’re debating are those who still insist that carburetors and physical throttle cables are better than fuel injection and electronic throttles (I’m a motorhead amongst other things), despite the fact that you can do so much more with the latter to produce power, torque and driveability (kind of what HDMI offers). And I might also point out that I have a science project manager background in defence research (another thing) and multi-strand cables are a pretty common thing in that industry, notably aerospace. If it’s fit for purpose, then it’s used.

    And I should point out that I’m very inquisitive and because of my science project management background where I was managing AU$30+ million worth of contracts annually, I had to be cognisant of outcomes etc, especially when it came those based on appeal to authority. I learned to question everything and never accepted the argument that ‘I’m an expert and therefore you shouldn’t question what I say.’ Many contractors fell afoul of that sort of hubris.

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