Monthly Archives: November 2010


The LP-E6 is the battery type used in the Canon 60D, 7D, and Canon 5D Mark II. This AC power adapter will power your camera from any AC outlet. There's usually several cameras going at one time and to compliment the stationary tripod shots in the studio, I decided these AC adapters help save me time from charging batteries. I can use my other batteries for the more mobile cameras. Having constant power to a few cameras is also one less thing to worry about when we've got only two guys manning 4-5 cameras. As you can see the cords are very long, so even without an extension cord, they are quite usable on it's own. These cameras don't require much power, and I verified that it works with my little portable $99 dollar battery pack which should give me more than a full day's worth of power. Extended Timelapse shooting? You'll probably think about something like this. If you're in studio, or even on constant location shoots with a static tripod shot, a battery pack and this ACK-E6 battery adapter is definitely a handy thing to have in the bag in case you run low on batteries....

If you're not using a battery grip, you can get away with some of the inexpensive versions running around $20 dollars. If you're using a battery grip, some of the aftermarket types don't work well and the battery door won't close properly. That's why I went with the OEM.

find-price-button Canon ACK-E6AC Adapter Kit for Canon 5D Mark II Digital SLR

Canon T2i / 550D owners are in luck, as the OEM ACK-E8 power adapter is much cheaper than the ones for the 60D, 7D, and 5D Mark II.
find-price-button ACK-E8, AC Adapter Kit for EOS Rebel T2i Digital SLR Camera



Sure it's not DSLR, but if you're working with a camera that lacks 60p, you might want to take a look at the Panasonic TM700. For those shooting sports and loving that whole slow motion look, this cheap little video camera might help add to your work flow. Vimeo member iamkalaniprince just posted this video up showcasing Panasonic's ability to provide smooth slow motion playback with Image Stabilization already built in to help with your hand-held shots. Camcorders are well known for their fast auto focus compared to DSLR's which makes this perfect for fast moving subjects. Not to mention it's got a bit of a zoom range in a tiny lightweight package. There's a built in 32GB hard drive, but also supports SDHC for more storage. Filter ring support for those ND and CPL's, Microphone input support and headphone monitoring are also nice additions, along with a crazy 3.45-41.4mm f/1.5-2.8 Leica lens (yeah they dropped the Leica name). You won't be coming in with the same Depth of Field look as a DSLR and possibly lack the low light abilities, but for an outdoor fast moving shoot that you can turn into butter smooth slow motion this looks like a fun little video camera. I'm waiting for someone to throw this footage into Twixtor next.

Here's a Low Light Sample from iamkalaniprince

find-price-button Panasonic HDC-TM700 High Definition Camcorder at B&H Photo Video



I've received several comments and emails about how well these FD lenses actually work. For those who are chasing that DOF look, old vintage lenses can get you there on a budget. You'll often hear that these lenses aren't as sharp as digital EF mounts, but that's going about it all wrong. Sure they aren't uber sharp, but with moving pictures it can provide a more classic Cinema feel than overly sharp lenses. Many of these lenses can give you this certain artistic look starting at only $20 dollars. I think the best comment left on this blog was 'Take them for what they are'. They can really blow out a background, especially this 200mm prime lens at F/4. Sure you can find lenses at F/1.2 but you have to also factor lens distance, subject focal distance, and background distance from subject. Get the right combination, and F/4 can provide a really nice blurred look to that background. Keep in mind too that the 60D with this FD adapter turns this 200mm into a crazy focal length of 320mm+ at F/4.


There's a few things I could have done better in this. My white balance was set to Auto, and perhaps if I set it correctly it could have warmed things up. I didn't have an ND filter on so the shutter speed was a bit high. I could have thrown a reflector on the subject to get more balanced lighting under the hat, and a scrim to shade the hot spot. I was also just using the preset Picture style for Portrait on the 60D. I possibly could have shot it in a more flat style and edited in post, but I wanted to show how well the image can be straight from the camera. So hopefully this sample will give you guys an idea of some types of footage that can be achieved. You can find the adapter i'm using back at this article:

Click Image for FD Adapter



Old video - The 24-105mm has been upgraded with Stainless Steel Inserts

If you're out of gift ideas for what to get your camera geek buddies, you may want to check out the Coffee Mug Lens Replicas. I'm all over this one. After the initial release of the Canon 70-200mm F/4 at the Olympics, there's been quite a few new additions of 'Lens Replica Coffee Mugs' including Nikon versions. The Nikon version i'm showing in my gallery actually 'Zooms' in and out, which is quite whimsical. The details on these replicas are incredible with the recent versions being over 95% detailed to match the real deal. The new versions also include stainless steel inserts for hot beverages, perfect for both Camera lovers and Coffee Drinkers. I have quite a few myself which you can check out in the galleries below. The 24-105mm Lens mug you see in my gallery is the old one. The new Canon 24-105mm F/4 Replica Lens mug now has a stainless steel insert and is more accurate in replica details.

Originally these items were crazy over priced upwards of $100 dollars each with rare finds, but now the the trend has died down and there's more sellers available. The new cheaper prices sometimes found for about $10 dollars for these things make for the perfect Christmas gift for any Camera enthusiast. A gift you know won't end up being recycled back to someone else, LOL. You'll find local sellers that can get you one in short time, but if you're looking to get this by the big Holiday for cheap over seas pricing, you may want to pad for some shipping time and order soon.

find-price-button Nikon Coffee Mug Telephoto Zoom

find-price-button Canon Lens Mug Coffee Mug Replica Telephoto Zoom



One of the most popular inexpensive DSLR Video lights would be the CN-126. It's been featured many times on this blog and to this day is still one bargain that's hard to beat. The CN-126 contains 126 LEDs, hence the name 'CN-126'. If you haven't seen it, this article is a good reference: This was probably my first LED Video light for DSLR videography and still have three of them in use today. I carefully selected the CN-126 because it was cheap (at the time was about 350 dollars cheaper than comparables), was the right size, used several different battery types for more power options, and most importantly was 'Dimmable'.

find-price-button 126 LED Dimmable Multi Battery LED Video Lighting

Aside from the 126 LED video light, the family of LED video lights available from this manufacturer include the bigger 160 LED down to the tiniest 48 LED.
find-price-button 160 Dimmable LED Video Light

find-price-button 48 LED Video Lighting Requires 2x AA Batteries

If you've done your research you'll even find the even bigger '183 LED Dimmable Video Light'. The 183 LED Light didn't fly off the shelves like it's smaller siblings, mainly because it was misunderstood. Unfortunate PR, but this also helped to keep prices down. Recently people have been very interested in the 500 LED Video Light Panels, but because of it's really directional light output (a feature of LED lights) small spaces proved to be work in diffusing the light from the larger panel. Another drawback on the 500 LED video light panels is that they work off of an AC outlet. This means you'll need power at your location, and also travel with tangly extension cords and surge protectors. Even if you can modify a small battery, you might be concerned about short run times from larger light panels. This is where the 183 LED Video light was designed for. A smaller unit than the 500 LED panel and packaged with it's own portable rechargeable power source.

183_LED (2 of 4)

Because the 183 LED video light resembled it's smaller siblings, I believe people may have misunderstood it's purpose in life. It's not something that would be totally suitable to use on the hot shoe of a camera for Run and Gun. It's a bigger design and also exclusively uses an external battery pack. Instead, the 183 LED Video light would best be used as a portable video light similar in use as the 500 LED video panels. Throw it on a light stand and take advantage of the portable battery pack (included). The 183 'cannot' use AA batteries internally. There is only a connection for the 12V input. A nice addition is that the battery pack was designed with two outlets to power two 183's giving you hours and hours of LED lighting. Unfortunately due to poor marketing, it's been misunderstood, but you can see the design was to support two lights together with a portable battery solution mainly for stationary use like the 500 LED Video panel.
Straight Bracket with Two Adjustable Flash Shoe Mounts

183_LED (4 of 4)
(above) 183 LED next to 48 LED and Z96 Video LED Light

So if you've been eyeballing those 500 LED video panels but either couldn't afford it, or are turned off by the the lack of 'portable power' options, the 183 LED might fit the bill. You can travel with these lights without worry of an AC outlet and with it's power pack can shoot for several hours worry free. One thing to mention though is that the cord that comes with the unit is fairly short, but would be an easy task to snip down the middle and add some wire in between to extend. The best deal would be to grab a pair and get you up to 366 LEDs of broad diffused light, and two lights can be powered from a single battery. This setup would still be dimmable and each light can still be individually powered on or off. By grabbing a pair, you'd also have a spare battery set aside for even more hours worry free use. Pack all the items into a nice travel case, and you'll be set to add outdoor fill light or indoor studio video lighting wherever you might end up. While this is not a popular item for anyone looking to mount a video light 'on camera', these would work well for building a portable lighting solution set to be used 'off camera'.

183_LED (3 of 4)
find-price-button 183 LED Dimmable Video Light Panel Digital Camera Video Camcorder DV Hot Shoe mount lighting Panel



Canon OEM flashes are no joke when it comes to pricing, but also no joke when it comes to features. Regardless, there's a handful of people who may never even cross those extra abilities and are just looking for a flash that works. You might have caught Aaron's review of the Yongnuo 560 at this article:, but now we've got another one to add to the list. Vimeo member Rick Elrod shows a bit of the Yongnuo 468 which supports TTL communication from the Canon camera. In simple terms, the flash meters through the camera in a few different ways and makes decisions for you. This Auto Pilot feature works great and is more often what you need, and very seldom what you don't need. So for those who want to go the manual route in those rare incidents, the flash can be set all manually as well. Got questions? Send them over to Rick via the Vimeo page here. [Thanks Rick]

find-price-button Yongnuo 468 Speedlite Flash with TTL



Since the announcement of Teradek's Cube which streams HD Video wirelessly to pretty much any device you can think of including the iPhone and iPad, people have been trying to find their own solutions to stream video to a remote monitor. Teradek offers many modular pieces with their products along with many more features than to just stream video, but that all comes to several thousands of dollars. Not to mention with all the abilities it can provide, can also provide more configurations to worry about. Some articles surfaced the web regarding a few 'options' that might help people achieve streaming HD video to a monitor without breaking the bank. These are also very dumbed down solutions that do exactly what they say they do - stream HD Video. The two popular HD Wireless Streaming solutions are made from Asus and Brite-View. For Asus they have an item called the 'WiCast', and for Brite-View they offer an 'Air SyncHD' and 'HDelight'. From other reviews the units functioned pretty much equally and I picked up the Asus solely on the size and look of the units. The Asus WiCast is extremely lightweight, feels almost hollow, and all plastic. The lightweight is actually an advantage if I plan to mount this onto the hotshoe of my camera, or somewhere on a shoulder rig, but also means I shouldn't be throwing it around. With new EVF's (electronic view finders) with HDMI pass throughs making their way into the marketplace, this would be a great solution to use an EVF while streaming video out wirelessly for someone else to monitor, or even pull focus.

Teradek Cube - Wireless HD Video Streaming

The Asus WiCast comes with both a transmitter and receiver that creates it's own little ad-hoc network to each other. The time it takes to sync together is fairly quick, possibly under 10 seconds once they are both powered on. The video streams are fast, and I notice no latency or dropped frames. I haven't tested range yet, and i'll re-post when that's up. They both come with an AC adapter (exact same adapter for each) that supplies 5 volts to the unit. This low voltage and low amperage requirement means a DIY battery pack, or an already existing battery pack to power them up would be easy to find. Most people aren't ready for streaming video to a remote monitor wirelessly, but by knowing how you can achieve these same results for several times less than high end solutions, maybe this will open up some creative possibilities with your video. A few things that come to mind is to stream the GoPro HD Hero video, or even extending the reach of a monitor on a long Video Crane.

find-price-button ASUS WiCast Wireless HD Video Transmitter and Receiver




Hal Robertson is at it again. Here's a simple, cheap, but extremely effective way to get a more diffused and powerful flash while staying portable. Using mainly PVC parts to assemble this cross shaped mount, it hold three individual camera Flashes. You can find more detailed photos at the Flickr page here:


Why would you want so many flashes in one umbrella? There's a bunch of good reasons why. First, you're harnessing much more power in a small lightweight package. In order to get more power on location with real studio strobes, that normally means carrying a heavy battery. Secondly, instead of firing one flash at full power, you would fire three flashes at a lower power so that your recycle times are much much faster. Third and probably most important for some high shutter shooters out there is the ability to use HSS. Most studio strobes can't support the bursts of HSS to sync at just about any shutter speed. When using HSS, you can fire the flash at almost any shutter speed but this will reduce it's power output. By adding up three flashes, you'll be able to support HSS while still giving plenty of light spread to your subject. [Thanks Hal]

In order to make mounting easier and still support some tilt action for light position, you'll need a tilt mount. Normally these things run between 30-40 dollars, but here's one I tracked down for about 10 bucks.
find-price-button Positionable Tilt Umbrella Adapter Flash Photography

Don't forget you'll need some of them little Flash Shoe Adapters too which are dirt cheap.
find-price-button Cold Hot Flash Shoe Adapters