DIY Video and Photography Projects

CAME-TV GoPro 3 Axis Gimbal with Encoders
September 21, 2015

CAME-TV today has listed another new gimbal on their website today. At first glance it looks like many GoPro HandHeld Gimbals on the market today, but this version is far more advanced. This new gimbal features ‘Encoder’ technology much like what is found in the high end FreeFly MOVI, DJI Ronin, or in the popular CAME-SINGLE gimbals.


When Encoders are used, gimbals are several times more stable, motors are tracked more accurately, and battery life is several times more efficient. On this GoPro gimbal, you might expect to get up to 6 hours of battery life between charges.

came-gimbal gopro 3 axis

Many small GoPro gimbals run their own software which means you can’t modify or tune the settings. I’m not sure if ‘tweaking’ will be encouraged by CAME-TV, but this new Gopro gimbal operates on the latest 32 bit SBGC. So someone like me can easily customize profiles, service modes, etc.

The new 3 Axis GoPro Gimbal with Encoders is available now over at the CAME-TV website, but my guess is it will be sold out by end of the week like the CAME-SINGLE has been for months.

came-tv action came-action gimbal encoders
VIEW-ITEM CAME-TV GoPro 3-Axis Gimbal with Encoders

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Rokinon XEEN Cine Prime Early Adopter Discounts Save $1500 OFF Set
September 17, 2015

Rokinon is offering up some major discounts on their new XEEN Cinema Prime lenses. (I myself already have a set and sold off a bunch of my expensive Canon L lenses). These lenses have had a lot of press and lots of interest with an amazing $2495 price tag – almost half the cost of other Cine Primes.

But In order to entice more ‘early adopters’, Rokinon has slashed -$300 OFF retail price (Now Just $2195 Each) for a limited time right now. These deals end officially on September 24th, 2015. I’ve seen a lot of people contemplating the purchase, and maybe this offer could finally set them in motion.

Rokinon Samyang Xeen 24mm Cine LensRokinon Samyang Xeen 50mm Cine LensRokinon Samyang Xeen 85mm Cine Lens
find-price-button Rokinon XEEN Cinema Prime Lenses 24mm T1.5 | 50mm T1.5 | 85mm T1.5

But wait, there’s more. You can save an extra -$1500 OFF the entire 3pc bundle over on eBay (found here).

Rokinon XEEN Cinema Lenses
find-price-button Rokinon XEEN 3pc Cinema Lens Bundle – via eBay

This same $1500 OFF XEEN Bundle Deal Discount can also be found via Adorama (found here).
rokinon xeen bundle deal discount
find-price-button Rokinon XEEN 3pc Cinema Lens Bundle – via Adorama

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Official Pre-Orders Now Available for Sony A7s II
September 17, 2015

Today retailers have opened up official pre-orders for the new Sony A7sII Camera. This camera is more than a mere upgrade from the previous A7s now with 4K internal recording, new SLOG3 profile, 120FPS 1080p, better ISO in low light, and 5-Axis In Body Image Stabilization (IBIS) – just to name a few. For still photographers, it will also have 14 bit RAW. I’m pretty sure this camera will be a tough one to get your hands on after it sells out.

Sony A7s II A7sII Mark II
VIEW-ITEM Sony A7s II Full Frame Mirrorless 4K SLOG3 – via B&H Photo Video

Sony A7s II A7sII Mark II
VIEW-ITEM Sony A7s II Full Frame Mirrorless 4K SLOG3 – via Adorama

– 12.2MP Full-Frame Exmor CMOS Sensor
– BIONZ X Image Processor
– Internal UHD 4K30 & 1080p120 Recording
– S-Log3 Gamma and Display Assist Function
– 5-Axis SteadyShot INSIDE Stabilization
– 0.5″ 2.36m-Dot XGA OLED Tru-Finder EVF
– 3.0″ 1,228,800-Dot Tilting LCD Monitor
– Up to 5 fps Shooting and ISO 409600
– Fast Intelligent AF, 169 AF Points
– Built-In Wi-Fi with NFC

In related news, if you’re looking for a Cage system for the new Sony A7sII, the brand new Varavon Zeus Cage has been confirmed to fit perfectly and was displayed at IBC 2015.
varavon zeus cage with a7s IIzeus a7sII cage varavon ibc
sony a7s II camera cage video varavon ibc show
Find the Varavon Zeus Cage for Sony A7sII (here).
varavon video cage sony a7RII sony a7s IIvaravon zeus cage a7sII
VIEW-ITEM Varavon Zeus Cage for Sony A7RII and Sony A7sII

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Panasonic GH4 VLog-L Samples Before and After
September 17, 2015

Panasonic recently announced they will have a firmware update with a new VLog-L Profile for the Panasonic GH4. I loaded up a ‘sample’ of this for a test drive. Unfortunately it was slightly overcast on the day I went out. so I did not get to simulate many high contrast scenes, but I did what I could trying to shoot random scenes that shared both bright and dark areas.

The ‘sample’ VLOG-L that was installed is not the official release, so there seems to be some bugs. Especially problems with the histogram meter, so it was very hard to gauge how to properly expose. In any case here’s a few samples of my first day out with the new VLOG-L on the GH4 + 12-35mm.

The base ISO for VLog-L is ISO 400. So outdoors on a bright day, you’ll need to either stop down the aperture, crank up your shutter speed, or carry around an ND Filter. To make life easier I used the XUME Magnetic Filter Adapters paired with a set of Tiffen Static ND Filters.

I only had a few hours of practice, but from what I can tell, it might be good to keep your ISO under 1600 whenever possible. To add some color and contrast back to the VLOG-L footage, I started by applying the Varicam 35 LUT and then fine tuning the exposure from there. You can download the Panasonic Varicam LUT (here).

From just my early tests, I can say that when the new VLOG-L update is officially released, it’s worth the $99 dollar upgrade. By then, hopefully they will fix some of the bugs with the histogram.

I know that the results would be much different on a bright sunny day, so i’m going to go out and try again this week when I have some free time. So far though, it does feel like the camera has added dynamic range and will be a great addition to all GH4 shooters.

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Digislider Motorised Carbon Fibre Mini Jib Sweepstake sponsored by Digislider
September 14, 2015

You may have seen a short product review on the DigiSlider Motorized Carbon Fiber Mini Jib, and now DigiSlider is offering up a complete system to one lucky person! Remember the Mini Jib can be used with or without the Motor, and this kit will include the advanced Dynamic Perception MX3 controller.

Digislider Motorized Carbon Fiber Jib Giveaway

The Digislider Motorised Carbon Fibre Jib is a super portable and extendable mini crane. It has a compacted length of 75cm (in bag) and can be extended to 240cm easily with the quick lock system. Perfect for DSLR cameras or any system under 5kg. Has a maximum Radius of 120cm, and a minimum of 50cm from centre to camera platform.

The platform stays level when the jib is moved up and down. If you mount a video tripod head on the front you can get smooth pan and tilt shots without altering the counter balance. Alternatively you can tilt the platform the jib is attached to to get the same effect, but the counter balance will be slightly off as the centre of gravity is shifted.

Made from 6 layered carbon fibre tubes and aircraft grade aluminium connectors for maximum strength and lightness. Only weighs 1.5kg (3.4lbs) and comes in a nice padded 80cm x 10cm x 16cm full length zip bag.

Easy mounting points for tripod with the 1/4″ and 3/8″ threaded holes. Comes with a bowl head adaptor and quick release plate in a nice compact padded bag.

For more information about the DigiSlider Motorized Carbon Mini Jib Giveaway, visit the contest page.


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Sony A7RII (possibly Sony A7sII) Video Cage Rig from CAME-TV
September 11, 2015

When Sony originally released the A7 / A7r / and A7s cameras, they shared the same body. So specialty cages that were designed for one camera could be used on the others.

Now that Sony has changed the body style on the Sony A7RII with a larger beefier grip, older A7s custom fit cages will no longer work. So here’s a look at a new Cage System from CAME-TV designed specifically for the new Sony A7RII camera body.

Recently Sony has made an announcement for the new Sony A7s II. So far from the photos and videos, the body looks exactly the same as on the new A7RII which means that this new CAME-TV Cage may be able to work as well. You can find more information about the new CAME-TV Sony A7RII Cage (maybe A7sII also) at the product page (Click Here).

VIEW-ITEM CAME-TV Cage for new Sony A7RII Camera

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Reasons to Upgrade to the new Sony A7sII Camera
September 11, 2015

The original Sony A7s is still an outstanding little camera, but with the announcement of the new Sony A7s II, i’m sure existing Sony A7s owners might be thinking about upgrading. I’m a Sony A7s owner, and here’s a few reasons why I think it’s worth the upgrade.

First, you now have the option of 4K internal recording. We don’t have enough information just yet about how long it can record or if it will overheat like the A7RII, but either way 4K internal is a damn good option to have when you need it.

Next there’s 5-Axis In Body Image Stabilization (IBIS). I have been using this in the new Sony A7RII and I can’t tell you enough how much this new feature can help with your footage. If you move around a lot, work with a shoulder rig, hand held, or just like older lenses with no IS, the 5-Axis IBIS will be your best friend.

The new Sony A7sII also has the option of SLOG3, which offers up a flatter profile than SLOG2 while offering more detail and information in the shadows. The new A7sII also has a base ISO of just 1600 instead of 3200 which is way more manageable if you have to shoot outdoors on a bright day.

For slow motion there’s the new addition of 120FPS in full 1080p. Previous cameras (including the A7RII) can only shoot 120fps in 720.

The new Sony A7sII also has faster AF for movie mode over the original A7s.

Even though the A7s was known for being the low light king, the new A7sII is even more improved for low light shooting.

So that’s just a short list of new features that I think should sway many A7s owners to go for the upgrade to the new A7sII. I myself have been convinced already to go for the upgrade. Any other existing A7s owners looking to do the same? Leave a comment below.

sony a7s II camera 4K internal
VIEW-ITEM Sony Alpha a7S II 4K Video Mirrorless Digital Camera

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DJI Announced 2 New 4K Micro Four Thirds Cameras X5 and X5R for Inspire 1 Quadcopters
September 11, 2015

DJI has announced two new gimbal ready 4K cameras that can be used on existing Inspire1 quadcopters. Unlike the original 4K camera, the X5 and X5R are new 4K Micro Four Third (MFT) interchangeable lens cameras. Even though it appears to be a standard MFT mount, only a few lenses have been announced to be truly compatible. The main difference between the two cameras is that the X5R is capable of shooting 4K RAW.

While I’m already quite happy with the results of the existing Inspire1 camera, the new X5 and X5R are incredibly impressive. DJI has really raised the bar for other companies to follow. Unfortunately the announced pricing is $2199 (X5) and $4999 I feel will keep many from upgrading. But keep in mind DJI has been known to inflate prices when new products are announced, and typically is much less when it finally becomes available. Let’s hope they do the same with these new cameras. For more information visit the product pages below.

VIEW-ITEM DJI X5 and X5R RAW Camera and 3-Axis Gimbal

Or you can buy the complete kit with Inspire1 Quadcopter. The new Inspire1 ‘Pro’ comes with the new Zenmuse X5 gimbal for just $4999.

VIEW-ITEM DJI Inspire1 Pro 4K Mirrorless MFT Zenmuse Gimbal

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Sony PXW-FS5 4K Camera (Baby FS7)
September 11, 2015

The Sony FS7 is a very popular camera system, and now Sony has followed up with a smaller FS5. I’m not a big fan of the samples Sony has on the FS5 right now, but i’ve included a few sample videos below. I’m sure in the right hands there will be better example footage out soon. Overall quality aside, the new FS5 is more affordable, smaller, more ergonomic, and in many ways offers more features than the FS7.

Just to name a few there is an introduction of 240fps/1080p, a variable electronic ND FIlter, better white balance controls over any other Sony FS camera, both an external monitor and EVF, along with a smooth 2x digital zoom that can be used when working with prime lenses. The camera can also be stripped down to bare body weighing just 1.7lbs for use in small gimbals.

At many of the shows where it was introduced, they mentioned pricing of $6699 (body only) and $7299 (with 18-105 F/4 lens). But according to the listings posted today, the new Sony PXW-FS5 (body only) is just $5599 and $6099 (with lens). Pre-orders are available now via B&H (this is guaranteed to be a sold out camera) Found HERE.

Sony FS5 Camera
VIEW-ITEM Sony PXW-FS5 XDCAM Super 35 Camera System

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Servo City Motor Kit on Cinerails SnapTrack Curved Track Dolly
September 8, 2015

This short video shows a very simple way to motorize a tripod track dolly using friction between two wheels. In the video below i’ve modded the Cinerails Snaptrack kit.

The main parts are a simple DC motor and Speed Controller from Servo City, and small venom 11V 3S Lipo battery. I mounted the Speed Controller up top so I don’t need to bend over to change speed or direction. I mounted the motor just over one of the track wheels, and used washers to get the right amount of spacing.

Unfortunately these were spare parts laying around my house, so I don’t have the exact part numbers. While I work on getting that together, here’s a few links to get you started. I’m sure If you contact they can probably help you out with an entire kit.


  • Gear Motors
  • Motor Mounts
  • Wheel Shaft Adapters
  • Motor Speed Controller
  • Venom 11V 3S Lipo Battery Small

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