New 3D renderings of the CagePro were added today showing that the final design will now accept threaded filters for use with CPL or ND. The top handle of the CagePro has also been modified with additional accessory mounting points.
The GH2 or other small video cameras are very lightweight and the selection for a quality stabilizer are few. Lately, there's been some interest around modifying a Steadicam Smoothee to work with such light cameras. I was able to modify one successfully, but I never got around to showing it's full capabilities. So it's great to see other examples out there, and here's one of the best videos i've seen so far about a modified Smoothee (a.k.a Baby Merlin) with a GH2 camera from Vimeo member MKVideoFilms.
Vimeo member Ragnar tackles the DIY suction cup camera mount for his GH2. There are much cheaper suction cup mounts, first posted here: http://cheesycam.com/diy-double-and-quad-suction-camera-car-mounts/, but Ragnar decided to go with a slightly more expensive Suction mount with articulation so that it can mount on not-so-completely flat surfaces such as hoods, windows, and other car panels. I'm sure we all don't believe in specs, but the one he's chosen states that it's rated for 132 lbs, so even if it's half true, that's more than suffice for a small GH2. So far it looks like he's fairly comfortable with the setup, trusting it to about 50mph (with a backup safety strap attached of course). For GoPro owners, this inexpensive setup should have no issues with the mini lightweight camera.
If you're an iPhone Video shooter, this Lensse Camera Stabilizer for phones is pretty fluid. (BTW that's not an iPhone. That's the Samsung Galaxy) I'm thinking it should be able to support my GoPro HD once i've added enough counterweights. The drilled brass socket for the Gimbal is smooth, but as other stabilizers like this the angle of rotation is limited. I'll need to really test the weight once my GoPro LCD Bacpac has come in, but it should be fine.
Sometimes you get too caught up with high end DSLR's, you tend to forget the awesome abilities of the little GoPro HD. This camera has laid out a nice portfolio of things no DSLR camera would dare to venture. Here's another one from VERB TV about the sport of FlowRiding, put together by Jason Johnson cranking out what looks like a faux 1000fps from the little cam. Details of the video below, but you might want to catch this video in full HD over at the YouTube Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWQRhqxM5xs
Mission Beach San Diego, a place called Wave House.
Edited in Premiere Pro CS5, After Effects CS5 and Photoshop CS5
Twixtor within After Effects for the super super slow mo.
Everything else was shot at 60fps slowed down to 24fps in Premiere as a baseline for the footage.
Time to dust off the old GoPro and throw some footage into After Effects.. [Thanks Jason]
This is going to open up a few new doors to what you can do with the GoPro., but it does make that lens more prone to dust and scratches. Shouldn't be a huge deal for you non-sports GoPro users like Timelapse stuff or Steadicam Flying. Here's a video of Cinevate flying a GoPro on a custom stabilizer: http://vimeo.com/16013644. I bet they wished they had the LCD screen back then.
Whoa wait wait..I think they do have a rear casing to support the LCD BacPac into the water proof enclosure. Yup, it's all there. Now you can have your LCD underwater too.
There's some new firmware floating around updating the GoPro HD Hero. The new firmware update will add a ton of new options making a good thing even better. The most exciting feature is the 'Live View' feed. Plugging the GoPro HD Hero into a monitor with it's composite out is said to even provide 'HD' feeds for live viewing. I've gotta try this when I get home. You can find more information about the new GoPro firmware at their product website here: http://www.goprocamera.com/support/hdheroupdate.php
With this new Live Feed out, there's also a new housing to support the cable connections. I'm still waiting on the external battery pack and mini LCD.
Not even a day later, I just got a message back from GoPro themselves, I love their super fast support responses. The above video was added to the email back to me as an example of the fix they are working on. It does appear to be much much more sharper than orginal curved lens footage:
Due to the curved lens of the waterproof housing for the HD HERO camera and standard def Wide HERO cameras, you will notice a slight loss of sharpness/focus to underwater images. In video mode with the standard def camera this is not very noticeable due to the lower resolution. With the HD HERO camera this becomes more evident at the higher resolution. We are developing a flat glass adapter / housing specifically for underwater use, thus allowing for the same image sharpness that you enjoy with your GoPro camera above water. Please sign up for our newsletter to receive an update for new product releases.
So officially GoPro Cameras is aware of the underwater Focus and aware of a Flat Lens fix. The question now i'm sure everyone is wondering about is ETA. The R&D process for mass manufacturers can sometimes be a bit slow, but you should definitely sign up for the GoPro Camera Newsletter to stay informed of their updates.
Don't let this stop your vacations. If you're impatient and want to get better underwater focus with your GoPro HD, the options are DIY it yourself, or let someone experienced like EyeOfMine Multimedia prepare a housing for you.