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Posts by Nicholas Somera

Topics NAB 2017, Power

In this video, I’m joined by Jose Flores of Core SWX to tell us about some new and exciting battery technologies they are showing off this year.

The first product Jose shares with us is the new HCM9, a Hypercore Mini battery featuring a 12A power draw, 98Wh capacity and both a USB and a PowerTap for providing power to accessories.

The Fleet charger has also received some upgrades, including a bump in charging speed, solidifying its place as the fastest charger on the market. One of the newest and most innovative features include a Safe Fly mode, which intelligently discharges your batteries down to 25% to adhere with FAA requirements. Make sure to watch the video above to learn more.

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I’m joined by Franciso Toro from DJI, who is here to show us the brand new Ronin 2. This will be DJI’s new flagship model and just about every piece has been updated or adjusted from its previous version. Some of the new upgrades include a new dual battery system, allowing for hot swapping batteries so there is no need for down time changing out batteries. The new batteries are the same as those seen on the Inspire 2, so that one battery can power both a ground and aerial based stabilization system, meaning less dedicated chargers to bring with you.

The frame has been redesigned as a carbon fiber ring, which lets the operator easily set the Ronin 2 down without having to carry around a separate tuning stand. As a result of this new design maximum payload has also increased to a respectable 30lbs. What’s all that increase weight capacity good for if you still can’t balance your camera though? Well not to worry, telescoping arms allow for much larger cameras and zoom lenses than previously possible. A dedicated OLED display makes tuning and adjusting settings extremely quick and easy. Check it out in our video above.

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I had a chance to chat with Pamela Berry from Atomos about new firmware for their Shogun Inferno monitor/recorder as well as an exciting new product. Atomos recently released a free firmware update for their popular Shogun Inferno enabling all supported RAW formats to be saved in CinemaDNG format, preserving the RAW context of the files all the way through post, if required. Previously, supported RAW camera signals had to be debayered to Apple ProRes or Avid DNxHR format for recording. Currently CinemaDNG recording is supported for the Sony FS5, FS7 and FS700, the Canon C300 Mk II and C500, and Panasonic VariCam LT.

Other “big” news is Atomos’ new Sumo monitor/recorder. Sumo provides the same functionality as the Shogun Inferno, but built into a 19” HDR production monitor, an interesting evolution of the monitor/recorder. Generally, all previous products in this category were meant to be mounted on a camera, but the Sumo is clearly the type of device that belongs on its own stand or on the DIT cart. It also features quad-SDI inputs, which can be configured to receive quadranted 4K from cameras like the Panasonic VariCam 35 or four separate 1080p signals, which can be recorded simultaneously or live switched (with the live cut recorded as well). The Sumo also features balanced full-size XLR inputs with phantom power and two four-pin power inputs allowing relay power and hot-swapping. It also features a dedicated calibration input configured to work with the popular i1Display Pro from X-Rite. Watch the video above to hear more about this exciting new offering from Atomos.

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I stopped by the Steadicam booth to chat with Rey Reyes about their latest product updates. This year they’re showing off the finalized production version of the Steadimate, an adapter designed for connecting typically handheld gimbals to a traditional Steadicam vest and arm. The Steadimate removes the weight from the operators arms and allows them to focus on framing and executing the shot. This helps prevent physical exhaustion, which in turn helps prevent mental exhaustion, which is key to operating at peak performance.

We were also lucky enough to be joined by the inventor of the Steadicam himself, Garrett Brown, along with legendary operator Jerry Holway to talk about the new X-3 upgrade. The X-3 is a third arm section that allows for increased booming range, allowing the operator to get both lower to the ground and higher over their head than ever before. You’ll also see talented operator Lisa demonstrate the range enabled by the X-3.

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In this installment of our NAB 2017 coverage, I’m here with Patrick Santucci from Sigma to discuss some updates and new lenses in the Sigma Cine series.

The most recent additions to the cine prime lineup are a 14mm and a 135mm, both with a maximum aperture of T2. These lenses will be available in PL, EF and E-mount, and offer full frame coverage up to 8K resolution, just like the rest of Sigma’s cine primes.

Sigma’s line of Super 35 cine zooms have been so popular, they are now stepping into the full frame-compatible cine zoom lenses market with the 24-35mm T2.2. With a 43.3mm image circle, this lens will be perfect for everything from Sony’s a7S to the RED EPIC-W. Check out the above video for more information.

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I spoke with Ryan Schorman from Wooden Camera about some of their new products. First up is Wooden’s Universal Follow Focus, a flexible and modular double-sided studio unit inspired by time-tested designs from OConnor and ARRI. The unit can be mounted on standard 19mm rods, as well as lightweight and studio 15mm rods. It will be available in Pro and Base kit trims (similar to other Wooden Camera products such as their Universal Mattebox) with prices of $1250 and $1995 respectively. Available for pre-order now, the unit is expected to ship by mid-June.

Ryan also shows their new director’s monitor cage, which sports a neck strap with better padding and a new folding sunshade sized to fit most popular 7” monitors. It also features fold-away handles and a cool swing-away battery plate that also serves to manage cables and protect any wireless receivers that may be mounted to the monitor. Watch the video above to learn more.

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I met with Alan and Brian of Freefly Systems to discuss their new MoVI Pro as well as other recent product announcements. The new MoVI Pro features a number of improvements over the original MoVI family, including hot swappable batteries and an integrated stand to allow for all day shooting with minimal downtime. Additional updates include new, stronger motors, integrated RED camera control and a built-in LCD screen allowing for auto-tuning and further adjustments, without the need to connect to a computer or smartphone.

One of the new products Freefly has announced this year is the Pilot system, which is essentially a modular take on the MoVI Controller. The system is based around the MIMIC at its core, and allows users to configure in a variety of setups based on their specific needs. Modules are available for a single axis lens controller, as well as a handle module for complete control of focus, iris, zoom and MoVI settings. Dennis from Freefly demonstrates how customizable the system is by showing it used on a shoulder mounted rig.

Lastly, we check out the new MoVI XL, Freefly’s largest gimbal to date. Designed utilizing a lot of the same upgrades found on the MoVI Pro, this is the heavy duty version, allowing up to 50 lbs of total payload for working with heavier camera packages and longer lenses. The MoVI XL is extremely flexible with mounting options as well. Here, Alan shows it to us mounted on a Technocrane. Check out the video above for more information.

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