Saturday, May 24, 2014

Need a Panasonic GH4 with the YAGH interface right now? They're in stock for $3298 at Amazon!

If you have a project that needs 10-bit 4K output, and you can't wait until June for the official ship date - this may be the solution. As of this post, Amazon has two of them left in stock at $3298

If you need one, you may want to order it now. If you do, please click on the picture above, the display ad below or the text link in this post. It won't cost you anything extra - and it will help keep these posts coming. Thanks so much for your support.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Adorama GH4 Deal and B&H Live Webcast Event

There is Panasonic GH4 news from two of my favorite online retailers, Adorama and B&H. First, Adorama.

There's not a lot of discounting on the GH4's $1699.99 list price yet, but the best price out there right now (at least in the US) is this $1697.99 deal at Adorama - it's only a penny off the $1698 price at Amazon - but it includes the usual entry level "kit" of a camera holster, SD card, cleaning kit and screen protector.

Of course, they're backordered right now, but you might as well get some free stuff with your camera when it comes in.

When you do get your hands on your camera, you'll probably want some tips from the experts on how to use it. Over at B&H, they're ofering a free Panasonic GH4 Live Webcast Discussion: "Professional 4K in the Palm of Your Hand" on May 27th from 1 to 3PM Eastern (registration required).

Speakers (and GH4 experts), David Flores, Eduardo Angel and Mathew Frazer will participate in a panel discussion on the camera and answer your questions. This is another great service to the community from B&H, in addition to their excellent educational resources, great prices and customer service. I really like them (and they're not even a sponsor, so I'm not paid to say that :)).

Speaking of sponsors, if anything here has helped you to make a decision to buy a GH4, please click on one of the links or display ads on the site. It won't cost you anything and it will help to keep news about great camera deals coming. This site would not exist if it weren't for your support. Thank you.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Studio Ring Light or Ring Light for your Rig? The F&V R-300 is Both!

Last month at NAB, I was a "one-man band" - shooter, gaffer, interviewer, sound person, editor etc. I learned a lot about shooting events solo - enough to know that I had almost the right rig for the job.

If I ever do this again, I will need the Panasonic 12-35 f2.8 lens or some other fast autofocusing, low light glass. The focus motor on the old Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 just isn't fast or accurate enough (you'll see that in the interview at the bottom of the post with F&V North America Manager Connor Hartnett).

That said, my DIY rig worked well - especially the new ring light I bought for the show.

That light is the $199 F&V R-300, and it is easily the best lighting investment I've made in 35 years of video and moviemaking. I love my Stellar Ring Light - but the F&V is better - because it is dimmable, has easy-to-use magnetic clip on filters for both diffusion ($25) and tungsten color balance (included) - and it is powered by one $8.50 Sony FP-V550 battery (or by 12V input from an AC adapter if you want to plug it in).

The R-300 is smaller than the Diva and much more portable - both in the studio and in the field.  Here it is on the front of my DIY rig, attached with the $40 F&V rail mount.

This setups gave me great light and lots of flexibility. It was also a lot more convenient than having an LED mounted on top of the camera. Several folks stopped me on the show floor to ask me about the R-300 and I sent them over to the F&V booth. Here's the interview with Connor, where he talks about the R-300, a new R-300 softbox as well as some of their other new products:

As usual, if anything here has helped you to make a buying decision, please shop using the links above or the display ads below. It won't cost you anything extra, and it will keep these blog posts coming. Thanks!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Blackmagic Studio HD Camera Now Shipping for $1995 from Adorama!

I saw Blackmagic CEO Grant Petty demoing the new Blackmagic Studio Camera at NAB - and it produced fabulous images in a studio setting (which is what it is for). For low budget web, cable and broadcast production, this camera is an incredible value for the money. With a couple of these cameras lenses, mics and a switcher you'll have the basics of a live production setup for around $10,000 - a fraction of the cost of a single traditional broadcast camera, such as the $87.5K Sony HCD 2000 Studio Camera.

It is interesting that Blackmagic has been able to start shipping the Studio Camera so soon after NAB. This augurs well for an early (or, at least, on time) ship date for the Blackmagic Ursa - which I am much more interested in, as an amateur cinematographer.

It will also be interesting to see whether prices on traditional cameras start coming down in reaction to this camera. The big manufacturers in this market have already seen their profits in this market segment decline over the past few years. This will probably drive a few of them out of this line of business.

If anything here has helped you to make a buying decision, please click on one of the links above or the display ad below to order your Studio Camera. It won't cost you anything extra, and it will help to keep these blog posts coming. Thanks!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Straight Flush - Panasonic GH1/GH2/GH3/GH4 Family Picture

I took this picture almost as soon as I had the GH4 out of its box.  It's hard to remember how revolutionary the GH1 seemed back in 2009.  Video autofocus, an Electronic Viewfinder, camcorder-like recording times, 1080/24fps and a swivel screen made it arguably the most advanced video-capable, large sensor, interchangeable lens camera of its time.

But time marches on, and the new Panasonic GH4 quadruples the video resolution of the earlier cameras - and is a much better still camera too.

I'll be taking the GH3, GH4 and the BMPCC up to the Travis AFB air show in Fairfield, CA for a comparison shoot tomorrow. The GH4's battery is charging, and I'll take a few UHS-1 SD cards to experiment with.

I'll be leaving the old GH1 and GH2 behind, though. I don't see a lot of demand for GH4 comparisons with 2009/2010 era cameras.

Results coming soon!