Saturday, April 2, 2011

Special Sauce, Letus, Cheese

This is my review of the Letus Hawk Viewfinder.
If you are doing any sort of professional video work with a DSLR, a viewfinder or "loupe" is a must have. By professional, I mean any level of paid work. The Letus Hawk VF is one of the best on the market. Watch the video to find out why.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Craigslist Killed the Video Star

My thoughts on how some people are abusing Craigslist and hurting the video production industry. I'll keep the typing short because I pretty much say it all in the video. Enjoy!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Getting Loupey

***Update 2-25-11: The nice folks at Genus saw my review video on Vimeo and let me know that their loupe is NOT made by Hoodman. They make them themselves.***

After having some issues with shooting during daylight with my Nikon D7000, I decided it was time to buy a LCD loupe.  I didn't want to spend too much money, so I narrowed it down to the Hoodman loupe and the Genus loupe.  Both were around $80.  I went with the Genus because I liked the way that their loupe attached to the camera.  Hoodman offers two options: a $15 rubber band or ridiculous arm bracket that attaches to the camera's shoe.  The arm bracket comes in a kit with the loupe for $190.  This was the only video that I had seen on the Genus loupe and it seemed way more practical and clean.

So I went ahead and ordered it from my local camera store.  On a side note, one of the employees told me that the Genus loupe is actually made by Hoodman.  I'm not sure if it's true, but I find that very interesting if it is.

Above is my video review of the Genus loupe.  The one thing I forgot to mention in the video is I wish the loupe came with some sort of case.  I'd like to just throw it in my camera bag.  I'd feel better about the optic part not getting scratched if it was in some sort of bag or case.  A small zipper case with a plastic shell, like some sunglasses come in would be nice.  A silk bag with a drawstring would be better than nothing.  I think this product is a perfect example of paying more for functionality than the quality and durability of the product.  I've seen the Zacuto Z-Finder Pro up close and I'm hoping to check out the Letus Hawk soon.  Those loupes (they call them viewfinders, but it's all the same) are in the $375-$400 range.  You're paying a lot more for a higher quality product:  better construction, better optics.  Both of those loupes have baseplates for the camera.  But I would say those high end loupes are more for the shooters that are doing higher budget, more grueling shoots.  The final verdict on the Genus loupe:  a good purchase if you need a loupe for your DSLR and you don't want to spend hundreds of dollars.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Entry 1.0

This is my first blog entry..ever!  After months and maybe even years of thinking and talking about it, I'm actually doing it.  What is my blog going to be about?  All things "digital filmmaking".  I say digital filmmaking, because that is my preferred name for it.  Some people call it digital cinema, but the point is that I'm talking about the art and science of making commercials, documentaries, feature length films,  music videos, promotional videos, and short films with a digital video camera, digital film camera or DSLR (more on that later).

This blog is going to be dedicated to talking about digital filmmaking:  the cameras, the software, the other tools and gadgets that we use to do what it is we do.  Right now I'm a DSLR owner/shooter so I'll be talking a lot about DSLRs and DSLR accessories in my first few posts.

I'm also going to start Twittering, so you can follow me @STL_DSLRShooter

So that's about it.  I'm most likely going to do a hands on review of some DSLR gear for my next post.
I bought a new piece of gear and I haven't seen much out there on it as far as reviews go.  I really had to take a leap of faith to buy it.  But it was less than $100 so it's not that big of a deal if it turns out to be lame.  It's supposed to come in this week, so I'll be reviewing it and letting you other DSLR shooters know if it's worth buying.  What is it?  For now, I'll keep it a secret, so you are intruiged and you come back in a week.