The best of 2014

Filmmaking

The Aviator Travel Jib can be attached to most video and photo tripods and supports camera...

So you purchased a DSLR capable of shooting impressive HD video, thinking it would give your movies a professional look and feel. But watching back some of your wobbly and uninspiring shots you realized there was more to it than having the right camera. The Aviator Travel Jib is looking to solve this dilemma - it's a compact and lightweight alternative to expensive professional jibs that promises to take your cinematography to new heights with sweeping camera shots.  Read More

The Lens/Focus Shifter is a lens mounted follow focus which claims to offer thrifty film-m...

Modern DSLRs can shoot some pretty impressive video footage, but unfortunately their small and often fiddly focus rings aren't quite cut out for creating cinematic masterpieces which require smooth and accurate focus. The Lens/Focus Shifter is a lens mounted follow focus which claims to offer DSLR film-makers and photographers a professional solution to this problem … on a budget.  Read More

CG characters can be easily posed with Qumarion (Photo: DigInfo)

Comic book artists and animators often use posable mannequins or motion capture to help get tricky action postures just right, but transferring the figures to paper or computer screens still involves drawing or learning complicated animation and mo-cap software, not to mention all the cameras, hardware and people in funny suits running around. Last year, we reported on the efforts of a Japanese consortium to create what is essentially an action figure equipped with sensors at several joints that would allow real-time pose generation of on-screen CG characters. Still in development then, it's now called Qumarion and when it hits the market in a few months, it'll no doubt prove to be a major time saver for artists and animators alike.  Read More

MoveeGo is a compact camera rig system, for users of small camcorders or smartphones

There was a time not so long ago, when amateur film-makers were simply told, “If you want your footage to look professional, use a tripod.” While that advice still stands, the market is now being flooded with relatively inexpensive devices that allow basement videographers to smoothly execute camera moves that were previously only possible using Hollywood-style gear. One of the latest contenders in this field is MoveeGo, a two-device system that lets users of small cameras get SteadiCam-like handheld shots, or sleek tracking shots.  Read More

Manfrotto has just launched its SYMPLA modular camera rig, which can be customized for a w...

It’s April, which means that once again, the National Association of Broadcasters trade show has taken over Las Vegas. Amongst the various other film, video and photography-related gizmos that have been unveiled this week is an interesting new product from Manfrotto. Known as SYMPLA (for SYstem Moving PLatform), the modular camera rigging system can be configured in seconds, without tools, to accommodate a wide range of of DSLRs, camcorders and accompanying lenses.  Read More

Blackmagic Design Digital Cine Camera posing in a field

Blackmagic Design, best known for its well designed, keenly priced video peripherals and the DaVinci color-grading software, has created quite a buzz at the 2012 National Association of Broadcaster’s Show in Las Vegas. Like RED did five years ago, BMD seems to have suddenly changed the game by announcing a new digital cinema camera that breaks all the accepted conventions - including price.  Read More

T3 Motion's new T3-MT electric standup vehicle is designed to accommodate camera operators...

Big- and medium-budget film-makers looking for smooth tracking shots will soon have another alternative to laying down tracks for hand-pushed camera dollies. T3 Motion, the maker of the T3 electric standup vehicle, is launching a new version of its EV, designed specifically for use by cinematographers.  Read More

Galileo is a motorized iPhone holder, that allows the user to remotely pan and tilt the ph...

With their built-in cameras, microphones and speakers, iPhones can be very handy for video conferencing. Should you be trying to talk to a boardroom full of people through a phone that’s propped up on the table, however, it can be kind of frustrating – you’re stuck with the stationary shot provided by the phone, and can’t see people who are outside of that shot unless you get someone to move the phone for you. Well, that’s where Galileo comes in. It’s a motorized iPhone holder, that allows a remote user to pan or tilt the phone 360 degrees.  Read More

NHK's gyro-stabilized balloon camera rig

For those who dream of one day shooting aerial footage without the bulky cranes and cables to hold everything aloft, Japan's NHK may have just the thing: a tethered, balloon-mounted, four-axis gyro-stabilized camera rig that weighs in at about 2 kg and can soar up to 300 meters.  Read More

The CineSquid is a tripod system with suction cup feet, allowing small video cameras to be...

For the past several months, film-makers using DSLRs or small camcorders have had an interesting option available for getting smooth tracking shots – CineSkates. The product combines a GorillaPod Focus tripod, a BallHead X tripod head and three soft urethane wheels. Those wheels mount on the feet of the tripod, allowing it to make fluid, dolly-like movements. Cinetics, the company that makes Cineskates, has now announced a new member to its family. It’s called the CineSquid, and it includes the same tripod and head, but with suction cup feet that allow it to adhere to almost any smooth surface.  Read More

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