Tag Archives: HDSLR

Dedicam – A (much) cheaper alternative to the real thing

12 Oct

Amazing for sports and event cinematography, probably less amazing for secret spy work.

This morning, while looking for some inspiration for my DIY remote pan/tilt head, I came across something rather spectacular.
It seems that I’m not the only one with the opinion that renting a helicopter for a couple o’ thou’ per hour is cutting into the pocket money just a little too much. Well lucky for us, Dedicam, a company hailing from Germany, have been hard at work building varyious models of radio control helicopter/steadicam combinations.

Their site shows three models: Two “standard” looking R/C helicopters (an electric and gas version), and what they call a DediUFO_01 (pictured right), an 8-rotor octocopter which is solely electrically powered, and for lack of a better word.. Awesome!
I’d imagine the electric powered models would be best in terms of vibration reduction, at a loss of air-time. But with the amount of stabilisers and deadening stuffed in the Nitro model, I can’t see anybody being too upset with their petrol-powered purchase.

You can catch Dedicam’s showreel below or here if you’d like.

It looks like a two man job to get anything half decent out of this setup, with one person physically operating the Octocopter,and the other on the camera rig. I’m really impressed with the quality of workmanship in their creation, but what I think puts the cherry on the top of this rig is the set of video goggles worn by the cameraman.

Testing the dedicam

Suiting up

So I don’t know about you guys, but I’m pretty desperate to get into something like this. I’ve heard one can purchase a Dedicam (not too sure which model) for approximately $10,000, which is really pushing the DIY motivation through the roof. I’ve managed to find a few forum discussions about similar set-ups, and the word “Mikrokopter” seems to crop up a lot… I’ll report back on what I find on that front.

Below is a German video of a six bladed multicopter, with a much smaller camera mounted on it. It’s a little longwinded, but skipping through you’ll find some demonstrations of a pretty awesome GPS system, allowing the machine to return back to where it’s motors were started, a weight test with a 1l bottle of CocaCola, and some other fun stuff.

What do you think of this newfangled, “legless tripod”? Leave your thoughts below.


Timur Civan and his hotcakes Wollensak

11 Oct
Image from 102 year old Wollensak 35mm F5.0 Cine-Velostigmat - copyright Timur Civan

Image from 102 year old Wollensak 35mm F5.0 Cine-Velostigmat - copyright Timur Civan

Just shy of a month ago, photographer and DOP Timur Civan posted these images on Cinema5D.com . Taken with a 5d and a 102 year old Wollensak 35mm F5.0 Cine-Velostigmat cinema lens, from the cranking days.

I’m a huge fan of any old 35mm / medium format lens that I can possibly try and fit onto one of my Canon DSLRs. So much so, that I buy lenses that have very little hope of ever fitting, but they get bought because the “what if” factor in my head is… a very strong decider. In any case, the images that come out of this button-sized lens are something to see, each filled with an awesome sense of nostalgia.

Maybe it’s knowing the age of this lens that gives it that intrinsic mood, or maybe  it’s just inherent in the images themselves. You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Civan has even created some video footage with this little baby recently!

This 1908 Wollensak 35mm F5.0 “Cine-Velostigmat” on a chunky 5d MkII looks ridiculously cool in my opinion, and the images (which I don’t believe are completely untouched like some seem to argue) speak for themselves.

more info can be found over here