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#1 David Rakoczy

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 06:42 PM

Has anyone played with the GearNex Gear Head? Gear Heads are probably what I miss the most about LA and I've been pondering this item... If you have used it I'd love to know what you think about it's use with a Full SR2 Package.

They sure nailed the price point... but does it function effectively?
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#2 Chris Keth

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:16 PM

Has anyone played with the GearNex Gear Head? Gear Heads are probably what I miss the most about LA and I've been pondering this item... If you have used it I'd love to know what you think about it's use with a Full SR2 Package.

They sure nailed the price point... but does it function effectively?


I played with one a little at filmtools last week.

It's certainly small. It seems well-built but the display already had some play in the pan, which I don't take as a good sign. You would change pan directions and be able to see a little jerk.

They don't have the variety of gears that other gearheads have. There is just a "high" and a "low," really, and you can't easily shift on the fly because the shift is jerky. I think it could use a "higher" gear, personally, but it's not really a deal breaker.

I think it would be quite nice with an SR on top.

Have you looked at mini worrals or mini-mitchells? This isn't bad but I like both of those better. I think visual products has a used mini-mitchell right now.

Edited by Chris Keth, 23 November 2009 - 11:19 PM.

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#3 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 11:49 PM

Has anyone played with the GearNex Gear Head? Gear Heads are probably what I miss the most about LA and I've been pondering this item... If you have used it I'd love to know what you think about it's use with a Full SR2 Package.

They sure nailed the price point... but does it function effectively?


You'd have to play with one yourself to see if you like it -- I played with one at NAB... it was small, felt a bit rough, but apparently the prototypes at NAB last spring were not finished in terms of filing and smoothing down the teeth, whatever.

But it seemed to inherently lack some of the solid mass you'd need to transfer inertia away from the camera and into the head instead. However, I'm not a gearhead operator, which is why I think you're just going to have to play with one yourself. It certain looks cool and cute, and I liked the whole concept of a simplified, cheaper, smaller gearhead for smaller, lighter cameras. I'm just not sure what camera size/weight it's best for -- an ARRI SR2 may be at the upper limit of what it can handle smoothly.
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#4 Saul Rodgar

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 02:17 AM

I don't see any info on what cameras were on the gear heads David Mullen and Chris Keth used. My experience with lower-priced camera support is that the camera weight sometimes needs to be just right for the camera support to operate smoothly. So the same tripod head may operate better with a fully-loaded ENG-sized camera, but now with a camera kit weighing 10 lbs less, and vice versa, sometimes despite specs. Perhaps this could be a similar case?

I mean, the Film Tools website lists supported cameras anything from tiny 1/3" chipset cameras all the way to RED One and 2/3" ENG cameras, as well as lightweight 35mm and 16 mm cameras. And the weight limit on it is listed at 75 lbs. That is quite a range. So who knows where the "sweet spot" will be in terms of weight for the darned thing to operate properly.

As David Mullen suggests, trying it out, especially with a similar kit as one intends to use on it, may be the best option here. Oh, and asking about the warranty on it may not be a bad thing either.

Edited by Saul Rodgar, 24 November 2009 - 02:18 AM.

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#5 John Sprung

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 02:28 AM

I played with one at HD Expo. The main issue for me is that the fast tilt gear is nowhere near fast enough. You need 3-4 complete revolutions to follow a stand-up. My old Worrall would do that in 3/4 to 1 revolution. The one on display wasn't set up too well, turning the tilt wheel like that sent the head back and forth to the extremes of the play in the pan, so a stand-up gets a very zig-zag look. I'd give them some time to do better, which I really hope they do. I love gear heads, they really save your body on a long hard day. Size wise, it would be a good fit for the Arri SR's.





-- J.S.
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#6 Chris Keth

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 02:35 AM

I don't see any info on what cameras were on the gear heads David Mullen and Chris Keth used.


Good point. I tried the filmtools demo that has a canon XL H1 on top of it so it was definitely in the lower third of it's weight range.
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#7 David Rakoczy

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 07:46 AM

Between the Mini Mitchell and Mini Worrall, which do you prefer?... I have always used ArriHeads and Panaheads... but I sure want my own Gear Head :wub:
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#8 Chris Durham

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 11:30 AM

I played with it a little at film tools as well. It was neat, but the more I played with it the less stable it seemed. Maybe the XL-H1 wasn't heavy enough, meaning with something like a red on it there would be less wobble. I think it could manage an SR3 depending on what else you had on it, but if you're spending the money on a S16 rental, rent a geared head, I'm sure it would be more worthwhile. This is priced for ownership by a production company doing HD commercial work.
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#9 David Rakoczy

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 03:05 PM

Thanks for the insight guys! I own a complete SR2, Dollies, Grip & Electric... but I have always wanted my own Gear Head.. I miss the Wheels! So, I just purchased a Mini Worrall in GREAT shape!

IMG_9782.jpg
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#10 Chris Keth

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 05:59 PM

Thanks for the insight guys! I own a complete SR2, Dollies, Grip & Electric... but I have always wanted my own Gear Head.. I miss the Wheels! So, I just purchased a Mini Worrall in GREAT shape!

IMG_9782.jpg


Good choice, I think. They are really nice heads that will take a big variety of common cameras. Take care of it and you'll have it forever.
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#11 David Rakoczy

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:17 PM

Thanks Chris. My Head Repair guy (Rafael Rodriguez in LA)... is giving it a tune up/ paint touch up.... may chrome the Wheels etc...

Now I need some Mitchell Support (see Cine Marketplace Forum).
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#12 Chris Keth

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:25 PM

Thanks Keith. My Head Repair guy (Rafael Rodriguez in LA)... is giving it a tune up/ paint touch up.... may chrome the Wheels etc...

Now I need some Mitchell Support (see Cine Marketplace Forum).


It's Chris. Keth (without an "I") is my last name. :P
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#13 David Rakoczy

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:32 PM

I am so sorry Chris.. I know who you are :lol: ... I have two lines blinking and a ton of emails flowing in and while juggling all that I am trying to carouse with my Film buddies. Sheesh. My apology... see Mr. Mull(e)n and Salzman(n)... this is a habit I really need to work on... s-l-o-w-i-n-g down...

Well....Gotta go!
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#14 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:35 PM

Thanks Keith. My Head Repair guy (Rafael Rodriguez in LA)... is giving it a tune up/ paint touch up.... may chrome the Wheels etc...

Now I need some Mitchell Support (see Cine Marketplace Forum).


Hi David,

Not to jump off topic, but I wonder if you can post contact info (or PM) for Rafael. I'm assuming you like his work. I have a used Technovision head I purchased earlier this year and I would like to have someone give it a tune up just to be sure it's up to spec.

BTW I'm hoping the guys from GearNex have a great product. When I saw their head I thought it was about time someone built a geared head at that price point.

-Fran

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#15 David Rakoczy

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 06:40 PM

Here is Rafael Rodriguez's contact number... he lives near Glendale, CA. He has always been very helpful on all repairs.. Fluid or Geared!

Please tell him I sent you.

Home - 323.660.4993
Cell - 213.446.1944
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#16 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 07:01 PM

Here is Rafael Rodriguez's contact number... he lives near Glendale, CA. He has always been very helpful on all repairs.. Fluid or Geared!

Please tell him I sent you.

Home - 323.660.4993
Cell - 213.446.1944



Thanks, David

-Fran
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#17 Chris Keth

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Posted 24 November 2009 - 07:16 PM

I am so sorry Chris.. I know who you are :lol: ... I have two lines blinking and a ton of emails flowing in and while juggling all that I am trying to carouse with my Film buddies. Sheesh. My apology... see Mr. Mull(e)n and Salzman(n)... this is a habit I really need to work on... s-l-o-w-i-n-g down...

Well....Gotta go!


It's all good. I'm used to gently reminding everybody not to add that "I." I bet you can't wait to get that head. They're great.
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#18 Dominic Gruenberg

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Posted 26 November 2009 - 07:29 AM

Thanks for the insight guys! I own a complete SR2, Dollies, Grip & Electric... but I have always wanted my own Gear Head.. I miss the Wheels! So, I just purchased a Mini Worrall in GREAT shape!

[image]



Where did you get it? You said you purchased it, sound's like you walked into a store and just picked it up. ;)



€: Same question goes out to Fran btw. ;)

Edited by Dominic Gruenberg, 26 November 2009 - 07:32 AM.

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#19 David Rakoczy

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Posted 26 November 2009 - 08:41 AM

I googled Mini Mitchell and Mini Worrall Geared Head and there was one listing for each. The Mini Mitchell is at Visual Products (that is the one Chris Keth mentioned) and there was one listing for a Mini Worrall on Craiglist. I contacted the guy (Robert Smith in LA - super nice guy) and asked him to drop it off at my Head Repair guy's house... a couple hours later Rafael called and said the Head is in great shape... actually much better than what is pictured... he said the photos make it look a lot more used than what it looks like in person and he said it functions perfectly! So I paid Robert through Paypal ($4,000 USD) and for that I got the Mini Worrall Head, Two Plates, Eyepiece Leveler Holder and an Anvil Case. It is currently en route here to Florida where it arrives Dec 2. I am thrilled! I am often very lucky (blessed) when it come to equipment. When I need or desire something, it usually surfaces at quite a deal. Now I have a Gear Head to ride my Dolly (which came about much the same way as this Head). The problem is, I am paying about the same for new (Mitchell) Standard & Baby Sticks, Spreaders and Hi Hat.. but whatever.. If I get out for under $8k for the Head and brand new Mitchell Support I'll consider it a deal. btw.. later I saw this Head listed in CML.

I found it here.

... I kinda feel like a great deal on Mitchell Support is gonna show up... we'll see.


Happy Thanksgiving All! :)
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#20 Fran Kuhn

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Posted 26 November 2009 - 12:11 PM

Where did you get it? You said you purchased it, sound's like you walked into a store and just picked it up. ;)



€: Same question goes out to Fran btw. ;)

Hi Dominic,

I got the Technovision head through Ken Rich at The Power Broker. http://www.cineused.com/

It was listed by Ken on eBay, and there were two of them, both purchased from Clairmont Camera in Hollywood. They both were in very good condition, had camera risers and came with the heavy-duty yellow Clairmont shipping cases. I believe I paid $5,000 for it, sorry don't have the invoice right in front of me.

Both heads were collecting dust in the showroom at Transylvania Film in Burbank, CA. The guy told me that geared heads have fallen out of favor with the new indie shooters, he seemed to think they have no interest in the "old way" of doing things. Just want everything cheap and fast.

They may still have the other head. Ken told me they were something like $23,000 when new. The thing looks like it was built at JPL for NASA. A real precision piece of equipment, hard to believe it wasn't $50,000!

-Fran
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