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What gear is most important to have?


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#1 Mike Frymus

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 12:57 PM

I am a Film Student, and obviously I cant afford to own anything I really want.
I am on a low budget, and I am wondering what equipment is NECESSARY to have or something that I should highly consider getting.

I am a cinematographer, so I love working with lighting and with the camera department.

Because I am a student, most of the jobs I do, I need to own my own equipment. And so far, I haven't had the money to rent out equipment. Most of the stuff I for myself, I do for web based stuff. So, I don't make money off of it.

I currently own:
T2i HDSLR
Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS
3-point Arri lighting kit (1K, 650w, 300w)
Redrock shoulder mount
3x (16gb) Memory Cards
2x Batteries
Basic photo tripod


Im hoping to get some 1 item, or a few items that would cost me up up to around $1,300 CAD.

I want to be making my own short films in the summertime, hopefully something for a film festival. I want to save some money for the production, but also would like to invest in some gear of my own.

Edited by Mike Frymus, 09 April 2012 - 12:59 PM.

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#2 Mike Frymus

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 01:26 PM

Can someone move this to Camera Accessories and Tools? - Or somewhere appropriate?
This was posted in the wrong section.
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#3 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 09 April 2012 - 02:40 PM

I'd look into getting a mattebox (4x4 is a pretty standard size) and start packing up on filters. It's great because you can use most of them on any shoot. Don't skimp too often with filters either, stick to the big-name brands, Tiffen ect. Start out with the basics, ND Grads and Solids (.6, .9 are good to have of both), Pola Filters, and maybe a diffusion set-- I'm partial to Black Pro mists and Classic Softs myself and go from there. You'll certainly be keeping filters longer than any camera out there.
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#4 Brian Dzyak

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 09:00 AM

The LAST thing I'd purchase would be a camera and the accessories for it. Every project will call for different specs.

On the other hand, you know you'll always use lights. Of course it's impossible to know exactly what lights you'll need as every SHOT is different (different locations, INT, EXT, Day, Night, Sunny, Not Sunny, lots of windows, no windows) but you can build a lighting/grip kit of basics that you'll use on every project you shoot.

Cameras are changing hourly. Lighting is pretty consistent from year to year.
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#5 Mike Frymus

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 04:45 PM

I don't want to buy a camera, not camera specific items. But, some camera gear would be nice to have.
I don't want to be renting gear. So, whenever I am doing my own cheap project, I will be using my own gear. People say don't buy anything and just shoot. Well, its not just having a camera and shooting. I want to make this look professional and not just like it was shot on a camcorder by some 12 year old... not saying Im a 12 year old... I just don't want my stuff looking amateurish.

So, I need to consider everything, but on a limited budget of what is most important to have.

I do in a way want lighting, but there are just SO many options, and its hard to know what I need. And it gets very expensive.
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#6 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 07:17 PM

China balls; good porceline sockets, and start collecting used Mole and Arri tungsten units; but no need to buy anything bigger than a 2K.
Tungsten lights are damned cheap (hell a par64 can can cost like $130 new with one bulb for it); and you'll use them all the time.
C-Stands
Flags/cutters/silk.

buy a roll of 1/2 CTO and 1/2 CTB and 216. cut it so you can keep what you cut.
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#7 Tom Jensen

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 08:24 PM

Rain gear
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#8 Tim O'Connor

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Posted 16 May 2012 - 11:17 PM

Looks like you have a good kit to get started. If you can't afford a high-hat, something like this works pretty nicely, for about $20.00! camera pod and opens up lots of new shots. It's great for a DSLR. You could build a nice skate-wheel dolly pretty inexpensively. Start assembling a good tool kit, multi-meter, screw gun, circuit checker, scissor clips, things that might come with the crew and trucks for DPs at higher levels but are pretty handy for everybody else, definitely things that I like to have.
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#9 Simon Wyss

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 01:51 AM

I currently own:
T2i HDSLR
Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS
3-point Arri lighting kit (1K, 650w, 300w)
Redrock shoulder mount
3x (16gb) Memory Cards
2x Batteries
Basic photo tripod

Find a wooden legs ciné tripod with a good fluid head, like a Universal (Sydney), a Miller, an Arri, whatever. See that you have a spirit level with it.
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