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Odd Shaking filming telephoto


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#1 Nickoloz Kachibaia

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 11:05 AM

Hey everyone,

 

I'm currently working on a doc project and was shooting some shots of the city on a Alexa Mini + Fujinon Cabrio 19-90 on sticks (E-Image 7060H - with 8kg max payload)

 

I am getting some really weird jittery / shaky footage. Here is an example:

https://drive.google...iew?usp=sharing

 

There was no wind at all where I was standing and I was zoomed in @ 90mm...

 

 

The tripod I'm using is definitely not recommended for this setup (it is an old one I own and didn't have time to rent one due to having to shoot these shots immediately), but should it really be this bad?

 

Thank you!


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#2 aapo lettinen

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 11:26 AM

Generally it is necessary to use a head with at least double the maximum rating compared to your camera+lens combo's weight. I watched with a phone so cant analyze much but seemed like there was some amount of heat shimmer going on, maybe choosing a different shooting angle could reduce this?
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#3 Nickoloz Kachibaia

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 01:04 PM

I just weighed the camera and it's 9.5 kg, would that cause the frame to shake like that on a totally static frame?

 

Also, I thought it might be heat shimmer as well after seeing the footage, but I'm certain there was non visible to the naked eye...

 

It almost looks like rolling shutter to some degree due to vibrations.

 

Any more thoughts?


Edited by Nickoloz Kachibaia, 07 January 2017 - 01:06 PM.

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#4 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 08:25 PM

Looks like some sort of heat shimmer to me too.. were there any big vents in front of you..  did you try any other shots or all this same direction.. 90mm is hardly really long lens.. the other thing you might try is not to hold/touch the pan bar.. (on static shots obviously :)... often on a really long lens.. any slight body movement.. even breathing .. can introduce some shake..but 90mm should be ok.. if there was no wind knocking it as you say..

 

Rolling shutter isn't a problem for this shot ..IMHO..


Edited by Robin R Probyn, 07 January 2017 - 08:26 PM.

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#5 Nickoloz Kachibaia

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 11:00 PM

I'm pretty sure there was no vents below or in front of me (was on a balcony), and I also made sure to stand back and not hold the tripod once I hit record and released. The weird part of it is that I have a few other shots and they are all exhibiting the same problems. Would heat shimmer be possible since it was -15 degrees C outside?


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#6 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 06:11 AM

I guess so if the air coming out was warm enough to effect the very cold air.. but it shouldn't be in every shot ..  does it play back in the camera the same.. ? or can you re play on any other devices to see if thats that problem.. ?  the camera and lens are obviously high end and shouldn't have any problems.. I can only think to try and shoot some other very controlled shots with wide and long lens ... or another lens and see if you get the same problem..


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#7 Tyler Purcell

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 08:55 AM

Yea, it's heat haze coming from something, it's not the camera.
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#8 Mark Dunn

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 11:21 AM

+1. Heat haze. Odd looking though.


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#9 Nickoloz Kachibaia

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 12:42 PM

I think you guys are right, I just did a test at home from my balcony and the heat haze is gone. However, the tripod seems to be the problem as well. I rolled and stood still, away from the camera, and it seemed to be fine (aside from when gusts of wind would shake it) then I walked around the tripod without touching to test if my footsteps could cause the jitter and that seemed to be the culprit.

 

Any small vibrations with this thing and it sends shockwaves apparently, guess I need a new tripod.

 

Thank you for your help everyone! Much appreciated :) 


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#10 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 07:03 PM

Well it also depends what surface your tripods on..   even a heavy tripod will wobble if people walk on a flimsy surface.. but presuming your balcony isn't like that ! .. yes you need a better tripod..  its a basic tool really.. and will last you a very long time..Ive had mine over 20 yrs.. don't go cheap on a tripod..(like buying a cheap lifejacket)  you,ll just have to buy another one anyway.. stay with one of the established brands ...


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#11 Nickoloz Kachibaia

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 07:17 PM

Funny you mention that, I was going to start a thread regarding tripods. 

 

I have narrowed it down to 3 heads in the order of price:

 

Oconnor 1030D                ---  $6,525.00

Sachtler DV 12SB            ---- $3,375.00

Succed SC - V15 / 100RP  -- $1,090.00 (From what I've been told, these are almost identical to the Sachtler at this point since their patent expired last year)

 

Is it really justifiable to pay 3x or even 6x the price? I've heard some great things about all of these tripods...

 
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#12 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 08 January 2017 - 07:40 PM

I have a Sachtler 18 tripod.. it was/is a standard work horse tripod for ENG/ I guess up to around 14kg rigs.. my F5 with all bells and whistles is around 12kg I guess.. and its ok for that.. anything more I would need a bigger tripod .. maybe 150mm bowl.. but then dragging it around becomes a big pain.. 

 

The DV Sach has only 1-5 drag control.. the 18 series has 1-7.. the extra can be helpful from very slow pan,s .. 

 

Dont know about the Succed.. but O conner is of course a very well known brand.. 


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#13 Michael Rodin

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 10:49 AM

The DV head is an overpriced toy - it's for DSLRs and handy-cams, really. I'd prefer a 150mm head. Sachtler 25 Plus is my favourite for a lightweight 150mm head, well suited for documentary (I'm actually using one on a feature doc right now).


Edited by Michael Rodin, 09 January 2017 - 10:50 AM.

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#14 Albion Hockney

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:00 PM

I'd say 100mm tripods are totally sufficient for anything under large cinema camera setups (IE Alexa Classic with 19mm support and heavy lenses or heavy zoom lenses). Some people really like a perfect tripod that is super perfectly balanced and I understand that in some situations - but generally speaking the oconnor 1030D is the standard for just about everything these days unless you have a large crew. 

 

Sachtler 18 or 21 is also a fine head - the 18 is great for doc. the 12 is pretty lightweight that is more for something like an FS7 with no AKS and photo lenses or something. 

 

I can't imagine having a 150mm tripod head on a doc - maybe wildlife? I donno - that seems absurd. 


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#15 Michael Rodin

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 12:27 PM

Last year I shot what you'd call run-and-gun with a Sachter 30-2 on heavy-duty 150mm cine sticks. It was a reportage (for a doc) from a Russian Navy day in StPetersburg. We had four camera crew (DP, 1AC, 2AC, clapper) and moved a lot. On the tele zoom's long end (163mm S16 format) the head was at its limits and didn't feel smooth at all. And we had an SR2-HS with 15mm LWS, which wasn't particularily heavy.

 

Sachtler 150mm EFP system with carbon sticks is no heavier than most older top-end 100mm systems.


Edited by Michael Rodin, 09 January 2017 - 12:28 PM.

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#16 Robin R Probyn

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 06:59 PM

I think 4 camera crew is the key element here :)... I had a 150mm Sach tripod when I started out and I can assure you.. without an assistant or two .. its a total non starter.. I even had a director who said to me straight out.. I have enjoyed working with you and your footage is fine.. but that tripod has to go !.. he was only half joking.. 

 

A good 100mm bowl with a decently balanced camera is fine for anything except, as mentioned .. maybe a fully rigged Alexa.. but then you wouldn't usually have that on a doc.. except Nat History shoots with very long lenses.. but they usually arnt running around much either.. I wouldn't advise the OP to go for a 150mm bowl head.. 


Edited by Robin R Probyn, 09 January 2017 - 07:00 PM.

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#17 Giray Izcan

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 07:08 PM

I would get an O'Connor 2060 head.
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#18 Robert Hart

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 03:06 AM

To my eye, the artifact seems to be entirely heat shimmer which you will get even on a cool clear day in a city when there is a mix of hot steel roofs, metal sidings, concrete roofs, tarred roads and airconditioning towers or boiler/heaters putting out concentrated volumes of warm air.


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#19 Satsuki Murashige

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Posted 14 April 2017 - 11:45 PM

The bouncing in the video does appear to be from the tripod. At only 90mm, that's pretty bad. If you're working with cameras and lenses of this quality, I think you need a better tripod.

 I have narrowed it down to 3 heads in the order of price:
 
Oconnor 1030D                ---  $6,525.00
Sachtler DV 12SB            ---- $3,375.00
Succed SC - V15 / 100RP  -- $1,090.00 (From what I've been told, these are almost identical to the Sachtler at this point since their patent expired last year)
 
Is it really justifiable to pay 3x or even 6x the price? I've heard some great things about all of these tripods...  


In terms of what is justifiable, that's a personal call. If you make a living from shooting, then I think owning a high quality tripod is one of the best investments as it will last you many years and will easily improve the quality of your footage. A lot of operators who own expensive tripods often rent them out to recoup some of the cost.

The OConnor 1030D is probably the best 100mm tripod you can own for narrative work. It works well with a variety of camera systems because of the continuous counterbalance feature and wide range of camera mounting plates. You can also tilt +/- 90 degrees, which most Sachtler models can't do. But it's a tad heavy for the limited max payload range and it seems to require more frequent service than an equivalent Sachtler.

The Sachtler equivalent would be a Video 18 or 20. More utilitarian than the OConnor, but also less delicate. Better for run-and-gun style shooting where you don't have time to crank the counterbalance handle. The DV12 is not really in the same range, I would only go that small if you really need a 100mm system as light as possible for travel work.

I've only used a Secced head once or twice. Didn't notice anything egregiously bad about it, but I suspect getting spare parts and repairs done would be a hassle. I also don't like the idea of using knock-off gear, but that's a personal call.
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#20 Sabyasachi Patra

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 07:29 AM

The OConnor and other such good ones will last a decade and half or two. If you calculate the cost, it would be like 500 dollars a year. People often buy cameras even DSLRs at some 4-5000 US dollars. And these cameras are upgraded every 2-3 yrs. So the investment in tripod and good fluid head is economically sound. 

 

I have an OConnor 1030HDs and Sachtler ENG 100 CF2 tripod and I remember how much I thought before plunging close to 10K in buying the combo. And it will work for a long time. 

 

When people use flimsy tripod and head, you will often find that the starting and ending of the pan is unusable. If your tripod and head is good then you can carefully choose the starting composition as well as the ending composition. 


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