Monday, February 6, 2017

Bought Me A Came-TV Optimus Stabilizer

Bought another big expensive piece of equipment, a Came TV Optimus stabilizer. This device allows for non shaky video shooting when moving, Even when running you get a pretty stable picture. Basically the Came Optimus is a one handed stabilization device for camera systems under 2.6 pounds in weight. The cost of this new unit made in China was whopping $1075 USD with free shipping.

The price point was something I thought long and hard on. I originally was going to get their earlier model used for around $600-700 but lost out on several eBay auctions. With some more thought I decided to get the new improved 2nd generation version.

The second model allows you to shoot very low level shots (upside down camera action). It also has a better design allowing for 360 degree rotation of the camera and a much more comfortable hand grip. The package includes in a nice water tight box also comes with a two handed adapter set up, that I might use. Buying something new with no damage and the above listed bonuses seemed worth the $300 extra cost.

With all the walking and movement I do in the dump, trying to record moving people, workers digging, children running etc. I kept thinking that some kind of gimbal/steady cam was a must. One of the advantages of working with the BMPCC bodies is that they are small and light. That camera with smaller lens and metabones speedbooster should give me a light enough unit for the Came Optimus  to handle (or so my calculations seem to indicate). Putting the larger heavier 24-105m Canon lens on this set up might not work (it is right on the edge of 2.6 pounds). I plan to use it with a Tokina 11-16mm or a 12-24mm that I still need to buy ($250 - $350 USD) or the 24mm F1.4 Canon I currently own (40mm equivalent on the BMPCC).

I kept seeing one shot in my mind when I was thinking of buying this unit. A shot following a young child walking through the garbage, low angle from behind. To get that visual I needed this unit. If it makes it into the movie then this big price tag was worth it. I can also get in closer on the workers with this tool, and possibly shoot them from both low and high vantage points. I want the viewer of the movie to FEEL THE GRIME, FEEL THE STINK, FEEL THE HARDSHIP AND WORK. I was thinking of attaching a mono pod to the end of this unit then using that that to shoot down on everyone with the provided Optimus remote control. Here are photos and links to this amazing piece of technology.
A Bunch Of Came Optimus Made Footage
Came TV Optimus Being Used With Double Handle
Comparing New Came TV Optimus Versus Older Model Single
Came TV Optimus Attached To A Monopod

Update* Been watching the Optimus footage videos (linked above), mostly people walking and beaches, skateboarders and the like. Basically people playing in their Western playgrounds. That's all fine and good, but gosh using the Optimus in a documentary way seems so much more right. To remember the lives of people in garbage dump, recording the lives of children living in garbage seems so much more of an important subject to shoot. Happy I bought this thing. The closeup stabilization is going to make the film that much more visually exciting and watchable. I will use it to add reality to the movie, to get more in dept visuals that tell the true story of the lives of my subjects.