Video Tag

When Fujifilm decided to make their mirror-less medium format camera, the GFX50s, most people saw it as an unusual step out of line for the firm. A flouting, if you will, of their basic philosophy that used an APS-C sensor in various ways. I don't agree with this judgement, as I saw it as only a next step on from the X-T series of cameras. Utilizing a larger sensor but trying to get the same still performance as the X-T2 spread out over a larger area. I think it worked - my brief time using the larger camera in the studio showed it to be a masterful performer. The people who want that level of resolution and output have a viable alternative to much more expensive systems. But what shall we think about the Fujifilm X-H1? It's been on the market for several months and an example has just made it across the Little Studio product table today. Is it a real, new, product-that-we-all-need? Well, let's unpack it and see...

Is worth two in the pocket. A phone on a video rig is worth three just held out at arm's length! But before we begin: A regular reader of this column has asked why I seem to be showing a lot of the packages and boxes of the goods that are featured. Aren't these extraneous to the reviews? No, actually they're not - they are a recognition that photographers are image people and customers have a visual memory. Every person who has ever worked retail trade with multiple products - like a bookseller - knows the client who comes in and says " I can't remember who wrote it or what it was about but I want a copy. The cover was green ". The same applies to camera gear - if people see a box, they will remember it, even if the exact details of the product inside are hazy. As they move about the shop their eye may light upon the thing and if I've given them an image of the external packaging, they might be able to pick up on it...

The great thing about the photographic trade is that it is so diverse and inventive - if a need is identified - or just created - there are a number of manufacturers who will leap up and offer a product. Some of the products may turn out to be frank commercial copies of other designs - but some of them are rather special and unique. I think we can assign the Manfrotto Twistgrip to this exclusive group. The need was for a device to hold a mobile phone steady for video work. That's steady in a flat orientation with the long side of the phone horizontal. Then the shots that come from it will go through the conventional editing processes and be displayed on a wide screen. Anything else may be art, or science, but it does not please the eye of the audience. A mobile phone is a slippery fish - just ask the innumerable people who have had them drop out of their hands and hit the ground - Goodbye Mr. Screen. Hello Mr. Repairman or Hello Apple Shop. I've...

It seems that everything we see these days on the computer screen is taken with a mobile phone. This was not the case in the 1950's. Many people in Australia were still connected to land lines and it was awkward ringing up Central and trying to arrange for a YouTube of kittens in under an hour. Plus if you were out in the street you needed to use the red phone box and frequently you didn't have the small change ready when they told you to drop it in. I used to call in to Midland Police Station and ask if anyone had a couple of coppers. Police are not as patient as you might think...

I have been accused of being too narrow in my focus upon photographic equipment - basing my coverage upon my own prejudices. This is hurtful. The Flapoflex digital wet-plate camera is, and has always been, the pinnacle of engineering achievement, and I will continue to force it upon you. But I am not a mean man - I can recognise good design in the work of other manufacturers and it would be unfair not to point them out when they are discovered. Thus today's focus upon the Sony A7R. I think it's the A7r...

Don't be sad, Kamahl. You may be lonesome but doesn't mean to say that you have to have distorted music. I discovered these headphones in the video cabinet at Stirling Street while reviewing rigs for adding monitors and lights onto DSLR cameras. As most modern cameras take decent video, and some take extremely decent stuff, there is more and more interest in the sound component of the show. Most cameras will have a basic microphone somewhere and the better ones have provisions for not only better microphones to be feeding sound in, but for some form of monitoring of that sound as it is going in there - or at least as it is being replayed. That's the function of this pair of Sony MDR 7506 sound monitors. They are extremely accurate as well as being extremely comfortable. I realise that anyone who has worn cans in the Western Australian summer might doubt this, but insofar as you can put up with the hot ear syndrome, at least you will not have to feel like your ears are being crushed. That padding is soft....