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GoPro Hero 4 Black review - suitable for documentary shooting?
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
December 20, 2014, at 2:34 AM

The GoPro Hero 4 Black is a small camera with a big potential and Johnathan Paul of Premiumbeat posted his review of it. What's interesting is that Johnathan looks at this camera from the perspective of documentary filmmaking. First of all he wanted to push the limits of the camera and he was happy to find out that the controls of the camera are very intuitive and that you can also rely on the GoPro App that makes it easy to control your camera remotely (on iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices). The app gives you access to all settings and options and you can even watch the recorded footage. As for the Hero 4 Black he got extremely impressed by the camera - and he thinks it can be a good addition to his RED Scarlet and run next to it. He also sees a lot of potential for filmmakers when using cranes or with high moving shots with the DJI Phantom. Additionally he embedded a video review of the GoPro Hero 4 by MW Technology:


And here's some more from Johnathan:

"Now the image quality for 1080 and 1440 looked great for such a small form factor, but it was identical to what I had seen GoPro’s produce before, particularly in the 2012 documentary film Leviathan. So, I jumped into 2.7K and began filming in wide and medium mode. Medium mode got rid of the wide angle lens look and made the image look a bit more in conjunction with DSLRs we were using for the shoot. The only HFR I used on the shoot was 50fps in 2.7K, which impressed me quite a bit especially after just filming some 48fps 3k footage back in October for another film.

While I ended up using 2.7K for the most part I did use 4K for some travel sequences. I was warned ahead of time by another filmmaker to not run 4K for a long period of time. I started by filming at 4K for just over 7 minutes but quickly found out what he was talking about – the camera was incredibly hot to the touch (which could likely damage it). From then on I would film between 2 to 3 minute bursts, which is not ideal for documentaries, but worked to keep the camera temp from becoming an issue."


Andrew Reid posts the first part of his Atomos Shogun review!
Posted by Michal, motionVFX Team
December 20, 2014, at 12:45 AM

Andrew Reid of EOS HD posted the first part of his indeep review of the Atomos Shogun. At the moment Andrew didn't share any ProRes video samples in 4K, but he plans to upload some of them this weekend. As you know there are high hopes for this product because it will allow to record 4K footage on the Sony A7S, but also offers the possibility to record 4K in 10bit to ProRes in the case of the Panasonic GH4. Additionally the Atomos Shogun is an IPS 1920×1200 field monitor and according to Andrew, it is so detailed you can nail focus on without even having to dive into the focus assists. He also reports that the device is much lighter than expected and while it ships with a 2600mAh battery, you can slot in a larger Sony battery (the same as the FS700 uses).

"Setting it up is straight forward but you need to supply your own HDMI cable. The Lindy Micro HDMI to full size HDMI cables are my choice, very slim but Atomos also do their own, which are coiled for higher flexibility. The locking guard for the A7S from Sony prevents any unwanted wobble in the tiny camera-side port.

I am using the new Metabones PL adapter for E-mount here with my Cooke Panchro S4i Mini 50mm T2.8 cinema lens. I also have the Hot Rod Camera PL adapter for my GH4 so I can use these lenses on both cameras. Just need one for the NX1 now!"

He also compares the Shogun to the Odyssey 7Q+ and he believes that the Odyssey appears to be aimed more at pros and the Shogun at both enthusiasts and pros.

The second part of the review should be online next week, so stay tuned, and for more make sure to visit Andrew's blog post (here).


Kickstarter news: wireless GoPro charging!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
December 19, 2014, at 3:44 PM

It doesn’t happen all that often that you’re able to say a particular Kickstarter campaign is almost 100% going to be successful, before it hits the goal. It appears that this little innovation will do just that. At the moment of writing this MOTA wireless charger for GoPro has got over $10 000 out of $15 000 goal, and plenty of time to go.

The name is self-explanatory – the MOTA charger has been designed and optimized for GoPro 3 and 4 and the set allows you to charge these cameras wirelessly without the need to swap the batteries – the camera can remain in its housing. Without further ado – the video posted in the product’s Kickstarter campaign page explains it all:

More info from the campaign page:

The patent-pending wireless receiver is the technology that makes the MOTA Wireless Charger compatible with Hero 3 and Hero 4 batteries. The receiver is engineered to enable wireless charging for your existing batteries. Before placing your camera in its casing, replace the GoPro’s USB port cover with the MOTA wireless receiver and align the bottom flap along the device’s base. After doing so, enclose your GoPro in its casing and simply insert it into the MOTA charging station.

If (of when, should we say) the campaign is successful, the product should be available at the turn of first and second quarter of 2015. Find out more about the product, and support if you wish, at the official Kickstarter campaign page here.


Vincent Laforet's killer MoVi setup
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
December 19, 2014, at 2:59 PM

It’s no secret that Vincent Laforet is a great fan of MoVi gear, and has been supported strongly it ever since it came out. There’s been a number of articles in his blog featuring MoVi systems, and now Vincent has posted another – this time showing his ultimate setup. Though the price of all constituents may cause headache, the versatility of this setup is mind blowing. Some info first:

I’ve been shooting a commercial for 2 weeks this pre-holiday season and I’ve really had a chance to put the MōVI through it’s paces once again.   We’ve been flying the MōVI handheld, on roller blades, running around,  on a jib, on a suction cup mounted to a cab, and on an RC car from Freefly Systems called a Tero. What I can tell you is that I’ve finally got MY system down… it took me awhile but i’ve found my "perfect" formula if you will and I’m happy to share it with you below in the hopes that you fly your MōVIs with as much glee as I have been! 

Vincent also posted a short video:

In his text, Vincent goes though every piece of equipment he’s used for the setup, starting from HDMI cable to external monitor. For each piece he provides the price, explanation for his choice and a photo. Apart from the small bits, and obviously, the MoVi stabilizer, the most significant parts to build this remote kit were:

MoVi wireless controller:

(…) a professional grade remote system that allows the operator full control over Pan, Tilt, and Roll. 

Axis 1 wireless follow focus:

The Axis1 from Hocus Products is the best wireless follow focus system you will get in this price range in my opinion. I have yet to have a SINGLE problem with the Axis1.  Ever.   And it intergrates perfectly w/ the Freefly remote so you can focus or zoom or iris control FROM the controller with the proper kit from Freefly.

Paralynx Arrow Plus transmitting set:

One Paralinx Arrow Plus Transmitter and 2 receivers.  Or 3 transmitters if you can make that happen.   I’ve chosen this system because it’s reliable and this is the smallest transmitter.  It stays permanently mounted on any of my cameras and is powered by the IDX battery above or a USB cable.  Love it.

To see the entire setup, with photos, photos, info from Vincent, and gear shop links, please follow this link to Vincent’s blog.


Adobe updates Creative Cloud apps!
Posted by Andrzej, motionVFX Team
December 19, 2014, at 11:07 AM

A few days back, we posted info about Adobe’s growing number of subscriptions and big plans to grow. Their development goes in pair with increased frequency of updates, which was advertised as one of the benefits of being part of the cloud. Now, another update has been released for the cloud apps, including Adobe’s video software Premiere Pro, After Effects, Media Encoder, and couple of others.

As Eric Philpott writes in his post at about the changes:

The Premiere Pro CC 2014.2 update includes a number of feature enhancements for editors, including support for Arri Open Gate media, the ability to set transitions and still image default durations in either seconds or frames, and improved GoPro CineForm export. In addition, QuickTime and GoPro CineForm codecs can now be used as sequence preview file formats on Windows

The 2014.2 update of After Effects CC provides more control over text through scripts and expressions. Additionally, based on customer feedback, the team made visual tweaks to the UI such as making the keyframe icons a bit brighter to stand out better against the background.

The video below shows how you can upload to Vimeo (among others) with all of the settings available in the ME:

Eric continues:

Along with Destination Publishing to YouTube and Vimeo, the Media Encoder CC update includes updated Vimeo and GoPro CineForm presets, the option to automatically append preset names to output file names, the ability to export audio channels as separate WAV files, and more. Audition CC, Prelude CC, Story CC Plus, and SpeedGrade CC offer a number improvements as well.

Eric’s post also contains links to blogs related to specific apps, where you’ll find more detailed info about the recent changes. Full post can be found here.



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