Pro Moviemaker Autumn 2019

The accessories you should buy right now! KITUPYOUR MIRRORLESS

How buying used kit could save you thousands SMART SHOPPING

BUSINESS MASTERCLASS Make more money by shooting live events: we show you how

AUTUMN 2019 £4.99 @ProMoviemaker

Blackmagic’s new Ursa Mini Pro G2 with Raw recording and 300fps THE MAGIC FORMULA FIRST TEST



FULL TEST POWERHOUSE PANASONIC Just how good is the new S1 for filmmakers?

SOUNDADVICE Transform your audio with our top tips and tricks PLUS LAV MICS AND WIRELESS KITS REVIEWED 12-PAGE SPECIAL


The ultimate magazine for next generation filmmakers

Editor in chief Adam Duckworth Staff writer Chelsea Fearnley Contributing editor Kingsley Singleton Chief sub editor Beth Fletcher Senior sub editor Siobhan Godwood Sub editor Felicity Evans Junior sub editor Elisha Young EDITORIAL ADVERTISING

Sales director Matt Snow 01223 499453 Group ad manager Sam Scott-Smith 01223 499457 Advertising manager Krishan Parmar 01223 499462 DESIGN Design director Andy Jennings Design manager Alan Gray Designers Lucy Woolcomb, Laura Bryant, Emily Lancaster & Bruce Richardson PUBLISHING Managing directors Andy Brogden & Matt Pluck MEDIA SUPPORTERS AND PARTNERS OF:

There are two things I don’t mind admitting I’m addicted to when it comes to filmmaking. The first is the joy of owning new kit – from cameras to lenses and accessories. And the second is slowmotion. A little bit of slomo can really improve the production values of your films. And of course I’m not scared to also admit using it to mask the odd mistake I’ve made in shooting footage that’s, shall we say, less than optimal. Such as stretching out some B-roll to put on top of a talking head interview to mask a jump cut. Or making some wobbly footage look less shaky. And as I shoot lots of off-road motorcycle sport, it’s immensely useful to put focus on what the rider is doing as they go around corners, over bumps or through the air. There’s something that feels cinematic about slowmotion of a rider pulling on his or her gloves ready for a race. In real time, it looks too ‘normal’. I shoot the majority of action at 120fps with audio, so I can slow it down or ramp the speed up and down in post if I need to. Yes, I realise that breaks the old ‘rule’ of shooting at 24 or 25fps for a smoother look. But it works for me, and more importantly my clients who want social media or YouTube shorts. I’m not shooting Hollywood blockbusters. So when Blackmagic revealed the Ursa Mini Pro G2 complete with 300fps, I definitely took notice. A sexy new camera and 300fps slowmotion, all in an affordable package. Cinematography catnip, as far as I’m concerned. And you just know that as soon as I got hold of the new Ursa to test it, one of the first things I did was to overcrank it to 300fps and try out the slowmotion. I now have lots of test footage of my dogs running around the garden, as it was the easiest and quickest thing to test my new slomo superstar on. Of course, I eventually got round to doing a proper test of the camera at conventional speeds. But I just couldn’t resist going faster on the frame rates, just because I could. Having had a couple of weeks using the Blackmagic camera, I believe it points the way forward for cinema cameras which is to be useful for everything from cinematic movies to run and gun, and everything in between. It has a large Super35 sensor, takes all sorts of EF-mount lenses for a shallow depth-of-field if that’s what you require, and shoots in 4.6K Raw. You can also overcrank to 300fps for super slow-motion albeit in HD only, ideal for adding drama to action shots. You can use it as a shoulder-mount ENG camera, or rig it up as a studio cam. It’s whatever you want it to be. Check out our full test in this issue, to see if there could be a bit of Blackmagic in your future. FROM THE EDITOR

Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridgeshire CB22 3HJ

Pro Moviemaker is published quarterly by Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridge CB22 3HJ. No part of this magazine can be used without prior written permission of Bright Publishing Ltd. ISSN number: 2045-3892. Pro Moviemaker is a registered trademark of Bright Publishing Ltd. The advertisements published in Pro Moviemaker that have been written, designed or produced by employees of Bright Publishing Ltd remain the copyright of Bright Publishing Ltd and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. Prices quoted are street prices. In sterling they include VAT but US dollar prices are without local sales taxes. Prices are where available or converted using the exchange rate on the day the magazine went to press.




The ultimate magazine for next generation filmmakers




A brand new full-frame mirrorless camera and lots of lenses to suit all budgets are revealed by the fast-growing Japanese optical giant. 9 SONY WHEELS OUT ITS BIG GUNS! Two new super-telephoto lenses break cover, as well as a new 61-megapixel A7R IV mirrorless camera, 35mm prime and new audio accessories. 1O ACCESSORY FEST Loads of latest kit like an anamorphic lens for your iPhone, affordable filters to protect your precious lenses and USB-C monitor screens. 12 STREAMING SENSATIONS A free firmware upgrade gives a livestream boost to a pair of Sony camcorders, Olympus boosts its professional OM-D system and Tamron shows affordable new glass.




Shooting events for big clients can be hard work but profitable, and offers creative opportunities if you do it right. We talk to one of the best in this growing business to hear the ins and outs of shooting live.



20 GOING ONLINE FOR TRAINING Famous post-production house Soho Editors reveals how the right online training can cut through the white noise of endless YouTube videos and offer real, professional advice. Take the fear out of online training for ever! 25 SOUND ADVICE Every filmmaker knows top-quality audio is key to making a successful film. We bring you top tips and advice from professional sound engineers on how to make your audio the best it can be on your next production. 34 ULTIMATE LIGHTING GUIDE Choosing the right lighting kit and learning to use it are essential skills every professional moviemaker should learn. We look at the latest kit and explain how and why to use it in our no-nonsense guide to lighting.




The ultimate magazine for next generation filmmakers



44 GREAT GEAR GOING CHEAP! If you dream of owning the latest kit but are put off by the high prices, used could be what you need. From the best used buys right now to selling your old kit with as little fuss as possible, it’s a smart way of owning new gear.


54 DRONE NEWS New anamorphic lenses for drones, winners announced in aerial photography competition and new safety measures for drone disasters.




58 IT’S A KIND OF MAGIC! The new Blackmagic Ursa Mini Pro G2 will cast a spell on you with its 300fps HD shooting, Raw recording, solid build quality and shockingly affordable price tag. 66 PANASONIC’S S1 STUNNER It’s the new Panasonic full-frame mirrorless camera that’s ideal for filmmaking. We put the S1 through its paces and check out the hot new S1H that’s on the roadmap. 74 SMALL CAMERA BUT BIG RESULTS The Marshall compact camera that shoots in 4K and has professional SDI output is ideal for livestreaming. 76 GROUP TEST: LAPEL MICS We take a look at a whole range of lavalier microphones that will give a real boost to your audio quality. 82 MINI TESTS We review great new kit including a Lacie SSD drive, IDX battery, Tenba bag, Rode wireless kit, Manfrotto and Libec tripods, Vocas rig and Shure mic. 94 BUYERS’ GUIDE: MIRRORLESS ACCESSORIES Take a look at our guide for the best kit to add to your mirrorless camera that will really make a difference to your movies.



AGENDA NEWS Sigma’s small surprise! The new fp is the ‘world’s most compact full-frame mirrorless camera’ and shoots Raw video WORDS ADAM DUCKWORTH

When Sigma signed up alongside Panasonic and Leica as part of the new L-Mount alliance, it was thought the Japanese lens giant would solely be making lots of its photo and cine lenses to fit onto the full-frame cameras from its partners. So it came as a shock when Sigma unveiled its own L-Mount camera, which it says is the world’s smallest and lightest full- frame mirrorless. And the ace up its sleeve is that it can shoot CinemaDNG Raw files. The new Sigma fp incorporates a 35mm full-frame 24.6-megapixel Bayer sensor in a compact body, rather than the Foveon sensors it has used in previous cameras. The sensor is a back-side illuminated CMOS unit that has an ISO range of 100- 25,600, expandable to 6-102,400. It has a fully electronic shutter and contrast- detect autofocus. The weather-sealed body has a fixed 3.2-inch touchscreen, plus HDMI, mic and USB 3.1 sockets. For stills, it can capture 14-bit Raw files at up to 18fps, but only for 12 shots. The video spec is more impressive, as it supports 12-bit 4K Raw recording in 24/25/30p and has a waveformmonitor,

“The fp has a Cinemagraph function – a hybrid between still photography and video”

inspired by the colour grade commonly used in Hollywood films. Each mode has a slider that enables adjustment of the strength of the applied effects. There will also be an auto HDR function in the cine mode and a Cinemagraph function - a hybrid between still photography and video in the form of animated GIFs in which parts of a still image keep moving. These will be available via a firmware update rather than when the camera goes on sale in summer. The camera is just 112.6×69.9×45.3mm/ 4.43x2.75x1.78in and the body weighs 370g/0.82lb without battery and card. There is a single SD card slot. There will also be a range of dedicated accessories include a an EVF and lens mount adapter to take Canon EF glass. No prices have yet been announced.

IMAGES The Sigma fp has a 35mm full-frame 24.6-megapixel Bayer sensor. The body is weather sealed with a fixed 3.2-inch touchscreen, plus HDMI, mic and USB 3.1 sockets

shutter angle control and time code. There is a heat sink inside the fp in a bid to stop it overheating – often the curse of small mirrorless cameras. And a director mode allows you to preview videos in different aspect ratios. For raw video data, the Sigma fp supports 12-bit CinemaDNG external recording via a USB 3.1 connection in 8-, 10- or 12-bit at up to 30p. In ALL-I recording, which is optimal for editing H.264 compressed videos, it can shoot the same 4K frame rates as in Raw, but in HD this also adds 60, 100 and 120fps in 4:2:2 8-bit. Playing CinemaDNG footage in camera is to become available via firmware update rather than at launch. There are a number of different colour modes, including ‘teal and orange’,





Three new lenses ideal for full-frame mirrorless cameras have been unveiled by Sigma to fits its new fp camera as well as the Panasonic S series and Leica SL. The lenses will also come in Sony E-mount. The trio include two from the premium Art range – a 14-24mm f/2.8 zoom and 35mm f/1.2 prime – and a compact prime from the more affordable Contemporary range, which is a 45mm f/2.8 optic. The 35mm lens is the first autofocus lens to fit full-frame mirrorless with an f/1.2 maximum aperture. It costs £1460/$1499 and is built to offer superb bokeh when shot wide open, thanks to its 11-blade rounded iris. There are three SLD glass elements and three aspherical lenses, including a double-sided aspherical lens. There are 17 elements in 12 groups. It is weather sealed, has oil- and water- repellent coatings and weighs 1kg/2.2lb. The aperture ring can be declicked. The Art 14-24mm zoom costs £1460/ $1399 and has been designed to excel at astrophotography, thanks to outstanding resolution to the edge of the frame due to the single FLD glass and five SLD glass elements. It also has nano-porous coating to cut down flare.

It also has a rounded 11-blade aperture and its construction is 18 elements in 13 groups. It’s splash proof and comes with a rear filter holder. It weighs 795g/1.75lb The £549/$549 45mm lens is compact and light, weighing just 215g/0.47lb thanks to its more simple construction of eight elements in seven groups. Designed to replace the 50mm standard lens, it has a seven-bladed rounded aperture that Sigma claims gives a very smooth bokeh when wide open. All the lenses are on sale now. Sigma has also revealed it is working on a new set of cine primes to give a vintage look. These will be based on the current cine primes, but with reduced coatings.

IMAGES Sigma has announced three new lenses compatible with its new fp camera, the Panasonic S series and the Leica SL-System. The lenses are also being released in Sony E-mount

EOS M FINALLY GETS SOME GLASS Sigma has revealed that its trio of DC lenses for APS-C and MFT mirrorless cameras – the 16mm f/1.4, 30mm f/1.4 and 56mm f/1.4 – will soon be available in Canon EOS EF-Mmount. It’s the first major independent manufacturer to announce it will build lenses to fit the EOS Mmount, which has previously only been serviced by Canon’s own limited range of lenses.





Sony goes super long! Sports and wildlife filmmakers who want longer lenses for their E-mount cameras have had their prayers answered by Sony, which has revealed a pair of telephotos at fluorite elements to minimise chromatic aberration and suppress colour bleeding. It has built-in image stabilisation and is compatible with Sony’s 1.4x and 2.0x teleconverters, extending the reach to a maximum of 1200mm at f/13.

The lens features an 11-blade circular aperture for smooth bokeh in images, and is coated with Sony’s original Nano AR coating to suppress reflections, glare and ghosting. Magnesium alloy is used throughout to minimise weight, and the hood is carbon fibre. The lens is dust and moisture resistant, and its front element is coated with fluorine to resist dirt. It has customisable focus-hold buttons in four different locations on the lens barrel, and a ‘Full-Time DMF’ switch to immediately engage manual focus at any point. The focus ring features Linear Response MF for responsive manual focus. The lens has built-in optical stabilisation and a drop-in filter slot that accepts 40.5mm filters as well as an optional drop-in circular polariser. The new FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS super-telephoto zoommight not have the fast maximum aperture of its big brother but is a fraction of the cost and size. It weighs in at 2115g/4.7lb.

The weather-resistant lens has five ED glass elements and an aspherical element. Both lenses are on sale now. Sony has also revealed the new A7R IV, aimed largely at stills shooters as it has a full-frame 61-megapixel BSI sensor. An evolution of the current A7R III, it has a redesigned body and shoots in 4K with 6K oversampling, plus HDR, and offers a 14- stop dynamic range for video. It offers S-Log 2/3 and Hybrid Log Gamma but will only record in 8-bit 4:2:0 internally or externally via HDMI. It has an HDMI Type-A connector, a new dedicated movie function menu and an overhauled new digital audio interface. It will cost around £3500/$3500 and is on sale in August.

very different ends of the price range. The FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS zoomwill ship in August 2019 priced at £1799/$1998 while the super-exotic but much faster FE 600mm f/4 GM OSS will cost a staggering £12,000/$13,000. The fast f/4 beast is Sony’s longest reaching prime lens, and despite its size is the lightest lens of its type, weighing in at only 3040g/6.7lb. It joins the FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS lens as an ideal tool for sports, wildlife and news shooters. The new 600mm lens features two XD linear motors to provide fast AF and reliable subject tracking. As it’s part of Sony’s flagship G Master series, it is designed for outstanding contrast and resolution even in the corners of the image. The optical design includes a large XA (extreme aspherical) and an ED (extra-low dispersion) element to suppress common telephoto lens aberrations, plus three

MID-PRICE OPTIC PLUGS 35MM GAP Sony has revealed a fast mediumwide-angle lens for its full-frame mirrorless cameras, the FE 35mm f/1.8, priced at £630/$750. It finally plugs the obvious gap in the range between the premium Zeiss Distagon FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA and the older and far cheaper Zeiss 35mm f/2.8 which does not have the greatest reputation. The new FE 35mm f/1.8 is not part of the G Master range of lenses, which is the firm’s own high-end range. The lens has 11 elements in nine groups, with one aspherical element, weighs 280g/0.62lb and focuses as close as 22cm/9in. There is also a nine-bladed aperture. Sony has also revealed a newall-digital mic and an XLR audio converter to fit its A-series cameras. Both accessories connect to the camera via Sony’s multi-interface shoe.




iPhone goes anamorphic!

Turn your iPhone into a fully rigged- up filmmaking tool complete with an anamorphic lens, using new kit frommobile device accessory specialist Sandmarc. The new £79/$99 FilmRig takes an iPhone, DJI action camor GoPro, is compatible with lots of add-on lenses and doesn’t need a counterweight when shooting with a phone. It allows you to use both hands for a more stable shot. You can also add amicrophone, small audio recorder and a light andmount it to a tripod. Sandmarc has also revealed its own anamorphic lens which features amulti-element, multi-coated and anti-reflective glass lens. Like the rig, the lens housing is aluminium to keep it lightweight yet durable. The 1.33x anamorphic lens provides a 2.4:1 wide aspect ratio, enabling cinematically wide videos. It also has the trademark oval bokeh and horizontal lens flare effects, just like real anamorphic cinema lenses. It comes with a Pro iPhone case, fits iPhone XSMax, XS, XR, X, 8, 8 Plus, 7 and 7 Plusmodels. It costs £127/$160.

“Turn your iPhone into a fully rigged-up filmmaking tool, complete with an anamorphic lens”

Philips has revealed a pair of affordablemonitors in 24in and 27in sizes with the latest USB Type-C port, so you can just plug in your laptop and get editing. Peripherals like a keyboard, mouse, and ethernet cable connect to themonitors’ docking station, reducing cable clutter. Thanks to DisplayPort-out, multiple high- resolution displays can be linked together with just one cable. USB 3.2 data transfer technologymakes downloading very fast, and can be done while charging a laptop directly from themonitor. Bothmonitors’ colour accuracy and brightness are suited for video editing. Cut cable clutterwith Philips

AFFORDABLE PROTECTION Keeping a clear or UV filter on the front of your lens can be a good idea to protect it from the elements. And Hoya’s new Fusion One range, including clear and UV filters as well as a circular polariser, fits the bill – especially for large-diameter wide-angle lenses onmirrorless cameras. They come in sizes up to 82mmand are low- profile to prevent vignetting at wide zoom settings. The Hoya filters havemulti-layer coating, ultra- high light-transmission, professional-grade optical glass and incorporate a stain-resistant and water- repellent coating. Prices range from£20 to £100/ $29 t0 $102.

The IPS panels have a wide viewing angle of 178° and can be pivoted around 90° degrees for editing vertical videos for Instagram. Both also have the secureWindows Hello pop-up webcamwith facial recognition, so only approved users can log in. The smaller screen is £319/$399 and the larger one is £489/$615.




Sonygoes streaming with free update

TAMRON’SWIDE ALTERNATIVE Independent lens maker Tamron has revealed a new 17-28mm f/2.8 lens for The new Blackmagic Raw codec and Ursa Mini Pro 4.6K have been used to film the So Long music video for DJ and songwriter Diplo at Stagecoach Festival in California. Shot by director Brandon Dermer, two cameras were used, switching between Blackmagic Raw and ProRes 444. It was graded by colourist Ryan McNeal who used a heavy grain and warm highlights to give a very distinct look in DaVinci Resolve Studio software. THE MAGIC OF MUSIC!

Two of Sony’s 4K HDR camcorders, the NX80 and Z90, are to get a free firmware upgrade by the end of 2019 to make live streaming easier. The ‘Simple Live Streaming’ systemmeans cameras only require a Wi-Fi connection without additional gear to start livestreaming and upload onto major video sharing sites and social media platforms. Sony has also been promoting its ‘Simple Live Solution’, which combines the £2200/$2200 MCX-500 Olympus updatespro cameras The new Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 2x Teleconverter MC- 20 doubles focal length and is weather sealed. It can be attached to the 300mm f/4.0 Pro lens, ED 40-150mm f/2.8 Pro and the ED 150-400mm f/4.5 TC1.25x IS Pro lens currently in development. It’s on sale now for £400/$429 and has a nine-element, four- group lens construction. The OM-D E-M1 Mark II gets a firmware upgrade to Version 3.0 which includes major improvements to autofocus performance and image quality, and unlocks new video features. It gets the latest autofocus features: C-AF Center Priority for high-

multi-camera live switching unit and the £1018/$925 RM-30 remote commander to provide multi-camera based live production. To live stream frommultiple camcorders, the NX80 and Z90 camcorders can be connected to the MCX-500 via SDI or HDMI to enable livestreaming onto social media platforms with features such as tally, title and transition. Simple Live Streaming offers even simpler operation for a single camera.

Sony full-frame mirrorless cameras. It’s the first third- party lens to offer such a wide zoom range and fast f/2.8 maximum aperture. At just £899/$899, the 17-28mm f/2.8 Di III RXD is lighter, more compact and affordable than the comparable Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 G Master lens, which costs more than double. The 420g/0.93lb Tamron is just 99mm/3.9in long and has no barrel extension while focusing or zooming. It has 13 elements in 11 groups, including three aspherical elements: two LD (Low Dispersion) elements and one XLD (eXtra Low Dispersion) element. There are nine rounded aperture blades and it takes a 67mm front filter. It also focuses a close as 19cm/7.48in at the wide-angle end. The

precision tracking of moving subjects, Group 25-point and C-AF+MF, which allows users to switch to MF while in C-AF. It inherits some AF capabilities from the OM-D E-M1X. AF precision for still subjects in S-AF mode has been improved and the low-light limit is -6EV. Noise at high ISO sensitivity is improved by a third of a stop. And Low ISO Processing (Detail Priority) has been added for higher resolution when shooting at low ISO sensitivity. Also, USB RAWData Edit is now supported for faster RAW processing with Olympus Workspace image editing for the E-M1 Mark II and E-M1X.

AF drive system is very quiet, making it suitable for shooting virtually noise- free video, claims Tamron. The lens is weather resistant and has a hydrophobic fluorine coating to repel fingerprints and dirt. The lens is a companion to the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 lens, sharing a similar design and look.





Jamie Rae traded in his freelancer title for a full-time spot at corporate events company, BCDMeetings & Events. We talk to him about that journey and what it’s like to shoot live events for big clients


F or a solopreneur, making the decision to work for someone else can be a daunting prospect, but if you consider company culture, a traditional working week could offer more fulfilment. Jamie Rae is someone who recently made the move to work in-house after ten years of working for himself. He graduated from Lincolnshire University in 2008 with a degree in Contemporary Lens Media, and from there worked with local businesses to create videos that promoted their products and services. Although Rae says he did work on some projects for larger organisations – such as the Open University, Network Rail and the NHS – the payment terms were, at the time, “horrific and far less rewarding”. Now, Rae celebrates one year working as a video producer at BCD, which is a company dedicated to designing and orchestrating events for clients that are similar in size to those mentioned above,

assignment: a huge conference for a leading soft drinks brand, where he was tasked with creating a series of videos that would coincide with key topics discussed at the event, as well as a highlights reel of the two-day event, which would later be played at the after-party. Rae was given the artistic freedom to play around with these topics, and he recalls when the brand wanted to discuss how it overcame the CO² shortage that could have caused production to cease in the summer of 2018: “We pitched an idea of recreating the ‘war room’, which was a real-life scenario that took place, where ten of the company’s most senior employees were locked in a room for 72 hours until they came up with a solution.” He continues: “We drew upon themes from the TV series 24 and used multiple shots and multiple camera angles of the same scene, which were then put onto a split screen – similar to the opening

but he says the full-time position enables better compensation. Rae works in a small team consisting of himself, Nick Hamilton – who is the video editor and animator – and Dan Umney, their creative director. “We’re a facet of a large company that is an events company first and foremost, and it employs 1000 people worldwide who are involved in making events happen – think catering, venue sourcing and entertainment,” explains Rae.“I was apprehensive before deciding to work full- time, because I feared I wouldn’t be able to create what I wanted to create, or that the environment would prohibit me from doing so. I was also worried about what the teamwould be like, having worked on my own for a decade.” Things go better with pop Those thoughts were immediately squashed after Rae was given his first




sequence of 24 . Clocks ticking, countdown timers, people looking serious.” Pitching and storyboarding video ideas to clients is an aspect of his new role that Rae relishes. He says: “In the past, I’ve found that clients are often sceptical about video because they don’t like being filmed, but the ability to pitch an idea before we film it encourages discussion and more ideas to develop.” The team also created a video about brand’s supply chain, with filming taking place at some of its premises in the UK. They also shot four videos about environmentalism in four different locations – one being an Asda supermarket – and did projection mapping, which projects 3D images onto blank surfaces. Rae explains: “We had the main screen and, on either side of that, we had two more screens of the same size. It was such a big event, with over 1500 delegates, so we had the video content playing on all three screens. Then, on either side of these screens, we had three columns, all different sizes – they looked a bit like a bar graph – and onto those we projected 3D content to coincide with the content on the screens. Sometimes, when no videos were playing, fizzy drink bubbles would float up and down the columns.” Filming the event itself required both Hamilton and Rae on site, as well as the help of two external cameramen. Rae says: “I did a little filming as people were arriving on day one, but I mostly stayed with Nick in the edit room to “I was apprehensive before deciding to work full-time, because I feared I wouldn’t be able to create what I wanted to create”

ABOVE RIGHT Jamie Rae, creative video producer (right), and Nick Hamilton, senior video editor and animator (left) BELOW A film being shown at the BCD Meetings & Events conference




make sure the cameramen on the floor were ticking off what needed to be filmed. I then helped Nick with the edit, which had to be finished before day two started. I think we only got about three hours sleep that night. “On day two, filming stopped at 12pm, because we needed to edit the footage for the highlights to be played at the after- party. It was full on, but the feeling of being able to create something in a live environment with a teamwhere we had to deliver something while on the premises was so exciting,” he enthuses. All limits are self-imposed The videos created for the soft drink brand’s conference, including the highlights, were shot on a Panasonic GH5 with a combination of the Panasonic Lumix G Vario 12-60mm, Canon EF 24- 105mm and Canon EF 70-200mm lenses. Rae says that the event was shot in 1080p and he used 4K for the talking- head pieces, shot prior to the conference. Though he did err on the side of caution with interviewees that were not as

forthright with their answers: “We can’t afford to be shooting hours and hours of content in that quality. The client gives BCD a budget and BCD works out an allowance for lighting, staging, catering, staffing etc. Video content isn’t an exception to this – we have to work with what we’re given, while also meeting the client’s expectations.” But limitations often breed ingenuity and Rae tells us about one instance where he videoed a person over Skype. “I was in

Milton Keynes and he was in Buenos Aires. I mean, no one’s going to pay for me to fly halfway across the world to film a guy for 30 seconds. So, I recorded the interview on Skype and green screened it to look like we were connecting live in the picture. If you can find a creative wrapper, you don’t need to exhaust your budget or manpower.” This philosophy also applies to recces before going on location to shoot. Rae explains: “You can get a good idea of what the location looks like and what kit you need to bring by looking at photographs or by doing video calls with the events team who are already at the site. “I’m doing a shoot at a place called Home Grown soon, it’s a private members club in London – although I don’t really know what that means,” he laughs.

“We have to work with what we’re given, while also meeting the client’s expectations”

ABOVE Jamie Rae and Nick Hamilton at work filming a talking-head piece, which they shot in 4K instead of the usual resolution of 1080p




ABOVE The conference display Rae worked on for the soft drinks brand, which was shown to over 1500 delegates using three large screens, as well as smaller screens to display 3D content

Clients who had formerly hired BCD for event services were either unaware or less aware of the video services also offered by the company, says Rae. “It relates back towhy clients are often so sceptical about video; they don’t really see its value, which is understandable if they haven’t seen examples of it working. Our website isn’t really a platform for showcasing this either, so I’mpushing to publicise what we do through social media andmore specifically, through YouTube.” Rae notes, however, that 90%of the video content that BCD creates is for closed doors, but the other 10%that does get signed off can be used to promote what they do. “Dan and I are now also having conversations about how to develop this creative department into somethingmore than just supporting event teams. We’d love to be getting briefs specifically for video production or design,” he says. “We’re not set up within the company to be doing that sort of thing just yet, but even if it’s just one or two projects a year, we could become our own powerhouse of creativity, where we not only support events but makemoney for BCD in other ways, and I thought YouTube would be a good shop window for that,” he concludes. You can find out more by subscribing to BCD’s YouTube channel at user/ZibrantOnline

“But it’s this really nice, high-end, contemporary art deco place with leather sofas and velvet pink plush cushions, and I could see that from their website. I also called the club up to ask for room dimensions and for more images, so that I could see exactly where the windows are and where the natural light is coming from,” he explains. When it comes to lighting, Rae likes to use natural light first and foremost, with other lights to support that. “But being a freelancer, it’s just what I’m used to,” he adds. “You have to be light on your feet because you don’t have the capacity to – for example – carry four massive lights with all the cables, dimmer switches, gels etc. You have to work with what you’ve got,” he points out.

With a little help frommy friends Rae and his teamwear a lot of different hats, but it’s this ability to possess interdisciplinary skills that makes doing what they do work. “Nick’s themain editor, but sometimes I will help himout and likewise. He will jump on a camera when I need him to. We each have our core skillset, but we’re able to bounce our creativity off each other and provide support, which is not something I was used to as a freelancer” he says. “Before jumping on board at BCD, my position was filled – in part – by Nick and various other freelancers, and although what they were creating was great, it wasn’t being recognised. So, when I joined, I saw this fantastic opportunity to develop and grow the video side of the business.”

More information





THE NEWWAY TO LEARN Live online training develops your skills in a way no YouTube video ever could

L earning creative software like Adobe After Effects, Premiere Pro, DaVinci Resolve and even CGI applications like Cinema 4D is often daunting. There are many online resources that are too often out of date, unstructured and rarely taught by real-world professionals. YouTube is great for tips and tricks, but not the best place to find a solid foundation and learn a workflow properly. Imagine you went for an operation and asked the surgeon where he learnt his skills, and he told you YouTube. You would freak out! While working creatively – be it design, editing, animation, visual effects –is, admittedly, not nearly as serious as surgery, it does require a solid learning path if you really want to understand what you’re doing and succeed at it. Prerecorded tutorials can be useful, but there’s a good reason classroom training has increased over the past decade. People learn by interacting, asking questions, getting feedback, trying stuff out, making mistakes and getting one-to-one help to understand what went wrong and how to fix it. That’s how learning has always happened, so it’s no wonder we still need that experience today. Go live and online! If you are happy just to pick up a few quick tips, then traditional online learning may be the way for you. Or, if you want to be in the same room as the person training you, without any other distractions, then classroom training is going to be best for you. But for everything else, live online training can be the best of both worlds.

“People learn by interacting, asking questions, getting feedback, trying stuffout, makingmistakes and getting one-to-one help to understand”

Live online training involves a virtual classroom that is streamed live to your desktop, laptop or mobile device. You watch the lessons and follow along on your own computer. The live session allows you to interact directly with the trainer, including allowing them to see your screen, review your work and problem- solve straight away. Each lesson is broken down into bite-sized chunks with a Q&A and private one-to-ones. Since the trainers are software certified, you can be confident you are getting all the up-to-date and accurate information, and because they all work in the creative world, you’ll also receive practical tips and tricks that go beyond just using the software. You can also log-in from anywhere in the world, whether it be from your office, your favourite coffee shop or the comfort of your own home. All of the practice files – such as footage, photos, and music – are sent

ahead of time, as well as video instructions on how to set up and interact during the lessons. What’s more, your lesson is recorded, so you can review the footage back at any time. Soho Editors is now able to offer all its incredible classroom training experiences live and online, including: Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects, Photoshop, Avid Media Composer, DaVinci Resolve, Cinema 4D, Final Cut Pro and many more. Contact Soho Editors for upcoming course dates, customised bespoke courses and live, online support.

More information

ABOVE One advantage of live online training is that you can log-in from anywhere, including your favourite coffee shop



CANON ADVERTISEMENT FEATURE EveryAngle Covered This is your chance to win a superb Canon EOS C200, worth more than £6490! Whether you’re an experienced cinematographer, or looking to make the jump into professional filmmaking, the Canon EOS cinema system has got you covered – find out more and how to enter this incredible competition here

W elcome to the Canon EOS cinema system, where every angle of filmmaking is covered. Canon’s EOS cinema cameras offer everything you need for professional filmmaking, whether it’s full-scale movie production, broadcast TV, events or documentaries. And its EOS cinema bodies are backed up by a superb range of dedicated movie lenses. Make no mistake, these are the tools that will turn your ideas into reality. In this special guide to the Canon EOS cinema system, we’ll show you the cameras and lenses that will revolutionise the way you work, and find out how the world’s best cinematographers are using Canon cameras and lenses to deliver their best-ever movies and TV shows. But first, let’s discover how we got here. Building on the dominance of its professional EOS stills cameras, in 2011 Canon launched its first cinema camera, the EOS C300. Quickly embraced by professional filmmakers from all disciplines, the line has expanded to four professional models, used in TV and film production worldwide. From

the groundbreaking 5.9K full-frame C700 FF, built to deliver the ultimate quality demanded by the industry’s best cinematographers, to the C100 Mark II, which is quick, light and the camera of choice for run-and-gun documentary makers, the system has it all. Industry professionals know the value of good kit, and we’ll bring you some of their stories in our Canon ‘Every Angle Covered’ campaign. Head to and you’ll find regularly updated interviews with Canon professional cinematographers, detailing how they get the best from their gear, and what this does to turn their creative ideas into award-winning film and TV content. But that’s not all, Canon is offering you the chance to experience the EOS cinema system by winning your very own camera – an EOS C200, worth £6499.99rsp. To enter and for full terms and conditions, visit

More information









Most videographers get into shooting for the visuals, but sound is 50%of good filmmaking. Here, we look at how to get better results from your mic


W hen it comes to filmmaking, people’s thoughts naturally turn first to cameras and lenses, composition, lighting and camera movement. Audio? Well, that’s often an afterthought. However, sound is just as important to the final production as vision. If anything, bad sound is even more off-putting than mistakes made in filming. It immediately feels like you’ve lost one of your senses – breaking the viewer’s

In terms of general sound quality, you’re looking for the same things you are in the image. It’s all about signal-to-noise ratio. For example, when the exposure is too light or too dark, and needs correction after the event, it loses quality. If the sound also needs correcting, you can lose quality there, too. Here, we’ll lay out some of the quickest and most important things you can do to improve audio in your work.

connection with the story you’re trying to tell, whatever the subject. So, what do we mean by bad sound? It could be too low or too high, or both at the same time; it could be distorted; there could be distracting elements in the recording; or it could be out of sync with the footage. When it comes to narration or subjects speaking to camera, bad sound even pushes into the area of sense-checking – is the subject even making sense?




1. PICK THE RIGHT MIC FOR THE JOB Tailor your kit and your technique to the subject or situation

how a mic can be positioned, that lets you tailor your choice to the subject. There are many polar patterns, but the most common are bidirectional, omnidirectional and cardioid patterns. A typical shotgunmic has an elongated polar pattern (called supercardioid, hypercardioid or lobar depending on how narrow its shape is) and this makes its pickup highly directional, letting you pick out a single source while suppressing background noise. This means it needs to be aimed accurately, but shotgunmics are often the best option, being highly versatile and able to be mounted on the camera, handheld by you or the subject, or mounted on a boom if you have a spare pair of hands. Lavalier mics can be omnidirectional and cardioid, and both have advantages. Omni mics don’t need to be pointed at the sound source for the clearest pickup, but will pick up other sources – though their range is small, so shouldn’t do so toomuch. Rarer, directional lav mics need a little more setting up, as you want thempointing to the subject’s mouth, but should give a stronger recording when done so.

The most important thing is to start by upgrading your camera’s built-inmic to somethingmore capable: a dedicated external microphone. If using a hybrid stills and video camera, the built-in stereomic can be improved upon quickly, and though a camcorder’s shotgunmic will probably be better, it’s still nomatch in terms of quality or range of options offered by external mics. But what sort of mic do you upgrade to? There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, and what you really need is a range of devices to deal with different subjects and situations. Your kit should at least include a shotgun mic, and wired and wireless lavalier mics. With those, you’re capable of dealing with a range of subjects. They can be run through an external mixer/recorder to improve quality and allow some mixing, or straight into the camera. All mic types have their own polar or ‘pickup’ pattern – a three-dimensional area around the mic that governs where it’smost sensitive to sound, and therefore where the recording is clearest. Some are capable of switching between patterns, but most are fixed. It’s this pattern, as well as

“What you really need is a range of devices to deal with different subjects”




2. BE PREPARED Knowing the task and the potential problems will help you avoid them

A lavmic is often the best option if you have an interviewee who’s moving about more than you can cover with a shotgun mic, or further than its range will allow. It’s not always possible to hide lav mics completely, but they’re so much part of the language of TV news and documentary, in those spheres, they go unnoticed in plain sight. Movement of the mic’s lead and any friction against the subject’s clothing will be picked up on the recording, but there are ways to mitigate that. To cut down cable noise, try using clips or tape to stop its movement. You can also make a loop in the lead near the mic to lessen the effect. And if there’s noise being picked up from the subject’s clothing, try adding foam or fur separators around it to keep fabric clear. You’ll also find that, even with most lavmics’ omnidirectional pickup, sound levels can vary if the subject turns their head when talking. There’s not much you can do about this, apart from trying to coach them not to. USING YOUR LAV MIC

By talking to the client or your crew, you can plan in detail the best way to record your subject, but also how youmight be able to adapt your sound recording using different mics if something does fail. For example, having the subject hold a shotgun mic out of shot instead of using lapel mics. Or the opposite. You’ll want to eye your stock of batteries, too, especially if you’re running condenser mics or wireless mics and receivers that need to draw power, either from their own cells or those of your camera.

In the words of the British Army, ‘Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents Pretty Poor Performance’. That’s a polite version of the seven Ps. How does it apply to sound? Let’s start with kit. You wouldn’t embark on a shoot without a backup camera and lenses, so why do it with your audio kit? If a mic or recorder fails on site, it’s going to be difficult to replace. Taking spares of everything you’ll use is the best route, and mics are usually pretty light. But you need to be sure you’ll use it all – there’s no point packing extra stuff just to have it.

3. USE A DEDICATED SOUND RECORDIST Many hands make light work


One of the things that really helps in editing both sound and video is having plenty of intro and outro length in your clips. Even a few seconds can help enormously, especially if you’re fading between clips. If you’re recording a

The number of crew your project needs depends on the subject as well as the budget, but if the shoot is complex, and money allows, you’ll definitely feel the benefit a dedicated sound recordist. The main advantage of that extra pair of hands is that if you’re running the camera and directing, you can concentrate on the finer points, rather than worrying about sound. And a sound specialist provides better quality audio, leading to less time in the edit for you. Splitting the task helps to eliminate the chance of mistakes in both the sound and the video, because two dedicated people doing their jobs are more likely to spot problems – things youmay not notice until the edit, and which are then too late to fix. Typically, a sound recordist will let you operate a mic on a boom. This then means they can follow a moving subject, and you don’t need to use lapel mics, which youmay not want to be visible in the shot.

A sound recordist will also be able to mix sound on site, and even in seemingly simple set-ups, a dedicatedmix can be vital. Say, for example, you’re shooting a discussion panel or documentary with four or five people involved – you can mic them all up individually, but they may be talking at different levels of volume at different times, so you need to adjust the levels on the fly for the best quality. Imagine trying to do that when you’re also running a camera. subject who’s inexperienced, they’ll quite often charge into their delivery, leaving you with little room for manoeuvre, so make a point of starting the recording, then counting them in with “five, four…”, followed by three, two and one silently.

ABOVE With the help of a dedicated sound recordist, you can concentrate on the camera and direction





4. GET YOUR LEVELS RIGHT Better monitoring means improved sound quality

You wouldn’t fly blind on video, so why take the chance on audio? Monitoring sound is just as important as monitoring exposure. There are lots of methods of monitoring, so the most important thing is that you pay attention to one of them, whether its within the camera’s screen, on a mixer, an external recorder or even on the mic itself. Too low and the sound will need raising in volume during editing; too high and it will be distorted. The former can be fixed, though you’ll also increase any noise print in the audio, just as you would when brightening footage. This can be compensated for somewhat with noise reduction, but the ideal is to get it right first time. If the sound is too high, and clipped, it’s just like losing the highlights and shadow detail in footage, and those parts of the soundtrack will sound distorted. This distortion is difficult to remove, if not impossible. When monitoring sound, it’s best to use a mix of the visual levels offered by the camera or recorder, as well as headphones. Visual monitoring will let you set the gain accurately, showing that the level of input is high, but not clipping. But remember: you may need to adjust this on the fly if the subject increases of decreases in volume during filming. Monitoring via headphones helps spot sound that’s too low or high as well, but it’s even better for checking what you’re recording is clear and accurate. For instance, graphical levels won’t tell you if a lavalier mic is muffled, or if the subject’s breath is causing pops in the sound and its position needs to be adjusted. Headphones are also required when positioning a shotgun mic to make sure the subject is in the most sensitive zone. Good monitoring of a speaking subject also involves sense-checking on what they’re saying. Did they slip up on a word or say the wrong thing? If you’re unhappy with delivery, always insist on a retake, as it’s probably you who will need to spend time fixing it later. “Whenmonitoring sound, it’s best to use the visual levels offered by the camera, as well as headphones”

IMAGES A graphical display of sound levels will give you the most accurate control in achieving a strong signal



Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 80 Page 81 Page 82 Page 83 Page 84 Page 85 Page 86 Page 87 Page 88 Page 89 Page 90 Page 91 Page 92 Page 93 Page 94 Page 95 Page 96 Page 97 Page 98 Page 99 Page 100 Page 101 Page 102

Powered by