GEAR | DRONE ALTERNAT I VES
BUGGIES As the regulatory environment around drones tightened up, it became clear that another remote control vehicle might be a less paperwork-entangled alternative. Rolling along the ground, systems like Motion Impossible’s Agito can be used in a much wider variety of circumstances, particularly in cities where permissions for drone work can be very difficult to get. That doesn’t mean that systems like Agito are limited to ground-level shots; with mechanical isolation and automatic stabilisation, risers and towers can bring the camera away from the ground, and there’s compatibility with various gimbals.
“Fisher’s hydraulic lifts emit, at best, a vanishingly quiet susurration”
the most engaging experience is probably not riding high into the air, so much as gliding inches above the ground as if sliding one ice cube noiselessly across another. The company has a full product portfolio, including the 43ft Hydrascope crane. Still, given the obsession with retro that’s evidenced by the popularity of anamorphic lenses and – gasp – film, there’s something about crew members gliding through the air that recalls a slightly Technicolor-tinted memory of Hollywood’s golden age. Give or take a Steadicam operator strolling through the scene, then stepping aboard a Titan for a ride, we can achieve similar things with lots of the other tools we’ve discussed, but it’s hard to claim it’s as much fun.
finish as everything else with a Fisher logo, can reach up to 21ft in three-foot increments. Perhaps the most spectacular thing about Fisher’s work, though, is the sheer silence: even the hydraulic lifts on the company’s dollies emit, at best, a vanishingly quiet susurration of rushing fluid. Drones make more noise than that while changing the batteries, although when discussing on-dolly jibs, we’re moving away from the sort of work for which a drone would be the obvious choice. Equally, the one thing a helicopter can do that a drone can’t is take passengers (though pilots would generally rather not, for reasons of sheer performance). As such, let’s end on a reference to a classic of film production engineering that soldiers on in the modern era as not only a tool, but also an experience. A ride on a Chapman/Leonard Apollo, Nova or Titan crane should be on the bucket list of anyone who’s ever been on a film set. Perhaps surprisingly,
IMAGES The Chapman/ Leonard Titan crane (top); level horizons are no problem for
industry stalwarts Egripment (right)
Where will your kit go next? Inspire others, earn some extra cash and make a difference. Sell your used kit and let someone else love it as much as you have. Make good use of your used gear. Sell yours today at mpb.com/sell THERE’S NEVER BEEN A BETTER TIME TO MAKE GOOD USE
40 DEF I N I T ION | JULY 202 1
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