Powering the Canon EOS-M with Anton-Bauer Gold Mount Batteries

EDIT: When this was written in early 2015, Canon made very little effort to publicize their AC adapter for this camera; it is almost as obscure as the access point (the rubber grip on the battery door simply flips open to reveal an access hole for the adapter plug). Shortly after posting this article, a commenter admonished this hack and pointed me towards the correct adapter – the Canon ACK-E12. In the meantime, the market has become flooded with endless Chinese ripoffs of the ACK-E12 for $11-15, which do the job…

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Why I don’t use Magic Lantern

The internet seems chock full of information about the wonders of Magic Lantern and how it can turn your Canon DSLR into a lean and mean video production machine – even though the creators themselves suggest that ML still remains somewhat of an experiment more than a cure-all. Don’t get me wrong – Magic Lantern is quite the achievement, and – for the most part – does what it claims, and very well at that. The developers deserve every bit of praise there is for spending countless hours analyzing the…

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Graduated ND filters for bright skies

Ed. note: This was published in 2013 when the DSLR craze was in full force and sensors with excellent dynamic range weren’t as common as they are now.  If you’ve ever shot a video with a bright sky in the top of your shot and dark foliage below, you’ve undoubtedly experienced the problems of exposing an image for such a situation – and it usually winds up with your clouds blown out to bright white in order not to underexpose the rest. Since it is difficult – and often impossible…

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The importance of framing: Jib shots

FreddieW on YouTube once remarked that the camera you use is not as important as how you use it. Being a film-look perfectionist, I can come up with a few hundred reasons why that is not always the case. Nevertheless, provided one has the talent for it, this statement is – in essence – true. A perfect example can be seen in a recent test video I shot when I was checking the usability of the second-hand 8′ jib crane seen here: Not in the mood to smash my 5D…

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Flat is better: Setting up for film look

Don’t let the simple look of this video fool you – it is one of the most valuable you’ll ever see: I’ve covered this subject before for ENG cameras – such as the JVC GY-HD110 – but it bears repeating for DSLRs: Getting the film look is not just 24P or the way you frame your shots. Out of the box, just about any ENG or prosumer camera will be set with contrasts and saturations set far too aggressively. Case in point, the video I shot for the HD110 settings:…

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The latest phenomenon in the 5-minutes-of-fame department…

…are viral YouTube videos. Frankly, I believe the viral video of three years ago is no longer the viral video of today. There was a time when a YouTube video’s success was based entirely on YouTube’s user base cross-promoting the video via digital word-of-mouth – often so due to impressive content, such as Leokimvideo’s macabre parody of Thomas & Friends: “Mad Bomber” – currently at 3 million views (not including an older upload, since deleted). That is not to say community-discovered videos no longer go viral, but there has been…

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Internet promotion of upcoming entertainment – the best way to keep your audience engaged?

Last week, I was rather critical in regards to the use of internet-based marketing as it is used as a constant method of contact. However, as a promotion source, the internet is a remarkably excellent medium to keep viewers/purchasers of film and television content engaged: The resolution to a season cliffhanger or upcoming new episode can be promoted through internet teasers and behind-the-scenes clips; media that would not otherwise be as cost-effective to air through a show’s syndication channels (assuming the show is not network-based), and would not reach as…

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Customer relations in film and media: How close is too close?

Given the extremely direct, two-way communication with customers afforded to companies through e-marketing, is it conceivable that this personalized service can become an out-of-control monster, taxing the resources of a firm’s public relations department? It is indeed possible, particularly in regards to film* and television production companies, both of which receive immense public attention as it is. Granted, outside of the inner discussions of these firms (and perhaps a few highly publicized disasters), few will admit to any such failure, but a simple perusal of some existing campaigns serve as…

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