Four years have passed since our last short film…
And in that four years, as you might imagine, so the equipment available to us has shifted considerably!
Recent to the arsenal is the Sony FX3, a full-frame cinema camera. Paired with a Sigma ART 24-70mm f2.8 lens, the picture is outstanding. We’ve already rigged it out with an inexpensive cage, top handle and power supply.
The old Zoom H5n was a reliable device and I particularly liked the mid-side shotgun mic we had paired with it, but it had its limitations. We now have two 32-bit float recorders available to us, the Zoom F3 and Zoom F6. Both allow us to record without clipping, ever, and the F6 has 6 XLR inputs while the F3 has two. The F6 has a dedicated timecode jack and both support timecode via Bluetooth.
Lots of changes here, too. We now have three channels of wireless audio available using Sennheiser’s XSW-D system: two transmitters with 3.5mm input and one with an XLR input. We have two Sennheiser lav mics and a Rode VideoMic NTG shotgun that can be used with the 3.5mm transmitters and a Rode NTG4+ that can be used with the XLR transmitter. Either of the shotgun mics can be mounted to one of our two boom poles.
Something I have wanted to learn and work with for a long time is timecode. As mentioned before, the Zoom field recorders can accept timecode via Bluetooth. An Atomos UltraSync BLUE will supply the timecode to the recorders while an UltraSync ONE will link to the BLUE and provide a timecode to the Sony FX3. The BLUE will also connect to an iPad allowing the timecode to show on the slate app we will use.
There are three new additions to our lighting possibilities. First, we have a pair of GVM tube lights that can supply different color temperatures for white light but also can be set to RGB colors or one of 8 effects.
Similarly, we have a set of four PavoBulb 10C lights that do white, RGB color and 14 different effects. These are bulbs that can replace a light bulb in a lamp for indoor scenes or they can be used anywhere else to supplement lighting.
Finally, we have three Molus X100 units from Zhiyun. These only cover the white light spectrum, but at 100 watts are super bright. They can be used directly as a hard light or diffused with one of several add-ons. These will be our main lighting units, along with the two LED panels from GVM that we have had for years.
And now on to our next project…
With improvements in the camera, sounds and lighting, we should be able to turn out a high-quality production. Of course we still need a story, script and all the rest, but our entering the 48 Hour Film Project in Cincinnati will take care of that!