Lightweight Film Camera for general use (or… new toys!!!!)

We’re about to leave for a field trip annex teambuilding annex day-away-from-the-computer-screens to Stonehengethe one with the large rocks mounted somewhere between 2600 and 1600BC, should there be any doubt – and as we are already dragging along quite a few DSLR’s, some laptops, a bag with cookies and walking shoes, but do want to shoot video, we had to find a “light weight” solution that for a not too large amount of money will get us good image quality and not too much backache when dragged carried around without any inconvenience in it’s brand new LowePro bag.The solution we chose for:

Digital Camera

A Sony HDV camera, the HVR-A1E which uses DigitalMaster film for HDto store the footage. With it’s 760 grams this digital camera recorder is one that’s easy to handle & hold steady, without having to grow extra arm muscles.

Lighting your Subject (a bit extra)

If you want your object to stand out of the background, or it’s just plain dark, an external extra light attached to your camera is pretty handy.We went with a Paglight C6 kit. It’s battery is probably the most heavy item in our whole setup – besides the tripod – but gives your whole appearance a nice futuristic battle-gear look and is definitely worth to take along, especially if you can get someone else to carry it.*waves at Scott*

(As we have only one mount available on the camera for now, it’s either light or sound fixed to the camera, and we like sound so…. *waves at Scott again*)

Sound & Recording without being limited by cables

With the Sony HVR-A1E comes a microphone with wind screen and the XLRadaptor to mount it to the camera. In some cases though, you want to be more mobile, catch a further away sound, go for the ambient sounds or even interview someone (shot from far).An excellent solution for this is the wireless Sennheiser W112-p G2 set which contains a compact receiver, bodypack transmiter, clip-on microphone, the needed cables and a flashmount adaptor.You’re free now!

(Or at least within the limits of the signal. Transmission range depends to a large extent on location and can vary from about 10 m to about 150 m. There should be a free line of sight between transmitting and receiving antennas.)

Extra Battery /Batteries

Keeping one or a few extra batteries at hand is never a unneeded luxury.All those who have already missed that “perfect shot” or that one “OMG!!!” occasion because they ran out of power, will definitely agree with me.So, the battery delivered with the Sony digicam was quickly replaced by one that lasts 6 hours instead of just 1, and the 1h battery makes a great “spare one”.

If you own a car, a car charger is certainly something you want to look into.(And when travelling to a foreign country, make sure you either take enough adaptors for the power cords, or, take one and a four-way-adaptor with you.)


We haz camera tools!At your discretion.We went with a mid-range Velbon, which is heavy enough to hold the camera with all attachments and the 6 hour battery steady, but is still light enough to carry arround attached to the LowePro backpack.

Whatever tripod you purchase, make sure it allows for a “shoe” to be quickly attached and detached from it, as there is nothing so annoying as having to screw your camera on the tripod each and every time you want to get help from some artificial legs!!! The little shoe – often included, and if not, not that expensive and will save you from lots of frustration and the thread wire of your camera wearing down.

**It seems most of the batteries have charged by the time we’ve unpacked and assembled everything and gave each and every piece of equipment it’s very own place in the LowePro backpack – Ordung musst sein! – and the time it took me to write this.So err…I’m sure you will all understand, we have some toys to go play with? 😉 **