As both a photographer / filmmaker specializing in nature programming, having one system that can do both high quality stills and HD video would be ideal. And we’re getting close.

I’ve been producing web films with the Canon 7D for some time and would like to share with you my experiences dealing with some of the benefits and limitations of shooting with a DSLR.

In this segment I will show you some of the modification I’ve made on my rig to make it easier to work with in the field.

On the first few projects I shot with the 7D I used a Zoom H4n digital audio recorder to capture audio. But I found this very awkward to work with as a one man crew. So after some research I decided to try the BeachTek DXA-SLR.

This BeachTek has AGC disable which is critical with this camera and many other DSLRs out there. Even if I could control the audio levels in the camera I would still use a mixer like this.

So this is my setup at present:
Zacuto viewfinder
Zacuto Gorilla Plate
Reposition with custom plate
BeachTek DXA-SLR.
AT875R Short Shotgun with lightwave shock mount (which is no longer available)
Sony URX series Diversity wireless mic mounted on side of viewfinder
Custom cables with right angle XLRs for shotgun and wireless

3/2015 update - For the last year or so I have been shooting with a Canon C100. I love the professional features of this camera and now the C100 mark ll addressed many of the issues of the C100. I do miss being able to use one camera system for both still and video work and the 7D provided excellent images. I still use the 7D as my B-camera.

Thanks for watching

Produced by Jim Karnik Film -
Camera - Ryon Lee Media -

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