1. We set ourselves a new goal to build a smooth, lightweight cable cam that is small enough to fit in your day pack and able to accomodate a GoPro HERO or similar action camera.

    Here's a little more how-to instruction - maiamedia.co.uk/2012/03/how-to-gopro-diy-cable-cam/

    We made a bigger version 12 months ago. You can watch the video too - vimeo.com/19892162

    Follow us at facebook.com/maiamedia

    And on twitter at twitter.com/maiamedia

    Music is You by Gold Panda

    # vimeo.com/38849420 Uploaded 116K Plays 47 Comments
  2. A wooden shoulder rig for a DSLR videographer. Two handlebars, one can change the focus.

    For more info please go here:
    athan.se/diy-shoulder-rig/

    Sample video: vimeo.com/11535111

    UPDATE 2011/06/19
    Have replaced the hose clamp for a fixed metal ring that slides in over the lens when zoomed in, then matches focus ring perfectly when pushed toward it. A big time saver! Check it out on my website!

    # vimeo.com/11435910 Uploaded 251K Plays 302 Comments
  3. Want more tutorials like this? mediahalo.com/articles/?vim

    Want to see more about me, my equipment, samples, etc...?
    mediahalo.com/p/dlevine/?vim

    You can also make a profile like that for free (you're welcome!)

    My Amazon Filmmaking recommended buy list:
    amazon.com/registry/wishlist/1ZETVDLH7JMLA/?_encoding=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&filter=all&layout=standard&linkCode=ur2&reveal=unpurchased&sort=priority&tag=yviewnow-20&x=10&y=9

    As much as a hate talking heads, here's mine, talking about the basics of video codecs.

    One of the longer Tutorials yet could be far longer with all the details of codecs, but hopefully this is a good starting point which will answer some basic questions i typically hear people ask about codecs.

    Here's the long written version:

    What are codecs? Codecs refer to how a video is compressed, and there are two types of codecs: Lossy, and Lossless. First off, Lossless codecs are codecs which don't degrade the image at all. We typically refer to them as uncompressed and/or raw, uncompressed has no compression at all and has huge file sizes. RAW on the other hand can be compressed or uncompressed, to put it very roughly and simply; RAW packages the video and allows for some compression, but many of those as well are considered lossless, even if it does degrade the image it's considered very nearly imperceptible. So if you're using anything labeled uncompressed or RAW, you're getting the good stuff.

    Now for the lossy guys, which are the bulk of this quick tip. To understand lossy codecs, let's go through thier basic settings:

    Bitrates are the central control, they are referred to in numbers: lower numbers means higher compression which leads to smaller file sizes and worse quality, and higher numbers mean less compression for better quality with larger file sizes. this is the same for any codec.

    But here's the trick: a bitrate of say 10 for one codec can be entirely different for another codec, which is what we called the codec's efficiency. another thing to keep in mind, is what resolution you're using, because a bitrate of say 2 might be good for standard definition video with a certain codec, but if you keep that bitrate and up the resolution, you'll get terrible results. When you're adding pixels, you need to add more data to maintain quality. Presets in your edit system will give you a very good idea of what settings are good for each codec, i usually give it a 20% or so bump in bitrate for good measure on top of whatever the preset has.

    The biggest buzz word in codec world today is h.264, which is a great efficient codec, but it's also a shape shifter, because you also know it by several other names. avc intra, mpeg4 avccam, and probably a few others.

    All of these are actually mpeg-4 level 10, and the reason for all this name changing is that mpeg codecs are customizable and tuneable, so each name means a company has made their own recipe. And just as it is with food, each recipe can either be delicious, or just mildly satisfying. Suffice it to say you don't need to mess with the depths of settings to get a good image, just stick with the basics and try different bit rates to see what's good for you.

    And just to name a few other codecs, there is the older but still great mpeg-2, which has been the codec you have watched for years on every single dvd you've ever owned. It has also shape shifted into HDV, which consequently is not seen much anymore because it's a tape based codec. Then we have panasonic's own dvcpro codec, which is great, very good in editing, at the expense of fairly high recording bit rates.

    Then there's Apple's prores which is also very high in bitrate but that also means its darn close to being lossless even though it's a lossy codec. Which codec you use depends on what you're using it for, and if that's websites, you'll mostly be using h.264. if DVD delivery, mpeg2, if bluray, likely h.264 again. Codecs like mpeg2 and h.264 can be acquisition(capture) formats, and delivery formats, and what's in the middle that's missing? Editing! Yes, although you can do it, it's not ideal to edit h.264, mpeg2, or any other Long GOP codec, because a GOP(group of pictures) means that the codec uses key frames to then base its compression for the next Group of Pictures. So when you cut your video, your cutting that series apart, and making the computer do more work. It also makes grading(coloring) your video more limited. I'll mention though that there are Non GOP versions of h.264 such as AVC-Intra, which are much better for editing.

    Now a word on file extensions, such as .wmv, .mpg, .mp4. These are called containers, and they contain codecs, and the only thing you need to understand about these are that there are containers which are single codec containers, which means they only represent one codec, and then there are containers which can contain any number of different codecs, just not at the same time.

    # vimeo.com/20273124 Uploaded 107K Plays 24 Comments
  4. A collection of "back to the camera" shots. The character stands center frame (most of the time), looking out at some epic landscape.

    MUSIC: "God Moving Over the Face of the Waters" by Moby
    Buy from Amazon: amzn.to/Uhdreb

    MOVIES:

    00:00 - The Aviator
    00:05 - The Legend of 1900
    00:07 - Synecdoche, NY
    00:10 - The Shining
    00:12 - Beyond the Black Rainbow
    00:15 - Once Upon a Time in Anatolia
    00:17 - Baraka
    00:19 - Walk the Line
    00:21 - Runaways
    00:22 - The Fifth Element
    00:23 - Dark City
    00:24 - Hamlet
    00:25 - Network
    00:27 - Black Swan
    00:29 - Lenny
    00:30 - Denis Leary: No Cure for Cancer
    00:31 - Bronson
    00:32 - Fantasia
    00:34 - Southland Tales
    00:35 - The Iron Lady
    00:36 - Hugo
    00:38 - The Searchers
    00:41 - Prometheus
    00:43 - Event Horizon
    00:46 - The Fifth Element
    00:48 - Dr. Who S01E02
    00:50 - Sunshine
    00:53 - Tron Legacy
    00:55 - Stargate
    00:57 - Starman
    01:00 - Kundun
    01:02 - Enter the Void
    01:05 - Inglorious Basterds
    01:07 - Watchmen
    01:09 - Sin City
    01:12 - Gangster No. 1
    01:14 - LA Confidential
    01:16 - Christine
    01:19 - Hero
    01:21 - House of Flying Daggers
    01:24 - Akira Kurosawa's Dreams
    01:26 - Predators
    01:29 - Alexander
    01:31 - Kingdom of Heaven
    01:33 - There Will Be Blood
    01:35 - The Cell
    01:38 - Valhalla Rising
    01:41 - Snow White and the Huntsman
    01:43 - Immortals
    01:45 - Matrix Reloaded
    01:47 - John Carter
    01:50 - Troy
    01:52 - Thor
    01:55 - Matrix Revolutions
    01:59 - The Abyss
    02:04 - Event Horizon
    02:09 - Watchmen
    02:14 - Another Earth
    02:18 - Take Shelter
    02:23 - Final Fantasy: Spirits Within
    02:28 - Constantine
    02:33 - War of the Worlds
    02:42 - Man of Steel
    02:47 - Hero
    02:49 - 300
    02:52 - Take Shelter
    02:56 - Beasts of the Southern Wild
    02:59 - Joe Versus the Volcano
    03:01 - The Proposition
    03:04 - Interview with the Vampire
    03:06 - Snow White and the Huntsman
    03:08 - Heat
    03:11 - Inception
    03:13 - Star Trek Generations
    03:15 - Minority Report
    03:18 - Skyline
    03:20 - Close Encounters of the Third Kind
    03:22 - X-Men: First Class
    03:25 - Knowing
    03:27 - The Day The Earth Stood Still
    03:30 - Hamlet
    03:32 - Valhalla Rising
    03:34 - Jericho S01E01
    03:37 - The Divide
    03:39 - Dark City
    03:42 - The Day The Earth Stood Still
    03:44 - Mission to Mars
    03:46 - Life of Pi
    03:49 - The Fountain
    03:53 - Fight Club
    03:58 - Pan's Labyrinth
    04:03 - The Empire Strikes Back
    04:08 - Gone With the Wind
    04:17 - What Dreams May Come

    # vimeo.com/63718300 Uploaded 577K Plays 152 Comments

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François Nicod

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