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How Useful Are Mini Tripods?

How Useful Are Mini Tripods?

Posted by Andi Lucas on 28th Nov 2017

Everyone has seen a little compact tripod. Some have bendy-legs, some rigid, some with ball heads, and most are about 5" tall.  Mini mounts like those shown here are so ubiquitous that they're often thrown in for free when you buy a camera.  The question is: how useful are they, really?               How often do you see someone on vacation take a tiny tripod out and get a shot with one?  And have you EVER seen a professional photographer with one of these types of mounts in their kit?  As a shooter who constantly works out in the field with numerous other experienced photographers and videographers on challenging productions, I propose that this style of mount are essentially useless.First off, they carry very little weight, so are really only good for smart phones or point-and-shoot cameras.  They could certainly never carry the weight of a DSLR.  Second, there's never a good place to … read more
Mounting Lights When Filming Underwater Sequences

Mounting Lights When Filming Underwater Sequences

Posted by Andi Lucas on 11th Oct 2017

Dinkum Systems Founder and Emmy award-winning cinematographer John Mans reports about filming underwater sequences for Travel Channel:For me, the best assignments are shooting at sea or underwater.  Recently, Travel Channel sent me to the Yucatan to shoot stories for one of my favorite series, "Top Secret Swimming Holes". On a recent job, I shot with my Canon 5D inside an Ikelite underwater housing, and used Light and Motion's Sola underwater light.     When filming underwater - especially in a cave - there's often no option to ascend and give directions to the talent because you risk crashing into a stalactite or not finding an air pocket in which to discuss your plans. Shooting the cave scenes, I needed all my lighting options available, so instead of locking my lights onto extension arms (which are generally used in deep open ocean), I used Dinkum Systems Clamp-to-Clamp arm.          With one clamp attached to the underwate … read more

Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival

Posted by Andi Lucas on 26th Sep 2017

Dinkum Systems Founder and Emmy award-winning cinematographer John Mans reports:My favorite film festival gears up this week! The Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival is a bi-annual showcase of nature documentaries, and a gathering of cinema's most fascinating hard-core adventurers. While the remote location at the base of the Teton Mountains, Wyoming during the beginning of Fall make it a spectacular place to visit, it's the attendees that make the festival exceptional. From the farthest corners of Earth, filmmakers that embody the "Walter Mitty" persona of adventure filmmaking gather, and the bar banter between colleagues who have formed bonds during shoots in the wildest places is beyond belief. These are the real swashbuckling explorers people imagine when they think of classic National Geographic exploration and cinematography. Bob Poole and Dinkum Systems founder John Mans capturing the ferocity of a Saharan sandstorm on location for National Geog … read more
Behind-The-Scenes w/ Sound Mixer James Tobin

Behind-The-Scenes w/ Sound Mixer James Tobin

Posted by John Mans & James Tobin on 27th Jul 2017

Dinkum Systems Founder and Emmy award-winning cinematographer John Mans reports from the field:I work regularly with my audio buddy James Tobin in very remote places, usually in Alaska.James is a super solid sound mixer who always seems to have the perfect gear for any situation.  Whether it's a multi tool, a white balance card, or any type of aviation plug, it seems like anything we need will always be instantly available with James.One of those go-to pieces of equipment is the Dinkum Systems FlexiMount.  Using our clamping mount in combination with other trusted gear in his kit, James can get crazy distances in challenging places like airports, cruise ships, fishing boats, and across distant, deep and difficult terrain.    James's secrets:"For my diversity wireless distribution system I own two FlexiMount's, and have added a few Dinkum Systems Additional Links to extend the reach and flexibility of the arms. The Dinkum Systems mo … read more
Sea Kayaking in the Bahamas

Sea Kayaking in the Bahamas

Posted by Andi Lucas on 27th Jun 2017

Dinkum Systems Founder and Emmy award-winning cinematographer John Mans reports from the field:On location in the Bahamas shooting for Travel Channel we needed to cover a segment which included our cast paddling a sea kayak from one cove to the next.Time was short, as always, and the main coverage was to be shot by a drone and land-based long lens.  Although I brought my whole rigging kit and was ready to place cameras off to the side with Matthews MICROGrip arms and clamps, the director said there wasn't enough time AND wanted clean shots from the drone about half way through the paddlers little expedition.  Adding to those challenges, the sea kayaks were smooth, wide, and had few penetrations on which to tighten or fasten anything.Solution: Dinkum Systems ActionPod PROs.      The ActionPod PROs, with their narrow, long jaws, are ideal to clamp onto the carry-handles.  Nothing could be quicker.   Additionally, the direct … read more