I have always wanted to up my production value on my video shoots by getting a follow focus but haven’t been able to afford one. By researching multiple sites (www.cheesycam.com) on these follow focus units I have found that Gini on ebay makes a very reasonably priced one. It’s a single rod design and now has a reversible gear. In order for a follow focus to work you need 15mm rods but to get those under your dslr camera you need some sort of base unit with rod support. I chose Cinevate’s Simplis unit with rod support. They make the best quality products for filmmakers which will definitely last longer than other brands. Plus I personally like the look of all black accessories instead of splashes of color which could draw more attention to yourself when shooting at an event. I made a top handle based off of Caleb Pike’s video and design with a quick release plate, cinevate handle, and a friction arm I bought a long time ago.
And once I had my cinevate mattebox delivered I actually decided I needed my follow focus to work so I took the 15mm rods off the cinevate mattebox and used them with my Medusa base plate with rod support. This allowed me to use the lens gears I had purchased from Cinevate and my new follow focus while I waited for my shipment of the Cinevate Simplis unit. Here are some more pics of my temporary setup with my Zoom H1 audio recorder attached.
Update: With the friction arm you can’t have a battery grip and a Cinevate grip. I’m not sure about other grips/handles but the 11″ friction arm that I have won’t stretch over the camera with a battery grip. Just a small side note.
This new toy I purchases on eBay is pretty sweet when it comes to Macro shooting on a dslr. It works with both photo and video mode on my Canon T2i. It’s called a Macro Bellows and this one is compatible with an EOS adapter but you can easily buy one for Nikons or any other brand camera. I found it works great with the 18-55mm kit lens the T2i came with. In the photos I used an FD to EOS adapter so I could use my old school Canon lenses. The one pictured is a Vivitar 135mm which works great. It let’s me get the macro shots without being right on top of the subject. And when I say right on top I mean with the lens almost touching the subject as with the kit lens. This is another perfect example of my favorite website helping me find really cool and functional gear at a very cheap price. Go to cheesycam