The guys over at AndyCine sent us a low profile hot shoe mount which we think is worth shouting about!
Today we are going to talk about its features, the many different ways you can use it, and why we like it so much!
Welcome to The Film Look.
It doesn’t look like much, but it packs a punch. We were sceptical about making a review for a product so small and basic, but MAN we were surprised when we started using it!
It has 360 degree rotation and 176 degrees of tilt. This is great if you need to flip the monitor for self-shooting, as well as positioning a monitor when shooting at some extreme angles.
It’s made entirely out of aluminium (or aluminum), which makes a great change compared to other budget hot shoe mounting systems.
We’ve had a bunch of mounts in the past, and the ones that feature some plastic parts usually break before you can get them tight enough.
It has a ¼ 20 screw on the top to attach monitors, lights, and other bits, and features a cold shoe attachment at the bottom for attaching to cameras as well as a ¼ 20 thread so you can attach it to things like light stands.
One thing that this hot shoe mount DOESN’T have is the ability to hand tighten.
Instead, it comes with a small allen key to adjust the tension on the rotation and tilt, so you can get it rock solid or loosen it off if you want some play to it.
What makes this better than other methods, in my opinion, is you can find that sweet spot where it will hold in place, but you can also adjust it without having to loosen it off completely. It makes setting up the shot fast and efficient, perfect for run and gun shooting.
You will need to carry an allen key around with you if you need to tighten it up on location, but I don’t consider it a big issue considering the advantages of this feature.
The hot shoe mount comes with a bunch of extras.
You get a handy padded tool case as well as a bunch of screw bits and a flat-profile wrench ...which even opens beer bottles.
I also love the size and weight of this mount. It weighs only 45g and its dimensions are 4.5cm by 3.5cm by 3cm. So basically, it’s tiny and really light!
We have used things like magic arms in the past to mount camera monitors to rigs before, and although they provide a lot of flexibility, they can be difficult to re-position and keep tight (at least the budget ones we’ve used).
The best mounting option we’ve seen for run and gun filmmaking has been the articulating arm you see on monitors like the SmallHD Focus and AndyCine A6, with its swivel-tilt feature/
But this hot shoe mount seems like the better option considering you can rotate and tilt.
So this mount is light, small, strong, and flexible, but the best thing about it is when you start to connect to it other products.
First thing we tried was connecting it between our shoulder rig and a magic arm. Like I’ve mentioned earlier, repositioning a magic arm can be annoying as you have to slacken it off, adjust it, try to hold it in place, then tighten it up again.
This is even more difficult if you are trying to adjust it while it's on your shoulder as you really need two hands to get it positioned properly.
By adding the hot shoe mount onto the magic arm, it means you can easily re-position the monitor with one hand without assistance from someone else.
The next thing we tried was attaching it to a crab clamp. The clamp we have already includes a ballhead arm which gives you a lot of flexibility, but it's another mount which is either locked or unlocked. By adding the hot shoe mount, it means you can make slight adjustments without having to reset the lock.
We will be reviewing this crab clamp by SmallRig in the next coming weeks. If you want to see all the ways you can use this thing to help you make films, get subscribed!
You might use this one - you might not - but, if you have a video mic on top of the camera, the hot shoe mount will give you the ability to offset the direction of the microphone. This could be handy if you are framing someone out of centre but you want to keep the microphone directed towards them.
In all honesty, if you are recording sound during an interview, placing the microphone on the camera is usually a bad idea. We have a video talking about that. There is a card in the corner and a link in the description. But, in a pinch, you may find this technique useful.
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