Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Please checkout this link to Democracy Now and listen to a crystal clear explanation of what caused the failure at the Macondo Well, Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Click HERE

Monday, April 18, 2011

Deepwater Rising Producer Mike deGruy on

The first airing of material from our 2 months of shooting the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf can now be seen on CNN's website . Our Producer Mike deGruy was Piers guest.
Click on the video below to watch!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

SONY F3 vs PANASONIC AF100-Indie Filmmakers challenged by "DSLR KILLER" Market

Excerpt from "Independent"magazine, keeping the AIVF alive.

I'm primarily an independent filmmaker who uses whatever tools can do the job both effectively and economically to keep up with the industries attitude of do it quick and do it for less, a spiraling virus that seems to be the norm these days. With the advent of the HDSLR over 2 years ago we have been able to produce high quality films for a ridiculously lower cost than conventional film, make a profit once again and GREENER to boot! What an incredible revolution but oh yeah there's that rolling shutter thingy, and those other artifacts like rolling shutter, moire, aliasing and oh yeah the main one's by CANON TURN OFF AFTER 12 MINUTES ! What the !!%^&#$@#!...
So this year  we get the new "HDSLR KILLERs" or "HDSLR Compliments"which are primarily 35mm video cameras !! Panacea, hmmm, no, I don't quite think so. Let me now explain the new complexity of problems associated with yet another new entry of new technology into the domain or should I say limbo zone for the aspiring INDIE to FEATURE film technologist, producer , DP etc... By the way this article will not discuss sensor size, codec choice, compression , quality of the image, etc... It simply addresses the VOID created by this next gen of 35mm based video cameras.

It seems that these "DSLR KILLERs" get released without the most BASIC feature of all DSLRs the ability to be compatible with your investment in GLASS, that's right your incredible collection of either Canon and Nikon lenses!  It's a disease spreading like wildfire as the LARGEST camera manufacturers scramble to get products to market that claim to fix all the issues with DSLRs. Is this really both an effective and budget minded technology to put the plethora of DSLRs spilling into the marketplace back into stills only! Given Round 1 & now Round 2 of the offerings I would have to say NO. Not yet...

OK big corps if you want to call yourself DSLR Slayers, Killers etc. then YOU sure as heck better  support Canon and Nikon glass, right? Can these indie filmmakers afford PL lenses? Zeiss lenses? Lets be fair here Panasonic and Sony. Oh but wait a minute whats that booth way in the back tucked away at NAB...your product does what for the AF100, for the F3 ??

3rd Party "Fix it all" Conundrum
Leave it to the ingenuity of the "little guy" to see from the smallest feature gaps to the most needed in a product! Unlike a deer in the headlights of technology, innovation is still alive and well in America too! There are many great 3rd party manufacturers out there & they are the true backbone of the industry but are they now responsible for filling the gap in BASIC FUNCTIONALITY? Are the giants of the industry now relying upon 3rd party product for bare essential primary compatibility and functionality for their products? Did they really release DSLR Killers without ZOOM Lenses?? Without the ability to use the most prevalent glass out there in the DSLR world?
Apparently so on all counts...

Lets look at 2 of these CRITICAL CRUCIAL 3rd Party Products

The "BIRGER ULTIMATUM" No it's not a new Matt Damon film!
EF LENSES for the Panasonic AF100
700.00 solution, somewhat palatable

Panasonic AF100 potential customers are lining up at Birger Engineering's door waiting for the "Holy Grail," an adapter that allows CANON EF lenses that do not require one to set aperture first on a DSLR body & then removing said lens & mounting on the AF100. It's ELECTRONIC SMART & reportedly emulates the binary lingo properly to control the EF lens! It even has REMOTE CONTROL for IRIS & FOCUS! Is it shipping? Sadly no, it's on announced delay #2
Oh and one other thing why do I still see MOIRE, that annoying vibrating artifact same as DSLRs coming out of this camera!?

The "Specialty Optics solution"" from ABELCINE
CANON & NIKON Lenses on the Sony F3

5800.00 OUCH! um DOUBLE maybe even triple OUCH

So ABELCINE was showing off the Specialty Optics HDx35 adapter which lets you use your EF lenses and hey it's only 5800.00!! It also knocks down 2 1/2 f-stops...I think someone just let the air out of my tires on that one, 5800.00 price point? Did I tell you guys about the land I have for sale in Florida...

OK what about that rocker on the body, for ZOOM? Sadly not yet functional, the Sony PMW-F3 has NO power Zoom lenses that are compatible with it, just PRIMES or again PL lenses. However it does have a Rocker for future power Zooms. Hey it also has an option for dual HD/SDI RAW 4:4:4 output, watch out ALEXA! The Sony is priced considerably higher so you are committing to the next bigger tier of the camera world. It makes sense for those with BIG bank accounts to actually down size but it's a mega leap from the DSLR world to step into those F3 shoes.

Correct me if I'm wrong here. These cameras, well it's like buying a car that only goes 25mph but the next revision will get you going faster, maybe. Uh yeah maybe faster so you can actually use the freeway! And oh yeah if you get the parts from that other company in Alabama...

Just a bit frustrating, a video/DSLR featured camera with only primes, no direct support for Canon or Nikon lenses who are the primary DSLR market share mfrs. If your claim is to compete with DSLR's then quite frankly I have to give you guys a "D" for not supporting the marketplace you are claiming to overthrow and for confusing the market place with cameras that have to rely on 3rd party product for PRIMARY FUNCTIONALITY.

But if you have to have one now I would settle for the AF100 because for the cost it's far less to shell out than the F3. Workarounds are numerous, Still has a little Rolling Shutter. Still has Moire/aliasing but numerous plug-ins and post can fix those maladies. Lots of adapters RAINBOWBRIDGE, NOVAFLEX to go from EF to MFT; 4/3, under 60.00, Can focus to infinity but IRIS is another story as we talked about, set on DSLR then transfer to AF100.

This is the route I will have to go to now, it's affordable and I need a fix for the 12 minute reset record syndrome.
My wish list ...
How about a version of the Sony F3 with an EF/PL interchangeable mount, fully functional with all features of the EF lens minus the Aperture click and instead a smooth transition true CINE LENS quality and a Long and Wide Zoom!  Or the Panasonic AF100 same features as above plus an APS-C or SUPER 35 sensor. Oh yeah and how about a price tag of 5995.00 MSRP for either one! Yeah yeah, I know I'm dreamin' here...

Your comments are welcome as I know there will be many! SONY and PANASONIC Camps fire away!

All geared up and feeling Techie...
Harry R.