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GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 12:50 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Thought it might be interesting to hear what gear people believe they need and what would be categorized as, uhhh... superfluous. (i.e., for the pro, semi-pro, and serious hobbyist)

here's my list of the essentials (excluding stuff like lens cleaner and bags and other inespensive, small, essentials):

1. camera body (obviously)

2. glass (selection and variety varies according to what you're shooting, e.g., glamour, landscape, street, other.)

3. light meter

4. strobe (on-camera)

5. studio lighting, e.g., monolights, heads & power packs, radio synch. (to me, if you're a serious studio shooter, can you have enough?}

6. grip, e.g., stands, modifiers, flags, scrims, reflectors, etc. (again, if you're a serious studio shooter, i'm of the opinon that more is better. if you mostly shoot exterior daylight, you still need reflectors and scrims and some way to create artificial fill, preferably off-camera.)

7. computer (fast, plenty of storage, high-res monitor, cd or dvd burner, photoshop CS or CS2, high-quality printer, high-speed internet)

8. temporary storage, e.g., flash cards. (at least two, 512K or 1MB cards)

9. spare camera battery (at least one spare.)

10. basic filters: UV, Polarizing


here's my list of stuff you don't need, i.e., stuff where your money would probly be better spent elsewhere, like on things in the above list:

1. add-on camera grips with extra-battery capability. (i don't know about you, but having two, charged batteries--one in the camera and one in my pocket--is about all i ever need. and i can hold my camera just fine without the extended grip.)

2. flash cards bigger than 1GB. (they're expensive and, personally, i'd rather not have more than a gig of shots at a time that are at risk of becoming lost or damaged.)

3. warming cards or warming filters (if you can't figure out how to warm your color temperature without using these, go back and re-read you manual and/or put your thinking cap on.)

4. any and all photo-editing software beyond photoshop CS or CS2,

5. special effect filters. (most of these effects, like star burst or whatever, can be created in post... and at least you're not stuck with the effect if you later decide you don't like it.)

i'm sure there's more that can be added to either list... these lists were just off the top of my head.






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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 01:20 AM   #2 (permalink)
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So what are your favorite/most used modifiers, and where/when/how do you use them? That would be some good stuff I'm sure!
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 02:24 AM   #3 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]

6. grip, e.g., stands, modifiers, flags, scrims, reflectors, etc. (again, if you're a serious studio shooter, i'm of the opinon that more is better. if you mostly shoot exterior daylight, you still need reflectors and scrims and some way to create artificial fill, preferably off-camera.)


[/ QUOTE ]

Gels! I'm sure you just forgot because I know you use them. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

-- Dave



 
 
Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 03:46 AM   #4 (permalink)
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i haven't used a light meter in over three years, even with multiple light setups.
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 04:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
1. add-on camera grips with extra-battery capability. (i don't know about you, but having two, charged batteries--one in the camera and one in my pocket--is about all i ever need. and i can hold my camera just fine without the extended grip.)

[/ QUOTE ]

Hmm, I dunno Jimmy, I guess I COULD use a camera without a vertical grip, but ever since my first one, I'd never get another camera without it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

As for essentials, there's two things I can think of I'd consider essential: gaffer's tape and Cinefoil! I use both of those a lot. Er, well, used to... haven't been in the studio much in a while. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]

Sam
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 05:15 AM   #6 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
8. temporary storage, e.g., flash cards. (at least two, 512K or 1MB cards)

[/ QUOTE ]

Hopefully a little more storage than that unless you shoot thumbnails [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 07:15 AM   #7 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
2. flash cards bigger than 1GB. (they're expensive and, personally, i'd rather not have more than a gig of shots at a time that are at risk of becoming lost or damaged.)

[/ QUOTE ]
The price isn't that bad, even for the good quality, fast cards. I understand the the risk, but I'd rather not be fumbling for a card and miss a shot. Of course, film shooters have been doing this forever, so that really falls under time-management.

[ QUOTE ]
1. add-on camera grips with extra-battery capability.

[/ QUOTE ]
I've come to rely on the buttons for the vertical grip.

[ QUOTE ]
radio synch.

[/ QUOTE ]
Although I use mine a lot (it's a cheapie Ebay), unless you have a high dollar one that your light meter supports, you will contantly be swapping the cable and receiver at the light. At least in my case, my AB shuts off the optical slave when something is plugged into the PC connection.

At some point, I'd guess a pro (e.g. gettin' paid for doing the shoot) photographer's going to want a backup camera body.

Minor nits, all of these. Yet another good guide, Jimmy.

Cheers!
Glenn K.
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 08:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]

Although I use mine a lot (it's a cheapie Ebay), unless you have a high dollar one that your light meter supports, you will contantly be swapping the cable and receiver at the light. At least in my case, my AB shuts off the optical slave when something is plugged into the PC connection.


[/ QUOTE ]

You don't have to do that. I just keep my camera around my neck and use the meter in cordless mode. So you push the button on the meter, and it'll wait for the flash. Fire the strobes manually from the transmitter and there's your reading. No reason to swap cables in anything.
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 08:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Here are my must haves:
A diffuser for the on-camera/external flash.
A tripod, I don't use them often, because I don't like to be restricted in moving and angels. But, there are times you want the shot wit a slow shutter and nothing else will do or when framing a shot you can leave the camera where you want it and arrange pose/props.

Ironically when I do finally attach the camera to the tripod I find I slow down and compose the photo more.
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Re: GEAR: What you need and what you don\'t need
Old 11-04-2005, 10:15 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I was just wondering do you use Warm Cards when shooting video Jimmy?
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