Hoya’s new Antistatic EVO filters aim to banish dust from your lens front

By site editor Dan Chung:

Hoya are one of the world’s best known photographic filter makers. They have just launched a new range of Antistatic coated UV, protective and polarising filters. Designed to work in harsh environments they repel dust and should require less cleaning than regular filters. In addition these filters have a top-layer that is water repellent and easy to clean.

The Hoya EVO Antistatic filter

The Hoya EVO Antistatic filter

The specifications of these filters sound very similar to what Nikon recently did to the fronts of their top end Nikkor fluorine coated lenses. I’m not sure if the technology is the same but the claimed effects are certainly similar.

If these filters work as advertised I can see them becoming an instant hit with news shooters. It would be great if the same technology could make its way into the company’s ND filter lineup too.

hoya 2

This from Hoya:
Hoya engineers have developed a new ANTISTATIC coating that acts like a force field around the filter to repel dust. Perfect for environments where dust is common, these filters require less frequent cleaning and maintenance than traditional filters. Additionally, the hardened, antistatic top-layer is water repellent, stain and scratch resistant, and cleans easily when smudges or fingerprints are introduced to the surface. The filter’s UV properties filter unwanted ultra-violet rays, reducing haze and increasing clarity.

The new EVO ANTISTATIC professional filters are made in Japan using hand selected silicates that are carefully smelted and blended to yield high performance optical glass. Hoya then uses extreme care and precision to apply the Improved 16-layer Super Multi-coating formula which greatly reduces or eliminates reflections on the surface of the glass and yields a 99.8% light transmission rate. This means the filter has virtually no effect on the color balance, contrast, or clarity of the final image.

The filters features a lightweight, one-piece, low-profile aluminum frame to house the glass. This one-piece design allows the filter to maintain perfect parallel alignment to the sensor plane for maximum sharpness, while the low-profile form eliminates vignetting when used on ultra-wide-angle lenses.

• NEW Antistatic coating repels dust
• 99.8% Light Transmission
• Scratch resistant – Hardened coating protects against everyday wear
• Stain resistant – Protects against exposure to ink, markers etc.
• Water repellent – Water beads up and wipes away easily
• Fingerprints and smudges wipe away cleanly
• Filters unwanted UV light before it reaches the sensor
• Hoya’s Professional-grade optical glass
• Hoya exclusive one-piece, low-profile filter frame with front filter threads

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Posted on July 23rd, 2014 by admin | Category: Filters | Permalink | Comments (0)

Review: iFootage Shark Slider + GH4 + Rokinon 12mm Cine lens = motion control

By contributing editor Chuck Fadely:

Field test: GH4 4k, iFootage Shark Slider S1 and Rokinon 12mm cine lens = poor man’s MoCo! from Chuck Fadely on Vimeo.

I’m so envious of those compound moves from expensive motion control (MoCo) units. I just love those simultaneous slides and tilts and pans and zooms. But ouch, the price tags on those things make me wince. I’ve done a field test with some moderately priced gear that will let you simulate those results.

The Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine lens on a Panasonic GH4. An inexpensive Polaroid fader ND filter is attached.  ©2014 Chuck Fadely

The Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine lens on a Panasonic GH4. An inexpensive Polaroid fader ND filter is attached. ©2014 Chuck Fadely

Using a Panasonic GH4, and shooting in 4K, gives you lots of room in post to do fancy moves with keyframes. There’s so much resolution to spare that you can do some radical zooms in FCPX and output a 1080P movie that’s still gorgeous. Combine that with the new Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine lens in a native micro 4/3 mount, with big fat geared focus ring and a 67mm front filter size for your fader ND filter, and you’ve got a compact wide angle outfit that’s easy to pull focus on.

And finally, add in the iFootage Shark Slider S1 from, and you can do some really nice moves with your bare hands.

The iFootage Shark Slider S1 is one of the best bang-for-the-buck sliders I’ve ever used. It has carbon fiber rails that can be extended by screwing in additional rails (an upgrade option). It is silky smooth thanks to a heavy counter weight and a toothed belt. And it’s nearly silent! Love that. It comes with adjustable feet and it has built-in sockets to mount it to C-stands at both ends.

The iFootage Shark Slider S1 Bundle, with the extension rails, sells for US $640 from out of Hong Kong. It includes a nice case, the extra rails that take it to 1350mm (53 inches) length, and the belts for both the regular and long setups. It’s fairly light at 3.8kg (8.4 lbs)for the long setup, and 3.4kg (7.5 lbs) for the regular length. You’ll need to add your own head or mount to attach a camera.

iFootage Shark Slider rail joint.

iFootage Shark Slider rail joint.

The slider feels like quality. Fit and finish is superb and even when screwing the rails together for the long setup it’s solid and smooth, with no bump when the carriage passes over the joint. It comes with built-in leg supports that swivel and have threaded length adjusters. Lots of 3/8” and 1/4” connection spots and the thing is solid.

The highly flexible toothed belt combined with the wheel counterweight gives exceptionally smooth movement, and if you’re careful in leveling the slider, you can start a slide with a light push and have it come to a perfect stop on it’s own down at the other end.

iFootage Shark Slider weight

iFootage Shark Slider weight

Mounted on a substantial tripod, you can do lots of movement with your pan head while sliding and it doesn’t flex or jiggle. Bearings are adjustable. The tripod mount is centered on the regular length slider but when you add the extension rails you’ll need to support the ends. Seems reasonably rugged. I don’t have anything bad to say about it.

They were showing a motion-control outfit based on the S1 slider at NAB earlier this year. I can’t wait for that to come out, but in the meantime some careful manual panning combined with zooming the 4K image in post can give a little spark to static subjects.

An iFootage Shark Slider S1 mounted on a Miller tripod with the Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine lens on a Panasonic GH4.   ©2014 Chuck Fadely

An iFootage Shark Slider S1 mounted on a Miller tripod with the Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine lens on a Panasonic GH4. ©2014 Chuck Fadely

Rokinon 12mm T2.2
The Rokinon 12mm T2.2 Cine Lens is tiny compared to the Rokinon full-frame 14mm. The 12mm keeps lines relatively straight, and it is sharp and decent for the price (US $429 from B+H) – too bad it only covers mirrorless APS-C size chips. It’s available in Micro 4/3, Sony E-Mount, Fuji X mount, Samsung NX, and Canon M mount. It has nice smooth focus and click-less aperture ring with cine style gears and the markings indexed on the left side of the lens – where you’d look at it when on a tripod at eye level. And the best part is it’s a wide angle that takes regular 67mm filters on the front so you don’t have to struggle to adapt filters to a petal front end, like you do with the Panasonic 7-14mm.

Rokinon cine lenses: 14mm at left; 12mm at right

Rokinon cine lenses: 14mm at left; 12mm at right

Notes on the GH4
And finally, a few words about the Panasonic DMC-GH4. I’m not going to go into detail here as there are plenty of reviews out there, but suffice to say shooting in-camera 4K is quite nice. A fast 64-gig SDXC card will give you well over an hour of 4K footage and Final Cut Pro X will edit it with no transcoding and no problems. Downsample the 4K on output to 1080 and the footage looks great. The camera has a good bit of control over the image and it has both mic and headphone jacks. I haven’t tried the add-on DMW-YAGH Interface Unit, which gives XLR and HD-SDI jacks, but for a still camera, it’s pretty video friendly even without it. It has peaking and focus magnification and you can monitor either the incoming audio in real time or the recorded audio with a slight delay.

To sum up, I find it incredible what can be achieved with such a small and affordable package. Only a year ago we could only dream of such convenience. For real world shooters the gear really isn’t a barrier any more – it’s all about your own creativity.

Chuck Fadely is a video journalist at Newsday in New York. provided the Shark Slider for review. The GH4 and Rokinon 12mm were purchased retail.

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Posted on July 23rd, 2014 by Chuck Fadely | Category: 4K, Lenses, Panasonic GH4, SIiders | Permalink | Comments (0)

Lectrosonics post video detailing the new L Series LMb and LT Transmitters and LR receiver

By site editor Dan Chung:

At NAB earlier this year we got a first look at the new Lectrosonics LMb and LT transmitters. These feature digital hybrid technology and interestingly for news shooters they have a wider range of frequencies than typical wireless systems. The L series can be purchased in on of four bands – A1 covers 470.100-537.575 MHz, B1 covers 537.600-614.375, C1 covers 614.400-691.175 MHz and D1, which is available in some export markets covers 691.200-767.975 MHz. The construction is all metal and there is the ability to IR sync between receiver and transmitter making setup easier.

The lower LMb model has an integrated antenna. The more advanced LT model is smaller, adds removable antenna and the ability to be controlled by the RM app on an iPhone which can put the transmitter to sleep or adjust its frequency. Both transmitters can work with the sister LR diversity receiver as well as other higher end receivers in the Lectro range.

The LR diversity receiver also tunes across the same wider frequency ranges as the matching transmitters. It shares the same metal contraction and has a useful smart tuning function which searches for available frequencies. It can also scan the available spectrum and graphically show where there are spikes caused by TV transmissions etc.

These new L Series products are positioned above the entry level 100 and the higher end 400 and SR series. They are designed to offer a good balance between price and performance, while staying small enough to be mounted on DSLRs or mirroless cameras. The obvious competition is the industry standard Sennheiser EW100 series and the newer Sony UWP-D range. Both of these systems are cheaper than the Lectrosonics so it will be interesting to compare both the audio quality and durability.

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Posted on July 23rd, 2014 by Dan Chung | Category: Audio | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Wall Street Journal goes 4K video with the GH4 – the first newspaper web team to do so?

By site editor Dan Chung:

The Wall Street Journal in-house video team has started shooting and publishing 4K video. To my knowledge this makes them the the first newspaper website in-house team to do so. Their EMEA operation have purchased four Panasonic GH4 cameras as upgrades to their existing GH2s. Eventually the GH4 will become the primary cam in the bureau.

Currently the WSJ can’t display 4K video directly on their own website, but are able to show it on their Youtube channel.

The Panasonic Lumix GH4

The Panasonic Lumix GH4

I spoke to WSJ video journalist and producer Mark Kelly about their choice of the GH4. Having only recently received the cameras they have not yet been used for big news stories, but Mark recently shot and published a 4K video piece about wine – part of their one minute wine series.

This is what Mark had to say:

“I advised my WSJ editor we should get GH4 cameras based on a number of years shooting on the GH2. I bought into Lumix GH2 back in 2010 (when the camera was released in the UK) when nobody in news went near them. The DSLR revolution was well underway but everyone was obsessed with Canon – few were willing to break from the norm and use Micro 4/3. I loved that Panasonic’s prime focus with the GH2 was video, and that in the field I could travel light with three lenses. It was also a camera that you could shoot movement with, something the fixed DSLR brigade seldom did. In fact I used the GH2 on a number of shoots for The Sunday Times when I was managing the Multimedia team there.

While content appearing on the WSJ’s own platform doesn’t yet give a viewer the option to switch to 4K viewing, content appearing on other sites such as YouTube will benefit. 

Shooting One Minute Wine at the Devil’s Dyke

Shooting One Minute Wine at the Devil’s Dyke

The GH4s will mainly be used as field cameras and we might start using the old GH2s as cameras for fixed pieces to camera in the office. Now that the warranties have expired on them I hope to persuade my editor to let me hack them to increase the quality of footage for output.

Lens wise it would be great to have more. Each GH4 field kit will be armed with the Lumix 12-35mm f2.8, 20mm f1.7 and a Canon 50mm with adapter. I pushed hard for the 12-35mm lenses – I’ve wanted one for ages for my personal kit but haven’t been able to afford it. The 14-140mm and the 12-35mm both benefit from image stabilisation – which is of real benefit in the field.

Shooting One Minute Wine on Brighton beach

Shooting One Minute Wine with the GH4 on Brighton beach

These cameras wouldn’t be my first choice for run and gun shooting. Audio is still a massive issue for me and regular camcorders all benefit from built-in XLR inputs making it a lot quicker to manage audio levels. Having that control makes it easier to focus on what’s most important – good visuals and an editorial narrative. As I described in a recent post on my own blog I don’t think the YAGH is a good solution for our audio needs. For protests etc. I still prefer a Sony EX1/EX3, or the affordable and lightweight JVC GY-HM150E.

That said I look forward to trying the GH4 in more challenging environments. As I described in a recent post on my own blog I don’t think the YAGH is a good solution for our audio needs.”

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Posted on July 21st, 2014 by Dan Chung | Category: 4K, Journalism, Panasonic GH2, Panasonic GH4 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Convergent Design ships Odyssey 7 and offers new features via firmware for 7Q

By technical editor Matt Allard:

The Convergent Design Odyssey7

The Convergent Design Odyssey7

One of the most popular external recorders on the market has received another firmware update which ads some exciting new features.

The Convergent Design Odyssey7Q can now shoot 4K RAW at 100 or 120fps in burst modes with Sony’s FS700. The other big feature is the ability to finally use monitoring look up tables (LUTs) when dealing with Log footage from Canon, Arri and Sony cameras. Lastly my pet hate on the Odyssey – the playback interface has been completely re designed. 

In addition to the firmware changes to the 7Q Convergent Design have also started to ship their lower model – the Odyssey7. Looking the same externally as the 7Q it has the same 1280×800 OLED display and image analysis tools like waveform and histogram. What changes is the lack of any RAW or 4K recording functionality – the 7 is currently purely a HD ProRes recorder. This brings the recommended price down by $1000 to $1295 US.

Here are some of the highlights:

Sony FS700 4K RAW 100p/120p Super SloMo
Record 100fps or 120fps in 4K RAW in a 440 frame burst usng the camera’s internal memory buffer.  Triggering is set on the camera at either the start of the memory buffer (capture the 440 frames after trigger is pressed) or at the end of the buffer (capture the 440 frames that occurred before the trigger is pressed).  440 frames equals 3.7 seconds of real time at 120fps and 4.4 seconds at 100fps.  440 frame played back at 24fps lasts more than 18 seconds.
This is a great new feature for FS700 owners. The ability to be able to record high frame rates in 4k raw is very impressive at any price point. There are very few cameras that can do this at any price point.  

Monitoring LUTs For HD Video
Monitoring LUTs for the LOG outputs from several popular cameras are now supported in HD video recording in both Apple ProRes 422(HQ) and Uncompressed DPX (Odyssey7Q only).  Cameras and LOG formats supported include ARRI ALEXA (Log-C), Canon C100/300/500 (C-Log), Sony F3 (S-Log), Sony F5/F55 (S-Log2), Sony F5/F55 (S-Log3) and Sony FS700 (S-Log2).  All monitoring LUTs conform selected Log signals to REC709.  Monitoring LUTs are applied to the OLED screen, video outputs and Image Analysis tools, but not to the recorded files.

Another great new feature that almost every Odyssey owner will use. It is very important to be able to monitor log material with a LUT. It looks like it is a preset REC709 LUT, but I hope in the future you will be able to load up your own LUT’s which I think is a feature most users would appreciate. 

Advanced Playback Controls
This is a complete revamp of the Playback system.  Standard deck-style controls for Play/Pause, single-frame step forward or step-back, and skip forward or back to next/pervious clip.  Additionally, an interactive scrub bar allows the user to quickly access any section of a clip simply by dragging a finger across the OLED touchscreen.  All recordable formats are supported and more detailed information is noted in the Play List.

Playback was something that used to frustrate me when using the Odyssey 7Q. I found the interface clunky and hard to use. When you have a great OLED monitor you want to be able to use playback in a easy and intuitive way.  Convergent Design have obviously listened to customer feedback and addressed what I thought was one of the devices weakest points.

Expanded HD Video Format Support In Apple ProRes 422(HQ)
In addition to 1080p video, the Odyssey7 and Odyssey7Q now support 1080i and 720p signals, as well as 24p signals embedded within 1080i video streams using “3:2 Pulldown”.  New record formats in Apple ProRes 422(HQ) include:  1080/60i, 1080/50i, 1080/(24 over)60i, 720/60p, 720/50p.  Additionally, upon selecting 3:2 PULLDOWN, the Odyssey7 and Odyssey7Q will remove the excess material and record a pure 1080/24p video stream for more efficient storage and ease of post.

It’s good to see the device finally support 1080i and 720p. For a lot of news and broadcast shooters the industry standard still is 1080i. Not being able to record this previously was a bit limiting. 

Waveform Opacity
Opacity is now selectable when using the Waveform.  The background of the waveform can be either translucent as in previous firmware, or selected to be solid black so that the waveform display can be more clearly seen.
Dual-Link RGB 4:4:4 Support For Sony F3 (Odyssey7Q only)
Record RGB 4:4:4 from the Sony F3 at 1080/23.98psf, 1080/25psf and 1080/29.97psf. 

Sort of good news if your the owner of a F3. Duel-link RGB 444 is very impressive out of this camera, but currently you can only record it as DPX files which I’m my opinion are just too big. Hopefully down the track you will be able to record 4444 ProRes like the Sound Devices Pix 240 can. 

Record Options Rentals
Using the newly re-launched Convergent Design website, Odyssey7Q owners can rent ARRIRAW and Canon RAW Record Options.  Rentals are based on 24hour time periods and are available for up to 31 day lengths.  Rentals begin when a first recording is started.  Indicators in the on-screen menus note rental time left and warn as the time gets low.

• FIXED Occasional file corruption when using PIXEL ZOOM while recording Apple ProRes 422(HQ)
• FIXED Occasional file corruption when recording a 1080psf signal
• FIXED Playback issues at end of a file
• FIXED Image scaling in psf and interlaced signals that showed jagged lines in PIXEL ZOOM.
• FIXED Black line in image from Canon 5Dmk3 in 1080/24p
• IMPROVED Hide Menu/Video Functionality
• FIXED Canon C500 QHD RAW (3840×2160) file corruption at 50p & 60p
• IMPROVED Sony FS700 4K/2K RAW S-Log2 to REC709 LUT
• IMPROVED Sony FS700 4K2HD S-Log2 to REC709 LUT
• IMPROVED Sony FS700 4K2HD REC709(800%) to REC709 LUT
• IMPROVED Sony FS700 4K2HD REC709 color science (internal LUT)

For the latest firmware, go to to download the update instructions, firmware, release notes, guides, and the latest Odyssey7 and Odyssey7Q manuals. 

An Odyssey SSD or Odyssey Utility Drive is required to perform the update.

About the Odyssey7:

The Odyssey7 (CD-ODYSSEY7) is a monitor/recorder designed for on-camera use.  The monitor features a 1280×800 OLED touchscreen with true blacks and accurate colors.  Monitor functions include advanced Image Analysis Tools for exposure and focus, such as Waveform, Histogram, False Color, Focus Assist and Pixel Zoom.  As a monitor alone, the Odyssey7 delivers an outstanding value beyond any competitor in the field.

The Odyssey7 is also a professional HD video recorder.  It currently captures HD video in Apple ProRes 422(HQ) up to 1080/30p, 1080/60i and 720/60p.  Future free updates will expand the available frame rates as well as add other formats of compressed HD video recording.  An SSD slot will accept a Convergent Design Odyssey SSD, available in 256GB & 512GB.  One 512GB SSD will hold 330 minutes of 1080/24p material.  The Odyssey7 features full playback functions including file scrubbing.  HD signals are cross-converted and output over both SDI and HDMI simultaneously.

The Odyssey 7 retails for $1295 which is a $1000 less than the 7Q. 

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Posted on July 19th, 2014 by Matthew Allard | Category: External recorders | Permalink | Comments (0)

Video Review: Shotput Pro automated card backup utility from Imagine Products

By technical editor Matt Allard:

A Look At ShotPut Pro from Matthew Allard ACS on Vimeo.

Backing up the material you shoot is a pretty tedious chore. Often I have to do this late at night after a day’s shooting. This is when I’m the most likely to make mistakes due to tiredness. Sometimes I’m dealing with multiple formats and cards from different cameras and it is very easy to forget to copy a card, duplicate the same card twice by mistake, or not copy the proper file structure. Just one small mistake backing up and I would lose valuable work. 

Recently I’ve been testing out an automated card copy utility for video and photo files called ShotPut Pro. Made by Imagine Products it is available for both Mac OSX and Windows platforms. The software gives you the ability to make multiple copies across multiple drives at once and then verify all these files.  Why is verification important? It is all good and well to just drag and drop files from place to another using regular file copy, but if those files are corrupted or missing in transfer you run you the risk of losing them. By using ShotPut Pro I can copy the exact contents to as many drives as I have hooked up at once and then get verification that every single file has been copied identically.   

The interface is easy to use and they have some great short tutorial videos on their website to get you up and running quickly. I looked hard to find faults in the product but it does exactly what Imagine products says it does. My only small complaint is I wish the licenses enabled you to put one copy on your desktop and one on your laptop, but unfortunately the license only lets you use it on a single computer and you need to buy another for a second device. 

While copy and verification is far from sexy it does give you piece of mind that what your shooting is getting copied and backed up correctly. Is it really worth not backing up and verifying your precious work? Well I think you will know the answer the first time you lose material. 

Imagine products currently have a July sale on and of you buy one copy of ShotPut Pro you can get another copy for 50% off

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Posted on July 19th, 2014 by Matthew Allard | Category: Storage | Permalink | Comments (0)

Defy G12 gimbal dances with Nikon D810 in ‘Dream Park’ – DP Anthony Arendt in conversation

By site editor Dan Chung:

Nikon D810 with DP Anthony Arendt and DEFY from DEFY on Vimeo.

Our friends at Defy were recently involved with the making of the Nikon USA promo film ‘Dream Park’ for the Nikon D810. Defy’s Seth Compton was operating the D810 on a Defy G12 brushless gimbal for Director of Photography Anthony Arendt. They have just posted a video where Seth and Anthony discuss their experiences with the camera and how it was set up on a Defy G12 gimbal to get different camera moves. The behind the scenes clips in the video are also worth a look if you want to indulge in a bit of gadget porn.

Dream Park: A Nikon D810 Film from Nikon_USA on Vimeo.

The Nikon D810 is the company’s latest full-frame DSLR which they have been promoting very hard as a film-making tool. The camera has a number of improvements over the D800 and D800e which it replaces such as reduced moire, zebras, 1080P/60 and 50 fps recording, a flat picture profile and auto ISO for changing lighting conditions. Nikon also claims the camera has excellent low light capabilities.

Unfortunately for Nikon the launch was largely eclipsed in video circles by euphoria over Sony’s a7S and Panasonic’s GH4. What is missing from the D810 are more video centric features like an electronic viewfinder (EVF), peaking, newer codecs (the D810 uses H.264) or a 4K function. This all said it does seem like a solid upgrade for users wedded to a Nikon platform – especially stills shooters who need a great stills camera that shoot video as well.

Making of Dream Park: A Nikon D810 Film from Nikon_USA on Vimeo.

Full disclose: Defy is a sponsor of this website

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Posted on July 18th, 2014 by Dan Chung | Category: Brushless gimbals | Permalink | Comments (2) – a new way to collaborate that might be perfect for news organisations and documentary editors

By site editor Dan Chung: Launch from Emery Wells on Vimeo.

You are on assignment and have just sent the first cut of your video back to your editor. Naturally she wants changes, but you are at one end of the world and she is at the other. She tries to explain what changes she wants, but you can’t quite visualise it. You edit another version but again it isn’t quite what they had in mind. After several more back and forths you might have a final cut, but you have wasted precious time and the whole process is super-tedious.


Now there may be a professional solution to all this. was launched earlier this week as a collaborative workflow tool for filmmakers working on creative projects. The brainchild of filmmakers Josh and Jason Diamond, founder Emery Wells and co-founder John Traver, it aims to replace the ‘hodgepodge’ of using Vimeo, Dropbox, and Gmail to work with media files online. The idea is simple – build cloud storage, client review, transcoding and light asset management into one seamless app. Clients can remotely see versions of your edit and add annotations and comments directly on video frames. Any confusion over what changes are to be made should be gone. There is a version control to see what has changed over time. Once you have a perfectly polished and finished piece that everyone has signed off on, you can publish it to the world from within using export options to YouTube and Vimeo.


The app isn’t specifically designed for factual shooters, but I can see it being just as useful to us as commercial types. There are other solutions for collaborative working out there but nothing I’ve seen looks as simple as purports to be. does more than just video review and notes. You can store, organize, review and comment on any media you upload. That includes audio files, stills and archival footage, which is perfect for both news organisations and documentary filmmakers. You can also upload full quality source footage and distribute to other team members via transcoded proxy files. isn’t available yet but if you want to know more and stay up to date with its progress then you can sign up at

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Posted on July 17th, 2014 by Dan Chung | Category: Journalism | Permalink | Comments (0)

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