By site editor Dan Chung:
We’ve finally caught up with all the videos we shot at IBC last month in Amsterdam. Hong Kong manufacturer iFootage has to win the award for interviewee with the best name and possibly the most apt: Dark Horse (many Chinese get to choose their own English names, which leads to some unexpected ones). Although many people won’t be too familiar with the brand they have rapidly gained a following in Asia for making the Shark S1 slider which we previously featured.
At IBC the company were showing several new products. First was a refined version of the motion control head they showed as a prototype at NAB. It attached to the Shark slider and is expected to cost around $2200 US when it ships towards the end of the year. It now seems much more like a real product and the moves we filmed with it were quite smooth. The wireless remote control is well made out of aluminium and looks like it would stand professional use.
As well as the motion control head there is also a motor unit for the slider that can be set to run in a cycle, from one end to the other and then back again. This is similar in concept to other units from Kessler and Edelkrone which can be left running for the duration of a shoot. Obviously, if you are doing an interview it’s important for the slider to run as quietly as possible. We couldn’t tell on the busy show floor just how silently this one runs – hopefully we can test that when it ships. Unlike the Kessler, Redrockmicro or Konova offerings the iFootage sadly does not have a parallax adjustment.
Also on show was a cute Hummingbird two-axis gimbal for the GoPro Hero. There were plenty of these around at the show but the iFootage one was made of plastic and therefore much smaller and lighter than anything else we saw. It runs on a regular GoPro Hero3 battery and uniquely has a regular GoPro mount so it can attach to any regular GoPro accessory mount. This means it can be used on helmet mounts, car mounts, selfie sticks etc without the need for additional gear or weight. Very clever. My only wish is that it was a three-axis device rather than two.
Lastly, they were showing new heavy duty carbon fibre tripods. These are similar to designs from Miller, Manfrotto or Gitzo, but with the addition of a removable leg brace that adds stability if needed.
Overall the fit and finish of iFootage gear seems first rate and a notch above most other Chinese gear makers. To find out more check out the iFootage website.
If you want to see just what the original Shark S1 is capable of then check out the slides in this recent video from Beijing, in which Clinton Harn used iFootage gear to shoot for DP Rodney Charters: