Aaton is giving new life to their famous wooden handgrip which was first made for their film cameras in the early ’70s.
Numerous companies over the last 10 years have copied Aanton’s design and come up with their own wooden handgrips.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
The original Aaton wooden handgrip was so well made and ergonomically sound that all the french company has done is take the original design and add modern functionality.
Please note that the one being shown is still a prototype and the materials being used are not what the finished product will look like.
Aaton has added a 6 position joystick, a scroll wheel and 3 function buttons to the handgrip. The grip will work with RED cameras and ARRI cameras and Aaton is working on developing support for other camera manufacturers.
The grip doesn’t have any internal battery, instead, it gets powered via your camera. On an ARRI this is done through the External port and on a RED through a Serial port.
Aaton will also be making a second grip that they hope to be able to integrate wireless focus control.
The handgrip also has built-in Bluetooth functionality and by using a free App you can assign various functions to those buttons and then save them.
A control for RED Komodo?
Based on our conversation with Aaton, there is a very good chance that the wooden handgrip will be used to control the functionality of RED’s upcoming Komodo.
A bit of History
Aaton was founded by Eclair engineer Jean-Pierre Beauviala, whose efforts have been primarily focused on making quiet, portable motion picture hardware suitable for impromptu field use, such as for documentaries. A model for all motion picture cameras they have produced is the “cat-on-the-shoulder”, a small, light, quiet motion picture camera.
In the late 60’s Beauviala was working as a professor of electronics in the University of Grenoble. With the project to make a movie about the evolution of the city and of its architecture, but unable to find the proper tools, Beauviala decided to create the camera himself. Though the movie would eventually be abandoned this led to the creation of Aaton in 1971.
The Aaton wooden grip was first made by a craftsman who was carving smoking pipes!
Price & Availability
The new Aaton wooden grip will be available in either wood or carbon fibre. They are scheduled to start shipping in 2-3 months and they will cost less than 1,000 Euros.