The GoPro HERO3 has really brought the popularity of the ultra-portable cameras to a whole new level with incredible performance in a very tiny package, but there are still some major gripes from filmmakers who are trying to have more control over their image and want a better way to power and mount the device. In comes the Tehkron CagePro. The cage is designed not only to let you power your GoPro with the very popular Canon LP-E6 batteries (used in cameras like the 7D and Mark II/Mark III), it will also let you attach filters to the front of the camera to better control exposure (rather than just letting the camera set a very high shutter speed). Click through for more on the cage.
What it is exactly:
Our unique Patent Pending design solves several problems for filmmakers who use the GOPRO® HERO3 / HERO3+in professional production and broadcast environments. First and foremost, our cage offers additional mounting points - an important feature to minimize vibrations when rigging the GOPRO® to cars, motorcycles, planes, boats, and more.
The CagePro also incorporates a 62mm threaded filter ring to further improve the image quality from the GOPRO® HERO3 / HERO3+ Cameras. By adding an ND Filter you can reduce shutter speeds on bright days which can help to reduce Jello and Rolling Shutter effects. Or slap on a CPL (circular polarizing) filter to reduce glare on reflective surfaces and enhance color saturation in skies, oceans, and trees.
Here's how it works:
Our internal circuit board drops the 7.2V battery down to safe USB operating voltage. The GOPRO® HERO3 / HERO3+ is connected to the CagePro through a USB cable that will charge the internal GoPro battery when it's powered off, or continue to power the GOPRO® Hero3 / Hero3+ when in use.
Essentially you put your GoPro in the Skeleton housing (the non-waterproof one), and it then slides into the cage. There are a bunch of cages out there for the GoPro, but I believe this is the first that powers from Canon batteries and gives you the threaded ring for filters (feel free to correct if that's not true). That second part is really just as crucial as the Canon battery capabilities, because you can fine-tune exposure settings by using an ND filter. This will keep the camera from using super high shutter speeds that can make the shot look a bit more amateur.
For $180, it's really not much of an investment for the features it adds, and apparently should also work with the new HERO3+. You can get the handle-less version for $150, but the added mounting points and the ability to actually grab and go seems like it's worth the extra $30.
You can find both versions for sale over on PNC Photography and Cinema at the links below.