April 2, 2014

Zacuto Control Grip & Z-Motor Make Any Zoom an ENG Lens, Plus New OLED EVFs

If you're doing any kind of ENG or documentary shooting with DSLRs and large sensor video cameras, you may be longing for the servo zooms and rocker switches of smaller-sensor cameras. Zacuto is introducing a new control grip and motor to give this functionality back to almost any lens and camera setup, so that you can go back to operating in a comfortable way zooming with one hand and focusing with the other. The company is also bringing out a bunch of other new products, including an update to their EVF, which will now feature an OLED display.

Zacuto-grip11

Here is the deal with the control grip and z-motor:

Balance is everything! Without it you get fatigued—quickly. As cameras get lighter, they need to be placed further back on your shoulder in a ‘Recoil’ position, with the camera essentially behind you in order to balance it. Now, how do you control it? The Control Grip gives you start, stop and five programmable buttons for your cameras as well as a full menu control joystick. Custom cables will be available to control the Canon®, Nikon®, and Panasonic® DSLRs, Sony® F5/F55, ARRI® Amira/Alexa, RED® Epic/Scarlet, and Canon C-Series cameras.  The Control Grip is fully self-powered with swappable LP-E6 batteries.

Combine the Control Grip with our new Z-Motor attached to your lens to create a rocker style servo zoom lens similar to an ENG style lens. So now you can get control of your lens, placed where you need it for a fraction of the price of expensive large sensor ENG style lenses. You can make all your zoom lenses, from a stills zoom to a high-end cinema zoom, become precision servo zoom lenses with extensive camera control. It’s a whole new concept..

This looks like it will fit in nicely into an ENG or documentary setup, especially if you need the quality of a large sensor camera. Zacuto is also introducing some other new products, including new Z-finders, a lens support that allows you to easily change lenses without unscrewing anything, some tripods, and brand new OLED EVFs with HDMI and HD-SDI inputs:

A year in the making, Steve and Jens brought five different engineering companies together to bring their latest EVF design concept to life. The Gratical LT 1024×768 (16×9 1024×576 3.3M dots) and Gratical HD 1280×1024 (16×9 1280×720 HD 5.5M dots) are the new generation super high resolution Zacuto electronic viewfinders. The Gratical uses an extremely powerful FPGA dual core processor and the latest micro-OLED displays, giving a hugely expanded contrast range with true blacks. Razor sharp optics with -1 to +4 diopter range and the latest Zacuto formula anti-fog protection. Key features include HDMI and HD-SDI in/out (HDMI cross convert to SDI), waveform, vectorscope, histogram, LUTS and much more. Custom cables allowing Gratical to get the same on-screen info as the camera’s proprietary EVF.

We will likely get more information about all of these products, including pricing, so stay tuned.

Link: Zacuto Announces New Products for NAB 2014

Your Comment

18 Comments

I'm so curious how that rocker will work with still lenses..

ps. Joe are you gonna be at NAB?

April 2, 2014 at 10:24PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Yep, a bunch of us will be there covering the show.

April 2, 2014 at 11:21PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Joe Marine
Camera Department

Sweet, hope to see you there. We meet last year at that PB hotel party on Sunday night.

April 4, 2014 at 12:55PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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You'd think some sort of a Google Glass/Oculus Rift version of the head/helmet mounted display, such as used in the military, would be coming down the pike soon.

April 2, 2014 at 10:51PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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DLD

I'm pretty positive, that the Oculus Rift will work with any HDMI input (the only problem is that it needs USB as a power source) - so that means it can work pretty much with any camera. What i'm not sure about is that if you would really want to use an oculus on the set... EVF is still a way to go.

Oculus + hexacopters? Now that's a great combination

April 3, 2014 at 1:34AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Peter

Would you really want to walk around with that on a run and gun shoot with that on your head though? A sure fire way to trip over something when you can't see anything except the distorted fov of the world.

The rift + the copters would be amazing though

April 3, 2014 at 5:28AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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+1. Really.

April 3, 2014 at 5:32AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Gene

They'll be a fucking rip off no doubt

April 3, 2014 at 5:32AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Tom

They're expensive no doubt, but not a "rip-off" They are not priced at the ARRI, Chrosziel or Bebop range. Nor are they at the prosumer range, they're in the middle.

But you never hear people complaining of their zacuto gear failing them. It's a "feature" people pay for, and do not mind paying for them.

April 3, 2014 at 7:13AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Steve JL

$$$$$ but built for sure

April 3, 2014 at 8:54PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Clrbars

That EVF looks really nice, so far everything I wanted a 2.0 of my Zacuto EVF to be. Question now is if will be cheaper or more expensive than, say, the Alphatron. NAB is going to be fun, even though I'll just sit in front of a computer i Sweden :)

April 3, 2014 at 7:53AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Hampus

With the EVF being capable of converting HDMI to SDI, could this be able to convert the 4K HDMI of the Panasonic GH4 into 4K SDI for recording onto Convergent Design Odyssey 7Q?

April 3, 2014 at 10:12AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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JP Belanger

Most likely not.
It looks as if the SDI is a regular HD-SDI output, which means it's limited to about a 1080p/2K image (or less). If you look at the Panasonic YAGH box for the GH4, you may notice that it has multiple SDI outputs -- that's to cover the extra bandwidth needed to output a 4K or UHD image. The only way to transmit a 4K or UHD image via a single SDI connector would be via the upcoming 6G SDI standard that's yet to be finished. So, I'd say it's highly, highly, unlikely.

April 4, 2014 at 5:18AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Mr Blah

I hope the old ones will now drop in price drastically ;)

April 3, 2014 at 10:14AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Bobkat

well, I just bought a Zacuto Flip EVF and a Z-finder Pro on ebay for under $500 combined (both almost new in box). There are bargains out there - just gotta find them.

April 3, 2014 at 10:51PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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Seems nice. Any price guesses anyone?

April 3, 2014 at 10:09PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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So now we just need a nice parafocal EF or F-mount still lens with constant aperture throughout the zoom..any suggestions other than the Canon Cine line?.

April 4, 2014 at 3:16AM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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I've had really good luck with my Canon 70-200 2.8 L about maintaining focus throughout the zoom range. Have you tried that?

April 6, 2014 at 12:16PM, Edited September 4, 11:56AM

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John