April 8, 2015

That Tiny 1080p Monitor from SmallHD Can Also Be Turned Into an Excellent Viewfinder

SmallHD Sidefinder EVF Loupe for 502 Monitor
Two weeks ago, SmallHD wooed the filmmaking world with their tiny 5" 1080p monitor. This week, they announced an accessory that turns the 502 monitor into a versatile, high-resolution EVF.

SmallHD Sidefinder EVF Loupe for 502 Monitor
The accessory is called the Sidefinder, and it's essentially an EVF loupe specifically designed for the 502 monitor. While SmallHD has experimented with EVF attachments for their monitors in the past with the DP4, the Sidefinder is far more fully-featured (mostly because the 502 monitor has loads of features and an excellent display). The Sidefinder attachment itself has tons of features, including an adjustable field of view and a mounting bracket that has mounting options suitable for just about every rig out there including ARRI Rosette, 15mm rod, and 1/4"20 mounts.

Here are the launch videos for the Sidefinder and 502 monitor:

https://vimeo.com/122785338

And here are some basic features:

SmallHD Sidefinder EVF Loupe for 502 Monitor
  • Higher Resolution: 720p EVF/1080p LCD
  • Increased Signal Processing: HDMI/SDI In and out + Cross Conversion
  • Customizable Viewing: Adjustable Field-of-View, Adjustable Diopter
  • Advanced Software: 3D LUTs, Scopes, Waveform, Image Capture, and more...
  • Many Mounting Options: Integrated EVF Mounting Bracket (NATO Rail, ARRI Rosette, 15mm Rod, 1/4” 20)
  • Added Durability: Shock-Mounted Display + Circuit Board

The 502 monitor and Sidefinder are almost undoubtedly going to become favorites for lower-budget filmmakers using DSLRs and mirrorless cameras who can't or don't want to afford something like the Zacuto Gratical EVF. An added benefit (beyond the extremely small size and low profile) is that it really is a two-in-one solution that offers a fully-featured external monitor as well as a viewfinder. For solo operators, that single solution pretty much covers any and all monitoring needs that you might have outside of additional monitors for directors or clients.

No word on pricing or availability for either the 502 monitor or Sidefinder yet, but we'll almost certainly know more within the next week as NAB updates roll through the filmmaking blogosphere.      

Your Comment

16 Comments

What's the benefit of the gratical EVF over this? I'm a fan of the form factor. Fits really well into my usual rig setups.

April 8, 2015 at 4:52PM

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Steven Bailey
Writer/Director/Composer
671

I'd be curious to check this thing out — I was already interested when it was just a monitor. But the Zacuto Gratical is an amazing piece of work that I expect to last years. This one doesn't look that weather-sealed, compared to the Gratical (which I shot with in a heavy snow storm for several hours in single-digit weather). I'm curious how the field of view of this compares — the Gratical is perfectly sized and it's something I predict others will emulate.

I'm curious to see what the price range will be for this — had it been announced and/or released several months ago, it might have made me second guess the Gratical.

April 8, 2015 at 11:06PM

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Jason Blevins
Director / Producer / Videographer
161

I wouldn't expect anything to last years at this stage. Interested in seeing how well this works in the flesh!

April 9, 2015 at 11:59PM

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matt
908

I would choose this over an Alphatron EVF! User LUTs, better n bigger display and much better designed mounting options.

If they price this appropriately, it would sell in huge numbers!

April 8, 2015 at 5:42PM

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seanmclennan
Story Teller
942

Not bad. Not bad at all.

Now let's talk about money.

April 8, 2015 at 7:49PM

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Edgar More
All
1015

Small HD please make an option to use the full resolution(1920 x 1080) for the EVF. With so many 4K cameras we need higher resolution EVFs.

What I want is full HD 1920x1080 or even more resolution EVF.

I think the monitor looks great, just am sad about the low resolution for the EVF.

April 9, 2015 at 12:17AM

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Tim Bradley
Director of Photography
81

I don't think you need a higher res EVF. It is higher resolution than the Gratical, and that one is bonkers good!

April 9, 2015 at 4:38AM

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Olof Ljunggren
Student
220

According to a Google Shopping search, it will cost $1,199 at B&H.

April 9, 2015 at 3:32AM

3
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Wow, that's a good price. If the total package including loupe is $1600 or so, that would be amazing. It's a very smart design. My biggest beef with Gratical is that you can't use it as a monitor which is essential for certain shots. This solves 2 problems in one.

April 9, 2015 at 6:11PM

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Gene Sung
DP / Director
732

Yeah it's on pre-order at B&H for $1199. No sign of the side finder price yet.

April 10, 2015 at 12:13AM

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matt
908

Very interesting indeed, I agree that this would be excellent for small director monitor with the Nyrius Aries and handles/lanyard of some sort.

April 9, 2015 at 5:23AM

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PJ Palomaki
Cinematographer | Motion Graphics
388

Will this be able to be calibrated like a Shogun or a Ninja Blade?

April 9, 2015 at 7:46AM

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Gilles van Leeuwen
Filmmaker
384

Ah, see when they mentioned the 502 a few weeks back I thought brilliant! With this form factor and resolution it would be a reasonable price monitor in the SmallHD range as soon as they announced this attachment I'm now guessing it's going to be more expensive than I anticipated. Still looks worth buying though.

April 9, 2015 at 1:51PM, Edited April 9, 1:51PM

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Dang it! $1.200 for just the monitor, no kits available or word on the Sidefinder yet... the Shogun costs $800 more and it's double in everything... I expected something around the $600 - $800 considering the AC7OLED is at $899 and it comes with GorillaGlass. Even the picture of how they they hold this monitor suggest fragility. I'm afraid to drop this and have the screen cracked like an iPhone... with the difference of one costing me $1,200. This highTech piece of equipment screams fragility all over to me. The Gratical is more than twice but at least it will last you forever.

April 10, 2015 at 3:24PM

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Juanky Álvarez
Video Editor | Photographer
93

I agree. The price tag seems unwarranted

April 11, 2015 at 3:19AM

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Caleb Price
Director
347

This cross converts, so it has features the AC series does not have.

April 12, 2015 at 10:13PM

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Daniel Mimura
DP, cam op, steadicam op
2079