December 7, 2015 at 1:02AM, Edited December 7, 1:18AM


Should I buy a Atomos shogun/ninja assassin or smallHd 501/502

Hey filmmakers
I currently have an Sony a7sii. Yes, a simple mirrorless camera nothing too fancy. Two days ago, I bought a used DJI ronin off eBay. I think it's a good idea to buy a some kind monitor for the ronin also the a7s. I did some research and found out the smallHd 501 (899 on BH) it's kind the same price as a Atomos ninja assassin (950 on eBay because I'm still a student). So I more lean toward to buy something future proof . That's also why I bought the ronin instead of Ronin M. Who knows one day when I get enough money I might upgrade to a bigger camera. So that comes to the Atomos shogun and small hd502 . I'm really frustrated right now. Coz I'm also on a tight budget. Too much great stuff out third. Wireless follow focus etc... So guys please help me out. Which one should I buy or there are better solutions. Thanks in advance.


1) Today, on B&H, the 501 is only $599.

2) Consider the size and weight. 7" monitors are gigantic. They look downright silly mounted on an a7s, and make a rig really, really unwieldy really fast. Plus, the power requirements of the Assassin and Shogun require much heavier, bigger batteries than the 501, making them even more unwieldy. Plus, they require media, an added expense.

If I were you, I'd either get the 501 or just a cheap-as-dirt, framing-only monitor for the Ronin and just rent a 4K recorder as you need. We rent them when we need them, especially since it's safe to assume that the cost and size of 4K recorders will reduce in the next year or two.

Also, given your situation as a student, don't overspend because of a hypothetical situation where you'll have a bigger camera one day. Let a future employer worry about the cost of that stuff—you're not doing yourself any favors.

December 7, 2015 at 9:14AM

David S.

Thanks so much for answers my question. It's really help me a lot. Super super helpful.

Zhenhua zhang

December 7, 2015 at 4:15PM

I would look at monitor/recorders...

Blackmagic Design Video Assist

Video Devices PIX-E5H

December 7, 2015 at 9:28AM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

thanks for help me out here

Zhenhua zhang

December 7, 2015 at 4:17PM

I would disagree that a 7" monitor is too large - it makes pulling focus much easier and is big enough for review on-set. I have an Atomos Shogun and find it great as a monitor, to do rapid reviews on-set and to do dual recording (in-camera plus backup copy). Chews batteries but works really well

December 7, 2015 at 11:16AM

Thomas Dove

Weight is an important factor on a gimbal: you'll need to carry it all. And it can get heavy after a while.
On the other hand: function wise the Ninja Assassin has zebra and peaking tools, can use LUTs as well. If you need the extra image quality...

It is all about priority.
I've got a 501 because it is light and small with 1080p screen and all the focus and exposure tools I need when running around (or sitting it tight spaces being driven around) with a MoVI.

December 8, 2015 at 4:22PM

Director, DOP, Writer, Editor, Producer

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