Generally speaking, VCK blog posts center around the challenges freelance creatives face in dealing with the bureaucracy and politics of the contest genre. And for the most part that will continue, but since I am a full time boutique production studio, who stays quite busy creating for contests and clients alike, I thought I might include a few blogs about the challenges you and I face knocking out the nuts-and-bolts logistics of producing content for these brands.
The ideas for these blogs will more often than not probably come from you guys, the reader, and/or friends in the industry. Invariably it seems you guys are always providing me valuable information and/or asking very good questions about the business, which usually require me to do a bit of learning myself.
Recently, Danny Winn, (an uber, uber talented creative and good friend), was asking me some questions relative to the Canon 7D and 5D. I thought I would share with him a recent problem I discovered with the Canon camera(s) and how I remedied it. This post is intended to share that information with the kingdom.
Canon HDMI Port Problems
Anyone who works with the Canon 7D or Canon 5D will share the frustration with the flimsiness of the HDMI chain and how it can create down time on the set when it either pulls out completely or yanks enough to cause a signal break to the monitor requiring a re-set of the image on the monitor. Aside from the aggravation, with the client on the set this can be very embarrassing, especially if it happens 10 times a day. The most important issue however is the integrity of the female port on the Canon cameras. It is not that beefy and I observed that it was actually getting a little loose on my Canon 7D.
Yes I always have a back-up camera when I shoot, but even so,…who wants to have to rent a backup while they send one of their Canon’s off for a costly HDMI port repair……I don’t see any hands raised, good, let’s continue.
Below are pics of how I jimmy-rigged and color coded my cameras with gaffer tape and $10 HDMI mini>standard adapters. In this way, the HDMI cable will be ripped/wiggled/yanked from the $10 adapter, and not the HDMI Canon port.
I’m aware my modification is not the most aesthetic, but this does not bother me. I have always put functionality above aesthetics. Even if the gaffer’s tape leaves tape residue, it matters little to me, as I will most likely work these camera(s) to a state that renders their re-sale value moot in any case. As a wedding photographer for almost two decades, I modified all of my equipment to provide the most reliable streamlined performance, freeing me up to think about the bride and the groom, not my sync cord. As a frame of reference, for those of you who know about strobes/flashes, I went through 8 (eight) Norman 400B flash units and about 20 batteries in my career. None of them looked pretty when I was done with them. It’s just the cost of doing business. I think we always need to measure how much importance we give to equipment, vs the content they are intended to assist us in creating. “Tools are meant to be used, and if necessary, abused, in pursuit of quality”. [VCK 2/15/11].
An old saying I subscribe to:
“If you can’t afford to get em’ muddy….don’t strap em’ on“
One day I hope Canon or a related 3rd party innovator comes up with a better solution. In the meantime this will have to get me by. If anyone out there knows of a better solution, I am all eyes and ears.
Below are the pics of the mods I made. You may click on them to see a higher resolution image. Note the strength of the mod as represented by the pics of the camera being supported by holding on to just the adapter. BTW, both of the battery grips are loaded with batteries.
Click HERE to check out one of the sites were you can buy the adapter.
BTW: If you get a minute you should go to Danny Winns Youtube channel
This guy is multi-talented and very cool to chat with.
Enjoy the pics.