Selecting the right camera system
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The choice of the right camera system depends on the types of images you wish to capture. We would like to introduce you to the different camera systems here:
Shotover camera systems
For your filming flights we can use the latest Shotover camera systems of various types. Whether for high resolution 3D Panorama shots from the helicopter or breath-taking action videos from a drone, Shotover has the right camera system for every filming flight.
The US Manufacturer Shotover has revolutionised the market for camera mounts with its new generation K1 camera system. Thanks to its six-axis gyro stabilisation the Shotover K1 delivers shake-free aerial footage of brilliant image quality in either 2D or 3D and with a resolution of up to 8K.
This open system is compatible with almost all cameras and allows cameras and lenses to be changed quickly. We can use the Shotover K1 with the popular RED, Arri, Sony, Canon and Phantom camera models and many others, according to your requirements. Even in extreme outside temperatures of -22 to +50 degrees Celsius, the K1 is able to support perfect aerial photography and filming flights. The innovative ultra-lightweight carbon fibre construction also comes without front glass for windowless operation, doing away with annoying reflections. As easy as it is ingenious!
The Shotover F1 is another open architecture system that is compatible with a wide variety of cameras and lenses. For aerial shoots with Shotover F1, we can use current RED, Arri, Sony, Canyon or Phantom cameras, as well as those of other manufacturers, according to the client's requirements. The F1 camera system is six-axis gyro-stabilised and allows impressive aerial shots at a resolution of up to 6K.
The continuous 360-degree pan capability as well as an inclination angle of 195 degrees deliver outstanding panoramic aerial footage. Shotover F1 can be mounted on most FAA and EASA certified helicopters and scores points for its compact dimensions and low weight, thanks to its carbon fibre construction.
Small but powerful: the Shotover G1 is a lightweight, weatherproof, gyro-stabilised camera system that combines the highest levels of stability with ultimate flexibility. It is ideal for aerial photography, for example, footage of racing cars or off-road vehicles in action. The Shotover G1 can be attached to all kinds of vehicles – from motorcycles to helicopters – anything is possible. The camera system allows the use of many popular RED, Arri, Sony, Canyon or Phantom cameras (and others). Like all Shotover camera systems, G1 can be used in ambient temperatures of -22 to +50 degrees Celsius.
The most cost-effective version of a photography or filming flight involves the removal of the side door of the helicopter. This allows the cameraman to take aerial video footage or aerial photographs from inside the helicopter using his own camera. The advantages of this option include the low cost and high level of flexibility, as small and therefore inexpensive helicopters can be used for these flights. If desired, all the seats in the helicopter can be used by other passengers as no technology needs to be installed in the interior.
Therefore, we can ensure that the helicopter is ready for take-off within only a few minutes. The high level of flexibility and the relatively low cost mean that this option is often chosen by news channels for urgent breaking news assignments.
Tyler Side Mount
The use of a professional Tyler Side Mount system guarantees shake-free shots thanks to its three-axis gyro-stabilisation. This stabilisation system is compatible with many current camera models. Examples are Digibeta or Sony EX1 and similar models.
For the installation of this Tyler mount system the side door of the helicopter is removed, and the camera bracket is attached to the hinges of the door frame. Depending on the size of the model, the whole back seat of the helicopter may need to be removed when installing the system.
Cineflex V14 HD
The nose or side mounted Cineflex is the most up to date camera system and delivers absolutely shake free and smooth HD recordings even at maximum zoom. The Cineflex can be mounted on the nose or side of the helicopter and controlled from inside the helicopter by a trained operator. The installation of the camera system takes about two hours, but this effort certainly pays off as any type of filming is possible.
The Cineflex even allows perfect footage to be taken at speeds of up to 300 km per hour. Thanks to its 360-degree camera rotation and a tilt of up to 195 degrees it provides the ideal aerial and panoramic shots. Even outside temperatures of -20 to + 45 degrees Celsius are no problem for this camera system.
Recordings can be made with the HD cam, HD cam SR, NanoFlash recorder, Cinedeck, XD-Cam or Blu-ray. The Cineflex is typically used for air to ground shots and air to air shots, as well for circling buildings, car chases or other pursuit scenes, sports events and landscape shots.
The Tyler Minigyro system was designed to meet the increasing demand for cost-effective camera mounts. This stabilisation system for ground and aerial photography, developed by the well-known manufacturer of the Tyler side mount, makes it possible to achieve relatively smooth and stable shots inexpensively.
One important advantage of the Tyler Minigyro is that you can use your own camera and thus achieve almost the same look on the ground as in the air at affordable prices. The compact dimensions of the stabilisation system, as well as the adjustable tilt head (for shooting up or down), which is operated by rotating variable position handles, enable flexible and dynamic camera work.
The stabilising function of the Tyler Minigyro is biaxial via opposing Kenyon K-8 gyros powered by a separate battery pack. In addition, a specially developed shock tube is used to absorb the resulting vibrations and thus provides additional stability. When using the Minigyro it should be noted that a start-up time of approximately 20 to 30 minutes is required until the gyros have reached their final speed and therefore their full stabilising capacity.
The Flight Head is mounted on the nose of the helicopter via a Mitchell mount and so allows a variety of shots that are not possible using a side mounted camera system. The three-axis gyro stabilisation and the head which rotates 360 degrees ensure steady images and a high level of flexibility.
The whole system is operated by a cameraman inside the helicopter, either using a joystick or hand wheels. The Flight Head is compatible with almost all professional camera systems. Mounting the system on the helicopter takes about 60 to 90 minutes.
The Stab-C Compact fulfils the highest demands in the production of lavish cinema and promotional films. The five-axis gyro-stabilised Stab-C accommodates camera systems such as the Arri or RED, among others. This means that the look that you create on the ground will also be maintained in your aerial shots.
Similar to the operation of the Cineflex system, the Stab-C Compact is operated from inside the helicopter by an experienced operator. As the calibration depends on the particular camera being used, and the system needs to be balanced precisely, you need to factor in about four to five hours to fit the Stab-C onto the helicopter. Of course, as with all film flights, the director or cameraman can fly with the operator, directing the shoot according to his or her wishes.
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Our photography and film experts will gladly advise you on the selection of the best camera system for your project and, if desired, can produce a free non-binding quotation for you. Contact us 24 hours a day: