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New Firmware Upgrade for Ki Pro Mini

The new firmware upgrade from Aja for Ki Pro Mini V.2.6.0 is now available.  This upgrade fixes an existing problem with CUSTOM CLIP TAKE by removing this menu parameter altogether. What’s also good about this upgrade is that it adds new functionality by enabling the RED Epic, RED One and certain Canon XF cameras to pass metadata directly to Ki Pro Mini via a single SDI cable. The update is designed to streamline the workflow between Ki Pro Mini and REDs or Canon’s high-resolution imagery on set and in post. Zbigniew Twarog, Chief Engineer, twarog@rule.com

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New In The Showroom

Lots going on In The Showroom these days.  Much of it consists of rendering footage on the showroom comp and loading the new Adobe 5.5, Apple Final Cut X and updating our Avid.  If you’re not familiar with that software and are considering an upgrade, you should come by and ask us your questions. What we have in stock and ready to go is exciting. We’ve got lots of new Sennheiser headphones, tons of SxS, CF, SDHC, and P2 Cards, plenty of different speeds to fit whatever camera/recorder you are working on, custom Zacuto rigs, Canon lenses and DSLR’s, and…ta da…the Sony FS100 and F3 cameras (which, yes, we do have in stock… just raring to go and definitely ready to be your latest experience!). We’ll be running a sale on Ki Pro Mini’s, so if you attend any of our August Learning Labs, stop by the Showroom for a look-see!  This sale will only be running for a short time, so if this is something that you’ve been thinking about purchasing, please let us give you a quote.  We also have an interesting addition of Porta Brace bags. This is an experiment on my part–since it is easy to go online and see all sorts of bags that you are curious about, but, if you are like me and need to see it and touch it, well — now you can!  We have sack packs, Cable bags, small DSLR bags, airplane bags for traveling, backpacks, ect.  If there is something you’d really like to see in here, let me know! I’ll make it happen. Sincerely, Your Neighborhood Salesperson, Brooks

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Alexa and Alexa Plus Software Updates

We’re in the process of updating and evaluating the latest software for the Alexa and Alexa Plus. The most important new features for ALEXA and ALEXA Plus: • Custom looks through ARRI Look Files • Audio playback from SxS PRO cards • Auto white balance • Anamorphic de-squeeze in EVF-1 and on MON OUT (paid license feature) • Peaking focus check in EVF-1 and MON OUT • False color exposure check for Log C images • EVF ZOOM target position • Compare stored image from SD card with live image • RETURN IN video • Operating time counter • SD card formatting in camera • EVF ZOOM and EXP buttons are now latching • SxS recording can be turned off • More silent operation at higher ambient temperatures • ‘Rec Low’ fan mode for silent operation in extremely hot environments • V-mount battery adapter update The most important new features for ALEXA Plus: • Master/Slave lens motor control • 3D lens sync • Lens Data System (LDS) info display in EVF-1 and on MON OUT • Lens Data Archive (LDA) • Electronic level in EVF and MON OUT Dave Kudrowitz, Senior Engineer kudrow@rule.com

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Back from InfoComm!

It’s nice to be back in Massachusetts following the heat of Orlando at this year’s InfoComm Show.  The show was great and provided opportunities for learning new skills from other industry professionals, exposure to the cutting edge of what technologies are available now in AV installation and continuing positive relationships with manufacturers. This year’s show focused on a few things that we at Rule Boston Camera already do well.  There was talk about the move in our industry away from providing products and towards providing services.  We go into most of our jobs assuming that all of your perspective installers can get you the same equipment that we can.  What sets us apart needs to be our attention to detail and the ongoing relationship that we have in providing not only the gear you want but the “Engineering Services” you need. The product category that seemed to have some buzz behind it this year was digital signage.  I agree with many of the presenters at the show, that in the next year to three years, who is using digital signage, and how they are using it will change dramatically.  New products at a wide range of vertical markets and price points can meet this need.  It is our goal at Rule to ride this wave since we already started surfing it!  We will take what we have learned from our clients who are already running digital signage and from those running bulletin boards on their PEG stations in order to offer a full range of products along with our engineering expertise to find the right solution for each customer’s need. Each year at this show, I learn more and more of what else is out there.  I am looking forward to implementing much of what I saw and to returning next year to learn more of what I have not even thought of yet. Ian Tosh Director of Engineering Services

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Production Outfitters: Community Resource

Boston’s film community is a growing community, and there is no greater partner to that growth than Rule Boston Camera.  Inherent in the company is a drive and motivation to supply the film and video community with the latest and greatest — not only in cameras and support but with an eye on covering all of the bases of production equipment needs. Enter Production Outfitters, Rule Boston Camera’s resource for production and expendable needs.  At Production Outfitters–as a convenience to our customers–we strive to provide all of the little tools and supplies that might otherwise be overlooked. Ranging from gaff and camera tape to gels, Assistant Camera equipment, Hard Drives and memory cards for the latest digital cameras, Production Outfitters aims to be an expanding resource to our customers and to the ever-growing local industry. If you have any suggestions on what’s hot or new in the industry, call or email me and I’ll work to make these options available to you. Help us to help the Boston film community keep growing and shooting! Nick Giannino, Production Outfitters Store and Rental Agent giannino@rule.com.

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Sony FS100 Camera (NXCAM Super 35)

I got a look at the new Sony Super 35mm FS100 camera recently, and I was relatively impressed- especially when the lights were turned off and the gain was tuned slightly to reveal a fresh crisp picture, with skin tones and blacks intact. Granted, this was with a Sony E-Alpha mount and Zeiss 85mm lens with a 1.4 F-stop, but still…  It was music to my eyes.  With a price range of $5,800 list for body only, it’s not made to be the F3, but could easily serve as a B-camera.  Actually, the gain level is better than the F3. I’ll keep this short and sweet so that hopefully your questions are answered quickly: Inputs: Comp/RCA video (L, R) USB out (2) XLR, one on the back of the camera, one on the right side AVCHD, 28mbps remote LANC clean HDMI out w/ LCD setting in menu “turned on” 1080/60i/24p 720/60i Does not have: ND Filters iLINK Timecode Out 720/24p Special Features: Tripod screw inputs on both the bottom and side of the camera Ability to use the FMU128 hardrive (List $800) for 10 Hours nonstop footage LCD screen on TOP center of the camera, 180-degree turn angle Optional Viewfinder (same hardware as EX3) Expanded Focus button Auto Iris (with E-mount lens lens) Peaking Interesting — included hot shoe mounted mic holder, looks like a handle, fairly sturdy, I wouldn’t use it as a handle if I had a choice… which I do. You’ll likely see 3rd party handles start coming to market pretty soon. And finally: Adapters: Currently Available: NOVAFLEX- E-Nikon F MTF                E-Canon FD MTF                E-PL MTF                E-Nikon G (manual iris control on adapter) SONY              E-Alpha 16×9                 E- PL On their way: Birger Eng.    E-Canon EF Hotrod            E-PL These are expected around the time that the camera starts shipping June-July however nothing is set in stone (4) Sony E-mount lenses coming out this year, (3) more coming out next year The stock lens that comes with it is an F/3.5 Stop fully zoomed in. Michelle Brooks, Inside Sales Representative brooks@rule.com

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Martha’s Vineyard Film Festival 2011

It’s my favorite season again- Film Fest Time! Rule Boston Camera supports a number of film festivals in New England, one of them being the Martha’s Vineyard Film Fest, which was held from last Thursday to this past Sunday and was in one word — AWESOME.  It was extremely well organized and the most enjoyable one I’ve been to yet.  I was privileged to watch (3) films during my stay – “How to Die in Oregon”, addressing Doctor-assisted suicide, “I Am” by Director Tom Shadyac (Ace Ventura, Bruce Almighty) exploring the world’s greatest minds with deep questions and personal revelations, and “We Still Live Here,” about the Wampanoag Indian’s reviving their ancient language and making it a part of everyday life after over 100 years of silence.  Most films had Q&A afterward, which, to me, is one of the props of the FF’s — being able to hear insight on editing, shooting challenges, etc.  It was fun to see lots of people with Rule Boston Camera hats walking around, and much thanks to Molly Purves, who made my stay (and everyone else’s) comfortable and easy.  Free (good) catered food with the movies, so if you are thinking of going to this fest in the future, you are literally looking at a $16 ferry ticket, hotel and movie tickets. A fairly cheap weekend, if you ask me and well-worth the trip.  Next year should be interesting, as Martha’s Vineyard has expressed a desire to build a facility strictly for films.  Personally, I hope they keep the 12 couches in back of whatever they build because that may be the greatest decision to date. If you want to look at more, follow me on Twitter @michelle_brooks and @ruleboscam and see my opinion of the films this weekend. Michelle Brooks, Inside Sales Representative

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In The Showroom: PMW-F3, Ki-Pro Mini, Zeiss CP.2 & More!

I love the smell of fresh styrofoam and cardboard.  Especially since that’s all I’ve been smelling for the last 4 days as I open up a new PMW-F3, KiPro Mini, Pan. AF-100, Marshall HDMI 5″ monitor, Zeiss ZF.2’s (18, 28, 35, 50, 85mm), Zeiss CP.2 (28, 35mm). Not so bad. Pair these diesel items with some custom Zacuto rigs, which I’ve been building lately (and which are the equivalent of grown-up legos) and you’ve got a set-up made specifically for you.  These items are so new and so popular that they’re challenging enough to use successfully without being overrated.  We’ve been sending AF-100’s and F3’s out to high-end freelancers, art schools, film schools, and pro feature film production sets.  They fit in anywhere if you can take advantage of the features that they offer.  Rule has recently become a Zeiss dealer and we’re pairing the latest Zeiss lenses with many of our cameras along with the Canon lensing and optional stock lensing from both Sony and Panasonic.  I just recently used an 18mm ZF.2 with the 60D last weekend up in Maine, but that’s a blog post for another time! Some questions have recently come up about lensing options for these cameras, specifically the F3 and AF-100, and, luckily, we’ll have some answers at this Wednesday’s 3/2 Learning Lab when Birger Engineering visits with their new Canon 4/3 to EF adapter which will be out in April.    As the Spring goes on, you’ll see lots of new announcements pending NAB.  I’ve included some pictures below of the F3 with the Mini Ki-Pro and CP.2.  Enjoy! Also, stay tuned — Mike Sutton is taking the F3 out with a Zeiss CP.2 this weekend, and I’m sure you’ll see a blog post from him sometime soon! Michelle Brooks, Inside Sales Representative

Sony PMW-F3
Zeiss CP.2
Sony PMW-F3 with AJA Mini Ki-Pro & Zeiss CP.2

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In the Showroom: Sony EX1R & EX3 Savings!

With the recent influx of large sensor cameras with detachable lenses like Sony’s PMW-F3 and Panasonic’s AF-100, many people are wondering what the future holds for their PMW-EX1R or PMW-EX3 — both of which are only a few years old and still going strong.  Sony made adjustments around the new trend by offering a $300 rebate on the EX1R and a $500 rebate on the EX3 with great leasing options.  This isn’t meant to dwindle the EX inventory, however, and it’s not because the EX series is going out of style, but it’s meant to highlight the fact that both are still phenomenal cameras with great features.  In our Sales Showroom, we’ve seen lots of EX sales activity, and this special rebate offer from Sony is a great opportunity for savings. You won’t see a comparable camera like this from Sony anytime soon. Here’s a quick overview of some capabilities of the EX1R/EX3: 1/2″ sensor 1080p 24p HD-SDI 8-pin remote connection 2/3″ Lens Capability (EX3 Only) 2 XLR inputs Interchangeable Lens System (EX3 only) Dual SxS Express Card Slot 1/33 – 1/2000 shutter speed range Stop by the Showroom for more details. Michelle Brooks, Inside Sales Representative