PhotoCine EXPO 2010 Wrap-up

by planetmitch2 Comments

We're not finished with posting videos and interviews from the Expo, but we thought we should get out our wrap-up of the PhotoCine EXPO 2010. Here are the notes I made during the trip as well as some additional videos and blog posts that have been made by others. Please let us know if you're enjoying our coverage! We sure had fun visiting with everyone at the expo!

Redrock Micro

First, please check out Tito's (@radraven on twitter) photoCine Expo post!
– it covers only day 1 so far, but is very complete – and he covers sessions that I didn't attend.
Friday, Sept 24:

The photoCine EXPO and the planet5D opening breakfast are just hours away (and I'm awake way too early, but that's a whole other story).

The trip into Los Angeles was mostly uneventful, but with about 3 minutes left to go in the ride from the airport to the hotel in a shuttle things got interesting.

A woman right behind me received a phone call. She was talking about budgets on a TV commercial she was working on and then the conversation switched to a new commercial. Not hearing the other side of the chat is frustrating at times, but her side was interesting to me. Right as we got to my hotel, she asked the person on the other end what kind of equipment they are planning to use… “Red? Why Red? Why not use the 5D? It is so much easier to use.” And then it was time for me to leave so i didn't hear the rest.

So, on the eve of the best HDLSR conference of the year, I get a real hint of how revolutionary the HDSLRs (especially the Canon EOS 5D Mark II) have been. Even on a random hotel shuttle, you can now hear a conversation about HDSLRs!


Monday, Sept 27:

So… Jump forward to monday… I'm on a plane on the way home from the expo and i'm exhausted and excited. I met so many wonderful people while at the expo and reconnected with folks i knew from the last one. Plus it was so much fun hosting the opening breakfast! My thanks also go out to Brian from Redrock Micro and Richard from Zeiss for helping to sponsor!

At the breakfast, i learned something interesting about planet5D, even tho we're one of the top sites in the HDSLR space, there are lots and lots of people who haven't heard of us yet! Now, what does that tell us? My take is that means that there's still a huge open market and that interest in HDSLRs is still growing.

After the breakfast, i spent the rest of the day visiting with attendees as well as the hoard of vendors at the expo… chatting and asking questions – trying to gauge where interest is and what the vendors are working on.

As you've seen from the Redrock microEVF announcement, and you'll see from some of the other videos i'm going to post, theres a lot of equipment coming out now for the HDSLR market. These guys wouldn't be working on these things if they didn't think the market was still expanding either.

There was lots of buzz about the new Redrock microEVF electronic viewfinder after it was announced. This should fill an empty slot in the accessory market for filmmakers. And the great thing is that it isn't just for the Canons… it will work on any HDSLR (and yes even video cameras) that has an HDMI out.

The Jag35 brothers Garcia were there showing off a new LCD viewfinder and quite a few rig options. Their new viewfinder is somewhat unique in that it doesn't require you to put your eye in an eye cup to see the LCD. And they claim it is easily visible outdoors as well.

We'll have more posts coming with interviews from Zeiss, Redrock, Lite Panels, CamCaddie, Canon Bootcamp, and more.

Faces of PhotoCine Expo by Dailey Pike

We found this on the photoCine News site.

Faces Of PhotoCine Expo 2010 from Dailey Pike on Vimeo.

Faces of the DSLR PhotoCine Expo 2010, shot (naturally) on a DSLR, the Canon 5D Mark II

As for the seminars, I attended very few. Not because they didn't interest me, but because I was gathering the news and meeting people. As they say, networking is critical and I was doing the most I could while there. There were also several planet5D friends there who will be adding their own blog reports and hopefully we'll get some coverage of the seminars. I did constantly ask folks what they thought of the expo and the unanimous answer was that it was a very good to excellent learning experience.

Of course, I did attend the two keynotes by Shane Hurlbut and Vincent Laforet and I managed to get in on the tail end of the Rodney Charters presentation.

The highlight for me (and for several others that I talked with) was the Shane Hurlbut presentation. Shane is like a motivational speaker. He really gets your blood pumping with his enthusiasm for HDSLR movie making. Is the HDSLR the only tool in Shane's arsenal? No, but he's embraced it for much of his work – and it is proving to help him win jobs that traditional film makers who aren't embracing the movement are losing. Shane used one example where he bid on a 60 second commercial for the armed services (I think it was the Marines) and the lowest bid from the other suppliers was $1.3 million and that was for 8 days of shooting – and Shane's Elite Team bid was $400k for 5 weeks of shooting all around the world. Shane and his team are proving that a small team with HDSLRs can indeed produce equal quality for substantially less money than traditional efforts. At one point, he estimated that they had reduced the effort required to produce film by between 75 and 90%. They've created a ‘package' where they have 12-15 Canon HDLSRs and associated equipment (including a generator) that will fit in a small 1 ton truck – where as when he was working on Terminator Salvation, they had 5-6 large trucks. And seeing “The Last Three Minutes” on the huge screen at the LA Film School was a real treat! I saw things in there i'd never seen before on the small screen of my iMac.

Shane Hurlbut at the photocine expo - photo by planetMitch

One of the questions on several people's minds was ‘how long is this HDSLR going to be viable in the market?' It is a good question with all of the new cameras already announced (the GH2 and the AF 101 for example) and we're sure there's something new and exciting coming from Canon as well as Nikon. And depending on whom you ask, you'll get a different answer. Shane's belief is that they'll be around in some form for a long time. There's a lot to be said for being able to reduce budgets by 50-75% or more. Others believe it will be only 12-18 months before other form factors take over again.

Either way, i think that the HDLSR revolution is proving to be exciting and here at planet5D we'll be along for the ride reporting everything we can along the way!

I'm sure many of you would have liked to have been there and we hope we've given you plenty of the news and highlights (but as I said, we still have more videos to produce so keep watching planet5D!). So, will you be there next year?

(Photo credit: snap from the crazy Hollywood nightlife by planetMitch)

Zeiss Cinema Lenses


  1. Without knowing anything about Shane’s project, I find myself wondering whether shooting for 5 weeks for $400k vs $1.3 million for 8 days actually saved the military money. If you factor in the salaries and time of the military people who had to work with the filmmakers for 5 weeks, that really starts to add a massive hidden cost. But hey, if it reduces sticker shock for the client and gets you the gig, it’s a winner!

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