Genus Matte Box, Rails and Shoulder mount on PMW-F3

DSCF9051-1024x576 Genus Matte Box, Rails and Shoulder mount on PMW-F3
Genus kit fitted to an F3

So here is my current set up. As you may know Genus are making the 3D rig that I designed, so I get to play with the latest Genus bits and pieces. This is my F3 with a pre-production universal riser and base plate. The base plate will fit most camcorders and incorporates mounts for a pair of 15mm rails. Up front I have a Genus Wide 4×4 matte box. I’m really pleased with this light weight matte box with added top flag, it is a good match for the Nikon DSLR lenses that I will be using and is much, much lighter than my old Petroff matte box. It fits lenses up to 105mm  diameter so I will need a bigger matte box for many PL mount lenses (and bigger filters) perhaps I’ll get one of those nice TLS Raven Matte Boxes. For smaller lenses though the Genus 4×4 is really nice. Behind the matte box I have a Genus Superior follow focus. This is a silky smooth FF unit and on this lens it’s driving one of Genus’s clever flexible lens gears. This is a little bit like a hose clip, a thumb screw tightens it up so that it fastens snuggly around the lens. It will fit a much larger range of lenses than a traditional rigid lens gear.  The lens in the pictures is a Tokina ATX-Pro 28-70mm parfocal zoom. This is a great lens, plenty sharp enough for HD video and it doesn’t telescope when you zoom. Breathing is minimal. To match the lens to the camera there is one of Mike Tapas (MTF) excellent Nikon to F3 adapters.

DSCF9055-300x168 Genus Matte Box, Rails and Shoulder mount on PMW-F3
Genus hand grips and Follow Focus

Underneath the lens I have a pair of hand grips from the Genus shoulder mount kit. The shoulder pad is right at the back behind the camera. For a little bit of extra convenience I have a Genus GAP adapter plate that allows me to use a quick release VCT-14 tripod plate.

The only thing left to sort is a loupe for the LCD screen. I’ve experimented with a Hoodman DSLR loupe that I have and this almost works. It doesn’t cover the full width of the LCD, but does allow me to use the LCD as a viewfinder when using this shoulder rig. I guess I need to get the Hoodman Hood Riser and Hood Strap to make the loupe fit the LCD correctly. I’ve read elsewhere that it does not fit the F3, but my experiments with the loupe alone suggests it will fit. Anyone else tried it yet? I’d rather go this route than getting a Cineroid viewfinder.

The tripod is a Manfrotto 509. This one of their new silky smooth “bridge” style heads. The 509 is a mid weight head with a pretty high payload capability, true fluid action and variable counter balance. I’m going do a separate write up on the tripod, it’s really rather good, especially considering the price!

12 thoughts on “Genus Matte Box, Rails and Shoulder mount on PMW-F3”

    1. It’s the same LCD panel as the EX1/EX3.

      That’s one of the problems with using a magnifier on any LCD. I’ve seen quite a few damaged C30 and C35W viewfinders that have been left pointing towards the sun for a few minutes. It doesnt take much. What you need is the old style shutters that open when you push your eye against the eyecup that film cameras have to prevent fogging the film.

  1. I can highly recommend the Cineroid EVF for both the AF101 and the F3. Sony were sleeping when they produced this camera and the EVF is poor. If you are going to bring out shallow depth of field camcorders to compete with RED etc, you would think they would have taken a leaf out of REDs book and given us a decent viewfinder for critical focus.

    1. Going to have to get a cineroid. The hoodman EX1 Loupe does fit and works very well, it’s just that the LCD hinge does not feel very substantial so not sure about adding extra weight and pressure via the hoodman.

  2. I just configured a similar set up with a Vocas rig. I consider having a custom piece made that somehow holds an EX3 viewfinder (the detachable piece) over the LCD of the F3 … or maybe at
    NAB SONY releases some extra accessories … the groove at the top of the F3 LCD invites some accessory to clip on … doesn’t it ? Practical question … when I use my similar rig for shoulder shoot I really feel the need for some start/stop rec button on the right handle bar … does anybody know of an accessory that possible works in conjunction with the 8 pin remote connector on the F3?
    By the way … love the camera … DOF is just a pleasure to work with …

  3. Hi Alister. Great looking rig. Out of interest what is that shoulder brace comprised of? I have been trying to get hold of a good one but the only ones I can find have the offset DSLR style bracket. I am just after a simple straight rig.

    1. The mount uses a pre-production Genus universal base plate with standard 15mm rails. The base plate is not available just yet but will be out by NAB. Genus are also producing a full shoulder mount kit for video cameras, again available by NAB.

    1. Hi Dylan. The Genus universal riser and base plate is not available yet. As soon as it becomes available I’ll let you know. In the mean time you can use the Genus GMB/A for matte box mounting, but not shoulder pad.

  4. Hi Alister,
    We have the Tokina 28-700mm. Mechanically it’s about the best SLR zoom you can get, but it’s completely soft and bloomy when wide open. You need to be at f4, and preferably f5.6. Is this your experience too, or we just have a lemon?

    1. Yes, sadly they can be a little soft wide open. But, then so are most zooms to some degree. I just find it hard to work with telescoping lenses for video. If I want very wide apertures I tend to use primes anyway, but the Tokina is a great all rounder. What’s needed is the mechanics of the older Tokina with modern optics.

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