The ProductionHUB Holiday Gift Guide: Part 2

Published on in Equipment / Tech Reviews

We had such an overwhelming response to the original holiday gift guide, that I just had to come up with even more holiday gift goodness. So, for the first time ever, may I present the ProductionHUB Holiday Gift Guide: Part 2. 

Keep on reading for some more incredible gift ideas along with additional input from ProductionHUB's very own Mike Valinsky, as well as some other highly respected (and familiar!) production professionals.

NUUN Sport Hydration Tablets

This first gift idea comes from one of the hardest working, talented individuals in the business, DP Jendra Jarnagin. Here is what she had to say about staying hydrated: “I recommend electrolyte powders or tablets you can add to your water, it makes a huge difference on set.”

Most of us know that getting dehydrated on the job isn't something you want to experience. We could all do a better job at hydrating long before the first shot. It's also important to stay hydrated all day, especially on those busy crazy days. We put our bodies through a lot so why not start the list with a gift to take care of yourself and your crew.

  • You can find pre-workout, caffeine options and immune function.
  • 1 tube contains 10 tabs – 1 tablet for 16 oz water
  • Flavors: Citrus Fruit, Fruit Punch, Grape, Lemon-Lime, Orange, Strawberry Lemonade, Tri-Berry, Tropical, Watermelon
  • Very light taste
  • 1 gram Stevia Leaf Extract
  • No Artificial Colors or Flavors, Non-GMO

Digital Cinema Society Annual Subscription

The Digital Cinema Society is a nonprofit educational cooperative dedicated to the industry’s informed integration of new technology. Formed in 2003 as an outgrowth of a pro bono documentary on the subject of Digital Cinema, they now have an international membership nearing 7,000 with thousands of followers on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  

They also count some of the top filmmaking, technology, and business leaders in the Entertainment Industry among their membership. Academy Award winners to aspiring Filmmakers, Educators, and Students are joined by artists from every production and post discipline including Cinematographers, Editors, Producers, Directors, leading Technologists, and top management from Manufacturers, Studios, Exhibitors, and Networks.

Godfather 50th Anniversary in 4K (UHD)

Another great staff suggestion. What better way to sit back and relax than with one of the greatest films of all time. It’s a brand-new box set and it includes the first two Godfather films, the original theatrical cut of The Godfather Part III, Mario Puzo's THE GODFATHER CODA: The Death Of Michael Corleone, and a ton more special features! A definite must-buy for that production person that can’t get enough of the classics.

American Cinematographer Magazine 1-year subscription

This is a great gift for anyone who loves the cinema. I consider American Cinematographer Magazine to be one of the best sources to find out what’s really going on in the wonderful world of cinematic production. American Cinematographer is the industry's leading journal of film and digital production techniques. First published by the American Society of Cinematographers in 1920, the magazine continues to offer readers valuable access to the world's finest filmmakers. I am always ready to go shoot my next production after reading! American Cinematographer Magazine is simply a must for this list!

Every month you can look forward to in-depth interviews with cinematographers and their collaborators about projects that include major Hollywood features, independent films, foreign films, television productions, music videos, commercials and short films. 

Cinebag CB01 Production Bag 20th Anniversary Edition Midnight Black

I love this classic Cinebag production bag for its simplicity and because you can’t kill these things short of running it over with a tank. Whichever version you choose, you will soon understand why production professionals go with Cinebag. (hint: they love it)

The CB01 Production Bag has been a staple for the camera department on sets around the world as in forever. The four removable pouches make it a great solution for camera assistants, grips, gaffers, or just about anybody who likes to be organized on the set.

The CB01 Production is a versatile bag on productions and is a staple in many camera departments around the world. It is a perfect solution for all your camera assistant tools as well as a great gear bag to store your camera accessories like monitors, rods, base plates, follow focus, or mattebox. 

OWC Thunderbolt Dock

I must have an extra clean workspace whether on location, in the studio, or the postproduction suite. Nothing is worse than a pile of spaghetti for cables. Which is why I lean on OWC to keep things in order. The OWC Thunderbolt Dock is my go-to when I want to keep everything neat and organized. 

It’s all the Thunderbolt you’ve always wanted by adding more speed and more fully functional Thunderbolt ports to your computer. It has the same Thunderbolt device compatibility whether plugged into this dock or directly into your machine and you can manage additional devices: Connect more storage, up to two 4K displays or one 5K/6K/8K display, and accessories. Expand the functionality of your port-limited Apple M1 Mac, Apple 'Intel' Mac with Thunderbolt 3, or any Thunderbolt 4 PC with the OWC Thunderbolt Dock. Gain convenient access to portable gear, headphones, and SD cards. Add your favorite Thunderbolt and USB devices. You can even connect Gigabit Ethernet networking for your workflow. If you are the proverbial neat freak, you’ll want this.

SMALLHD ACTION 5 Touchscreen On-Camera Monitor

If you're going to be shooting at a high level, you need a really good monitor that you can plunk on top of your camera. This 5” inch monitor from Small HD fits the bill so well. With a really bright screen and a load of features, you just might not take it off your set up.

For me, in bright sunlight, I have to have a screen I can see with no time to mess around. Even though I happen to normally go with like a 7” inch monitor, I think this 5” inch touchscreen monitor will more than do the trick for most shooters. It’s also pretty light as well, coming in at a half a pound. Packed with visual aid features, such as focus assist, false color, and frame tool, I think the Action 5 is a solid value and won’t disappoint.

FUJIFILM X-H2 Mirrorless Camera

Living in beautiful Rhode Island, there are many awesome wildlife sanctuaries that beg to be shot, a scant half hour away. That’s where the Fujifilm X-H2 shows up. The X-H2 has the feature set that make it one of the most versatile cameras currently available in the market. I can shoot stills and also have 4K 60p and 8K 30p internal recording. The X-H2 has an impressive video system capable of 4:2:2 10-bit internal recording in 8K at 30fps and in both DCI/UHD 4K at up to 60 fps and Full HD at up to 240p. A variety of codecs are supported as well, including H.265 and three tiers of ProRes: the high bitrate 422 HQ, the standard 422, and the more compressed 422 LT. Continuous recording times up to 160 minutes are possible at all frame rates and resolutions and can be extended to 240 minutes with the external clip-on fan. This is truly an awesome feature for me since I have this bad habit of overshooting.

TimelapsePlus View Intervalometer

This gift idea comes straight from my friend Curtis Pair. If you are like me, you tend to have a whole bunch of things going on during a shoot. If I can eliminate any extra things, I am all in. The VIEW is an advanced intervalometer designed for high-end timelapse cinematography. Press start and let it automatically follow the changes in light from day to night and even back again, no need to fuss with settings or monitor it along the way. The results are significantly better and smoother than the camera's aperture priority mode since by analyzing each image it can achieve a proper exposure for the Milky Way even when ramping from noon sun, while at the same time ignoring sudden changes such as from headlights.

Sony C-80 Uni Directional Condenser Microphone

I am always on the lookout for new sound gear, and I think Sony might have hit my sweet spot. I just like gear that one can use for more than one type of project. Sony just announced a new microphone for professional home studios, the C-80, a Uni-directional condenser microphone they say is ideal for vocal/voice recording, instrumental recording, vlogging, webcasting and podcasting. Utilizing the microphone capsule derived from the C-100 and a two-part metallic anti-vibrational body structure used in the C-800G, the C-80 inherits the essence of these two industry standard models.

Panasonic LUMIX GH6

There are a lot of very good cameras in this category. Having shot and reviewed The LUMIX GH6, this may be one of my absolute favorites. The GH6 fits in a really nice pocket of making great videos without being too heavy or too complicated. In other words, the GH6 is a camera that has a familiar form factor and you or the person you gift it to will be able to shot some nice footage right out of the box. Internal recording in Apple ProRes 422 HQ and 422 delivers high image quality at low compression. The Panasonic GH6 could end up being the perfect gift for just about every level of shooting experience.

AJA ColorBox

Whether you are building out your first “big boy” production workflow or working on important upgrades, the AJA ColorBox might be at the top of the list. AJA ColorBox from AJA is a compact, high-performance converter for color managed workflows designed to specifically meet the conversion needs of broadcast, live events, and on-set applications.  Supporting Standard Dynamic Range (SDR), High Dynamic Range (HDR), and Wide Color Gamut (WCG) signals, it utilizes 12G-SDI and HDMI 2.0 for single wire 4K/UltraHD HDR up to 4:2:2 10-bit 60p or 4:4:4 12-bit 30p with a unique color processing pipeline. One can also manage color processing options via the web user interface which can be accessed directly from a wired Ethernet connection or through a wireless connection via a third-party WiFi USB. 

Canon EOS R5/RF5.2mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye Lens

Now, creators can go from traditional stills or video shooting to stereoscopic 3D capture with a simple lens swap. The pairing of this lens and the EOS R5 camera brings high resolution video recording at up to 8K DCI 30p and 4K DCI 60p. With a beautifully engineered folded optical design, the dual high-performance L-series fisheye lenses combine imagery onto a single image sensor delivering impressive results to a single file. An integral part of the EOS VR System, Canon's EOS VR Utility software can easily convert footage to your choice of editing software. For Adobe® Premiere Pro® users, the EOS VR Plug-in software can help streamline your editing process.

With this lens paired with an EOS R5 camera, creatives, industry professionals and newcomers to VR can create an immersive experience, capturing dynamic scenes for entertainment, tourism, training and education, real estate, storytelling or anywhere you want to bring your audience to.

Laowa Nanomorph 27mm T2.8, 35mm T2.4, and 50mm T2.4

Another solid suggestion from my good friend and associate Curtis Pair out of Arizona and he speaks very highly of these lenses. I’ve always wanted to shoot anamorphics as well but have been dissuaded by either the size of anamophics, the price to buy or rent or both. These anamorphics are going to change that. One of the world's smallest Anamorphic lenses - Nanomorph 27mm T2.8, 35mm T2.4, and 50mm T2.4 is a pretty good range and the 1.5x front anamorphic design delivers distinguished cinematic widescreen characteristics, horizontal flares and squeezed bokeh. Mirrorless mounts and PL/EF mounts are available. Check it out at: https://bit.ly/3AR3dtj Pretty impressive.

There you have it. The ProductionHUB Gift Guide: Part 2. Whether you snag a few of these items for yourself this holiday, or gift them to the production lover in your life, you can't go wrong. Happy shopping! 

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About the Author

Mark Foley
Mark Foley
Mark J. Foley, MBA BA is an award-winning producer and director and the Technology Editor for ProductionHUB.com. He is on a mission to provide the best in new equipment reviews, along with exclusive analysis and interviews with the best, the brightest, and the most creative minds in the entertainment and production business. Have a suggestion for a review? Email Mark at mfoley@productionhub.com.

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