Padcaster was the first truly complete device to attach an iPad to a tripod, with cold-shoes for accessories and a lens mount. I first covered Padcaster at NAB 2012, and in 2013, I mentioned it within several articles. In December 2013, Jeff Foster published a review on a competing device called iOgrapher. This article will cover the unusual set of circumstances that followed Jeff’s review, and led to an unexpected migration.
Back in 2012…
Almost two years ago, I published several articles about this topic, including iPad video journalism comes of age at NAB 2012 (which covered The Padcaster mount among other things). Originally, the key photo in that article was of a gentleman who was using a Padcaster to shoot video at NAB, including his face. Even though at NAB 2012, he was happy to be photographed, he later became embarrassed to be seen using an iPad to shoot video, and he wrote to ProVideo Coalition’s editor shortly thereafter and requested that the photo be taken down, which it was, as a courtesy. His name will remain anonymous until further notice. As iPad videojournalism continues to flourish, I wouldn’t be surprised if he contacts us in the near future and asks us to put his photo back up, and be listed as one of the pioneers.
Much more recently, I published an article about the first dual-balanced audio input interface I became aware of for iPad, the Duo-Capture EX from Roland and a microphone comparison test via that same interface, both done using my friend María’s Padcaster using her 4th generation iPad. In December 2013, Jeff Foster published his review on the iOgrapher, and I became intrigued about it, in general and because it was already available for the iPad Mini (and iPad Mini Retina). I mentioned the iOgrapher to a few friends. I was also intrigued when I saw an interview with David Basulto, the iOgrapher’s inventor, since David is a high school media teacher who reminded me so much of the one that —back in the 1980s— taught me how to edit 1/2“ open-reel EIAJ–1 format video ”linearly” using Sony AV–3650 recorders in my high-school’s Media Center. I knew that there had been a Kickstarter to create a Padcaster Mini, but unfortunately it did not reach its goal on time, since it got US$7,068 of its US$30,000 goal. However, ThePadcaster.com is already taking pre-orders for the new Padcaster for iPad Air (i.e. the 5th generation of the full-sized iPad, launched by Apple on October 22, 2013), which uses the same frame with a different rubber insert.
I had no idea about it at the time, but as it turns out, while I was mentioning the iOgrapher to friends in December after discovering it in Jeff Foster’s review, David Basulto was suffering from the same exact technical problem as professional editor Manuela Santana:
Footage shot with FilMiC Pro was giving both of them terrible lip sync problems when edited with Premiere Pro CS6, which I covered in Why Manuela returned to FCP after loving Premiere Pro CS6? in November 2013. Back then, I didn’t know David Basulto, and he didn’t know me or my articles. Frustrated by the lip sync issues, David asked an Apple Engineer friend he knows how he could solve this problem. The Apple Engineer sent David a link to my Manuela article; David then tried Final Cut Pro X for the first time, and his lip sync issues from FiLMiC Pro footage disappeared immediately. David was so happy that he contacted me; we exchanged a few emails, and he graciously sent me two iOgraphers: one Mini (since he knew that I am on the verge of acquiring an iPad Mini Retina in order to review other products), and one large one for María’s 4th generation iPad, which he had seen in a picture in the Manuela article.
The photo of María with her 4th generation iPad mounted in a Padcaster, first published in my Manuela article
María’s comparison and migration
Just after the two iOgraphers landed in Miami, María and I got together at one of our favorite cafés, and she compared the iOgrapher with the Padcaster she had been using earlier. Her response (translated to English) was:
The empty Padcaster weighs much more than the entire combination of the iPad together with the iOgrapher!
The difference in weight that María observed is due to the fact that the Padcaster is made out of metal with a rubber insert, while the iOgrapher is made out of ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene). According to Wikipedia’s article:
ABS combines the strength and rigidity of acrylonitrile and styrene polymers with the toughness of polybutadiene rubber. While the cost of producing ABS is roughly twice the cost of producing polystyrene, it is considered superior for its hardness, gloss, toughness, and electrical insulation properties. Source: here.
María also commented that she likes the handles on the iOgrapher. She found it so light (compared to her prior experience with the Padcaster) that she could actually shoot with it with one hand…
…but uses two for better stability in her very few handheld shots. Most she does with her tripod.
María found it much quicker and easier to insert and remove her iPad from the iOgrapher than her prior experience with the Padcaster, after seeing David Basulto’s QuickStart video
Shortly thereafter, she sold her Padcaster and is now happily shooting with the iOgrapher.
Jeff Foster’s reviews on both products
Jeff Foster, who is also a frequent writer for ProVideo Coalition magazine, has published detailed reviews on both products:
- Product Review: The Padcaster & Lenscaster October 2012 by Jeff Foster
- Product Review: iOgrapher for iPad/iPad Mini December 2013 by Jeff Foster
I consider Jeff’s reviews to be required reading material for anyone who is considering either product. As of publishing time of this article, if you want a device for iPads 2/3/4, it could be either product. If you want something for iPad Mini or iPad Mini Retina, it will need to be exclusively iOgrapher, and if you want something for iPad Air, it’s exclusively Padcaster.
Recent articles related to iPad videojournalism
- iOS 7 expands digital USB audio use with iPhone/iPod Touch from January 7, 2014
- RØDE Rec audio app for iOS has come a long way from January 8, 2014
- Five iOS-capable, dual-input balanced>USB audio interfaces compared from January 11, 2014
Upcoming articles, reviews, and books
Stand by for upcoming articles, reviews, and books. Sign up to my free mailing list by clicking here.
Si deseas suscribirte a mi lista en castellano, visita aquí. Si prefieres, puedes suscribirte a ambas listas (castellano e inglés).
My latest book (paperback + ebook)
My most recent book is available in two languages, and in paperback as well as an ebook. The ebook format is Kindle, but even if you don’t have a Kindle device, you can read Kindle books on many other devices using a free Kindle app. That includes iPad, Android tablets, Mac computers, and Windows computers. Although generally speaking, Kindle books are readable on smartphones like Androids and iPhones, I don’t recommend it for this particular book since it contains both color photos and color comparison charts. The ebook is also DRM-free.
In English, it is currently available in the following Amazon stores, depending upon your region:
- Amazon.com, for the US and other countries in the Americas that don’t currently have their own Amazon store, or anywhere if you simply prefer it
- Amazon.br for Brazil
- Amazon.ca for Canada
- Amazon.de for Germany
- Amazon.es for Spain pero a lo mejor lo preferirás en castellano, a continuación)
- Amazon.fr for France
- Amazon.in for India
- Amazon.it for Italy
- Amazon.co.jp for Japan
- Amazon.com.mx for México
- Amazon.co.uk for the United Kingdom
Or in your favorite bookstore by requesting ISBN–10: 1456310232 or ISBN–13: 978–1456310233.
En castellano, está disponible actualmente en las siguientes tiendas Amazon, según tu región:
- Amazon.com para EE.UU. y todas las Américas donde no existe ninguna tienda particular… o en cualquier parte si simplemente lo prefieres
- Amazon.com.br para Brasil
- Amazon.co.jp para Japón
- Amazon.de para Alemania
- Amazon.es para España
- Amazon.fr (Francia)
- Amazon.in para India
- Amazon.it para Italia
- Amazon.com.mx para México
- Amazon.co.uk para el Reino Unido
o en tu librería preferida al solicitar el ISBN–10: 1492783390 ó el ISBN–13: 978–1492783398.
Allan Tépper’s other books, consulting, articles, seminars & audio programs
Contact Allan Tépper for consulting, or find a full listing of his books, articles and upcoming seminars and webinars at AllanTepper.com. Listen to his TecnoTur program, which is now available both in Castilian (aka “Spanish”) and in English, free of charge. Search for TecnoTur in iTunes or visit TecnoTur.us for more information.
No manufacturer is specifically paying Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC to write this article or the mentioned books. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs.
Copyright and use of this article
The articles contained in the TecnoTur channel in ProVideo Coalition magazine are copyright Allan Tépper/TecnoTur LLC, except where otherwise attributed. Unauthorized use is prohibited without prior approval, except for short quotes which link back to this page, which are encouraged!