Product Review: Genustech ScriptShade™ Mattebox

Portable Teleprompter & Professional Mattebox in one kit.

Genustech ScriptShade mounted with a Canon 6D MkII & Rokinon 35 Cine Prime.

Genustech ScriptShade™

I first saw a prototype of the ScriptShade™ at the Genustech booth at NAB this year and was immediately impressed with the concept! Being already familiar with Genustech hardware from earlier reviews here on PVC, I knew that this was going to be well-engineered and built solid.

All of the kit hardware out of the box looked familiar since I have a Genustech mattebox already, but this kit is portable and ready to assemble for use in the field or studio in minutes.

The rear opening of the ScriptShade is 105mm. The Mattebox accommodates lenses up to 95mm with the use of Nuns Knickers (optional – not included). For lenses with threads 86mm and under, attach the Adapter ring (and Step Up Ring if needed). If your lens has an outer thread of 86mm or less there is the additional choice of attaching the ScriptShade Mattebox using the clip-on-mode.

Converting from a regular mattebox rig to a teleprompter takes a bit longer than what’s stated on the Genustech website however. You will first have to remove the French Flag (if used) and install the beam-splitter glass, then adjust the rods to extend our far enough to add the two table/phone brackets and install your mobile device and align it for use. That all takes a bit more than 60 seconds unless you just leave it set-up all the time.

Genustech GI-SSKIT : ScriptShade (MSRP US$699.00)

What comes in the kit:

  • The ScriptShade™ Mattebox consists of a Wide Angle Mattebox complete with French Flag, the ScriptShade hood, Teleprompter glass, glass bracket holder and (2) tablet/phone brackets.
  • Additionally, the KIT includes all the attachments required for using the Mattebox with lenses 82mm or less (Genus 82mm Step Up Ring Set and Genus 82mm Adapter Ring).
  • A Height Extension Bracket is also included to allow for different cameras. (NOTE: My tests included the DSLR bracket)

The ScriptShade Matte Box is a professional Wide Angle Matte Box complete with French Flag. It has two filter trays which allow for the use of 4×4 filters. One is a 360 degree rotating tray with friction adjustment so you have full control of the rotating speed. To assist in judging the position of your filter there are audible clicks every 90 degree rotation. The front tray is slightly wider to minimize the risk of clipping when used with full frame cameras or wide angle lenses.

Accommodates your existing 4×4 filters with both a fixed and 360-degree rotating filter frame built into the box behind the beam-splitting glass.

DSLR Mount (as tested)

I tried both my Canon EOS 60D and 6D MkII DSLRs on the ScriptShade Mattebox kit and found it to be the best combination right out of the box. No 3rd parts adapters or parts necessary whether using a 18-35mm IS Canon zoom or any of the Rokinon Cine Prime lenses on either camera.

ScriptShade mounted with Canon EOS 60D DSLR with Rokinon 1.5/35mm Cine Prime lens

By using an additional shoulder brace to the kit and swapping out the bulkier iPad for an iPhone, makes this kit a powerful handheld solution for roving subjects on location.

Handheld configuration with 3rd-party shoulder support on the kit-provided CF rods, Canon 60D with Canon 18-35mm IS Zoom lens.
ScriptShade mounted with a Canon 6D MkII DSLR with Rokinon 1.5/50mm Cine Prime

Flexibility in design for most any prosumer or professional video/DSLR camera

Video Camcorders

Using our Panasonic AG-DVX200 4K camcorder (what we typically use in the studio and on location for most of the corporate video productions) required another 3rd-party cheeseplate with out kit in order to accommodate the size. But after we got it set-up, I can see that this will most likely replace our existing prompter which is cumbersome and difficult to set up ever time we have an on-cam subject to shoot.

ScriptShade mounted with Panasonic AG-DVX200 4K camcorder (3rd party cheeseplate on mounting bracket)

Cine Cams

Using our 3rd-party cheeseplate, I mounted the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6k with a Rokinon 24mm Cine Prime lens which fit fine. I’d probably use our existing rail/rig setup with this camera which has extension rods and would allow the addition of the follow-focus and be more streamlined – but if I didn’t already have that gear, this would definitely work in this setup. *UPDATED NOTE: Also see the GI-ULT  Universal mount included as shown below)

ScriptShade mounted with Blackmagic URSA Mini 4.6K Cine Cam w/Rokinon 24m Cine Prime (3rd party cheeseplate on mounting bracket)

Alternate kit configurations and options, upgrades, etc.

The Genustech ScriptShade comes in 3 different kit options and mounts:

GI-SSKIT  (Basic kit)

GI-DSLR (as tested with DSLR bracket)

GI-ULT  (Universal mount included as shown below)

ScriptShade with Universal Mount

They also offer the GI-SS upgrade kit for those who already have a Genustech Mattebox, which includes the shade, beamsplitter glass and mounting hardware to convert your mattebox into a teleprompter in minutes.

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Jeff Foster has written and contributed to several books and magazines, and has been producing motion graphics, photography and creative design for major corporations, television and film for more than 25 years. See his full…