With an infusion of fun and adventure in all the work he does, Paul Cronin specializes in high-speed, extreme-condition footage for his company, WhiteCap Video. The shoots for his high-end boat reviews require his keen sense of the elements along with gear that can face the tough conditions of humidity and temperature while capturing steady shots. Cronin counts on the Fujinon ZA17x7.6BE HD ENG lens on his Sony XDCAM HD PMW-500 camcorder and the Fujinon TS-P58A image stabilizer.
The first thing Cronin looks for in a lens is how sharp it is. “I need it to maintain a meticulous back focus,” he said. “I’ve found Fujinon to be more stable in its back focus. It stays sharp. Using my ZA17x7.6BE, I was very happy with the extra focal length.”
When he needs to go wide, he uses the wide-angle adapter. This gives the videographer three lens choice: ZA17x with wide adapter, ZA17x alone, and long and stable shooting with the ZA17x and TS-P58A. “This covers all of my bases for my current clientele,” said Cronin. With the stabilizer, the focal length is increased by about 25 percent. “I push and pull all the time with boats going by at 60 miles per hour and back focus is critical. The longer range I get from the TS-P58A image stabilizer helps tremendously.”
For shoots like a recent one in Knoxville for Bayliner Boats, Cronin is on chase boats, keeping pace with the boat they are reviewing at 55 mph. He stands up holding the camera and can be anywhere from thirty feet to five hundred feet from the subject. “That’s where my stabilizer is golden,” he said. “It cuts our time in half because I get the material I need the first time. That saves us a lot of money.”
For Cronin, the TS-P58A is very easy to operate. “Just hit the button and horizontal and vertical can be switched at the same time,” he said. “Frame the shot and you get into a floating gyro feel. That’s what I’m used to with the equipment I use when I shoot from a helicopter, and I get a rock solid shot.”
Requiring just a couple of minutes to take it on and off, the Fujinon TS-P58A image stabilizer is a sandwich-style optical stabilizer for use with most Fujinon 2/3-inch ENG style lenses. It mounts between the lens and camera and increases magnification by 25 percent. “It’s extremely compact, and I’m impressed with its power consumption,” said Cronin. “I brought three 130 watt-hour batteries for my XDCAM 500. I haven’t used two in a day yet.” The power consumption on the TS-P58A image stabilizer is DC12V, 4.2W (from camera).
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