Using the Zacuto Zgrip Relocator for C100 with the Movi M5
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I think this would be a great opportunity to talk about one of my favorite ways in which Zacuto helps me get the job done. Two of my favorite products would have to be the Movi M5 and Canon C100. I shoot mostly weddings, so the C100 is the perfect option for me, with its Dual Pixel AF, C-log, built-in ND, and incredible low-light performance. The Movi M5 gives me an enormous amount of versatility on a wedding day, allowing me to have almost limitless creativity with my shots.
The AF on the C100 is really handy and works very well, though it’s not perfect. When it works correctly, it allows me to achieve breathtaking shots, but when it doesn’t work correctly, it makes my shot completely unusable. During a wedding, I can’t always tell the bride and groom, “go back to 1.”
Typically when I’m shooting with the C100 on sticks or a shoulder rig, I remap the 7 button on the handgrip to be AF lock. That way when I’m shooting, I can focus on my subject then hit the AF-lock and reframe without worrying about the focus running away from the subject (as long as I maintain the same distance from my subject).
When I first began putting the C100 on the Movi M5, I wasn’t able to use the handgrip, so I didn’t have AF-lock. My first attempt to solve the problem was more of a proof of concept. It was very dirty. I used gaff tape to attach the C100 handgrip to the side of the Movi handle. I used a standard 1/8” TRRS extension cable to connect the handle to the camera. This only sort of worked; unfortunately, Canon does not use a standard 1/8” TRRS cable for the handgrip connection. The connection on the grip cable has a few extra sleeve connections that go around the 1/8” jack. So while I did have a working directional stick for menu control as well as start and stop control, the precious 7 button (AF-lock) did not work.
Zacuto makes a beautiful piece of gear called the Zgrip Relocator for the C100/C300.
Below is a step-by-step guide on how to make your own Movi/C100 Grip using the Zacuto Zgrip Relocator.
What You Will Need:
— 2.0 mm Allen driver (comes with the Movi)
— 2.5mm Allen driver (comes with the Movi)
— 15mm rod mount (with 1/4” 20 male mount)
— 1/4” 20 bolt
— 1/4” lock washer
— 1/4” large washer
— wrench for above bolt
— 25mm multi-rotor motor mount
— Zacuto Zgrip Relocator
— C100 Handgrip
The great thing about the Movi is that it is made by Freefly and since they also make multi-rotors, many of the parts for the Movi are borrowed from their other product lines. One such borrowed part is the top bar for the Movi, it is the essentially a carbon fiber multi-rotor boom arm. So I was able to use a 25mm motor-mount for this project. Don’t get hung up on the specific model or brand of motor-mount, we had several kinds floating around the office and we could have made any of them work just fine.
First detach the carbon fiber plate from the motor mount by removing the four 2mm screws. Attach the 1/4” bolt, lock washer and standard washer to the carbon fiber plate. It is critical that this bolt is tightened as much as possible. You want this to be rock solid, that way it does not give out or rotate while you are holding the Movi.
Put the 15mm rod into the rod mount and use it to counter the wrench to help you tighten it down. Make sure that the rod mount is at the correct orientation in relation to the motor mount before tightening. Reattach the carbon fiber plate to the motor mount, using the four 2mm screws.
Remove the right handle from the Movi top bar using the 2.5mm screwdriver and attach the motor mount in its place.
Attach the Zgrip relocator to the rod mount and plug in the cable to the C100. Install the C100 handgrip and you’re done!