Here's a video I shared a few years ago, but has become even more relevant under today's pandemic circumstances. More and more people are working remote and having to deal with live video conferencing / meetings. Instead of a poor quality webcam, with this adapter you can capture the HDMI video feed (up to 4K resolution) and turn any professional camera into a webcam for conferencing applications like Zoom, Skype, Hangout, and even Facetime. Or use it for live streaming through services like Facebook or YouTube Live.

Yes there are cheaper video capture adapters, but most are only up to HD resolution. Even though most streaming services only support HD, by having the option with 4K resolution, you can use the extra resolution for faux camera angles and simulate a multicamera production. If you're offering a live stream service for a business or company, this could greatly help turn those boring static camera angles into a more interesting and engaging presentation for the viewers.

Software like OBS will allow you to create 'scenes' in which you could zoom in to different parts of that 4K resolution and then toggle between them by just using your keyboard. Live Keying (such as green screen) will also benefit from 4K capture as you have more information to work with. So virtual backgrounds will be cleaner. Not to mention that 4K just looks better when downscaling. So yes, while there are cheaper solutions to turn any camera into a webcam, not many can capture 4K resolution like these Epiphan Video Capture Adapters.

epiphan video 4k hdmi to usb capture device card
Learn-More-sm Epiphan Video 4K HDMI to USB Capture Record Stream Adapter

Anyone remember these shoulder rig camera stabilizers that have an adjustable chest support? Despite how cheap they feel, they work great for stabilizing shots. And they're less than $20 bucks!

Learn More Shoulder Stabilizer with Chest Support

But the main thing I hated about those stabilizers was that you couldn't just throw your rig back onto a tripod for a static shot. It's just not designed to work that way. I'm a big fan of a shoulder rig with chest support, it makes a huge difference keeping the camera from falling forward - and you won't need rear counterweights that just add excessive weight to your rig. So I decided to grab one of Sony's old camera stabilizers made for cameras like the EX1.

Now if you're looking at the OEM Sony Camcorder Shoulder Support (as seen here), you'll see they run upwards of $480 dollars+. Instead, you want to look at an aftermarket version will runs just over $100 dollars (which I have), and the quality is pretty much the same.

Learn More Foldable Camera Stabilizer Tripod to Shoulder Rig

The moment I received the shoulder stabilizer, I removed all the VCT mounts underneath, and just attached a manfrotto 501 plate. The front VCT QR plate can also be removed, and after stripping it down, I used this plate to attach rosette handles (had to drill two holes for the clamp). So not very much modification needed to have a functional shoulder rig stabilizer that easily sits back on to a tripod! It's worked so well, i'll probably be picking up one more for my Pocket Cinema Camera rig.

In my office i've got a pretty sweet 80TB Synology RAID NAS setup for editing videos. But with COVID here i'm working from home mostly (to tend to my kids who have no school). Editing at home from a laptop I'm quickly finding myself in need of an extra portable hard drive.

My requirements for a small drive are 6TB+ with at least Type C USB. I don't need lightning fast SSDs for the projects i'm working on with my laptop, and space is more important than speed. After comparing a few different drives, I happened upon this Oyen Digital 10TB Mini Raid (hardware RAID, not software) - which I ended up purchasing.

Learn More Oyen Digital 10TB Portable RAID Hard Drive

The Oyen Digital drive can be selected to run on bus power, or through an AC adapter (included), and can also be configured for JBOD, RAID 0, RAID 1, & big mode - No software required. The flexibility for TypeC USB means that I can use it with my newer laptop, or adapt it to work with the older USB on my Mac Pro (trashcan) desktop computer. They are available in various sizes, and even SSD Versions if you're truly in need of speed.

There are physically two disks internally, and when set to JBOD will show the drive as just 1 large disk (maximum space). Using RAID 0 will give you the fastest write speeds as it writes to both drives at the same time - if you need speed. Configure it as RAID 1 and it will be slower on write speeds, but should one drive fail, your data can still be recovered from the second drive. RAID 1 does mean that you'll lose half the capacity because of the redundancy. So there's plenty of options depending on your needs.

I'm guessing for the price, the internal drives aren't something to brag about, but for the total space and hardware RAID features, it's not bad. These Oyen Digital mini RAID drives have been available for a while, has almost full 5 star reviews (at time of this writing). It looks good so far, but obviously I have to through some projects.

Learn More Oyen Digital 10TB Portable RAID Hard Drive

If you haven't heard of the Oyen Digital brand, they've been around for quite a while, and early models supported external storage for XBOX and Playstation consoles. But they also have a line of large RAID enclosures such as this 70TB model on B&H. If you don't need the rugged casing, they also have desktop versions with hardware RAID options.

Oyen Digital RAID Enclosures

How can you use your Canon DSLR, Sony Mirrorless, or even your Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera as a webcam? That's been a common question these days. As more people continue to work from home, Video conferencing has become more of a necessity. While basic webcams are suffice, there may be reasons you will need cameras with more abilities and features. Features such as better low light performance, wide angle lenses to fit a large conference room, or maybe you need audio inputs from a wireless Lav mic when teaching a distance from the camera - simple features where a basic webcam may fall short.


By simply adding a capture device, you can turn just about any camera into a webcam for use with applications such as Zoom, Webex, Skype, Hangouts and even Facetime. Rik Cordero from gives us a look at a popular HDMI USB capture device from Inogeni.

Learn More INOGENI HDMI USB Video Capture

The CAME-TV Boltzen Fresnel Snap Kit makes modifying the Boltzen 30w and 55w fresnels quick and simple. With the fast magnetic adapter you can modify the diffusion, color temp, or add RGB effects. The kit is currently on sale from $128 to just $68 US. So why would this be better than just buying a dedicated RGB LED Light?

Well while the world is becoming more obsessive with RGB LED Lighting, one of the small problems with having this feature built in is that the maximum power for the light can be greatly reduced. As a rough example a 60 watt daylight LED is obviously a full 60 watts of power, and a 60 watt Bi-Color might be just 30 - 40 watts of brightness. When going to RGB, that same 60 watt light is even more greatly reduced.

What you'll find is some people will shop for a single color light that they most often use. This will allow you to get the smallest possible light with maximum output. Then in those rare cases where you would need the light color or temp to be modified, you can add gels. My personal preference is to choose a Daylight or Bi-Color LEDs as my primary key lights (as I often will use those on skin tones). Then for rim lighting, background lighting, or accent lighting, I'll work with RGB lights.

So while the current Boltzen 30w and 55w LED lights are not RGB, they are great portable fresnels (products here), and if you need a quick way of throwing on a splash of color, the Snap Kits are currently on sale (found here).

Learn More Boltzen LED Snap Kit

I've owned a lot of DJI Drones from Phantoms, Inspires, Mavic, Spark, Mavic Air, etc. Of all the drones, my favorite is the original Mavic Air because of it's compact size and great image quality. Though quality is not as good as the Mavic Pro series, I still prefer the smaller form factor of the Mavic Air.

I find the smaller drones less intimidating when out in public, and people tend to just see it more as a toy. The larger drones are louder, and I find more people are sensitive to the size of the drone. It's sort of the same mentality of taking photos in a public place with a smartphone vs a large DSLR camera. More people tend to look at you if your equipment looks too professional.

So i'm excited to see the new DJI Mavic Air 2 that sits in between the Mavic Pro and Mavic Air size (and weight). I think it's still might be compact enough for most people to write off, but now adds much better stability, distance, performance, and image quality over the smaller Mavic Air. It's something I think i'll be adding to my gear this year.

The new DJI Mavic Air 2 adds a new high-end camera with 1/2" CMOS sensor capable of capturing 8K Hyperlapse time-lapse shots, 4K60 video, 240 fps slow-motion 1080p video, and up to 48MP stills. Photos, panoramas, and 'video' can also be captured in HDR (high dynamic range). If you forget to insert your media, the Mavic Air 2 has 8GB of internal storage, and can accept SD cards up to 256GB.

Now DJI has added intelligent obstacle avoidance, The Advanced Pilot Assistance Systems 3.0 (APAS) is aware of the Mavic Air 2 in 3D space and its proximity to people and objects to help avoid accidental collisions.

A larger 3500mAh battery allows flight times for up to 34 minutes and at speeds of up to 43 mp. The included remote controller supports OcuSync 2.0 technology to provide you with flights at a distance of up to 11.5 miles away. For more information visit the DJI Mavic Air 2 product page (click here).

Just q quick reminder that if you want to get extra height with your cameras, you can use a variety of different and inexpensive Painter Poles found at your local hardware stores. Perhaps you need to hold up a portable flash, and LED light, or extend a microphone. The easiest way to adapt painter poles is to use one of these special adapters designed to thread to the standard hardware poles, and also have a locking set screw to prevent your accessories from coming loose.

Adapter for Telescoping Painter Poles

The ClickSnap Adapter is a bit more expensive, but it does already come with an articulating ball head. One less thing you need to add if you want to be able to tilt.

Learn More ClickSnap Painter Pole Adapter

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The Insta360 ONE R 1" Edition is one of the key configurations of the modular ONE R action camera system. It includes the Core module, 1" Mod, Battery Base, and Mounting Bracket, also known as a frame. The 1" Mod features a large 1" sensor and captures up to 5.3K resolution video at 30 fps. It also captures 19MP and Raw photos. The Core module functions as the brain. It has a touchscreen live-view display with controls and is reversible so the display can be used for selfie/vlog shots. The 1" Mod and Core module mount side by side on the Battery Base, connecting into electronic contacts on it. The Battery Base has a built-in battery that powers the modules for approximately 65-70 minutes. The Battery Base is rechargeable via a USB interface.

Learn More Insta 360 ONE R 1" Edition

There's a lot of arguments of whether or not you need an 8K resolution, but let's not open up that can or worms today. I'll leave that up to the individual to decide. In the meantime you can check out some crispy 6K footage from the new Autel Robotics EVO II 8K Drone below.

The new Autel Robotics EVO II drone captures 8K Video footage and 48MP stills. Features up to 40-minutes of flight time, with a top speed of 45mph and up to a 9km range. The Autel Robotics EVO 2 now includes new sensors for omni-directional obstacle avoidance - which they claim is the best in the industry. With so many sensors, of course the drone is also able to follow subjects autonomously while navigating around obstacles at high speeds.

Learn More Autel Robotics EVO II 8K Drone