Custom DIY Letus Master Cinema Series- Essential equipment, on a budget!

So you want to be a DSLR shooter? Here is a list of all the things that you may need, plus a a few just because its cool!

I’ll be adding more over the next few days, First up, the knock off shoulder rig!

When i saw the new line of Master Cinema Series camera mounts that Letus are bringing out, i was excited! Then i saw the price. Most of us indie film-makers are strapped for cash and cant afford to shell out $3000 for a shoulder rig. So i did the next best thing, I ‘ebayed’ it! This is my make and do list of the pieces you’ll need to make the shouldercam model. (Before i get into this i know there will be quite a quality difference but hey its cheaper, so what do you expect!)

Here is a picture of the Shoulder cam

Ok, so lets break it down piece by piece,
First up we have the matte box, you can go the more expensive route and get a swing away but for demo purposes we’ll stick with a regular one.
Here is the bottom of the barrel, dirt cheap!
Ebay Link $145

This is a really good price for what your getting!

  • Matte Box (M-2)
  • French Flag
  • Side Flags
  • 4×4 Filter Holder
  • 15mm Rod Connector
The only down side is that there is only one filter slot.
I wouldnt go for this I would actually go for this option,
…………………………………………………………………….
$250
The great this about this is that there is a set of rails with a camera mount, its the mattebox above but it had two rotatable filters, instead of one. two C brackets for a top handle and more rails and a top handle.
This costs $250 for everything!
…………………………………………………………….
Next part is the follow Focus!
$112.50
Now we have a nice piece of kit for your DSLR, we want to make it a shoulder rig now though. One of the unique selling points about the Letus version is that it has the camera positioned further back. so as with their one, we will set ours further back too.
We need a shoulder pad and a double rod mount set.
Here is one that I found that has both!
$53.80
This can be linked to the bottom part of the rail system to give you the position of how far you want the camera to sit.
……………………….
Handles
This is a personal thing, you really want something comfortable to hold for long periods while shooting. I’ve been searching for  handles like the Letus version, but i just cant find it.
The cheapest ones i could find are;
$12.75 (x2)
These really are the cheapest of the cheap but if you want to keep the cost down its not a bad choice.
A more expensive version is this;
$90.58
The biggest part thats missing from my list is the counter weight, this is up to You. If you have power for your EVF or other devices then the anton bauer batteries will help weigh it down. Im in  the process of making this rig and i’ll be posting a video and pics of the completed piece!
Total cost;
$441.80
Or
$506.88
Depending on which handles you go for.
As i said this is no where near as good quality as the Letus version! But its a good substitute for the indies who cant afford  the Letus version.
 Steve
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One thought on “Custom DIY Letus Master Cinema Series- Essential equipment, on a budget!

  1. Pingback: New Mini-Doc shot on the GH2 & 550d « Steve Hall Video

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