Dual-camera tripod?

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    • #43981

      I’m working with a theatre to video their original productions (no copyright issues) in their lightbooth. The problem is they only have a space big enough for one tripod. I’d like to do a two-camera shoot: one full-stage and the other zooming to CUs. I was wondering if there was a tripbod head or config somewhere that allowed two cameras to be mounted (and seperately rotated) on one tripod. Any brainstorming would be appreciated.

    • #184293

      I’ve seen something similar done for shooting football games. A wooden board, about 8 inches long, is used. It has a hole drilled through the center, and a hole drilled through near each end. The board is attached to the tripod somehow, using 1/4 -20 hardware. Then a camcorder is mounted near each end, using 1/4 – 20 bolts. The camera on the right stays wide, while the camera on the left is zoomed in on the player with the ball.

      Now, the above setup works fine for football, where both cameras are panned to follow the action. But for a stage production you might want the wide camcorder to be stationary, on its own tripod. Then have the CU camcorder being panned around on its seperate tripod. I really think the 2-tripod approach is best for you.


    • #184294

      Hi Ken,

      Thanks for your reply. The problem is that there is only (barely) room for one tripod in the crampted light booth. They don’t want any cameras visible to the audience so it doesn’t inhibit the “atmosphere” of the live performance.


    • #184295

      I use a Manfroto tripod 055clb – it has the usual tree legs and the post up the middle. The top of the post has the usual quick mount shoe etc., on the bottom of the post is another place to mount a camera. I just tried it and found it a little annoying that you have to aim and angle using the legs – but if you have room for one tripod, try that (and rotate the image 180 in your software).

    • #184296

      I have seen many high school football teams do this, butI got much better results by making my own device than buying a dual tripod head. If you need to change the angles of two camcorders, the ones I have seen are too hard to adjust. I simply mounted a piece of angle iron with holes ($9 at Home Depot). After mounting my main closeup camera, I them mount a “Tristar” grip mount ($69 on Ebay) to the side of it. It is much cheaper that the Bogengrip mounts, and is more reliable. Since it raises the second camcorder’s view screen over the top of the first camera,you can see both screens easily.

    • #184297

      the trouble is you’re gonna induce shake on one camera, when panning the other… but here’s the easy setup (I already got the gear so no additional cost to me…)

      I heavy duty tripod.

      one peice electrical conduit pipe 1 to three feet long (paint it black for asthetics).

      3 manfrotto superclamps.

      two tripos heads.

      bolt one superclamp to your tripod quickrelease plate.

      clamp the pipe in and attach to tripod.

      place two clamps with tripod heads attached on either end of pipe.

      attach cameras to tripod heads.

      you can shoot wide with one, and use a lanc or remote controller on the other, but any panning or tilting is gonna induce some shake for the other camera. perhaps if you are careful, it will be minimal enough to fix in post with shake removal in software.

    • #184298

      do what I do at Weddings.

      set your wide view up on a tripod, and leave it running (hard drive or tapeless camera).

      steadycam rig on the other camera.. handheld.

      synch them in post and cut from a to b cams to remove any unwanted footage off your handheld cam.

      occams razor… the simplest solution is probably the best.

    • #184299

      You didn’t mention the cameras you were using…

      Have you looked at GorillaPods (something like the linked item below)?


      They come in different sizesfor different weights. I use a smaller one to mount my Zoom H2 to my tripod for “B” roll audio when I am out in the field shooting. you wrapit’s legs around a tripod leg, or any object for that manner, andthe small ball socket lets you point the supported unit where you want it. You could use this for the fixed camera and then use the tripod pan-tilt for your controlled camera.

    • #184300

      Most of the lighting booths that I have been in have a large ledge where you could mount a stationary camera on a gorilla pod or a board outside of the booth (as mosth of the booths are above the audience, they should not be visible to anyone except the actors). You can then have your second camera on a standard tripod for your closeup shots.

      Talk with the lighting crew as they may be able to get you into the cove section of the house where their front throw lights are. If they are back far enough, this might be a good place to mount your stationary camera as well (although changing tapes will be difficult)

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