The Phantom Flex: Making Ordinary Stuff Look Awesome in Super Slow-Mo

For a few members of the Videobred team, Easter weekend was spent with the Phantom Flex camera, capturing in slow motion things like eggs in mouse traps and Newkirk hitting a 300 pound block of ice with an axe. Over the weekend, they were able to capture a wide range of events in slow motion, such as a parade, archery, and break dancing.

Thanks to our friends at the Camera Department in Cincinnati, we were able to have a few days of hands-on training with the Phantom at Videobred and have some really cool footage to show for it. (Check out a demo.)

Here’s what our Director of Photography Will Cravens had to say about it:

“The first thing we did once we were comfortable with the camera was to push it to its limits.  We cranked up the framerate to its maximum of 2,500fps at 1080p HD resolution. That means for every second of recording time, we would get 1 minute and 44 seconds of video.   So when we popped a water balloon (an event that only took a fraction of a second), it still took over 30 seconds to watch it play back. The speed at which this camera records is staggering.  It’s really quite cool.

“ Once we explored the flexibility of the camera, we went into full production mode, using the camera in real shooting environments on location.  We wanted to fully test the workflow, from building the camera on set to bringing the footage into the edit suite.  With a camera of this caliber that records so much data, proper planning must be done.  The camera’s internal RAM, the attachable CineMags and even a 4TB drive will fill up quickly, so the recording time must be precisely calculated and chosen.  And as we learned, production must be scheduled to accommodate footage offload time.   It’s not as simple as popping in a new SD card every time one fills up.  This is a professional rig and should be treated as such.”


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