Movi 15 for NYC subway use

Discussion in 'MōVI M15' started by John Schmidt, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. John Schmidt

    John Schmidt New Member

    Feb 20, 2015
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    Wondering how you guys think the movi would perform on a moving subway car. If anyone has ever shot handheld on a subway they can attest it is no easy feat. It's very unlikely we will be able to be on sticks and will need to move around with ease.

    The movi seems like a great small footprint stabilized head alternative but I am concerned about the acceleration/deceleration of the train drifting the camera without a GPS signal.

    Thoughts? Anyone tried this?
  2. Steve Maller

    Steve Maller UAV Grief Counselor

    Oct 30, 2012
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    Well, aside from the general paranoia of New Yorkers (both the citizenry and the government) around photography in subway stations and on trains, it'd probably depend on your equilibrium. If you are able to brace yourself on a pole or against a seat, you'll probably be fine. But it's also a bit of a hazard to the other riders, so I'd avoid busy times.

    As far as GPS goes, you'll want to google up the "boat mode" that the MōVI has. And maybe boot it up above ground and don't turn it off once you're underground.

    Don't finesse the permitting process. It's a pain, but quite necessary for things that are that public.
  3. Ryan Hamelin

    Ryan Hamelin Member

    Nov 1, 2013
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    Hey John,

    My partner and I actually shot part of our dance film "Alice" on the NYC subways. Technically speaking shooting on the subway is illegal, and a Homeland Security issue, so we took lots of precautions. Check out the video below:

    The biggest thing for us was scouting. We started waaaay out at the end of the subway line in Brooklyn, and we shot at around 1am on a weeknight to have an empty car and the least amount of bystanders on the platforms. We also scouted platforms for security camera locations, and built the rig in a minivan outside of a station without a window attendant before walking everything in.

    There have been many horror stories about rigs getting indefinitely confiscated, cameras seized, and media being acquired through intimidation or force by the NYPD. New York wide permits only allow for street shooting without a tripod, and while you won't have sticks on the subway, it's still a grey area. Subway permits themselves involve several weeks of red tape and can be prohibitively expensive, hence why we stole our shots. I'm not going to lie and pretend it wasn't nerve-wracking, but we got everything we needed and got the hell out of there as quickly as we could.

    Hope that helps.

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