The first time I was at this basketball facility, I wasn’t prepared to set up a remote camera. So I made a mental note to myself to bring a magic arm to attach to the base of basketball hoop the next time. That opportunity came about a month after the first visit.
Jan 17 2015 || Sacramento, CA: Bay Area Renegades invade Jam On It’s MLK Dream Big Festival Basketball Tournament held at McClellan Park || © 2015 John Encinas, all rights reserved || www.johnencinas.com
Recent had the opportunity to test out my newly acquired fplate (www.fplate.net) and I cannot believe I waited so long to purchase one. The image above was literally the first image that was captured after the initial setup, prefocus, and test shots.
Nikon D800 | Nikkor 17-35mm @ 22mm | 1/400 | f4.0 | ISO 6400
Here’s where I placed the camera mounted on the fplate. I’m sure people who were was watching me setup was taking side bets to how many times I would hit my head against the wall as I was trying to stick my head in a small area to prefocus the camera. In hindsight, I have a solution to that problem and I’ll share it on a future post.
I’ve been shooting with remote cameras for awhile now. For outdoor sports, primarily baseball… I invested in a pair of Manfrotto Magic Arms many years ago to attach a remote camera to fences, backstops, etc. I have an earlier post HERE where I outline the equipment needed to set up a remote camera.
Although, I had the equipment for outdoor sports, I didn’t really have any equipment for indoor sports such as basketball and volleyball where I would setup a remote camera on the floor to provide a very low perspective. All I did was place a AA battery on the bottom of the camera with some gaffer tape so that the camera can be slightly angled upwards to capture the action. It gets the job done and it’s cheap.
The main problem with that method is consistency and accuracy. So, I decided to step up my remote camera game and purchased a floor plate from fplate.net. What’s neat about the fplate is the ability to mount a Pocketwizard directly to the fplate for an overall clean setup. I also installed an Induro ballhead so that I can precisely compose the remote camera to whatever angle I need. I don’t have to move a AA battery around to try and get just the right angle. The Induro ballhead is equipped with a QR plate so I also purchased a universal L-Bracket so that I can quickly change from a horizontal to a vertical orientation on any of my cameras.
Can’t wait to give my new remote setup a try.
Setup as a floor remote, I gaffer taped a single AA battery at the bottom of the camera so that there is a slight tilt upwards. I plan to purchase an fplate in the near future to give me a more consistent and sturdy base. The remote camera is triggered via Pocketwizard.
Remote: Nikon D800 with a 35mm lens @ f4, 1/400, ISO 5000
Main: Nikon D3s with a 85mm lens @ f4, 1/400, ISO 5000
Dec 20 2014 || Sacramento, CA: 11u Bay Area Renegades vs Jam On It held at Jam On It at McClellan
Camera on a tripod on the stage behind the backboard. Manually pre-focused and tirggered via Pocketwizard from the balcony on the opposite side of the court.
Remote: Nikon D800 with a 28-70mm (at 28mm), @ f4, 1/400
Dec 12 2014 || Vallejo, CA: 5th Grade Holy Spirit Knights vs St. Vincent held at St. Vincent Gym.