A year of many, many gadgets

posted by Jeff | Friday, December 22, 2023, 5:00 PM | comments: 0

It's hardly a secret that I have a gadget problem, but in my defense, it tends to be mostly outcome based. Like, I buy certain things to fulfill certain actual needs. This isn't always the case, and sometimes it's just "because," but usually there's intent.

Making the documentary was a big instigator for this. Unfortunately I feel like it's going to be a short and not feature length, but I will edit it and see how it goes. The biggest part of that endeavor was upping my lighting game. I finally bought a serious key light, a dome, some tube lights, C-stands and stuff. Diana made a black flag/blanket for a few bucks with fabric she sewed, which was also awesome. I bought an EasyRig, which suspends the camera from an arm overhead strapped to your back, and that was a game changer. It fixes the problem of cameras not being shoulder-mounted in an elegant way that makes it possible to shoot comfortably for hours. I bought a camera slider, which makes some really cool looks, especially for product shots. There was a drone. I bought the DJI wireless mics, too, and they're pretty great. The core camera and lenses that I already had worked great, so no new investment there. Oh, I also bought this amazing Black Magic Design edit controller.

I replaced both my laptop and desktop computer this year. I couldn't resist the return of a non-sucky MacBook Pro using the new Apple silicon. All of the performance hype is real. I can write code with Rider and no dependence on Windows. I switched to a Mac Mini on my desktop, so both computers have the same CPU. Editing 4K video works much better. I could have gone with new PC hardware for the desktop for about the same amount, but at the expense of using far more power. And yes, this agitates the gaming situation, but I solved that in other ways.

My lighting design interest got a little more serious in terms of learning about the two major platforms (MA and ETC), but I didn't buy a console. I did commit to getting an onPC MA3 console, but the earliest I can see one is March. In the mean time, I did buy two more Chauvet Intimidator Spot 260's (well, 260x's), so now I have four. That already is more fun. I think next year I might buy two more, and some cheap Chinese brand washes. You can design shows virtually, but there's something about the tactile feel of actual light in the room. Plus, I like the idea of being constrained with physical lights. Virtually, there's no limit, so you don't need to be as creative.

More recently, I bought the handheld PC for gaming, the Lenovo Legion Go, and an Xbox Series X. Those have unlocked all kinds of gaming possibilities, and I feel like that has balanced my interests by giving me more energy for the other things. And using Whisky, and Apple's Game Porting Toolkit, I've been able to run a lot of Windows games on the Mac. They aren't kind to the battery, but they do work.

There were some non-electronic projects too! I installed a glass washer next to my bar sink. I didn't strictly need this, but when there are people over to make drinks for, it takes just seconds to get the shaker to clean. I also installed floating shelves. I decided to let someone make those for me, and because the wood is so beautiful, I decided not to try and put lighting in them.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure what to do with the video stuff, so it's piled up mostly in my office. I could probably put the non-electronic stuff in the garage (EasyRig, tripods, light stands, etc.), and maybe that'll be my plan. The lights have rubber belts in them, in addition to the electronics, so I probably don't want them baking out there.


No comments yet.

Post your comment: