Cinematography Mailing List - CML



Spy Camera

Published : 16th January 2007

A director has asked me to look into a few things. We will doing something similar to the title sequence for "Lord Of War" except we will be following a pea - from field into harvester, cleaning on and on the into a fridge, then a pot into a mouth.

There will be various elements. Naturally the pea and his friends will be CGI. Some of the settings will be real and others will be a set. I would like to make it a little more dynamic. I am not sure what medium we will be using. At the moment they are quoting 35mm, but I am wondering about HD. Is there a good quality spy type camera that we could record to HD. If we can have something small which is connected to a cable then to a recorder that will give me some flexibility. It must be small so it can be moved from bag to pot to spoon to plate etc.

Thanks in advance

Clive sacke SASC

The Iconix HD spy cam is just what you're looking for. It's about the size of an egg (just look at their ads!) without a lens attached. It's 3x 1/3" CCDs and has a c-mount. The camera is still in prototype but beta units should be available soon. You could contact them directly or through a facility such as ours (or others).

Mitch Gross
Abel Cine Tech

How about the T version of the F950?


Geoff Boyle FBKS
Director of Photography
EU Based

The T950 is a good idea. For the mouth and pot shots you could use a probe. For the other stuff use primes. It's really small while giving you a very high-quality pictures. The recording medium is up to you. Since you will have substantial CGI, an SRW-1 is a really easy way to go. It makes the entire system clean and neat.

I have used it in cars, airplanes, and fight scenes where the camera is POV of the actors fist.

Carlos Acosta
The bridge between technology and art.
DIT, Engineer
Los Angeles, CA


I must have missed a post here. What kind of camera is the t-950?

Marty Mullin
Los Angeles

> I must have missed a post here. What kind of camera is the t-950?

The T950 is an adaptor that allows you to take the CCD module out of an HDC 950 or F950 and put it's own tiny housing. It connnects via 26 pin copper cable to the camera body. Max cable length I think is 10m. All you signals are available at the camera body. You can have a VF on the T950 or strip it down to the bare box.

Carlos Acosta

The bridge between technology and art.
DIT, Engineer
Los Angeles, CA

Hi Marty,

They would be referring to the Sony HDC-f950 with the optional T adapter, which allows you to split the CCD block and lens from the camera body. It's the same set-up used in my trusty Cineflex.

By the way, you should have hung around later at Social Hollywood the other night. Things got really strange as the evening progressed...but that's a story I'll have to save until I see you !

take care,

Steve Cassidy
Aerial D.P./Contractor
Detroit - Miami - New York

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