When prepping for a shoot the one thing that I always want on hand is a trusted field monitor. Something that works with any camera, can handle abuse in the field and that can be used for a variety of applications. A 7″ screen is perfect for pulling focus, for a director to use and even to hand off to your client. ikan has come out with an awesome monitor that does all of this plus offers a high bright output that allows you to view outdoors without using a hood.
If you’re looking for a compact, outdoor monitor, then you should definitely look into the ikan MD7. This thing is well built, sharp and bright. It works great as a director’s monitor or client monitor. Due to the weight, a little over 2 lbs with the battery, it isn’t ideal for an on-camera monitor.
How I Configured the MD7
I had three main configurations to get the most out of this monitor. The first was on the Kessler Pocket Jib. With an ikan clamp and articulating arm, I attached it directly to the jib. This made my setup compact and gave me a great monitor to eye my framing.
The second configuration I used was one of my favorites. I had a lanyard and 1/4-20″ thumb screw which I attached to the monitor and gave to the director. Since we were running on batteries he could easily disconnect the SDI cable and go untethered. When we were framing up a shot, the 2nd AC gave him the video feed. It would have been awesome to have a Teradeck but this setup worked out great.
The third configuration I’ve used was to mount it on a compact ikan light stand. I used this when filming a shooting competition outside and it was great for the client to view what I was shooting while not being right over my shoulder. It also made for a great way to watch playback in slow motion.
1. Designated Buttons
Having designated buttons for waveform, peaking, marker, input, zoom, false color and 4 user buttons is amazing. When onset, I never entered the menu once which was great. I could quickly switch between Cam A and B, check exposure and focus. This was the favorite feature from director Chris Jurchak when shooting a recent commercial.
2. Image Quality
It was great not fooling with a hood and being able to see the screen with out squeezing my face around my hands to block the sun. The image was also very sharp. Great to pull focus from. I adjusted the sharpness in the monitor to almost full when I needed to rack focus or when shooting wide shots.
3. False Color
Not only is it a trust worthy gauge of exposure, but they also provide the key on the right side. It’s a quick way to make sure you aren’t losing any information in the highs or lows. After using it a few times, it’s now a tool a constantly rely on.
This monitor is great for anyone that does field work. Whether on DSLR, Canon C300, FS700 or Red, this monitor will work with any camera. Not to mention it has HDMI to SDI loop through to connect to other monitors. It is a very practical monitor but not one I recommend attaching to your camera. For more information on this monitor please visit the Product Page.