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The Lens

Lens, Camera, Video, Lighting and Drone Rentals

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August 2016

Five Items You Might Not Know We Rent

5 months ago 457 Views

Cameras, lenses, video, support, and lighting equipment - items in these categories are instantly what you think of when you contact a photo/video rental house. While we certainly have a large selection of items in these categories, did you know we also carry things that might fall outside of this spectrum? We've compiled a list of five items that you might not know we rent.

1. Camera Bags & Cases

All of our local orders (and some of our shipped orders) come packed in a Pelican or Seahorse hard case. These are usually on the smaller side and lenses are not mounted to the cameras in these cases. We do however also rent backpacks and other bags are a little easier to access when you're traveling with equipment. We have an entire category of Camera Bags and Cases available for rent. One of the most popular cases we rent is the Pelican 1510 with Dividers. The 1510 has been a favorite for many event or traveling photographers since it can accommodate quite a bit of gear and fits most airline's carry-on requirements (we recommend consulting your airline for specifics).

2. Novoflex VR Pro II

For people doing panoramic images or virtual quick time tours, the Novoflex VRPro II Panorama Head is a must. This head allows you to set up your camera centered on the nodal point of the lens for a perfectly perspective-corrected panoramas. Once set up, the click stops allow you to easily produce spherical panoramas, perspective-corrected flat panoramas, or cylindrical panoramas. The only thing you will need is a ball head to mount it on like the Giottos MH-1300.

3. Quantum Batteries & Flashes

Do you use flash a lot and wish you didn't have to run through so many AA batteries? The Quantum Turbo 3 might be the answer. The Turbo 3 is a rechargeable battery pack that allows up to 1050 full-power flashes from a hot-shoe flash. The Turbo packs are compatible with professional flashes that feature a port for external batteries like the Nikon SB-910 and SB-5000 or Canon 580EX II and 600EX. All you would need is the corresponding cable (CKE for Nikon or CZ for Canon).

You can even take your flash game a step further with a Quantum flash. Quantum flashes use a removable flash tube similar to that found in a studio strobe, and provides a higher power output compared to a standard speedlight. The Quantum Trio (available for Nikon or Canon) can be mounted directly in your hot shoe and provide full TTL capability. The Quantum T5-DR can be used on a flash bracket or off-camera. Both Quantum flashes require a Turbo Battery for use, but the power cable is already included with the rental.

4. Projectors, Screens, and PA Systems

We have all of your needs for audio visual presentations - ranging from meetings, presentations, birthday parties, or even the big game. Our Epson Projectors offer connection via S-Video, VGA, RCA Video, and HDMI while our Optoma Projectors can connect via HDMI. For indoor events or presentations, we have an 80-inch tripod screen that can fold down for convenient transport. If you're looking to take the party outside, we also offer a 12 ft. Outdoor Inflatable Screen. Even though the projectors have a built-in speaker, the audio isn't very loud. If you want to take things to 11*, we also offer a Mackie SRM150 PA System with XLR/Line and stereo inputs.

Disclaimer: The Mackie PA does not actually go to 11, but it can get pretty loud.

5. Event Printers

In today's day and age, many clients want instant gratification. Our event printer rentals allow you to deliver prints to your clients on the spot. The DNP DS-RX1 Event Printer can print a 4x6 image in just under 15 seconds. The only thing you'll need is a laptop or desktop computer with a USB port and the 4x6 Media Roll for up to 700 prints/roll or 6x8 Media Roll for up to 350 prints/roll (available for purchase).

We're always open to adding new and exciting items. If there's something that falls outside of our traditional items, send us an e-mail and let us know what you want to see!

Just Announced: Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

5 months ago 253 Views

Almost four years after the release of the hugely successful EOS 5D Mark III, Canon has finally announced the EOS 5D Mark IV. The camera features an all-new 30.4 megapixel Full Frame CMOS sensor. It is also the first Canon Full Frame camera to feature Canon's Dual Pixel AF system, which will be a big addition for both video and still photographers.

Video can be captured at up to 30p in DCI 4K, up to 60p at 1080, and up to 120p at 720. For stills, the frame rate has been upped to seven frames per second. The auto-focus system features a similar 61-point layout of the 5D Mark III, but it has been expanded to cover more of the viewfinder. The new 30.4 megapixel sensor also benefits from an expanded ISO range of 100 to to 32,000.

The EOS 5D Mark IV will be available to rent starting in September. It is available for rental pre-order here.

Stream Your Event Live with the Teradek VidiU Pro

5 months ago 457 Views

Live video streaming through the internet is something that has been growing with popularity over the last decade. Previously even the simplest video stream required a capture card, special software, and quite a bit of technical knowledge. This week we've added an item to make streaming easily accessible to just about anyone with an internet connection, smart phone, and HDMI capable camera - the Teradek VidiU Pro.

The VidiU Pro is a small box measuring at just 4.7" x 3" x 1.2" and 6oz. It has a cold mount shoe on the bottom, making it easy to mount to the top of most cameras, camcorders, or other mounting accessories. All you have to do is connect your video camera through the HDMI port and you're ready to start streaming. The audio will be picked up directly from the HDMI source, but you can also feed a 3.5mm line in audio source.

The VidiU Pro can connect wirelessly to a router or wired through an ethernet cable. If an internet connection is not available, you can also connect to your smart phone or a mobile hot spot and stream via 3G/4G/LTE. In situations where the connection is poor, you can even pair bandwidth from multiple sources with up to 6 data connections to maximize the stream output with ShareLink (optional subscription service, not included with the rental). The VidiU Pro is controlled easily through a compatible iOS or Android device with the VidiU app. Once you're connected, the VidiU Pro can natively stream to some of the most popular streaming platforms like Facebook, YouTube, LiveStream, UStream, and Twitch. You can also stream to your own private server via Wowza's Streaming Engine. You can start, stop, and monitor your stream directly from the VidiU Pro app.

The VidiU Pro has a built-in lithium battery that allows you to stream tether free for up to 2 hours. If you'd prefer, an AC adapter is also included for extended streaming. You can also record your stream in H.624 directly to an SD Card for back-up purposes or to distribute later via other services. Please note, this only supports up to 32GB SDHC cards and the recording will be split into 4GB files similar to most popular DSLRs.

With the wide variety of streaming platform options, you can easily stream your live events including (but not limited to) meetings, public speakings, youth/high school sports, church services, weddings, family reunions, and a lot more! We did a test stream to Facebook Live and the setup was very simple. Here is an archive of the live stream:

The Lens Depot Test Live StreamTest Stream with the Teradek VidiU ProPosted by The Lens on Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Stay tuned, we will be doing more live streams in the future! We'd love your feedback of what you'd like to see for our live streams, send us an e-mail to with what you'd like to see. The Teradek VidiU Pro is available to rent here.

New Items - Additional Inspire 1 Options

5 months ago 366 Views

The DJI Inspire 1 is one of our most popular drones because of its versatility. Unlike the DJI Phantom 4 and Phantom 3 drones, the Inspire 1 is easily up-gradable and allows for expansion as DJI introduces new cameras. This week we've added two of their latest offerings in the Inspire 1 family.

First up is the Zenmuse Z3 package. The sensor of the Zenmuse Z3 is identical to the one found in the Osmo X3, Inspire 1 X3, and Phantom 4's camera. The big addition is the ability to zoom - a first for a DJI drone. The Z3's 7x zoom consists of a 3.5x optical and 3x digital, giving an equivalent of 22mm to 77mm focal length. Zooming is accomplished by either a digital display on the DJI GO app or by holding the C2 button underneath the remote and using the left control wheel. The ability to zoom opens a whole new realm of creative possibilities. We were able to do a brief test when we received the camera. You can check it out below!

Next up is the Zenmuse XT. DJI has partnered with FLIR, one of the leaders in thermal imaging technology to offer an aerial thermal imaging solution. This is primarily used for industrial applications such as surveying, inspections, agriculture, and search and rescue. Video and photos are captured at 336 x 256 in MP4, 8-bit JPEG, Radiometric JPEG, or 14-bit TIFF. Temperature reading can be done from the center of the frame with an accuracy of +/- 10 degrees Celsius. Scene analysis can be done in a variety of Palette options including White Hot, Black Hot, Fusion, Rainbow, Glowbow, Ironbow, Sepia, Color, Ice Fire, and Rain. This package will be offered as a dual operator package, allowing for one user to operate the craft while the other operates the camera. We've also captured some test footage of the Zenmuse XT 9mm camera.

Like most other DJI drones, you will need a MicroSD card to capture your video and images. You will also need a smartphone or tablet with the DJI GO app installed and a USB cable that corresponds to your device. Each package includes two DJI Intelligent Flight batteries, but we also rent additional batteries if needed.

The DJI Inspire 1 Z3 can be rented here.
The DJI Inspire XT FLIR can be rented here.

Customer Spotlight: Sean Woods

6 months ago 436 Views

We have a number of talented and interesting customers all across the country and we think it’s time to shine a spotlight on them. Every month we will be spotlighting a customer and ask them to share their special talents and experiences in the photography and video world. This month we talk to Sean Woods from Tampa, FL.

Tell us a little about yourself and what you do?

Well, I'm a photographer sometimes, a cinematographer the next, doing some audio scoring the day after that, probably designing some marketing tools for a client the next day and literally on and on. One day I'm shooting a wedding, then the next I'm filming for a corporation. It's never boring and I enjoy interacting with people! I have a degree in public relations and I've always been up to the challenge of strategically completing multiple things for one project. Not to mention, when I first started out with photo and video, I had no choice since the money wasn't there then. But hey...we grow right?

But on a serious note, I'm really passionate when it comes to business. I enjoy learning as well as helping others! I'm the person that shows up early to practice, then stays after just to get some extra reps in! I'm a firm believer of HARD WORK, so each day I push myself to be better than the day before. Well, the guys at The Lens Depot are holding up time cards telling me I've already talked too much, so I'll stop here! But just know that I enjoy this journey I'm on as a growing entrepreneur.

How did you get into photography and/or video?

I got into photography as a hobby some years ago when I was a radio personality. As I traveled and toured, I just always kept a camera in my hands for some reason. I would always be the one to put of recap photos or make a video with movie maker back then.

Where are you located?

I'm currently located in Tampa, FL

What are some of your favorite hobbies/interests outside of photography?

Some of my favorite hobbies would be exercising and even though I'm no longer a radio personality, I still keep up with a lot of music.

What is your favorite thing about being a photographer/videographer?

My favorite thing would be the opportunity of interacting with so many clients and capturing lasting moments for them to remember forever

What is your least favorite thing about being a photographer/videographer?

My least favorite thing would have to be the gap between the professional and client with understanding the 'cost of business.' Yes many of us do this out of the love for it, but it costs to operate a full-time business everyday. If you could only get the client to understand that the video didn't just come out like that final product or that those photos took countless hours to get the look they have. You hate to have to be the bad guy, but in order to grow as a business, you really have to stick by your guns as they say and put your foot all the way down to make sure you're being compensated fully for your time and energy.

What is your current favorite piece of rental equipment?

My current favorite piece of rental equipment would have to be the DJI Ronin-M.

If you were going to a deserted island and could only bring one camera & lens – what would it be?

Hmmmm...tough one. I think I would choose the Canon 5D Mark III and the EF 24-70mm 2.8L II. That's pretty much my main setup that's always ready to go.

Where can people follow you or find your work online? (website, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube etc.)

On Instagram, please follow me @seand1 and please be sure to stop by my website at

Last, and most importantly – what is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

My favorite flavor of ice cream would be butter pecan!


Thank you Sean for taking the time to participate in our Customer Spotlight Series! We hope you enjoyed it. We've included some of Sean's photo and video work:

Reel #1 from PicsAndFlixs on Vimeo.

New Item - Kino Flo Select 30 LED 2 Light Kit

6 months ago 442 Views

Lighting is an essential part of almost any video or photo production. Having a light that works in a variety of lighting situations is extremely helpful, and this week we've added one of our most versatile lighting solutions yet - the Kino Flo Select 30 LED 2 Light Kit.

Kino Flo lights are very well renowned by both video and still photographers for their soft and even illumination. Most of the Kino Flo kits we offer like the Diva Light 400 and 4 Foot Bank use fluorescent bulbs. While the quality of the light output is great, you do have to specify if you need daylight (5500K) or tungsten (3200K) bulbs for your project. The Kino Flo Select LEDs offer a variable color temperature range from 2700K up to 6500K that is flicker-free and does not shift when dimmed. In addition, the Select 30s also offer control for green and magenta shift to help better match other light sources.

The control unit for the Select LED 30 is mounted on the back of the fixture, but it can also be detached and can control the light from up to 25' away with the included extension cable. Like the Kino Flo 4 Foot Bank, the Select LED 30 has a built-in barn door design, ball and socket Baby Mount, and is very light-weight for such a large fixture, allowing it to be mounted in a variety of situations. In terms of power output, the Select LED 30 is also very comparable to the 4 Foot Bank with an output of 2470 LUX at 3 feet, compared to the 4Bank's 2599 LUX at 3 feet.

Due to its size and weight, the Kino Flo Select LED 30 will only be available for pick-up at our main office in Orlando. The kit includes 2x fixtures, 2x mounts, 2x balasts, 2x 90 degree grids, and 2x 25' extension cables. If you don't already have them, you will need stands - we recommend our Avenger C Stands.

The Kino Flo Select LED 30 is available to rent today!