“If I’m on a pedestal camera, then I’m using a Vinten head or head and ped,” says 30-year veteran multi-camera operator Paul Basta SOC. “My relationship with Vinten goes all the way back to series like Alice, Family Ties and Growing Pains. Currently, I’m using Vinten on the series Reba."
“As an operator, one’s reputation, professionalism and craft are directly affected by the quality of the equipment we use,” he says. “I can honestly say that, with good equipment, my job as an operator is enhanced. Conversely, he explains that, “Sometimes with inferior gear, there is more creativity used in concealing equipment problems than in shooting the show. The test of good equipment is reliability to perform exceptionally under the pressures of the job.”
Basta chooses Vinten. He continues, “Why? Because Vinten seems to have succeeded in properly designing and engineering equipment that all but guarantees successful operation.”
Even classic models of Vinten heads outshine everything else for Basta. “Once camera configuration and lens complement are matched to the right head, its ready to perform and remains reliable throughout the show”.
For Basta, the Vector series is by far the most innovative and conveniently designed camera head. “Now I have infinite control over the balance of my camera, plus equal control over the dampening of the tilt and pan functions,” he explains. “And, this can be done very quickly, without any special parts or additional accessories. Properly set up, the Vector models – including the 60, 70, 700 series and 90 – make any camera configuration wonderfully ‘neutral’ to operate.
“Vinten has always made reliable, responsive and by far the most intelligently designed camera heads I have ever used! That’s why Vinten pan and tilt heads and pedestals are the standard for television studio and field production facilities here in Los Angeles and New York.”
Paul M. Basta is a charter member of the Society of Operating Cameramen. One of the most sought after multi-camera operators, his sitcom career goes back to Alice and Family Ties. He manned the pedestal camera (with Vinten head) on Growing Pains for seven years, began working on Reba in 2001 and ‘Til Death in 2006.