Blind Spot Gear, the British company specialized in niche products for filmmakers, just released its 7th Kickstarter campaign: the Power Cage & Bracket. This 10.000 mAh power bank with 45W of power output is designed with filmmakers in mind. The Power Cage features two USB-A ports, a USB-C port, and a 7.2V DC barrel to power your camera and your accessories. Let’s take a closer look at it!
Blind Spot Gear
Blind Spot Gear is a British company well-known for launching innovative products on the market via Kickstarter campaigns. Earlier this year, they successfully launched the Crack Light. In the past, they also released the Scorpion Light V2, the Tile Light Duo, and the Power Junkie – you can watch our review here – which is a tiny and convenient Sony NP-F style batterie distribution box.
Nowadays, cameras and accessories require a lot of power to run for hours. Small internal batteries don’t get the job done; this is especially true with the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera 4k and 6K, Sony mirrorless cameras, and so on. To solve that problem, you can run your camera and accessories with a V-Mount or Anton Bauer battery. But, this kind of external power source is expensive and quite bulky.
So, if you don’t want to rig your camera fully or don’t have access to this kind of power solution, you often end up with Frankenstein looking camera rigs. I often see regular power banks velcroed on the side or on top of a camera to power it. This is not an ideal solution for filmmakers in general, and especially in run and gun situations.
We can say that Blind Spot Gear knows how to launch and handle a Kickstarter campaign, and today they are back with a new battery solution for filmmakers: the Power Cage & Bracket.
The Blind Spot Gear Power Cage and Power Bracket are two different products that you can combine to work together. Regular battery banks are not built to work with cameras; they lack 1/4″-20 and 3/8′-16 mounting points and relevant outputs.
The Blind Spot Gear Power Cage features two USB-A 5V output ports, a USB-C output port that is also used for charging it, and a 7.2V DC barrel. Also, there is an on/off/mode switch. You can use all ports simultaneously up to 45W to power your camera and accessories. On the inside of the Power Cage, there is a 10.000 mAh/37Wh battery, which is the equivalent of five Sony NP-FW50 batteries. Finally, you can charge the Power Bank up to 80 percent in just 60 minutes.
On the side of the Power Cage, there is a remaining charge indicator that doubles as an overload warning indicator. It is even possible to charge your laptop via the USB-C port (up to 30W).
On the front, there is a built-in nato rail that features six 1/4″-20 threaded holes and an eyelet neck strap. Additionally, there are eight 1/4″-20 threaded holes on both sides of the Power Cage. All these mounting points allow you to mount the Power Cage directly on your camera if you don’t want to use it with the Blind Spot Gear Bracket.
The Power Cage features a CNC machined aluminum shell to protect the internal battery. I would have preferred an all-aluminum design, including the top and bottom parts that are made out of plastic.
The Blind Spot Gear Power Bracket is an additional lightweight (70 grams) accessory that attaches directly to the Power Bank. It is made out of aluminum. The idea is to mount the Power Bank on the side of the Power Bracket and mount your camera directly to the Power Bracket. That way, the Power Bank doubles as a handle to grip your camera firmly.
If you use Arca Swiss quick release plates, the Power Bracket features a built-in Arca Swiss mount. Otherwise, I use Kessler’s Kwik Release plates, and I would have loved to have the integrated Arca Swiss mount of the Power Bracket in the other direction. Usually, Arca Swiss brackets “on the side” are more for photo shooters. In the video world, this kind of sideways design makes it impossible to adjust your camera back and forth on a tripod or gimbal, which is a must-have for balance purposes. Thankfully, there is a lot of 1/4″-20 threaded holes at the bottom of the Power Bracket so you can attach any quick release plate you have.
Finally, the Power Bracket features two additional lanyard points to carry your camera.
Pricing and Availability
For Kickstarter backers, the Blind Spot Gear Power Cage retails for $114/£89. The Power Bracket will cost you $38/£30. If you want to get both, bundles are available for $127/£99. The expected shipping date is set for May 2020.
Even if Blind Spot Gear always delivered its products on time with its Kickstarter campaign, as always, please be aware that this is a crowdfunding project and not a retail shop, so do your research accordingly. cinema5D does its best to share only the projects that look legitimate, but as with any crowdfunded campaign, there’s always the risk of the product or service never coming to fruition.