“Give the people what they want”. It’s often quoted in the entertainment world as the key to box office success. Groucho Marx and Samuel Goldwyn said it, and for John Fishburn, rental sales executive at Scheimpflug Rental, it’s the key to being New York’s premier rental house.
Scheimpflug provides lighting and grip, truck rentals, production support equipment, location, support equipment and has a rapidly growing camera department. In the camera department, giving the people what they want means stocking Anton/Bauer batteries.
“95% of our batteries are Anton/Bauer” says John. “There is no typical customer though, it’s everybody. Yes, we have some batteries from other brands, but they are the last to go because they are just not what the industry is asking for.”
Scheimpflug have recently boosted their battery fleet by investing in Anton/Bauer’s native 26V solution for high-power draw cameras such as the ARRI ALEXA 35.
The native 26V configuration used by Anton/Bauer balances cell use and needs fewer circuit boards packed on top of the cells which significantly reduces heat. Less heat means more charge cycles in their lifetime than the ‘regulated’ or boosted dual-voltage batteries from other battery brands and a superior return on investment for rental houses. Naturally, this is one of the reasons that John chose Anton/Bauer for the Scheimpflug 26V fleet.
I need to make sure that I'm delivering the highest quality battery solution. Battery brands that use methods to force 26 volts, to me, seems dangerous.
"I don’t need 14V batteries with some kind of upconverter in them to make them 26 volts and then have people yelling at me because their batteries are dying at half or two-thirds of what they are expecting.” says John.
As a true native 26V battery, Anton/Bauer DIONIC 26V batteries are the perfect easy-to-use, no nonsense, no compromise product for fleet managers. “I wanted something that made it simple for our team here in terms of doing rentals,” says John. “For us, the name and the performance are more important than fancy features. And in terms of connection and performance, Anton/Bauer is a known entity.” – Give the people what they want.
There is plenty of demand for the ALEXA 35, but ARRI’s latest high power-draw camera is currently in short supply and Scheimpflug are ahead of the curve by securing their supply of the perfect native 26V power solution. “I bought the batteries ahead of the camera because I know, when the camera becomes available, all of a sudden there won’t be many batteries around.” Says John. “There have been many times where a popular product comes out and there is limited availability on accessories to make it work – so I’m getting batteries!”
John speaks from experience, 27 years of experience in Los Angeles and New York. He also has many equally experienced industry connections. Connections that are a valuable sounding board when it comes to making decisions on new product inventory – such as which 26V battery solution to stock. "I asked other industry leaders what they were doing, and their answers confirmed that I had already made the right decision." He says.
As cameras and lights become more power intensive and the requirement for agility increase, John sees the demand for battery solutions to grow. Anton/Bauer’s ‘no compromise’ approach to engineering excellence and lifetime value has seen them become a firm favorite at rental houses across the globe. Asked to give one piece of advice to somebody choosing new batteries, John says, “Have a true 26V battery. Don’t buy a product that is actually upconverting, because you don’t know what you’re getting into”. Delivering a continuous 12A draw, DIONIC 26V produces over 300W of consistently reliable power. With no drop in current like dual-voltage batteries, so sensitive high-end cameras and lights can draw maximum power with no stress or sudden shutdowns.
The DIONIC native 26V range includes 98-watt-hour and 240-watt-hour batteries, both available to fit either ARRI’s new B-Mount or Anton/Bauer’s established Gold-Mount Plus. For John, the 98Wh models are the perfect high-voltage power solution for jet-setting camera operators. “I love the idea of having 26 volts and high watt-hour batteries.” He says, “but, I need some 98-watt-hour batteries too otherwise people won’t be able to fly with their cameras. It’s easy to get caught up just looking at runtimes, but a lot of people need to fly so I need to consider that too.” Anton/Bauer’s DIONIC 26V 99Wh batteries are safety certified to comply with UN38.3 IATA lithium-ion battery regulations - perfect for high power in a hurry, wherever the location might be.
While the no compromise approach to engineering and the no nonsense approach to achieving true native 26V are the main reasons that Scheimpflug choose to stock Anton/Bauer batteries, name recognition is also an important factor. “Anton/Bauer is like Band Aid or Xerox, which is good. It tells me that there is trust in the product name.” says John. “But even if they didn’t ask for Anton/Bauer and I gave them something that wasn’t – they would say I must have Anton/Bauer.”
And as somebody at the beginning of this article once said, Give the people what they want.