A mod too far

Jim Feeley
By Jim Feeley 04.25.08

America is a nation of tinkerers. Alas, not everything emerging from our garages achieves the Shelby AC Cobra's sublime balance of beauty and overkill.

For example, THE DOCKET conversion for the Canon HV20 fits an aluminum hosing around Canon's impressive little HDV camcorder. But it's unclear what, if any, advantage this mod imparts. Check out this eBay auction for more information, more pictures, and a link to a YouTube video shot with the HV20 and THE DOCKET.

The description says THE DOCKET housing adds XLR audio to the HV20, includes a metal matte box, grip handles, and a mount for external mics or lights. Buth required starting bid of $1,626 and a Buy It Now price of $1,675 for THE DOCKET and a Canon HV20 HDV camcorder (which costs $750 these days), it's a lot of money to pay for unclear utility.

But odd-looking mods can be beneficial. Case in point: The HV20 rig Stu Maschwitz and crew built for a shoot last summer looks unwieldy on first view.

But Stu, as you might expect from the author of the book, The DV Rebel's Guide, provides in his blog a detailed description of the rig, settings, workflow, and reasons for each decision.

Just we can mod something doesn't mean we should. But maybe I'm missing something. I pinged the seller to see what advantages he or she thinks THE DOCKET provides.