ATLANTA, GEORGIA – While on location in Panama shooting the blue water fishing and hunting TV series, The Best & Worst of Tred Barta, for the Versus Network, owner and executive producer of the full service video and film production company, R/Wheeler Communications, Bob Wheeler, and crew found themselves with an incompatible power source. Quick thinking and a call to Anton/Bauer customer service resulted in a saved shoot and on time delivery to his client. Anton/Bauer, a brand of The Vitec Group, and the world’s premier provider of batteries, chargers, lighting and other mobile power systems for the professional broadcast, video and film industries, was able to locate multiple batteries the same day and delivered them to a propeller plane waiting to take them to a remote offshore location.
Shot entirely on location in North and Central America, R/Wheeler Communications has been working with The Best & Worst of Tred Barta for eight years. “This is a run-and-gun outdoor adventure show. We assign just a two-person crew, so everything we bring has to be manageable by two people out in the field. The crew wears many hats—field producer, director of photography, grip, audio guy, and everything else,” he explains.
While filming at a fishing lodge located on a remote island off the coast of Panama, without an adequate power source to charge his batteries, Wheeler found his shoot at risk of not happening. “When we got to our location, we quickly learned that the power source out in the boonies was incompatible with our batteries, and it ended up putting our entire shoot in jeopardy. My first thought was to call Anton/Bauer to see if the company had any connections there. But it wasn’t as simple as going to Panama City to pick up new equipment because we were miles from the mainland. So not only did we have to find equipment, but we had to arrange transportation for it as well,” Wheeler explains.
Being a longstanding customer of Anton/Bauer, Wheeler didn’t panic. “I knew when I called the company, it would be able to help us immediately. I spoke to a gentleman in customer service who right away made my problem his problem, which was very impressive. He was able to reach a representative in Panama City at a rental house that had both the batteries and the chargers we needed. By the end of the day, I had the batteries and chargers at the airport for the small plane to pick up and transport over to the fishing lodge,” Wheeler says.
“If it weren’t for Anton/Bauer’s excellent customer service and support, we would have had to pack up and head home, making our client very angry. But instead, the company was able to deliver us the products we needed the very same day, and we completed our project on time,” Wheeler explains.
“At Anton/Bauer, we have always considered ourselves a part of our customers’ production teams. So we understand their frustrations when they run the risk of losing a day of shooting, even a few hours lost can cost them a fortune,” says Joe Teodosio, manager global customer support. “The goal of our customer service department is to make sure they are up and running as quickly as possible.”
For the rigorous demands of this shoot, Wheeler relied exclusively on Anton/Bauer DIONIC® 90 batteries. “We typically take anywhere from 10 to 12 DIONIC 90s with us. They’re extremely dependable , and they always perform well in places like Central America,” he says. Wheeler also used Anton/Bauer’s “T” Series Twin charger for its portability and consistency.
The DIONIC 90 delivers performance even in the planet’s most challenging shooting environments. The DIONIC 90 offers a RealTime® display that continually updates the operator on how much run-time remains and on the state of the current charge. It weighs only 1.7 lbs. and can be transported without restriction under the IATA and DOT safety regulations (http://www.antonbauer.com/Support/TransportationInformation), a requirement for Wheeler and his globetrotting productions. The battery can handle a maximum load of 90 watts, offering run-times ranging from six hours at 15 watts to 1.75 hours at 50 watts.
Wheeler credits Anton/Bauer’s outstanding customer support team and its industry experience with saving his project from potentially turning into a disaster. “It’s just a superior product, they command a premium as far as their prices are concerned, there’s no doubt about that, but the dependability is such that it just makes it worth it, especially when day in and day out, you are dependent on that battery power out in the field.”
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Anton/Bauer is recognized as the world’s innovator and premier provider of batteries, chargers, lighting and other key mobile power systems for the professional broadcast, video and film industries. Based in the United States in Shelton, CT with offices in Europe and Asia, Anton/Bauer was established in 1970 and has expanded its product offerings to include many signature lines such as its leading Gold Mount® system, InterActive® chargers and Logic Series® batteries such as the HyTRON® 50, 100 and 140, and DIONIC® 90, 160, HC and HCX. Their products are compatible with virtually every camera brand on the market today. Other Anton/Bauer high performance products include the Ultralight®, ElipZ®, ElightZ®, CINE VCLX and CINE VCLX/2. Their superior-quality products have become an industry standard. For more information on Anton/Bauer, visit www.antonbauer.com.
A Snapshot of The Vitec Group
Vitec is an international Group principally serving customers in the broadcast, photographic and military, aerospace and government (MAG) markets. Listed on the London Stock Exchange with 2009 revenue of £315 million, Vitec is based on strong, well known, premium brands on which its customers worldwide rely. Vitec is organised in three divisions: Imaging & Staging, Videocom and Services. Imaging & Staging designs, manufactures and distributes equipment and accessories for photography, video and events. Videocom designs and distributes systems and products used in broadcasting and live entertainment, film and video production and MAG. Services provides equipment rental, workflow design and technical support for camera, video, audio, fibre optic and wireless technology used by TV production teams and film crews. More information can be found at www.vitecgroup.com.