Ricoh Theta S DIY Monopod Extension

Hey guys, it's Giovanni. I am a huge fan of the Ricoh Theta S 360 camera. But it's got a huge design flaw, not a big deal though. I'm gonna show you how to fix this flaw with parts that you can get at your local hardware store for about two bucks and with no tools.

Alright, so since the 360 VR video craze has hit us in the last year or so, as far as the standard consumers go, a lot of cameras have come and gone. I've tested a lot of them. And at the end of the day, everything from the Kodak SP, the original SP360 to the 360fly, I've tried the V360 camera, a few of those and all the way up to the 360heros, either the camera quality was terrible or the setup and the maintenance of an ingestion of files and kind of the process of editing those files was more than what I wanted to mess with. With everything that's on the market now, I've become a big fan of the Ricoh Theta S.

However, there's a huge problem with the Ricoh Theta S in that the battery itself is not changeable, the rechargeable battery on the inside. And also, there's only eight gigs of memory in this and you can't do anything about that. So a solution would be to put the Ricoh onto a tripod. And the nice thing about the Ricoh is that it's got USB out that you can charge the camera with, you actually power the camera with it if you want to. It's also got an HDMI out that you can live stream out with as well.

Here's the catch though. The USB and the HDMI are on the bottom of the camera. So if you're thinking that you're gonna go in and put this on a tripod and run some power to it, then live stream out or maybe expand that memory by pushing it into, like an Atomos Ninja or something like that... Well, you're out of luck if you're putting it on a tripod. And frankly, walking around like this with wires coming out isn't a very good experience for the viewer or for the content creator.

How do we solve this? Lots of folks have been complaining about this setup for a while and it only took Ricoh about a year to hear you out, and they're going to be coming out soon... And as of the recording of this video, they have announced the... I'm going to look at my computer here. It's the TE1, it's the Ricoh extension adapter. Absolutely gorgeous looking piece of hardware. Beautifully machined. I'm assuming that this piece of hardware is probably gonna hit the retail stores for maybe 20 bucks, if we're lucky. What I decided to do, a, I didn't wanna wait for them any longer 'cause I'm out trying to get stuff done with the camera. B, I know that when this thing hits the store shelves or the Amazon shelves, it's gonna be ridiculously expensive. So I thought that I'd go out and find a solution to this problem myself, and I indeed have. It's a solution that I'm actually using actively now.

What I did is I ran out and I went up on Amazon and I found some quarter-inch 20 rods. And basically, a rod is a screw without a head on it. Your base is screw but there's no head on it, you can get these anywhere from 2 inches up to 4 to 6. This is a 6 inch rod. I also went out and got a coupling mount... A coupler here. Same size obviously. So you wanna get yourself a quarter-inch 20 coupler. And when you get this into your house, you wanna run it up the rod here like this to make sure that the threads are clean and that the machining on the rod and on the coupler are good. And so it goes, so that's great. The other piece that I'm gonna need now is gonna be either a wing nut or a standard nut or something like that. What I've done is I went out and got some rivets. I wanted something that was gonna stay far and away, out of the way of the two inputs there, the USB and the HDMI. But also something that I could easily turn because what this is gonna do when I put the camera up on the top of this rod here, I wanna be able to turn this up and tighten it up and keep it snug so the camera doesn't wobble around and change on [04:51] ____.

Here are your pieces for this, let me show you how we're gonna put this together. Now, you've already seen, the first thing that I do whenever I get this is I go and put the coupling on there to make sure that the threading is good. Then I go and I'll get my... These are the typically the kind of light stands I'll use with one of these Ricohs. I'll use one of these stands or I'll use a monopod, a Manfrotto monopod like that. Basically, the nut on top of these and the thread on top of those is about the same. What I wanna do first is I wanna find out how far down this coupling's gonna go on there. And I wanna bring that rod down on top of that and mark that. Okay, so the rod's gonna go down. Let's stop at snug there. What it is, I'll pull it up a little bit here. And I'll grab a Sharpie. And I'm just gonna mark that right here. Don't have to be too clean about it. And then this guy, I will run him, to where he's flush with the top. And I'll mark that first. And then I go ahead and I spin that all the way down to where I'm on the top of that mark and I mark it again. That's the bottom of that.

The reason why I'm marking this like this; two-fold. I'm not gonna do the whole process here, but this is two-fold. Number one, I will go and I will take gaff tape, black gaff tape, and I'll run gaff tape on this piece and this piece. Just 'cause I wanna hide the fact that these are silver, sitting on top of my tripod. If you want to, you can put this together first and then spray paint it black or something like that. That's fine, either way. I prefer the gaff tape. On the bottom piece, the reason why I marked it there, is 'cause I'm gonna go and apply some heavy duty glue. This isn't the answer to everything, but it will help this stay in place. So I bring that pretty much halfway a little bit more than halfway down.

A little bit of glue on there. If I'm lucky, I drip some on my desk. Good for me. Bring the thread back into the coupler. And we're gonna let that just sit there and we're gonna let that dry. Okay. Essentially, what you've got here now though, is you've got your finished piece. Before I would have glued this together. Normally, I would have run my tape on this stud, the rod first, and I would have taped this up over so it would have already been black. And then by the time I glued this together, there's obviously gonna be no tape there. So I put one more piece of tape around there. And I just let it sit overnight. Now if, you're using super glue, it should be dry in a minute or so, no big deal. This obviously, we don't want to put any glue on that because that's gonna stay moving the entire time. So...

Just like on the cooking show, we're gonna set this aside and we're gonna pull out the finished product out of the oven. Well, that's a mess. Basically, this is what the finished product looks like. You've got a rod here that is the right size, it's like I said, a 1420. And it'll go on any tripod. I'll show you why this is critical to have this like this, 'cause now, when I put this on to my white standard tripod or whatever, this is black against black, that does you no good at all. Pull this up so we can see it. So now, what happens is now these two, the USB and the HDMI input, on the back, is completely available; completely wide open, free. And I'll take this guy once he's on the thread, and I'll screw him up a little bit, so he's snug. And so this is a micro USD cable. Find the right one. And on this guy, typically, what we can do is either run power from this or I can go and I can attach a battery to the pole like an Anker battery, and give myself more life out of the battery.

On the HDMI, I can pull this out on the HDMI and pull a cable on there and either run that into a, like I said, Atomos recorder, something like that, or a monitor or something else that I want to monitor with this or this actually will live stream to YouTube or Facebook. So simple solution, parts here $2.01, not including the tape. Let's add two more cents for the tape. So let's say $2.03. You can decide how long you want this stud to be. Again, this is a six inch stud. A four inch stud will come down to about right there. But, that's what I found on Amazon. Then we'll see what Ricoh wants to charge for the TE1 when it comes out. And I guarantee you the TE1's gonna look much better than my solution. But, at what cost? Simple solution. Have at it.