When it comes to film production facilities, we take an end-to-end approach. So as well as the headline acts – three incredibly versatile studios and the A-Z of cinema-quality kit – you get a supporting cast of production offices, comfortable lounges and cutting-edge edit suites, all in one place.
We’ve factored in nice-to-haves like fresh barista coffee and locally brewed ales while you’re working. And when you need an extra pair of hands, our full-time crew is ready and waiting.
The first studio we built at The Old Dairy in 2009 – endlessly configurable and versatile for small studio production. You name it, we shoot it here: vehicle exteriors and interiors, one, two and three walled room sets, live action with sync sound, Technodolly, multi-camera live studio, photography and both large and small scale product shoots of every description.
- 1360ft2 / 126m2
- 44ft x 31ft x 10ft / 13.5m x 9.5m x 3.2m(h)
- L shaped infinity cove (9x9m)
- Sound-deadened w/excellent acoustics
- Diffused white canopy over stage (can be removed)
The tough one, built to do everything we couldn’t do in Studio 1. We’ve specced this studio to handle the rough stuff – we do all kinds of special effects shooting here including pyro. It’s also beautifully equipped for shooting motion control, live action, smaller sets, stills photography – the space and height is a dream for all tabletop. If visuals are priority over sound on a small scale production, this is the stage for you.
- 860ft2 / 80m2
- 30ft x 33ft x 13ft (h) / 9m x 10m x 4m (h)
- Greenscreen/Bluescreen infinity cove 7m(w) x 4m(h)
- Water resistant
- Fully blackout
The big one, we started building Studio 3 in April 2019 and opened the stage in August 2019. With seven-metre high double-decker access, this sound stage boasts the largest motion control rig in the world, a cherry picker and scissor lift, a huge floor space and extraordinary head height. Take everything you can do in Studio 1 + 2, combine it and times it by two and soon you realise why this is the best production stage in the UK for the money.
- 5100ft2 / 480 m2
- 82ft x 62ft x 33ft / 25m x 19m x 10m(h)
- Sound-deadened (not soundproof) w/excellent acoustics
- Double Decker Bus height vehicle access
- Water Resistant
Our TechnoDolly is essential on shoots, whether in the studio or on location. This versatile rig works as a silent, repeatable motion control rig and a camera crane in one. It’s fast, it’s quick to move from position to position and it’s incredibly accurate… in short it saves time and produces spectacular shots.
- Multi-axis repeatable Motion Control
- Can be used as a traditional SuperTechno camera crane
- Suitable for Studio or Location
- Full lens and AUX motor control
- Almost silent operation makes it suitable for dialogue too
- Shooting area; 3m (15’) high, 7.5m (25’) wide, 24.3m (80’) long
2K & 4K
Our Phantom 2K package is the affordable go-to weapon of choice for that instant money shot, boasting 2500fps in HD straight to ProRes.
For extra resolution and dynamic range, the Phantom 4K gives you full raw capabilities too, but comes at a cost, the first is financial, the second is what you gain in resolution you lack in frames per second – the max on this camera is 930fps in 4k.
- HD up to 2500fps with the 2K in full frame
- 4K up to 930fps with the 4K in full frame
We were one of the first ever production companies to invest in Arri Alexa, we pre-ordered two before their official release and that gamble paid off – the cameras have never let us down. From Alexa LF to the Alexa Mini for a somewhat less back-breaking camera operating experience. Alexa remains the industry standard for quality and durability – there is nothing else like it.
- ProRes & Raw output
- Anamorphic ready
- High-speed enabled (up to 200fps on the Mini and 120fps on the XT and classic)
PHOTOGRAPHY & DSLR
As well as the big cinema cameras we also offer photographic equipment including superb Broncolor strobe lighting, an array of Canon DSLR’s that produce spectacular still images. For moving picture shoots on a tight budget or that require a truly ‘run and gun’ approach we have a number of Sony A7Sii, Canon 5Diii and even GoPros.
- Canon 5DSR
- Canon 5Diii
- Sony A7Sii
- GoPro Hero 8
It’s pointless offering cinema quality cameras if you can’t match it with the pinnacle of lenses. We’ve got a lovely range in-house from the super sharp Master Prime to the vintage look of a 1970’s Zeiss SuperSpeed and a few nice little options in between.
Always check the latest kit lists for the full array.
- Arri Superspeeds Mk3
- Arri Master Primes
- Cooke Anamorphics
- Zeiss vintage options
- Arri Alura 18-80 zoom
LIGHTING & GRIP
With over 200 lights on-site at Sandstorm there is very little we can’t cover and the same goes for Grip. From gigantic 18KW HMI’s to Arri S60C and S30C Skypanels and flicker-free 5KW and 10KW tungsten heads for high-speed. In grip we own one of the most legendary dollies, the Elemack Cricket as well as Sliders, Skaters and Tripod Dollies.
It’s all here and some of it is included free of charge in our studio hire rate too.
Always check the lists for the latest armory, but in short, here’s a few of the popular bits.
- Arri Skypanels
- Astera Titan tubes
- Elemack Dolly and P+S Technic Skater Dolly
- Tripod Dollies and Sliders
If you know the Sandstorm team, you know we love our tech and we love efficiency. From the gigantic Cyclops motion control rig to on-site scissorlifts and rigging,
we believe in making the production experience as painless as possible.
We have a large team on-site, ready to go, so before pricing up your previous crew from London, plus their travel and hotels, speak to us. There may be a simpler solution – the added bonus, our team know the stages and the kit. So it is often just as fast, for less money, with a smaller more nimble team.
At Sandstorm we remained open for business throughout lockdown, due to our huge studio complex being based in the countryside with ample space to socially distance. Being outside of the cities also means we are experienced handling remote viewing. It is available on all our shoots and has been for over ten years.
It would be pointless to deny that our strength is in studio based production. We have three studios and our in-house team work in them every day. But we are also versed in location work and have a number of location vehicles, portables generators, easy-up gazebos and 4×4 all-terrain vehicles to bring our production values to any corner of the globe.
We have a full set build facility on-site, ready to go, with a lot of pre-configured room setups too. From a six room set; built, painted and ready to shoot in just three days to huge greenscreen rigs or small single room sets. We’ve done most things here and are on-hand, without any hassle.
PROPS AND STORAGE
We’re not big fans of throwing things away, which is why we have a rather comprehensive store of props that you have access to on your shoots for free. The list is NOT pretty, but it does give you a good idea of what is here, from flooring to sofas to lamps, rugs, pictures… you get the idea, stuff for room sets in general.
Often used for pre-production and client meetings, this room also doubles-up as a production office for clients on shoots. Fully AV’d up including conference facilities. Helping them keep on top of the world outside while remaining part of the action.
There’s an area to relax by the fire or be productive without background interruption, all the while monitoring the shoot via a direct feed from the studio and keeping connected to the outside world via lightning fast broadband. The lounge is also equipped with a client fridge and stocked with a range of complimentary snacks and beverages. When the sun shines (it always shines) get outside in our garden, enjoy the sun terrace and take in the view across open fields to the Ridgeway.
No end-to-end studio facility is complete without private, separate Wardrobe and Hair & Make-up room with illuminated wall mirrors and hanging rails.
- Two make-up workstations for Studio 1 + 2
- Three workstations for Studio 3
- Steamers, irons and wardrobe railing are all available
Our colour balanced room, custom-built desk and grade one monitoring (plus domestic screens for reference) make this the premier room for picture finishing at Sandstorm’s facility.
- Fully colour balanced, air-conditioned room
- Grade One monitoring (plus domestic screens for reference)
- Custom-built desk and control surface
EDIT, VFX & CGI
Equipped with eight matching suites in a custom-built open-plan environment, our editing team deliver and assemble edits, VFX, 3D and online. Whether working on eight individual projects or collaborating together on one, it is a faster and more efficient way to deliver post-production for our productions.
- 8 matching custom-built workstations
- Assembly, VFX, 3D and online in one room
- Open plan environment
- Shared media servers
- Open ring network productivity
- Comprehensive back-up and redundancy protocol
We also have first class voice-over facilities with our dedicated sound booth.
For use in broadcast and cinema voice-over, ADR, radio link and podcasting.
- Professionally sound-proofed and acoustically isolated
- RT60 – 0.053 seconds (can be customised to suit other requirements)
DOLBY APPROVED MIXING SUITE
Our sound mixing suite is built to the highest possible specification, allowing us to create unique surround sound experiences for cinema, as well as broadcast and online content.
- Dolby approved 5.1 & 7.1 cinema surround sound mixing
- TV & Digital sound mixing to R128 and all other global standards
- Cinema, TV & Digital sound design
- Foley & ADR recording
- Rigorously tested sound room with superb acoustics