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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » MAGICAP by Jesse Feinberg (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Scott F. Guinn
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I reviewed this item on my blog Great Scott! It's Magic!, but for those of you who haven't visited it, I'd thought I'd post it here as well.

Review: MAGICAP by Jesse Feinberg
This DVD from Black's Magic has a running time of approximately 40 minutes. I got it at a good price from Hocus Pocus. The DVD features Jesse Feinberg performing and explaining a number of different effects with MAGICAP.

The basic effect is this: You visibly remove the cap from a Bic pen. The cap vanishes, only to reappear on the pen. There are a lot of variations to this theme, as well as some pretty cool different effects.

So let me tell you what I don't like about this product, and then I'll tell you what I do like about it.

CONS:

I am in my 40's. I'm not a young punk, but I certainly don't qualify as an old fart yet, either. But this DVD has one feature that drives me INSANE, and it is becoming more and more prevalent these days on instructional DVDs and even radio stations. The background music (which I don't care for anyway--it's a "House Mix" kind of thing with only about two chords, repeated ad nauseum) is blaring virtually constantly throughout the entire DVD.

Now don't get me wrong: I'm into music. All kinds of music. I like Rock, jazz, blues, classical, and lots of other stuff. I used to be a DJ on a radio station, and I've sung lead in several fairly successful bands. I double-majored in college--one of my majors was music! I'll repeat: I LIKE music! The problem is that this isn't supposed to be a dance mix CD. It is supposed to be a teaching video. The music is far too loud and it's distracting (and not particularly interesting or melodious). Add to this the fact that Jesse is a pretty soft-spoken guy, and it becomes difficult at times to hear and assimilate what the man is saying. I found it difficult to "stick it out."

Maybe my background in music and radio cause me to be hypersensitive to this kind of thing. The thing is, background music (in radio, it's called a music "bed") is supposed to be just that--in the background. Not competing against (and sometimes winning, in this case) the speaker in its volume level.

There is room for different tastes in music. I don't expect to like every music bed on every DVD in the magic community. But for the love of mutt, gang, FADE IT DOWN when the instructor starts to instruct! I (and there are a WHOLE lot of people who agree with me on this) do not buy a magic teaching DVD to listen to the music. I buy it to learn the magic. Anything that takes away from that makes the product more annoying and less valuable to me.

The other thing that disappointed me about this particular item is this: There is a "special something" required. It is very inexpensive. However, it is not super-easy to find, and when you do find it, you have to buy it in huge bulk quantities--more than you and five of your friends would ever use in a lifetime. Were I to have come up with this idea and put out this DVD, I would have purchased the bulk quantities of this "special something" and included several of the items (maybe three) in each DVD case as a "value-added" bonus. Not only would this likely increase sales, it would build customer satisfaction and good will. The buyer would have everything he needed to get going as soon as he had the DVD in hand--he wouldn't have to go on a scavenger hunt.


OK, those are my cons. Here is what I really liked about this product.

PROS:

Let's start at the ground floor. This is a really good trick. It is eye-popping-ly amazing to watch, easy to learn and do, and extremely versatile. Plus it is done with an everyday item that everyone has seen and does not raise suspicion. This alone makes the DVD worth the asking price. Simply put, it's strong magic!

Jesse does a good job of teaching the construction of the prop, its handling and care and feeding, and the effects possible with it. It is clear that he paid his dues working with this item. This isn't something that occurred to him on Monday and was put on the market on Thursday, like so much of the K-R-A-P on the magic market these days. Jesse really thought about this and developed it. And while I don't know this for a fact, I suspect he has performed it in the real world for real people at least several hundred times.

Finally, the MAGICAP is a very practical, commercial, usable item for amateurs and working pros alike. It's FUN!


OVERALL:

So, what it boils down to is this...

My problems with this product boil down to its production values. Fade out the music when the man begins to speak and give me a couple or three of the required "somethings" so I don't have to buy a package of like 5000 of them, and I'm happy as a clam with this. The merits of the MAGICAP itself--its usability and the strength of the effects possible with it--far outweigh my crotchety complaints about the production values. As a working pro, this is worth many times the asking price to me.

MAGICAP by Jesse Feinberg is highly recommended.
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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Joe Mauro
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Mr. Guinn, that's a nice way to review a DVD. Cons/Pro's and extra thoughts.

On Reel Magic 13, Chris Kenner said the magic world needed an official reviewer. You have my vote.

~Joe
~Joe
Scott F. Guinn
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"Great Scott!" aka "Palms of Putty" & "Poof Daddy G"
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Hey Joe!

First, please call me Scott. No need for formality here, as far as I'm concerned. Second, thank you for your kind comments, although I fear you are being MUCH too kind!
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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edh
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How much is the added investment of the needed material?
Magic is a vanishing art.
Scott F. Guinn
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"Great Scott!" aka "Palms of Putty" & "Poof Daddy G"
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Hi, Ed!

Well, that's difficult to answer. The "special something" is in one way an everyday object, but it is a special type of that everyday object that, at least in my area, is not readily available. You may be able to find what you need for free or a few pennies. But I would have to order it, and they don't sell them per each, but rather per several hundred or several thousand. With shipping, it becomes a bit more expensive, and you could never possibly need that many--at least not for this effect.

That's the reason I don't understand why Jesse and the folks at Black's Magic didn't procure a batch and include a few with each DVD. It wouldn't have added very much to their costs and would have made this item so much more user-friendly, in my mind it just makes no sense not to do it! Like I said, a few of them is mere pennies. If I'm making a few hundred DVDs, that expense means nothing to me. If I'm buying one DVD and I have to buy a bundle just so I can use two or three over the course of my career, that expense DOES mean something to me!
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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Joe Mauro
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The ad says " Everything you need to create visual miracles is taught to you step-by-step on this DVD".

Having to go out and buy something that isn't readily available is information the consumer needs.

Scott, thank you again for the detailed review.

Joe
~Joe
edh
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Thanks for the reply Scott.
Magic is a vanishing art.
nowyoucme
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You can find these at any party store. You can use them all very ez, so thay wont go to waste. But yes Scott F. Guinn is right thay should have put one are two with the D.V.D. there very cheep. Great magic trick by the way.
Stucky
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The trick is very visual and done right, you will never have the need to even worry about that "Special something". My friend uses it at the very end of his recap routine and just rings it in at the end for that one last PUNCH.
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Scott F. Guinn
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"Great Scott!" aka "Palms of Putty" & "Poof Daddy G"
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UPDATE

At least in my area, contrary to nowyoucme's post, you can't find the necessary items at party stores. Where I finally DID find them, however, was at a restaurant supply store, in a box of 150 for $2 including tax. But it cost me a lot of time, effort, and hassle tracking them down. If I had released this item, I would have spent $10 on 5 boxes of these and thrown 1-2 in every DVD case.

Now I've got more than I'll ever need.
"Love God, laugh more, spend more time with the ones you love, play with children, do good to those in need, and eat more ice cream. There is more to life than magic tricks." - Scott F. Guinn
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nowyoucme
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I was at a nite club this Friday and I found what I needed just sitting there. Nice. Did not need them but I crab some up anyways.
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