stabilizer for gs100 at

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Old September 2nd, 2003, 12:57 AM   #1
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stabilizer for gs100

I just watched the Buena Vista Social Club on tv and I was impressed by some of its many steadicam shots. The homemade-steadicam footage here at the thread "par-t-com steadi-cam test " was also rather impressive. My question is, how possible is it to achieve flying steadicam shots (comparable, lets say, to those at the "par-t-com steadi-cam test" thread) using a handheld stabilizer like the steadicam JR lite, with the gs100? Or, have you found that the gs100's OIS allows you to achieve a flying steadicam feel with a cheaper and/or less cumbersome device? I've read here and elsewhere that all stabilizers require skill on behalf the operator for successful shots, so I don't expect to get good shots without a lot of work beforehand.

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Old September 3rd, 2003, 08:08 PM   #2
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Hi Paul. I can't answer your question. Why don't you copy, then paste your post over on the tripod forum?
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Old September 3rd, 2003, 10:35 PM   #3
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Paul, this is Devin, co-producer of the par-t-com steadi-cam test. Your thread will probably be moved over by the admins anways, but yeah it should be under there anyways for maximum exposure to the right people who can help you.

I'd have to honestly say that a hand-held unit would probably not yield the same results as Spencer's $350+ homemade rig. Previously we used a $12 stabilizer thing. I'm sure you can find tons of threads with links to that site that has plans for it. (nothing more than a long pole with a weight at the bottom, cam on top, and handle bar sticking out) We used that previously, and it did smooth out the shots, but for the supremely smooth shots you need a nice gimbal and tons of shock absorbance. But for the price, it did the trick before we had funding.

I've pointed Spence to this thread, he's been working with the rig since the beginning, he may be able to offer more advice. Not to rain on your parade, but I've heard nothing too great about those handheld stabilizers.

At most I'd assume those rigs would resemble the sled we use, but to carry the sled in your bare hands would be like holding onto a 20lb golf club mid-shaft and trying to walk smoothly (without your wrists snapping off!) That's not speculation either, that's me carrying our own sled in my bare hands quasi-balanced.

I also have to admit that even with our rig smooth shots don't magically appear in the view finder. We're still trying to balance the rig as of yet. To sum it all up, if you want the big smooth shots, you've got to get a nice rig...preferably one with a vest. This is all IMHO, I'd like to hear what others have to say.

BTW, we did another test here Its named bare bones because it isnt as glitzy as our last one, more of the raw steady shots. It should be mentioned that everything you see in that test is taken from on the rig.
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Old September 3rd, 2003, 11:08 PM   #4
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You guys are funny!

Please tell Spence that he's doing just fine. The rig itself is producing some impressive results, and he if keeps at it and practices hard, you guys are going to be able to make some very professional-looking moves.

In the past, I've posted some lengthy descriptions of exercises that help with the basics of operating, I think doing a "steadicam" search in this forum might turn some up. Unfortunately, Steadicam is a bit like learning an instrument--playing scales is boring, but it builds up the chops you need. Likewise with the basic Steadicam exercises.

Real quick--I'd suggest walking slowly in a straight line down a hallway (or anywhere with strong verticals and horizontals in the shot) with and then without the operating hand on the post; then examine the footage to see which looks better. It's a sure-fire way to see what the rig is capable of, and how the human interaction can actually interfere with its wanting to stay level and stable during a linear move (acceleration is where it gets complicated).

Keep it up gents!

p.s. I was suppose to operate on the first season of "Cribs", but I kept getting other work, so a friend of mine got it. Now ANOTHER friend of mine is flying around the country doing day I'll probably end up filling in!
Charles Papert
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Old September 4th, 2003, 11:01 PM   #5
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thanks everybody, I reposted my original query in "Support your local camera".
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Old September 5th, 2003, 12:20 PM   #6
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Charles - Thanks for your kind comments! We're still practicing with the rig as much as possible. We've fixed the last of the problems with the rig, and it's ready to go back to school with us for use in a short this fall. I'd say our main problem is balancing the damn thing. Before we just did it the noobie way and had the gimble ride high on the monopod close to the camera. Of course it sways around corners, etc. I think once we get that balanced we can really be in business with some practice.

We'll take your advice to heart and run that test down the hall once we get the sled balanced. Also, I laughed hard when I read that YOU are the back up steadi-op for cribs! That was all improv on my behalf in the test. Spencer was supposed to follow me through the house, but I went ahead and did my pop/rap star impression on cribs. Just came to mind after seeing all the steadi-work there. Well, once again thanks for your advice Charles!

PS - Do you have any clips online? I'd really enjoy seeing some professional steadi-work. We drool over it constantly, and that's the main reason why we're hardly ever content with what we gather! Hopefully with tons of practice we get up to your level one day. BTW, what rig do own?
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