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Old May 4th, 2005, 02:47 PM   #1
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Glidecam Smooth Shooter

Hi, is the only benefit of the Glidecam Smooth Shooter that you can use the rig much longer without getting fatigued?

Or does it actually also make it easier to stablize your rig and get more intricate shots? If it just helps you use the Glidecam for longer periods of time, I don't think it'd be worth it.

I'm just debating whether it would be worth it to pay for the entire rig, i.e. Smooth Shooter. Quite a jump in price.

Thanks.
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Old May 5th, 2005, 06:00 PM   #2
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Hello Eugene,

The Glidecam Smooth Shooter, when used with a 2000 or 4000 pro, is a true body-mounted stabilizer. The Smooth Shooter was never designed as simply a fatigue-reducing accessory, although that is an obvious benefit from a system like this since only a very light touch is now required.

It was very carefully designed to produce much more stabile footage than is possible with a hand-held rig alone, and even outperforms the Glidecam V-8, which it replaces. It will completely change how you interact with, and use, the Glidecam 2000 and 4000 Pro.

If your interested, I would advise contacting your local dealer about possibly setting up a demo of the Glidecam Smooth Shooter.

Hope this helps.
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Old May 6th, 2005, 12:30 AM   #3
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I know the Smooth Shooter has been designed for the 2000 and 4000, but I have an old 1000 model in my closet, lying around doing nothing right now. I beleive it's the ancester of the 4000 as it is bigger than the 2000 and supports up to... hmm.. I beleive it's 12lbs. Not quite sure. Anyway, I didn't think I'd use it again given the weight of my XL2 but this Smooth Shooter rig has me very curious about bringing the 1000 back to life.
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Old May 6th, 2005, 01:25 AM   #4
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David,

You would be hard pressed to get your XL2 to work well on the 1000 Pro (which I am looking at right now in my office). The 4000 would be the sled to buy as I think Casey will verify. First of all, the 1000 holds it's counter weights on the post and you'ld have to use a lot of them with the XL2. Second, the gimbal and bearings have been vastly improved in the 4000.

The 1000 Pro would fit on the Smooth Shooter but I think you would be much happier with the 4000. Sell the 1000 on ebay.

Tery
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Old May 6th, 2005, 02:21 AM   #5
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Sorry Terry, big brain cramp there, I'm working way too late and I'm getting tired. I meant the 3000. I woke up when you wrote about the weights being on the pole. I got confused because I also owned the 1000 at some point, but I really don't know where that is, I think I must have sold it years ago. Actually, now that I think about it, I've owned all 1000, 2000, 3000 and V-8. Glidecam should be giving me a 4000 just as a reward for my loyalty ;). But I do have the 3000 in my closet and although the comment on the improved gimbal mechanism still stands, I'm pretty sure it can handle the weight of the XL2 quite well.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 01:51 AM   #6
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David,

You would still need to add quite a bit of counter weights as the XL2 is fairly heavy isn't it? I'll have to get someone to let me try an XL2 on my Indicam system to see if it can handle that much weight.

You can always try the 3000 out and if it works you're in business. If you shoot often you will want to get a vest and arm system. You'll see...

Tery
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Old May 7th, 2005, 03:30 AM   #7
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The XL2 is fairly heavy yes. I'd say anything between 8 and 12 lbs depending if there's a viewfinder (and which one) attached, a matte box, a mic/wireless system or shoe-mount light.

I didn't have the time yet (nor the desire before the Smooth Shooter was annouced) but I'll try to balance it on the 3000 pro tomorrow and see how it holds up.

I was using the stabilizers mainly for scripted/fictional stuff in the past but I'm sure I could find a use for it for event/corporate and especially ad/music videography.

My main hesitation right now comes from the fact I could probably get a complete Magiqcam system for just a few hundreds more and it has the advantage of a dual-arm system. I'm still juggling with my options. Trying that 3000 with the XL2 will certainly tell me a bit more about the possibilities.

Terry, did you by any chance also try the Magiqcam? If so, how does it compare to the SS?
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Old May 7th, 2005, 09:42 AM   #8
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David,

I walked around with John (Magiqcam) for a few hours. His system is nice and the dual arm does give you alot more boom ability. Both systems are smooth so the biggest question is how much up-down area of movement do you need or want.

Tery
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Old May 7th, 2005, 12:51 PM   #9
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Hmm, well, I guess I could over-simplify and say the more the better. But I've heard good things about the Magiqcam and I really think a new stabilizing system is a smart investment for me at this point in time.

So I think it boils down to $$$ (what else). The thing is, John is offering a IIa model right now at a discount price and unless I'm mistaking, it also includes the sled. Selling my 3000 pro on eBay and buying his system would cost me the exact same price as buying the Smooth Shooter and using it with the 3000.

Even though Animagique doesn't have the R&D ressources of Glidecam, logic says John's gimbal/bearing mechanism is at least as good as the old 3000 series, which isn't the most fantastic piece of gear I've seen anyway, but the big benefits are a dual arm system, which allows for much more versatility, and also it supports more weight than the SS with a 3000 sled too (up to 15lbs) which gives better room for growth.

Frankly, I think I'd need a reason not to opt for a Magiqcam to go for something else at this point as I really don't see how John's offering can be beat in this price range. Of course if I had the money I'd probably go for a Flyer, but my business can't afford that for now. The IIa looks like the next best thing to me.

Last edited by David Lach; May 7th, 2005 at 01:17 PM.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 10:44 PM   #10
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David,

Well thought out. Tell John "Hi" from Tery at Indicam.

Tery
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Old January 12th, 2007, 12:54 AM   #11
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Hi Terry - Indicam & XL2

HI Terry,

I'm new to this forum so I'm not sure if posting to this old thread with get through to you or not, but reading all of these (old) posts about testing the XL2 on the Indicam makes me want to jump up and yell pick me pick me!

I've been hunting around reading everything I can find and it looks like you've proved that you have a model of the Indicam that can indeed fly the XL2 (I saw the video on your web site). I was settled on the smooth shooter until I saw that dual arm, that just fires me up.

Before I got wind of Indicam, I purchased a used Glidecam 4000 Pro off of ebay. I set it up tonight with my XL2 and it weight in at a whopping 16.5lbs. I couldn't hold that up with just my arm for more than about 60 seconds. Holy heavy!

The sled alone ways in at amost 4lbs and it takes about 3.5lbs to balance the XL2 with the 4000 fully extended. According to your specs, this would be over the weight limit of the Indi, so I am concluding that your sled is 1 to 2lbs lighter than the 4000, the pivot axis is closer to the camera and/or it can telescope further than the 4000. In any case, I imagine the total weight comes out to about 14lbs.

Anyway... I have a winter carnival shoot coming up second week of February, so I'm hoping to get some of my questions answered and get a rig on order pretty quickly here. I sent you an e-mail to you earlier today and I'm hoping to hear back from you soon.

- Todd
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Old January 18th, 2007, 12:45 AM   #12
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Todd,

I thought I would answer this post even though we talked over the phone so other readers who might have the same questions can read the answers.

Our sled with 12 counter weights is a bit over 5 pounds. 14 counter weights brings it up to a little less than 6 pounds. We usually operate with the 12 counter weight configuration and will drop the lower post if needed for heavier cameras. The Z1U doesn't need the lower post dropped but about an inch or two but it can be dropped a total of 13 inches.

We just returned from a cruise to Mexico where the ship's video crew (Mike and Eric) used our rig for two of it's on-board productions. It was fun helping them learn how to shoot steadicam shots. This is what Mike Krebs said in an email...
===============

Hi Tery,
Its Mike. The broadcast technician from the Norwegian STAR. I just wanted to write to say thank you, for letting me use your Indicam rig. It was great to try something new. I am glad it all worked out.
How might I be able to get a copy of the pictures you took of me?
Well, I hope everything works out well for you in the future. And perhaps I will see you on another cruise. Hopefully as a passenger, but you never know.
Thanks again.

Best Regards,
Mike Krebs
Broadcast Technician
================

Tery
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Old January 18th, 2007, 05:24 PM   #13
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Todd,

I just set up a rig with 10 pounds on the top plate and could balance the sled with 12 counterweights and the lower post extended. The single upgraded arm worked with the 10 pound payload but 9 pounds on the camera plate worked a bit better.

With a 10 pound camera the arm rode very low but still there wasn't much effort to bring it up to normal operating height. In other words, you could use a 10 pound camera and still be happy with the rig's performance. Still, we will rate the single upgraded arm for cameras (or payload) weighing up to 9 pounds.

Thanks for the opportunity to research your needs.

Terry
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Last edited by Terry Thompson; January 18th, 2007 at 06:20 PM.
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 01:27 PM   #14
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Terry,

Thanks for taking the time to test out your rig at the heavier weights. I appreciate your willingness to test your products capabilities pre-sale.

If I recall correctly, my XL2 weighs in anound 8.25 or 8.5lbs with a battery but without any accessories. With accessories more like 9.5lbs.

So if I read your post correctly, you're feeling good about cameras 9lbs or less and 10lbs is a little heavy but workable.

Quesiton... how long is the sled with the lower post fully extended? I guess my question really is... being that the sled must be FULLY extended to balance the XL2, what is the lowest shot than can be taken while keeping the camera horizontal? I'm guessing the sled is around 36" when fully extended?

Anyway Terry... I'm stilling thinking about making the purchase. At this point my concerns about your rig are pretty much satisfied. Presently I'm debating my ability to move around the ice statue sites, which are on ice covered slopes, without wiping out. Pretty treterous.

Todd
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Old January 23rd, 2007, 01:50 PM   #15
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Todd:

Last year I had to do some Steadicam work on ice for the opening of the HBO series "Big Love", and my research led me to Icers, a strap-on base for your own shoes or boots. They dug in beautifully, I felt fully secure working on the ice with them but they didn't hinder my movement at all. There's another product called Stabilicers which are based on these, more or less the same thing. There are other products out there with sort of grippy bungee cord that wrap around the shoes, I don't think they are powerful enough for camera work on ice.
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