Creatives involved in extreme action filmmaking are typically using GoPros in order to get those much desired POV and other seldom-seen shots. The drawback to using such a compact and lightweight camera, however, is stabilizing the shots you get, which means finding a stabilizer that will give you a really smooth image. Currently on Kickstarter, the EasyGimbal, designed exclusively for the GoPro 3, offers a lot in terms of affordability and style for being a 3-axis handheld camera stabilizer, but how steady can it keep your shots? Decide for yourself after the jump.
According to the developer Cordvision, EasyGimbal, originally crafted with plastic in a 3D printer, is small, lightweight, and ready right out of the box.
There are a few things that make the EasyGimbal different from other handheld brushless gimbal stabilizers made specifically for GoPros. First of all, the design is an interesting one. Most stabilizers boast about using high-grade metals that make the unit durable and long-lasting, but EasyGimbal went a different route.
Our design cannot be laser cut, but will need to be molded which is expensive. Molded parts can be real 3D objects which allows for complex shapes including cable channels. We decided that the optimal material for making the EasyGimbal would be a type of Polyurethane. It is very durable, lightweight, and allows for complex shapes to be produced. We have already test molded parts to ensure this process will satisfy our needs and prove feasibility. Also, we will be able to custom color the EasyGimbal by mixing the Polyurethane with a color dye. Besides the standard black, we will offer yellow, green, blue, and red.
And probably the most important difference is that the motors operate on 3 axes: pan, tilt, and roll, which, according to my eye, makes the image more stable. Other similar GoPro stabilizers I've come across use only 2 axes, forgoing a motor to cover panning, which allows for more instability along the z-axis. This means that you can be more mobile as you shoot -- you won't be limited to tracking bike/skateboard shots -- you can move around in 3D space.
The stabilizer runs on "standard rechargeable DSLR style batteries" that last about an hour if they're fully charged. Cordvision also explains that they use electronics that "compensate for the voltage drop as the battery gets depleted," which means that whether your battery is at 100% or lurching toward 0%, it will perform as if it were fully charged.
With the prototype ready, Cordvision is looking to go into production, and in order to get the manufacturing costs down they need to be able to mass produce the unit. Contributing $599 or more to their Kickstarter campaign gets you a preorder of the EasyGimbal -- relatively safe to say that this will be the price of one post-campaign, but that's just speculation. So, if you're interested or want more information, take a look at EasyGimbal's Kickstarter campaign.
What do you think about the EasyGimbal footage? How big of a difference (if any) do you think the 3rd axis makes on the image's stability? Let us know in the comments below.