Choosing a stabilizer for an action camera
Almost all gadgets produced today are equipped with miniature photo and video cameras. However, cameras as independent products are still relevant. The same applies to professional models of equipment used for filming films or solid TV shows. All this can be said about the innovations of the current century. action cameras, by their intended purpose, focused on shooting in special, dynamic conditions.
To get a high-quality, defect-free material, action cameras must be paired with an additional accessory. a stabilizer (steadicam). The modern market is replete with a variety of models focused on all kinds of technical requirements and user wishes. How to choose the right model, what criteria to be guided by when choosing. we will consider in our small review.
The rating of the models on the market will, for obvious reasons, be conditional. Nevertheless, a small list of popular steadicams will help you navigate, taking into account the specific goals and objectives that you are pursuing.
- Feiyu Tech G360. the model is designed to work with panoramic cameras. There are few high-quality gimbals for 360-degree cameras on sale. However, the model has successfully proven itself in conjunction with traditional action cameras. To start work in a panorama, a special button is equipped on the product body. When enabled, the gimbal slowly rotates the device around its axis, starting panoramic shooting in one motion.
- Dji Osmo Mobile is one of the best solutions in terms of functionality and quality. Made in China.
- SJCAM Gimbal. One of the moderately affordable models (around 10 thousand rubles). Unfortunately, it can only be paired with the action cameras of the manufacturer.
The holder is equipped with all the buttons necessary for control, which is very convenient.
- Xiaomi Yi is an excellent stabilizer at the price of 15 thousand rubles (China). Purchase it for the cameras of the company of the same name. However, there is no holder in the design, which will have to be purchased separately (monopod or tripod).
- Xiaomi Mi Action Camera Handheld Gimbale is one of the best electronic steadicams in terms of the combination of cost, high quality and features. Compatible only with Xiaomi Mijia 4K action camera (4K and 4K Lite). That is, the scope of application is narrowly focused. The body of the product is made of strong plastic. there is no need to fear for the safety of the device during dynamic shooting. Weight. about 200 g. The product is black, with a matte finish. Sadly, the handle of the product is made without a rubberized attachment and can slip in hot weather. Allows shooting in three main modes: horizon hold mode, tracking mode and selfie. The second option involves tracking the movement of the camera by the movement of the handle (hand). In the third, the apparatus rotates 180 degrees towards the one who is shooting.
It is rated as one of the best options in its category by experts.
- Beholder MS-PRO. You will have to pay about 40 thousand rubles for this stabilizer. The product is of excellent quality, lightweight and durable. Weight. about 700 g, but confidently withstands a camera weighing up to 1.2 kilograms.
- Zhiyun Z1 Evolution. For electronic devices, long-term operation without recharging is relevant. The specified model meets this condition in the best possible way. Equipped with a 2000mAh battery.
- Zhiyun Crane-M. Stabilizer. It is ranked among the best options for small cameras in the 125-650 g weight range. It is often used for smartphones as well. It comes with two batteries, each with a charge of up to 12 hours.
Electronic structures work according to a different principle. the cameras are stabilized by electric motors, and the degree of deviation of the apparatus is recorded by special sensitive sensors. Thus, the principle of feedback is triggered here. even a slight bias will be compensated by an electronic device. Electronic stabilizers are divided into two-axis and three-axis. Three-axis models work better.
The advantages of electronic steadicams include:
- ease of customization;
- subtlety and accuracy of device operation.
DIY Camera stabilizer for action camera
Thanks to these advantages, both stills and video frames tend to have a high level of professional quality, if the equipment you have is good and configured correctly.
- high price;
- the need to recharge the power supply;
- water sensitivity. it is better not to use in rainy weather.
There are also waterproof models, but you will have to pay extra for this.
Despite the endless variety of stabilizers produced by various companies, they are all divided into two main categories, differing in their principle of operation. mechanical (manual) and electronic. To fix cameras, special tripods are widely used, including monopods. tripods with one point of support, selfie sticks with stabilizers.
Features of the
After attaching the action camera to the gimbal and the initial adjustment, the stabilizer will balance it as needed by the filming person. As a rule, stabilization is carried out along 3 axes with special electric motors. Yes, three-axis designs of steadicams are much more expensive than simplified mechanical products, but this is perhaps one of their few disadvantages. With the use of steadicams, the masters produce fantastic quality shooting, absolutely without losing control over the workflow.
Features of such designs provide for the implementation of preliminary calibration. On the steadicam, restrictions on the movement of electric motors are configured, and this allows you to control:
- tilt angle;
- angle of rotation;
- dimensions of tolerances;
- various offsets.
Studios are produced with several preset work algorithms, which is very beneficial in conditions of long, painstaking and tedious shooting, with abrupt changes of angles.
Quick change of modes provides the ability to instantly change the characteristics of the steadicam and make high-quality photo and video material.
Using mechanical equipment in the work, the operator has to control not the camera itself, but the holder. The principle of operation of such a steadicam resembles the operation of a conventional scale, and when the handle is unexpectedly twitched, the equipment again, in a smooth mode, returns to its original horizontal position. Professional stabilizers work on three axes, which is why they are called three-axis. The simplicity of the design of such a steadicam suggests the possibility of its own production.
The advantages of a mechanical device are convincing:
- simplicity, minimum of details, cheapness;
- independence from weather conditions and unpretentiousness;
- durability and reliability.
However, there are also disadvantages.
- A three-axis steadicam requires careful and correct setup. Otherwise, the equipment will constantly skew.
- In the case of sharp turns, the equipment does not always manage to “catch” the frame, the principle of physical inertia is triggered. That is, you need to get used to such structures, gaining the appropriate skills.
Criterias of choice
With a certain degree of certainty, it can be argued that an electronic steadicam is the best option for professional video filming. Although this parameter depends on the specific situation, and this should be borne in mind. Nevertheless, in any case, one should rely on quite significant selection criteria.
- For which camera the product is selected. The pairing of the stabilizer with the camera must be absolutely reliable and ensure that the equipment does not fall out of the holder during sudden movements. Most of the models on the market have standard connectors that fit many cameras.
- Compactness of the unit. From the point of view of his choice, this is the most relevant criterion. In addition, small-sized steadicams are, as a rule, more technological, more convenient when moving.
- Permissible load. Obviously, the gimbal should be chosen so that it can support the weight of the equipment attached to it.
- Weight. For obvious reasons, lighter steadicams are more appreciated. they tire the hand less.
- Operating time without recharging. This is the most relevant criterion that does not require special explanations. No food, no work. This, of course, does not apply to mechanical models.
Often, users ask a question about which model to choose for DSLR and mirrorless cameras. There is not much difference here.
It is worth focusing on the criteria given above.
Review of the budget stabilizer for action cameras Hohem iSteady Pro you can see below.
The simplest do-it-yourself 12 volt voltage regulator
It is easiest to make a voltage regulator for LEDs with your own hands on the LM317 microcircuit. Assembly of parts is carried out on a perforated panel or universal printed circuit board.
The device allows you to maintain a uniform glow and prevents the blinking of bulbs.
5A power supply circuit with voltage regulator from 1.5 to 12 V
For self-assembly of such a device, you will need details:
- a plateau measuring 35×20 mm;
- chip LD1084;
- diode bridge RS407 or any small diode for reverse current;
- power supply unit consisting of a transistor and two resistances.
The latter is designed to turn off the rings when you turn on the high or low beam.
In this case, 3 LEDs are connected in series with a current-limiting resistor that equalizes the current. Such a set, in turn, is connected in parallel with the next same set of LEDs.
How to make a 12 volt voltage regulator?
- The simplest 12 volt voltage regulator
- Power supply circuit with voltage regulator
- 12V stabilizer for LEDs
- Voltage regulator connection diagram
- Video with step-by-step instructions
Everyone knows that LEDs cannot work simply from being plugged into the mains. They must be connected via voltage stabilizers (drivers). The latter prevent voltage drops, component failure, overheating, etc. About this and how to assemble a simple circuit with your own hands, and will be discussed in the article.
The diagram and step-by-step instructions will come in handy if you have no desire to buy a ready-made device, but you want to make a simple 12 V stabilizer yourself. It is difficult to make an impulse stabilizer in a car with your own hands. That is why it is worth taking a closer look at a selection of amateur circuits and designs of linear voltage stabilizers. The simplest and most common version of a stable consists of a finished microcircuit and a resistor (resistance).
- Read also how to make a step-up / step-down voltage converter with your own hands
Stabilizer 12 V for LEDs on the L7812 chip in a car
The LED current regulator can be assembled on the basis of a 3-pin DC voltage regulator (L7812 series). The wall-mounted device is perfect for powering both LED strips and individual bulbs in a car.
Required components for assembling such a circuit:
- microcircuit L7812;
- capacitor 330 uF, 16 V;
- capacitor 100 uF, 16 V;
- rectifier diode for 1 ampere (1N4001, for example, or a similar Schottky diode);
- heat shrink 3 mm.
In fact, there can be many options.
Connection diagram of a 12 V voltage regulator based on LM2940CT-12.0
The body of the gimbal can be made of almost any material except wood. When using more than 10 LEDs, it is recommended to attach an aluminum radiator to the stability.
Some people think that you can easily do without unnecessary troubles by directly connecting the LEDs. But in this case, the latter will be in unfavorable conditions most of the time, which means they will not last long or will burn out altogether. But tuning expensive cars translates into a rather large amount.!
Regarding the described schemes, their main advantage is ease of installation. No special skills or abilities are required for manufacturing. However, if the scheme is too complicated, then it becomes not rational to assemble it with your own hands.
- Learn more about the L7812 stabilizer
The ideal option for connecting LEDs in a car is through a 12 volt voltage regulator. The device balances fluctuations, with its use, current surges will no longer be terrible. In this case, the requirements for the power supply must be observed. This will allow you to adjust your stabilizer to the network.
The device should provide maximum reliability, stability and stability, preferably for many years. The cost of the assembled devices depends on where the parts will be bought.
Video with step-by-step instructions for soldering a simple 12V voltage regulator:
Mount to monopod
- 1,3. rubber ring Ø20 x 3 mm.
- 2. sleeve Ø20 x 25 mm.
- 4. flange Ø30 x 8 mm.
Improvement of the design
It is advisable to choose a handle with three sections, but more often they are found with two. The handle is very long and needs to be shortened.
A simple, straight monopod can be made from materials at hand.
- Tripod threaded head.
- Fasteners from the FED tripod-clamp.
- Textolite handle Ø18mm.
- Steel rod Ø5x85mm.
- Threaded bushing M5x8x35mm.
- Washer 20mm.
- Rubber foot Ø20x20mm.
Stand-clamp FED. This is a device for attaching a camera to flat surfaces: tables, railings, window sills. ). The construction of the monopod is simple. Threads must be cut on both sides of the bar. Fix the rubber foot on one side and on the other. mount for the camera. This monopod is good, but not perfect. First, it turns out to be cumbersome. It would be more convenient to be able to fold it down, reducing the length. Secondly, the camera was rocking from side to side. The monopod will not get rid of this in the form in which it is now.
The telescopic tube is quite fragile, therefore, rubber washers must be installed between the elements.
When the nuts are tightened, the rubber compresses and the body of the telescopic tube carries minimal loads.
The support leg must be made rotating in order to rotate the monopod during shooting without any obstacles. To do this, you need to make a long thread or organize rotation using washers and bolts. If the intermediate washers are too large, then they can be sharpened on the machine. To evenly grind washers around the entire circumference, they must be clamped on a hairpin and constantly rotated evenly during grind.
- weight. steel Ø50x50mm.
- hairpin М6 х 300 mm.
- flange. steel Ø30x8mm.
The total weight of the cargo is 1.5 kg. Weights are attached to studs, and studs are connected to each other by a flange.
To stabilize handheld shooting, a stabilizer will be added to the monopod. The weights allow you to stabilize the camera not only vertically, but also horizontally. Loads are spaced 30 cm each. The design turns out to be not the most convenient and beautiful, but for shooting at home or on the road among friends, it is quite suitable for operation.
When shooting at short focal lengths, the advantages of the monopod are not obvious, but if you increase the AF, the influence of the stabilizer and support will be significant.
Shortening the telescopic tube
Our tube is too long, so it needs to be shortened. We will cut the pipe on both sides.
You can mark up with a scribe or a thin marker. In order not to damage the paint when cutting, the cutting site can be wrapped with electrical tape or thick paper. We will cut with an ordinary hacksaw for metal. Position the blade so that the teeth point away from you and only cut towards you. This will complicate the task, but will allow you to get a smoother cut. Final finishing can be done with sandpaper.
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Detailed review of SJCAM SJ360
Today we will talk about the 360 ° camera from SJCAM. As you can see from the image below, its actual viewing angle is not 360 °, but 360 ° x 220 °. In this article, we will analyze its advantages and disadvantages.
The gimbal is perfect for home archive videography and blogging. Its unrivaled autonomy allows it to be used on hikes and long trips. If earlier video from an action camera had to be watched with tension in the eyes, then with the Z-1 Evolution it has a smoothness comparable to professional stabilization systems. Low cost and compatibility with most action cameras. this is exactly what made the device popular.
The Z1 comes in an elegant white box, perfect for storage and transport. The foam has grooves for storing each part, so the box does not rattle when shaken. The kit, in addition to the stabilizer, includes the following items:
2 batteries type 18650 Li-Po 3.7V 2000mAh;
Battery charger for 18650 batteries;
Zhiyun Z1-Evolution User Manual.
You don’t need to buy anything, everything works out of the box.
The average charging time is 3 hours, which is quite long. No 220V AC adapter included.
You can find out the residual charge by the indicator only when the stabilizer is turned on: 4 flashes. 75 to 100%, 3 flashes. 50-75%, 2 flashes. 25 to 50%, 1 flash. it’s time to charge the battery. This method is not convenient.
There is no rubber pad in the aluminum grip, so when shooting in the cold, the palm quickly freezes.
No remote control function via mobile app. Gimbal calibration via PC is difficult due to complex program interface.
You can output video to an external screen via the 3.5mm jack, but there is not even a holder for this screen included.
Simple controls can be mastered in a couple of minutes. In addition to the on / off button and the joystick, there is nothing superfluous. You can choose from one of three stabilization modes that are activated by pressing the stick: Pan Following, Locked, Heading and Pitch following. First. this is the default operating mode, when the camera smoothly rotates along all axes following the gimbal handle and there is access to change the pitch angle. Locked locks all axes, allowing the camera to be locked in one direction. Heading and Pitch following is a variation of the first mode, but with a locked rotation angle. By the way, if you turn the camera upside down, all three modes will still function.
The handle has a 1/4 ”thread at the base of the handle. You can attach the gimbal to a tripod or monopod. Shooting on an extended monopod, you can achieve the effect of flying on a quadcopter.
The Evolution differs from similar models for its quiet yet powerful brushless motors. You will have no problem even when shooting in strong winds. Zhiyun Z-1 is versatile and supports most action cameras regardless of their weight and additional attachments. The main thing. so that the dimensions of the device do not exceed 42.7 mm in height and 31 mm in width (dimensions of the mounting frame). For non-standard cameras like the GoPro Session, special adapters are sold for mounting on a standard mount.
The reviewed model is completely made of metal, which makes it stand out from the “plastic” competitors. All parts are fitted with machine precision and fit together perfectly. With a high degree of probability, the stabilizer will survive accidental drops with dignity.
The Evolution lasts up to 12 hours on a single full charge of 18650 batteries. 3400mAh power supplies are also available that allow up to 20 hours of battery life. It is the only gimbal for action cameras that can boast this kind of autonomy. You can make the gimbal more compact by unscrewing the extension tube and using other 18350 batteries with smaller capacity and dimensions. They are purchased separately together with the charger. Also available is the ability to charge the action camera from the gimbal and simultaneously shoot. To do this, use the adapter that comes with the kit.
SJ4000 vs SJ4000 vs SJ4000 Gyro
In this article, we’ll take a look at the differences between the models in the SJ4000 series. When you finish reading the article, you will understand which one is best for you.
Zhiyun Z-1 Evolution 3-axis gimbal review
Even on the best action camera, there will be distortions caused by walking and hand shake when recording video. Only a three-axis stabilizer can help in this situation. This time, your attention will be presented to the compact one-handed Zhiyun Z-1 Evolution, designed specifically for small action cameras. It will fit most models (including SJCAM SJ4000, SJ5000, SJ6, SJ7, SJ8 series). The main elements are a 6-axis gyroscope and three brushless motors. When paired with each other, they create a compensating movement that brings the camera back into place.
Of course, the best stabilizer that would be equally good for any camera does not exist in nature. in all cases you need to adapt to the camera and shooting features. Nevertheless, under the same conditions and one model of recording equipment, certain steadicams will have an advantage over all others. In view of this, our rating will be rather arbitrary. none of the models presented in the list may be suitable for an individual reader. Nevertheless, these are the best or very popular models in their classes, which simply should not be ignored if they suit you according to their characteristics.
- Dji Osmo Mobile. Another “Chinese”, which is regarded by many as the best solution in terms of functionality and quality. It is worth, however, even more expensive than the previous model. from 17 thousand rubles.
- SJCAM Gimbal. Among electronic models, it is often called the most affordable. if you wish, you can find it for 10 thousand rubles with a penny. Many consider the disadvantage of the unit that it is only suitable for action cameras of the same manufacturer, but it is a pleasure to operate them, because the holder has the necessary buttons that allow you not to reach for the camera.
- Xiaomi Yi. A stabilizer from a famous manufacturer attracts the attention of fans of this brand, who buy a steadicam for a camera of the same company. However, it is worth noting that at a price of 15 thousand rubles, the structure is surprisingly devoid of a holder, so you will have to additionally buy a standard monopod or a tripod.
- Steadicam. This, of course, cannot be done, but the enterprising Chinese decided to produce a mechanical steadicam under the brand that is literally called that. This somewhat complicates the search for the right product, but the designated model made of aviation aluminum weighing 968 grams costs less than 3 thousand rubles, and in its category it is considered one of the best.
- Beholder MS-PRO. Stabilizers for professional needs cost much more, but they have improved properties. For this model, you will have to pay about 40 thousand rubles, but it is an excellent, rare for amateur steadicams, combination of lightness and strength. An aluminum unit with a modest weight of 700 grams will withstand a camera weighing up to 1.2 kilograms.
- Zhiyun Z1 Evolution. For an electronic stabilizer, it is very important to work as long as possible without additional recharging, this particular model, for 10 thousand rubles, meets this requirement in the best possible way. The battery has a good capacity of 2000 mAh, and a generous manufacturer, just in case, also added two of these to the package.
- Zhiyun Crane-M. The same manufacturer as in the previous case, but a different model. This steadicam, for 20 thousand rubles, is often called the best for small cameras in the weight range of 125-650 grams, it is also often used to stabilize smartphones.
In this case, the supplier also decided to put two batteries in the box at once, and the life of each of them on one charge is estimated at an average of 12 hours.
Features of the stabilizer for the camera
Almost no one is perfect, and you can use even the best camera, but if your hand shakes when you press the shutter, ruin the perfect shot. In the case of video shooting, the situation may turn out to be even worse. moving behind a moving object and not always having time to look under your feet, an operator, especially an inexperienced one, will inevitably provoke shaking. However, you probably noticed that professionals do not have this problem.
In fact, the trick is not to long and diligently develop hand stability in a stable position, but to buy special equipment that smooths out the shaking for the recording equipment. Such a device is called a stabilizer or steadicam.
There are many different models of gimbals available for your camera, but they all come in two main classes, radically different in how they work. Accordingly, the steadicam can be either mechanical or electronic.
The mechanics certainly came before. Mechanical steadicams are often referred to as handheld because they look like a free-floating camera retainer with a handle. When shooting with such equipment, the operator controls not so much the camera itself as the holder. It works on the principle of classical scales. the place for mounting the camera is always in a horizontal position, and if you pull the handle sharply, the equipment will return to the “correct” position by itself, but it will do it smoothly, without blurring the picture.
A professional gyro stabilizer of this type works in all axes, which is why it is called that. three-axis.
Those who want to save money and just do it all, they can easily make such a device even on their own.
As befits the ageless classics, the mechanical steadicam has a lot of advantages. Here are just a few of them:
- the mechanism is very simple, consists of a minimum of parts, therefore it is relatively inexpensive;
- a mechanical steadicam does not depend on the weather in any way, it does not need to be waterproof, because it is not afraid of moisture ingress. if only the camera would withstand;
- such a stabilizer functions exclusively thanks to the elementary laws of physics, it basically does not have anything like a power source, and therefore it does not need to be recharged and can work indefinitely.
If you already think that you are in love with this type of device, be prepared for the fact that it also has significant drawbacks. Firstly, the unit must be properly adjusted, otherwise, instead of an ideal horizontal position, it will constantly skew your camera along one or more planes. Secondly, during sharp turns, the rotating equipment may simply “not catch up” with the frame, which must be photographed quickly, or, due to inertia, at first turn more strongly than we would like. In a word, the mechanical steadicam is very simple at first glance, but you still need to get used to it.
The electronic unit acts in a fundamentally different way. electric motors return the camera to the correct position. Deviations from the correct position are detected by sensors, so that even a small angular misalignment, which you would not have noticed with the naked eye, will be fixed and corrected. Electronic stabilizers are divided into two-axis and three-axis, the latter, of course, give a much better picture than the first.
The advantages of using an electronic steadicam are obvious. First of all, it is easy and simple to set them up, “smart” equipment itself will tell you what is the best way, will double-check everything correctly. Thanks to this, both photos and videos are obtained at the level of professional shooting. provided, of course, that you have a good camera and that you have configured it correctly.
But here, too, there were some drawbacks. Firstly, technologically sophisticated equipment cannot be cheap a priori. so it is not worth it. Secondly, the electronic steadicam works thanks to the battery, and if it is discharged, the entire unit turns into useless. Thirdly, most typical electronic stabilizers, as befits an electrical appliance, are afraid of contact with water. The instructions specifically indicate that they are not suitable for shooting outdoors in rainy weather.
Of course, there are waterproof models, but for the quality, as is often the case, you will have to pay extra.
How to choose?
When purchasing a stabilizer for a video camera, you need to understand that the existing variety of models does not exist for nothing, and it is impossible to choose the conditional best copy among them, for all occasions. It all depends on what needs you buy a steadicam for. From the foregoing, it could be concluded that for professional video filming, an electronic steadicam seems more relevant, in general it is true. it is easier and easier to set up.
However, even this criterion strongly depends on the situation, and if you do not shoot some action in its very epicenter, then the mechanics may well be enough.
In any case, when choosing, it is worth focusing on very specific criteria, which we will consider in more detail.
- For which camera (mirrorless or SLR) this model is suitable. The connection of the steadicam with the camera itself should be as reliable as possible, ensuring that the recording equipment does not separate from the holder at a sharp turn. At the same time, some stabilizers are produced with an eye to a specific camera model. they provide better grip, but will not work with alternative equipment. Most of the models on the market have a standard connector and fit all cameras.
- Dimensions. A stabilizer is hardly needed at home. this is the equipment that you take with you on business trips, travels, on trips. Therefore, compactness for such a unit is undoubtedly a big plus. Paradoxically, but it is the small steadicams that are usually more technologically advanced. if only because the mechanics are always large, but they have no additional functions.
- Permissible load. Cameras can vary significantly in weight. all GoPro fit easily in the palm and weigh accordingly, and professional cameras don’t always fit on the shoulder of a sturdy man. Obviously, steadics should be chosen so that they are able to withstand the weight of the shooting equipment, which they want to fix on it.
- Weight. In most cases, a gimbal with a camera attached to it is held on an outstretched arm. This position of the hand is in many ways unnatural, the limb can get tired even if you do not hold anything in it. If the equipment is also heavy, it is simply not possible to shoot for too long without a break, and sometimes it is simply criminal to interrupt. For this reason, lightweight models of steadicams are valued higher. the hand gets tired less from them.
- Operating time without recharging. This criterion is relevant only when choosing electronic steadicams, since mechanics does not have a power source at all, and therefore is capable of “breaking” any electronic competitor. By saving on a battery with a small capacity, you run the risk of being in a situation where there is a stabilizer, but you cannot use it.
5 Gimbal Action Camera stabilizer. homemade tutorial DIY
Consumers often wonder which model to choose for DSLR and mirrorless camera types. In this sense, there is no fundamental difference. focus only on the criteria that are given above.
How to do it yourself?
Probably, such a person has not yet been born who, at home, with his own hands, would design an electronic stabilizer. Nevertheless, the design of its mechanical counterpart and the principle of its operation are so simple that the task no longer seems insurmountable. A homemade steadicam, made with great care, is unlikely to be much worse than inexpensive Chinese models, but will cost mere pennies. At the same time, it should be understood that you should not expect a direct stunning result from such handicraft products, therefore it makes sense to additionally process the video through video editors.
Theoretically, you can experiment with any materials at hand, but in most cases, a reliable and durable unit is assembled, of course, from metal. It is noticed that the simplest mechanical stabilizers give a better result with an increase in mass, therefore it is hardly necessary to count on the fact that the final product will turn out to be light.
Horizontal and vertical strips should be made from metal blanks. Rigidity is mandatory for both. swinging weights should not swing the horizontal bar from which they are suspended, and the vertical bar must successfully resist torsion and bending. They are connected to each other with a screw connection, designed so that the angle between them can be changed easily and without additional tools by unscrewing and unscrewing the individual parts. The camera will be mounted on a vertical bar. It is necessary to adjust the device according to an ordinary bubble level, or, if the recording equipment can do so, according to its sensors.
The length of the horizontal bar is needed as long as possible. the farther the opposite weights, suspended along the edges of the bar, from each other, the better the stabilization. In this case, the fragments of the stabilizer should not fall into the frame even at the minimum focal length, and this imposes certain restrictions on the maximum allowable length of the structure. The problem could be solved by lengthening the vertical bar with a higher camera attachment point, but this would make the structure too bulky.
As weights, you can use any small, but rather heavy objects, including ordinary plastic bottles filled with sand. The exact weight of the weights, which will provide reliable and high-quality stabilization, can only be determined empirically. too much depends on the weight and dimensions of the camera, as well as on the length of the horizontal bar and even the shape of the weights themselves. In homemade designs for cameras weighing about 500-600 grams, a homemade stabilizer with weights can easily weigh more than a kilogram.
For the sake of ease of use, handles are bolted to the structure in different places, which can be purchased at a low price. Where exactly they are to be placed, in what quantity (for one hand or for two), depends only on the designer’s flight of imagination and the characteristics of his camera, including its dimensions and weight. In this case, before the final assembly, you need to fully make sure that even at the minimum focal length, the handle does not fall into the frame.
How to choose a steadicam, see below.
How to make a stabilizer with your own hands
It is almost impossible to implement an integrated module for a lens or camera matrix with your own hands, but it makes sense to try the technology of creating the same steadicam. In essence, you should have a simple stabilizer that will reduce the effect of camera shake. The work will require the main metal rod, on which the equipment for holding the camera, bearings, and also devices for manipulating the mechanism will be fixed.
So, the essence of the design will be to reduce the vibration transmitted to the camera from the hands during the shooting process. The main component of the system will be the vibration damping base. It is formed by a set of weights, the mass of which can be varied, and a system of bearings fixed at the points of rotation of the camera relative to the axis of the rod. So that the home-made stabilizer does not fail at the right time due to a miscalculation in the load-bearing structure, you should also provide for reliable retainers of its individual parts. Since both the boom and associated hardware will not be heavily stressed, you can restrict yourself to conventional mounting brackets. In addition, it is important to complement the design with ergonomic grips, since during long-term shooting, holding fatigue can increase the amplitude of vibrations.
Purpose of the stabilizer
This technology should be used in cases where there is a risk of image quality distortion due to unintentional movement of the device. Optical stabilization compensates for angles of movement and reduces camera shake to prevent blur at slow shutter speeds. It is important to understand that the presence of this function in the camera practically does not entail negative operating factors, so it certainly will not be superfluous. Another thing is that in some cases a stabilizer for a camera does not save the day, and can often be replaced with an ordinary tripod. Although it is still recommended to combine different stabilization and shake reduction methods to achieve high quality images.
Varieties of systems
High-end stabilizers are generally divided into two types. Nikon’s VR systems and Canon’s IS modules. Often, the end results of both systems are of a similar quality. especially in the eyes of non-professionals. An important feature of these systems is the ability to improve the quality of shooting in poor lighting conditions. A radical departure from this integrated anti-vibration concept is the handheld camera gimbal, which is essentially a more ergonomic version of the tripod. Usually, such devices, called steadicams, are used in equipping video cameras, but recently they are increasingly being purchased by camera users.
Another direction is represented by the stabilization system used in SLR cameras from Sony and Olympus. In this case, the stabilizer for the camera is not built into the lens, but into the matrix base of the camera. The advantages of such solutions include the compatibility of the module with almost all lenses, since the system interacts not with the optics, but with the stuffing of the main device.
Camera stabilizer device
In the traditional version, the optical stabilization module is integrated into the lens of the device and represents a whole set of functional components. In particular, this complex is formed by a movable optical element in the form of a lens, which can be included in the optical system of the objective. The stabilizer also includes angular velocity sensors that record the parameters of the camera oscillation, which allows the system to adjust the optimal characteristics of the balancer. An important part that also provides the camera stabilizer is the electromagnet. Thanks to this part, the movement of the optical element is carried out based on the readings from the aforementioned sensors. The microcircuit is responsible for the coordination of individual components of the system: the overall quality of the stabilizer largely depends on its function.
How much does a camera stabilizer cost
The simplest models of steadicams can be purchased for 1.5-2 thousand rubles. It can be a versatile attachment that will fit almost all camera models. In the middle price segment, better and more ergonomic developments are offered at a cost of 5 thousand or more. It makes sense to pay attention to a complex stabilizer for a camera, which will consist of an integrated module, manual damping equipment and a floor bar. Such kits already cost about 10-15 thousand.
As a rule, there are two modes in which the camera uses the stabilizer function. frame and continuous. The best quality allows you to get the first one-shot mode, because in the process of using it, the camera, roughly speaking, “freezes” until the moment the picture is taken. But the continuous format of the stabilization system can be justified if it is required to get several photos in the course of dynamic shooting in a short period of time. To improve the quality of such shooting, it is precisely recommended to use accessories for the camera in the form of the same manual stabilizer. The main correction module will eliminate significant and abrupt deviations, and the tripod will initially minimize them. But even with such support, you should not count on creating high-quality images.
Stabilizer for the camera: design, purpose
Amateur photographers and professional camera users alike are familiar with the challenges of hand-held photography. Firstly, there is a high chance of getting a blurry image, and secondly, even in the absence of a clear haze effect, the frame is more likely to turn out not sharp enough. A stabilizer for the camera helps to eliminate these troubles, which may have different designs, but serves the same purpose. creating optimal physical conditions when fixing the frame.
A lot depends on the shooting conditions when choosing a stabilizer. If we are talking about “field” conditions and a dynamic format of photo-hunting, then one cannot do without a built-in module in the matrix or the camera lens. However, in a home or studio setting, external accessories for the camera in the form of the same rod or steadicam will also help. Here, a lot will depend on the very organization of filming. Also, the quality of the images will be affected by the shutter speed. the period of time during which the camera focuses on the object without corrections. The longer it is, the higher the chance of getting a high-quality picture, even without using stabilization systems.