Amateur or low-budget videographers who want to smooth out their shaky handheld camera work have for some time now had the option of using the Smoothee, a simple rig made by none other than Steadicam. The product is intended for use with pocket camcorders and smartphones, however, which kind of leaves DSLR-users in the lurch. Well, those people now have a new affordable stabilizing system of their own, in the form of the Cam Caddie Scorpion.
The composite thermoplastic device consists of a flat base, with a scorpion-tail-like handle that arches around above it. That handle features a polymer grip.
Pretty much any model of DSLR or smaller HD video camera (or pocket camcorder, for that matter) can be mounted on the base, via the camera's tripod mount hole. Depending on the size and weight of the camera, it can be mounted towards the front or rear of the platform, in order to keep its weight centered. From there, the user simply holds the rig by its handle, with the weight of the camera and the platform serving to minimize the jiggles - as can be seen in this demo video.
Various custom accessories are available for hook-up to the Scorpion, including LED camera lights, monitors, and mounts that can themselves hold several other accessories, such as multiple lights or wireless microphone receivers. Besides being used as a stabilizer, the device can also simply be mounted on a tripod, where its handle serves as an attachment point for shotgun mics, lights, or any other peripherals. Additionally, a DSLR can be turned sideways on the base, with the camera body and handle curve serving as dual hand holds, for more controlled panning.
More information on its use can be found in the video below.
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