I have to admit to occasionally doing something that's perhaps a little dorky. If I'm listening to particularly moody music, I'll sometimes close one eye, then simulate a tracking shot or a crane shot from a movie, by slowly moving my head past the items on my desk. Yeah, I look pretty dumb doing it, but the continuous change in perspective created by such a simple move really has a way of making even the most mundane scenes look ... poetic? Profound? Good videographers realize how powerful such shots can be, which is why some of them put their DSLRs or prosumer-level camcorders on camera sliding mechanisms like the Glidetrack. Now, users of smartphone cameras and pocket camcorders can get in on the smooth-tracking action, with Glidetrack's compact new mobislyder.
Like the larger original Glidetrack, the mobislyder is based around a central rail, which an articulated camera mount slides along via integrated roller bearings. Five different styles of mount are available, so it reportedly should accommodate just about any small video-capable device. When users want their camera to remain stationary, the mount can be locked in place anywhere along the length of the rail.
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End caps with round rubber feet at either end hold everything above the ground, while also providing a grip on smooth surfaces. Besides its obvious horizontal applications, the device can also be propped diagonally (keep in mind, the camera mount swivels), or held vertically against a wall, to simulate crane shots.
The mobislyder is now available for pre-order via the Glidetrack website, for GBP99 (US$135) - it should retail for around GBP129 (US$175). Shipping is schedule to begin on December 12th.
Down the road, users will also have the option of buying a longer slide rail, rolling wheels to replace the round feet, and an articulated section that replaces the rail, that would be used with the wheels to turn the mobislyder into a miniature camera dolly. Videographers who are interested in that kind of device might also want to check out the Pico Flex Dolly, or CineSkates.
The video below shows some examples of what can be shot using the mobislyder.