I own a glidecam 4000. never reallly really used it... saw the many videos.. but really never got it to work great.. thougth it was more of a hassle.. . any suggestions.. good... and works.. Im looking to add my monitor to it.. I can almost modify it myself. but dont want to waste my money buying crap.. unless I should just try harder to make my glidecam it work..
ive seen http://shapewlb.com/en/products/spider2_ss2200.php for $449.00 and for $80 i found this http://www.dynamicmotionvideo.com
looks pretty good.. its just that I wasted so much time everytime I wanted to switch from Glidecam 4000 use to handheld.. then back.. etc.
I am guessing from your post that you have the Glidecam 4000 without the Steadicam-like body brace. I own the smaller Glidecam 2000. I find it marginally OK to use with a very, very light camera, and then only for a short while. All the weight goes on your extended forearm, which you can build up with weight-lifting but no matter how strong you are you will not be able to use this system for very long stretches at a time. It also takes lots and lots of practice to be able to make smooth pans as you walk or run.
You can spend serious bucks on the body-brace part to turn this device into a relatively cheap Steadicam-type system. I don't know how well that works.
Any variation on the steadicam will produce very different results from any variation on a shoulder brace/support. The last one you list looks terrific, by the way, especially if you add a quick-release plate that also marries to your tripod. But no shoulder mount will ever get you the smooth, gliding shots of a steadicam-type rig.
On the other hand, do you need those kind of steadicam shots? So much depends on what you are shooting. Since you already have the Glicecam 400, why not invest in the cheap shoulder-mount device and see if that takes care of your needs? Note that there a a huge number of similar devices out there. Here's a link to B&H's listing, from cheapest to most expensive: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=sort&A=search&Q=&sortDrop.... There are numerous others that B&H does not sell, such as the two you mention. Again, the Dynamic Motion Video device you mention looks like one of the very best solutions for a very cheap price. The only obvious problem I see is there appears to be no way to adjust the forward-back position of the camera.
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wow.. thanx a mill for all your great input.. yeah .. I'll check into detail all those B&H links.. its so crazy.. so agree with you with the Glidecam stuff.... stuff is heavy... on top of my canon xl-1 which is not that light.. plus my 7inch monitor on the glidecam 4000 base.. HMmMmM.. I'll end up breaking my arm.. its funny you mentioned the brace they make for it.. I had it.. the whole forearm and vest package.. what a piece of crap.. returned it right away.. the real deal is the one with the spring loaded action arm.. but my god how expensive that stuff is.... I will look into that link closely.. thanx again.
Not to sound like an elitest snob, but if you want to do stabilizing then Steadicam is the way to go. Glidecams and all the other wannabe clonecams sometimes work to varying degrees... but most pale in comparison to the real thing.
A fully-rigged top-of-the-line Steadicam Ultra will set you back more than I paid for my first house. But some of the smaller rigs are very affordable and work great... plus there is quite a used market for them, as Steadicam operators are constantly "trading up" to bigger/fancier units, so there are bargains to be had. I know this from personal experience... I'm currently on my third Steadicam rig... starting with the DV rig, moving to the Steadicam Mini, and now with the SteadicamSK (a no longer made model). There's lots of trading and swapping going on in the Steadicam world as there is a very well-developed users group. I bought my first rig from Cinema Products, traded it in on my second rig from Tiffen, eventually sold that one to George Lucas (shipped it right to his house, no idea what he wanted with a small rig), and bought the SK from a DP in Los Angeles who was moving to a master series. The SK will fly up to 20lbs and if I strip my heaviest camera it still comes in under that weight, so hopfully I'm set for a while. So, as you see, a lot of horse trading going on.
And yes... even though it seems little compared to a "big" camera, trying to stabilizing a camera the size of an XL1 without a vest/arm would require a forearm of steel for any shot longer than half a minute or so.... or some major steroids.
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how I just got a great idea.. I'll hire Alex Rodriquez to hold the Glidecam.. You know you are right.. always heard great stuff about the Glidecam..
On occasion we will use different types of stabilizers one thing I insist on is the body brace, mostly because of an injury. but the other thing we do is strip the camera down to only what you need on it. if you are using the XL-1 with a monitor. get the viewfinder off of it. every ounce adds up and the less weight the better.