Alzo Smoothy Radius and Linear Video Slider Overview

The Alzo Video Smoothy Radius and Linear Video Slider was first shown at NAB 2015, and they wanted to send one out for me to test drive. The slider can track in a straight line (linear) and then can be reassembled into a curved (radius) track for keeping a subject in frame and in center. Here's a little overview.

Riding on a track of this design requires careful hands to prevent any micro jitters. In some cases my shaky hands transferred slight vibrations, but after running a bit of post image stabilization the footage was fine.

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VIEW-ITEM Alzo Smoothy Radius and Linear Video Slider

The Alzo Radius Linear Slider is limited to small lightweight camera and lens combinations, and also requires you to be at least 6 feet away from your subject to use the Radius effectively. At 4 feet long it might be a bit too long for constant travelers. Overall I think it's certainly a unique design, and we were able to get some decent results. But what do you guys think about the new Alzo Smoothy Radius and Linear video slider? Leave your comments below.

 7 Comments





7 thoughts on “Alzo Smoothy Radius and Linear Video Slider Overview

  1. I purchased this slider recently and have gotten good results. One thing that is not addressed on either this review, or on the Alzo site, is that there is a wheel adjustment. There is an eccentric on one of the side rollers with a hex that can be rotated slightly and locked down with an included allen wrench, which allows the wheel to be tightened against the track, resulting in smoother operation. As for the comments on stabilizing the shots, most video editing programs (FCP X, Premiere Pro) have motion stabilization available to compensate for any slight rocking that you might experience. I am very happy with my purchase, especially after getting the 15% Black Friday discount.

  2. Emm

    Post author

    @Dan K - Yeah making a pvc arc is not as simple, but there are some things that can help. Make sure each wheel assembly casters and spins. Use a three leg dolly and allow one leg to extend and retract (adjust to be longer and shorter). This allows the dolly to adjust to imperfect tracks with varying differences. If you study the design on most track dollies you will see how they may have multiple pivot points at each end with swivel wheel assemblies.

  3. Dan K

    Appears to be light and compact -- always good features. The curve has pros and cons: first being that focus does not change as the subject is always at the same distance from the camera. Linear sliders that pan the camera change distance and focus technically changes from what it is at the ends vs. the center of the slider. In practice that may or may not be a problem.

    Con is, of course, you have to work at one distance every time.

    Now, about building a curved rail. I spent most of a day trying to make a smooth arc with PVC tubing. It's not as easy as it looks! And if the arc is not PERFECT, you will not get a good track. This Alzo is a simple, elegant solution. But hanging a camera on such a narrow lightweight mount will prove challenging to get a stable shot. There's a reason most good sliders weight so much and are the width they are: the wider the distance between the rails, the more stable the shot and the more weight it can carry.

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @OldCorpse - The moment I said it was for small cameras, this one would not even be within your standards regardless if it was rock solid or not. I can say it's rock solid for a point-n-shoot camera, and that still doesn't get it up to your standards. I guarantee this one is not for you considering the type of equipment you work with.

    One thing i've learned is that the equipment I work with, is not necessarily the equipment other people work with. There are movies being shot on iPhone, sold through distribution, and being shown on the big screen. This slider would probably be perfect for those iPhone shot movies so who am I to judge too harshly. So, again this one would be better targeted to other people unlike you or I.

  5. OldCorpse

    Hmm. I love your reviews, Emm, but this one is the pits. The #1 problem with any slider is *vibration* - any review that doesn't focus on that as the #1 thing to examine is @FAIL. I have returned sliders that looked fine on the website, but in practice were hopeless due to the inability to allow ROCK SOLID slides (example: Kamerar slider I had to return). You are often not going to necessarily see small vibrations on a small screen, but blow it up a bit (let alone cinema screen size!) and you are in a world of trouble. Sorry, but the thing that interests me most, long before we even get to any "features": IS IT ROCK SOLID SMOOTH movement!! Because without that, all the bells and whistles are meaningless - it's like talking about all the great features of a car, except the engine is worthless. No go. And looking at that thin sheet I am not confident it's worth anything as far as stability. And btw. that would be another reason why you should have done the straight slider test too - IS IT STABLE!!! Without that criterion, all the rest is meaningless. Sorry, this one falls far below your usual excellent demo standards.

  6. I love the shot that the radius produces, It's definitely got me thinking about how I could make a some kind of portable curved track system the Cheesy way, for what I use, and that's the Cinemover, http://www.moveyourcamera.com/cinemover.html

    I love this, because I can travel super light and go to Home depot and get a white 4"x 4" fence post for $15.00 and leave it when I'm done. Now some kind of Curved would be cool!

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