Canon 60D Video Stabilizer – First Flight Glidecam HD4000

Wait! Just gotta say sorry about the mess, I just bought the place and still moving crap in. Boxes everywhere, don't know where to put anything yet. Hey you're lucky i'm even sharing this test video, it's almost Midnight! Yeah and it might be a bit dark too, I wasn't going for quality here, just trying to get this darn thing balanced. So I have an early music video shoot tomorrow in which I thought I would do ALL Canon 60D's so I can break her in and get faster at the menu and settings. There will be three Canon 60D's on set. I didn't have the Glidecam HD1000 Stabilizer here, so I had to balance the Glidecam HD4000 Stabilizer. (always balance your rig the night before, saves time).

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The 60D doesn't have the Canon Battery Grip BG-E9 just yet, and i'm shooting with the the Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM SLR Lens. BTW, I'm loving that lens. Not much fisheye/barrel distortion as I thought it would have. The entire unit is just way too light for a beast like the Glidecam HD4000 Stabilizer. So in order to correct this, I placed weights above the camera on the hot shoe.

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Yes, you can add weights under the camera, but the hot shoe was a simple way to add or remove weights, keep things almost centered with the camera weight, and also easy to shift it around for additional fine tuning balance. It's a pretty cool setup actually which would work great with some stabilizers that lack fine tuning adjustments. You can add a simple flat bar to the hot shoe and shift it around to center that camera weight. So i'm very close to having it balanced, the rest can be done by moving the lower sled up or down to make it either bottom heavy or top heavy. Check out the video above, and the photos of how I added the weights to the camera with a threaded hot shoe mount. You can find those mounts in this article: http://cheesycam.com/mounting-zoom-h1-on-camera/ or find some below.

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find-price-button variety of shoe mounts

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find-price-button Glidecam HD4000 Stabilizer

Related Articles:
http://cheesycam.com/glidecam-hd4000-bts-with-canon-60d-steadicam-vest/
http://cheesycam.com/3-canon-60ds-music-video/





38 thoughts on “Canon 60D Video Stabilizer – First Flight Glidecam HD4000

  1. Emm

    Post author

    @Jonny - A slight breeze can rotate the camera around, and it's always a two handed operation. One for steering. Practice flying with both hands.

  2. Jonny

    Hello Emm, i follow your direction and today i received my glidecam hd 2000.. it's really exciting to mount it, balance...and go out for the first flight! It took me something like 30min for a decent balance (which i still think is not 100% correct). Im quite happy with my dropping time (almost 3sec)..the only thing is i notice a small (horizontal) rotation after i start movin...i dont know if it makes any sense, i basically take the glidecam and everything is perfectly stable, let's say i start walkin and after few sec the camera start slightly rotating...just wondering if it's because im not helping myself with the 2nd hand or need a better balance (if so what do you think should i change?)
    im currently using the glidecam hd 2000 with canon 7d and standard 18-135 lens...and i havent add any weights...
    thanks again for you help i really appreciate it...

  3. Jonny

    Hi, Im struggling deciding to purchase my first Glidecam HD, I never been flying and I really want to get into that.
    Ive got a 7D and I was wondering which one is going to be the best choice for me, HD 2000 or HD 4000?
    I was about to buy the HD 4000 Im recently discovering so many people writing is too heavy for DSLR....What's your thought about it? Im sure they asked you already millions of time but Im kinf of lost trying to wisely chose the best deal for me.

    Im not planning to mount any external LCD or microphone...but eventually some nice Carl Zeiss prime lenses (when there will be budget for rent lol)...
    Im really looking forward for your reply and I hope to read you soon,
    Kindly regards
    Jonny

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @Jak - Glidecam / Steadicam stuff isn't easy to hold for more than a few minutes at a time. If you want to use a Glidecam for more than a few minutes, you'll need to build up a whole vest system. This isn't an ideal piece of equipment to work with all the time. A small shoulder rig is easy to travel with, setup, breakdown, and doesn't attract so much attention. My advice is that you may eventually need both, but you need to decide on which one you need first.

  5. Jak

    hey there! I am planning to purchase the hd 2000 but was told to invest in a shoulder mount instead. if I wish to get smooth shots on the move, would a stabilizer like the glidecams work better than a shoulder mount that costs around the same?

  6. Emm

    Post author

    @mikeB - The Tokina 11-16mm is also a great lens. There's many examples of that lens on this blog.

  7. mikeB

    Hey, I got the HD2000 but I am looking to get a wider lense for my 60D. Do you recommend this lens? I'd love the 16-35 L lens but its so expensive, I'm trying to find an alternative that will work well with the Glidecam.

  8. Emm

    Post author

    @dev - Start with a wide lens and adjust aperture to have everything in focus. Try like F/5.6 - F/6.3 or something.

  9. dev

    Hey, I really love they way you keep everything in focus! And ALL your videos seem to be well focused! How is it that you maintain the focus? (and, especially on the Glidecam?)

  10. Emm

    Post author

    @Kelly - The screen makes a huge difference in balance. You can always tilt it up and down, but it has to be balanced swung off to the side.

  11. Great work! I imagine flying with a tilted adjustable screen makes it more comfortable since you're not forced to look at the back of the screen only. Quick question, when balancing with the 60d beforehand, do you have the the screen positioned exactly how you want it, then balance? Or is the screen light enough that it doesnt make that big a difference?

  12. Great work! Looks like you must have zoomed in a bit on that 10 - 22mm zoom since you're getting so little distortion on verticals. Any idea what your actual focal length was? Also, do you think a 18mm - 135mm EF-s Zoom could produce a similar effect on the Glidecam at 18mm? Obviously I would not be zooming during the shot.

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  14. Hey thanks for your vids and advice. I just ordered a 60D and Flycam Nano today after many days of research so looking forward to getting them and having some fun. My hope is to get into doing Real Estate video Tours as a biz, so the steady cam is a must!

    Keep up the good work, Andy

  15. Emm

    Post author

    @Danial - that's two very different sized stabilizers that carry two different sets of weight. The HD4000 can carry mich more, but too much stabilizer on a light setup makes it worse. You need the right stabilizer for the weight you fly. If you want to go HD4000 then you need to add additional weight to the top.

    The nano would be compared to HD1000. the HD1000 would be easier to balance, but in the end can have the same results as a Nano.

  16. Danial

    A 5DMark2/60D on either Flycam Nano vs The Glidecam HD4000 purely for non-audio required projects , Emm which would you recommend?

    Is the Flycam Nano as good as the Glidecam HD4000 for the purpose?

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  18. Emm

    Post author

    Yes, the reason I use the HD 4000 is because I normally load it up quite a bit with other accessories.

  19. Emm

    Post author

    Whoa, didn't know they got so popular. I grabbed mine fairly easily, they were always in stock. You're on the right track with all the sites though.

  20. Emm

    Post author

    Budget? Hmm..Haven't tried the Flycam Nano but looks like it will work well. Other than that, go at least Glidecam HD-1000. I don't know anyone who would fly a 24-70mm since you can't zoom while flying (especially a budget stabilizer). Best bet is to stick with a wide lens or a prime lens.

  21. Jon

    Hey Emm -
    What do you recommend for a one the budget version of this stabilizer? T2i with 10-22 and 24-70

    Thanks

  22. Great footage as always - my 60d says it will arrive tomorrow! I have the hd4000 as well and a blackbird. Don't you find that the heavier the rig - the better it does in the wind - as well as stops and starts and turns? More inertia keeping it steady?

    The blackbird is ultra portable and I've flown a t2i on it for quite a long time without getting tired since the gimble is directly below rather than offset.

    I'm thinking of keeping both - hd4000 with vest and blackbird without for super quick/fast setups. Glad to know that's also what you seem to do.

    But if it's windy out I tend to load my hd4000 up to be very heavy - definitely helps with horizon tilt.

    Do you not find it the same?

  23. Hey Emm,

    Question about the Glidecams, since you have HD1000, HD2000 and now HD4000, I figure you would be the perfect person to ask about this.

    Where, and how did you order the Glidecams, I've look at Adorama, B&H, and Amazon, they either don't have it, or the Glidecam was backordered, and your favoriate doesn't have it (eBay, sorry, can't help myself)

    How should I go about getting one?

  24. Emm

    Post author

    Probably at F/4, but I normally fly at F/6.3-F/8. There was very little light last night so I had to compensate a bit.

  25. Emm

    Post author

    Thanks Dave, It would have been easier with a smaller rig. Luckily I had the idea of using the hotshoe to add some weight to the top. The horizon tilts a bit, but that could also be because I haven't flown in a while...

  26. Emm

    Post author

    The HD1000 is very nice because of it's size. It's possible to fly a 5DM2 with a 16-35mm on an HD1000. The reason I have an HD4000 also is I often fly with LED lights, Microphone, Zoom H1 recorder (you can see my DIY mount bracket on the lower sled), and a bunch of other stuff. When you start adding items, you'll need to step up the size of the rig to get the weight needed to counter balance.

    Normally I would just use the HD1000 for this music video because we will not be using any of the camera audio, so no need to mount fancy audio. We're also using an large Generator for our shoot as we won't have access to electricity. The Generator (hopefully) will be powering all of our lighting, so since we have lighting on set, I don't need LED's on my Steadicam rig. You can see what an HD4000 with a few accessories looks like here. http://cheesycam.com/real-estate-tour/

    So if you're working with just the camera, the HD4000 is overkill. The HD2000 is in the middle. If you do this enough, you may find yourself buying several stabilizers...

  27. Drome McKauliff

    Interesting to hear that the 4000 is too big for the 60D. Is the 2000 about right, or is the 1000 enough? I worry that the 1000 is only suited for a T2i with the kit 18-55, not a 5Dii with a 16-35.

  28. Mike

    Ha, that tune still gets my head bobbing up and down. Nice footage. Your site has helped me a lot. When I first found it, I'd just purchased a T2i. Of course, one of the first articles I saw on the 60D was on your site. So, the T2i went back and then I started driving myself crazy comparing the 60D vs D7000 vs GH2.

    I finally decided on the 60D (swivel screen, 60 fps, and audio control were clinchers). It feels good to just pick something and I look forward to just shooting some video!

    Your glidecam stuff looks great. I've got a flycam nano coming in soon (another item I learned about on your site). Keep up the good work.

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