Fancier is back with a portable stabilizer rig. The first time they tried to do this, I reviewed one of their rigs and it didn't go over so well. You could find that old article (click here). I guess they were listening to feedback and made some really good changes. First, they got rid of all the plastic knobs - those were just meant to crack and fall off. They've also priced this new mini rig around what's currently on the market, but it also has much better quality than the one provided with the RJ focus.
The counterweight is a clever flat folding design which adds stability, and it makes for easy travel. There's nothing I could say about the shoulder pad, except that it completely lacks one. It's just a very thin foam lining. The only other thing you could easily point out as 'not-so-good-quality' is the handles. It's a nice contour design and easy on the hands, but it's a faux rubber plastic mold. Don't get me wrong, the handles don't feel frail like it could break. I'm sure they'll take quite a beating. I guess they could be easy enough to rewrap or cover if needed.
The FTV-50 rig is based on 15mm rod and clamp rigs, so it's possible to expand, but as it is now, it will not support something like a follow focus. My guess is it's targeting all the new hot little video cameras coming out from Pentax, Sony, Olympus, and Panasonic. Very little parts, but completely adjustable in all manners.
It has one hotshoe in the rear and two 1/4-20" threaded holes which you can add accessory arms to. Since the whole rig is based on common 15mm rails you could find optional clamps if you want to mount more. Why they still choose blue is beyond anyone's guess, but it doesn't look too flashy and at the same time doesn't look at all cheap. The price is floating around $130 dollars which is fair, but hopefully we'll see more cheaper rigs from Fancier in the near future. You can find the FTV-50 from Fancier on Amazon (click here).
Fancier Folding FTV-50 DSLR Rig Counterweight
Also available here:
DSLR RIG FTV-50 DSLR Movie Kit Shoulder RIg