When running from a bear whilst out on a hike, there’s but one concern–getting clear, shake-free footage. There are various gimbals and stabalizer systems for the GoPro, but a new motorized option is making all the other options look weak. SLICK is a motorized GoPro stabilizer that allows you to record video hands-free, to let you focus on the activity, ahem, fleeing that bear, while ensuring clear, shake-free footage.
Defined as a ‘motorized GoPro steadycam for filmmakers’, this sweet little thang mounts to a pole, a drone, your dog, your hand, your helmet, your surfboard or even your basejumping mother-in-law’s chest harness.
Within the device are three highspeed motors and sensors that work individually on the camera’s motorized 3-axis vibration table controlled by a microcontroller to ensure a smooth ride across all terrains. The GoPro camera attaches to the SLICK and then to a standard GoPro mount. That’s all there is to get started.
We spoke with Thomas Agarate, founder of SLICK, regarding the project, which has shot past the $50,000 funding goal on Indiegogo, and is heading toward $250,000. When Agarate was 19-years-old, he built drones with his own camera stabilization hardware. He decided to bring this professional technology to a larger audience, developing it using Autodesk Inventor and prototyping with an Ultimaker 3D Printer. We love their R&D video:
Thomas explained that the biggest challenge he faced was “definitively, to design a beautiful product and still respect all the strength and industrial constraints–this product is designed for action sport, so it has to look good and be shock resistant as well.”
Well said, as using the type of highspeed DC motors he chose is relatively new to devices like this, and typically in the hobby/sport industry, used only for drones or model planes. Agarate had to prove it could live up to the task, choosing the more extreme sports he is passionate about it, to demonstrate how it works.
Regarding the design, he further explains how, “each axis is perfectly balanced, so that each motor uses very little effort to compensate accurately. The result is an solid axis that doesn’t move a muscle, even in hard condition.”
The camera is waterproof and compatible with all modern GoPro cameras. You can get a SLICK from Indiegogo for $229 USD, $50 off the estimated retail price of $279. With funding ending soon, production is set to start October 2015, with shipments going out in March 2016.