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Sick of shaky hand-held video? You could try to build one of the many DIY steadycam projects out there or you could attempt to recreate the work of Colorado Springs area maker Adam Sidman’s multi-axis camera stabilization device. Using MEMS gyro sensors and servo motors mounted to a yaw and pitch gimbaled structure, the device actively compensates for sloppy handheld camera movement.

Adam Flaherty

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  1. Pete Rippe says:

    some professional gear uses actual gyros to counter unwanted movement, take a look at http://www.ken-lab.com/

    a fun read is also the issued patents for the Cineflex, a HD camera ball for helicopter use (uses a panasonic pro HD camera, which has the feature to disconnect the lens WITH the image sensor, place in the cineflex, and have the camera body back next to you in the heli via a big cable). The first isolation is from the heli to the unit: imagine two circles in parallel planes above one another. along the circumference a cable (thin wire rope) is spiraled (like a notebook) in short sections, separated by an equal space, and another spiral. this keeps the lower mount securely isolated from the heli, and removes any major jolts.

    between the motorized ball and the camera, imagine a sphere inside a sphere. on the surface of the inner sphere, flat electromagnets in specific axes (not just xyz) align to counter-electromagnets on the surface of the outer sphere. this system is connected to a controller that, like this project, reads accelerometer input, but instead of adjusting the cameras servos, the flat electromagnets are used to counter all the tiny motion changes and vibrations with a precision (yay analog) unobtainable by using a stepper. the camera movements are up to the operator in the heli to keep horizon and direction (there are auto functions available) and the end result is beautiful

    some of this info could be a slightly inaccurate representation as i haven’t been upclose to a cineflex in a few years. some of these ideas could still be applied to this rig in the article, using electromagnets to move a compensation system inbetween the servos and camera, take out those remaining jitters