With DIY moviemaking becoming more popular and smartphone cameras getting sharper, many amateur film-makers are turning to phones to shoot their masterpieces. In the past, supporting equipment hasn’t been readily available, with footage often lacking professional quality. But Freefly are looking to change that with their Cinema Robot – a stabilising gimbal for the iPhone.
Freefly Systems are no strangers to filming. For years the company has been producing high-end camera gear like £18,000 gimbals and £15,000 drones for Hollywood moviemakers. And they’ve built quite the reputation. Which is why a gimbal for the iPhone is so interesting – a professional quality piece of film equipment for the amateur generation.
Like any gimbal, the Movi Cinema Robot holds your iPhone still while you’re filming, mitigating shakes and bumps through a pair of motors and some clever software inside the hand-held unit. To use it, simply clip your iPhone into the mount, pair it to the Movi using Bluetooth, then open the Movi app to start shooting.
But Movi is far more than just a stabiliser. It also comes with some nifty capture modes. Majestic Mode is its basic stabilising mode, keeping the shot steady no matter how much you shake the rig. You can also use the app after filming to fine-tune the speed with which the lens catches up to your movements.
Echo Mode is where things start to get interesting. It lets you set an A and B point in your shooting environment with a trigger on the grip. It will then record footage panning from point A to B. You can tweak the speed of the pan too. Then there’s Orbit Mode, which lets you circle around something while remaining perfectly still.
But the Movi Cinema Robot also has something called Roll Mode – and this is where things get pretty awesome. It rotates the camera on a horizontal axis to give anywhere from a 180 to a 360 degree view of the scene. There’s also opportunities for time-lapses set to whatever speed or distance you like.
If you shoot regularly with your iPhone, we think the Movi Cinema Robot could do wonders for your footage. It’s showerproof, compatible with tripods, and comes with easy USB charging. Freefly have a reputation built on quality high-end equipment, and while there are similar pieces of equipment available, we always think it’s a good to pay extra for a brand you trust.
The Freefly Movi Cinema Robot for the iPhone is available to buy now over at the Movi Website for around £225 ($299).