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Update: Cinetics Axis360 motorized tripod wraps up on Kickstarter, last chance to chip in

Update on April 24, 2014: There is a day left to take part in Cinetics’ Axis360 campaign. The company has already shattered its initial $75,000 goal, demonstrating interest from photographers and videographers, and it’s well on its way to production. Cinetics has launched a third stretch goal of $700,000 (currently it’s at a little less than $610K), which would help the company add a Panorama Mode in a software update, and make shooting panoramas easier. “Axis360 can already shoot single axis pan, tilt or slide panoramas, and can be manually controlled to shoot two axis panoramas, but we’d like to create an automatic setting to make gigapixel and even terapixel image capture simple,” Cinetics says. There’s still time to get a basic system by pledging $395.

Update on February 27, 2014: We forgot to mention that Cinetics will demonstrate the rig at this year’s SXSW show in Austin, Texas, March 9-12.

When you want to take a sharp photo, naturally you’d use a tripod or a level surface to prevent the camera from shaking. But what if you’re making a movie, and you need to move the camera while keeping the picture steady? You could get yourself an automated camera rig like the Axis360 Motion Control System from Austin, Texas-based Cinetics. Currently a Kickstarter campaign, the Axis360 is a compact rotating device with a motorized tripod head and slider unit that pans, tilts, and slides your camera to create smooth videos and time-lapse photos.

Axis360 configured for pan and tilt.

Axis360 configured for tilt.

The Axis360 was created with small production crews in mind – folks who need something lightweight, portable, and affordable that can give them Hollywood-style videography. The 11-pound device works with a variety of cameras, from GoPros to DSLRs and cinema cameras, and “can move at a wide range of speeds, fluidly or incrementally, and the number of system combinations to suit specific shooting needs is virtually endless,” Cinetics says. Everything is handled automatically by a motor controller called the CineMoco, which was successfully funded during a previous Kickstarter campaign. Each Axis360 is hand-built by Cinetics in their shop in Austin.

A Canon EOS DSLR with an Axis360 configured for pan, tilt, and slide.

A Canon EOS DSLR with an Axis360 configured for pan, tilt, and slide.

The system comes in three configurations: Basic ($395), Plus ($495), and Pro ($795). All kits include the controller, tripod, and ballhead. The Basic unit handles panning. To add pan and tilt, the Plus option comes with a tilt kit for balanced, motorized tilting, while the Pro comes with a slider rail to let you slide your camera easily on a horizontal plane. Other configurations and components are also available. The prices listed are for early Kickstarter backers, so if you want to get in before prices go up, now’s the time. Shipping is scheduled for May.

It makes sense for Cinetics to go the Kickstarter route. The company had two successful campaigns for previous products, the CineMoco and the CineSkates camera slider. The Kickstarter community obviously embraces the gear: With still 58 days left in the campaign (as of this writing), Cinetics has already surpassed its $75,000 goal.

Check out the Kickstarter page for more details.

(This article was originally published on February 26, 2014.)

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