I shot this a while back when I first got the merlin. This was the first longer shoot that I did with the steadicam.

A steadicam is not a quick stabilization solution - it requires training and after you've done that, you need more training. I am personally a complete novice, although I have managed to train a bit more since this footage was filmed.

The merlin was my third try at stabilizers. I tried a Manfrotto 585 which was rubbsih and a Hague Mini MMC which was better but too primitive to balance the camera properly. The merlin is in a different class altogether and you do get much more stable footage even as a complete novice.

The camera used here was a Sony HDR-XR500v with a horrible wide adapter lens (it produces images that display an impressive array of optical distortions). The total weight was about 800 g. I tried to mount the full 35mm kit on it (~4 kg) but the whole contraption became too heavy to operate. I'd say that the merlin is usable up to 2-3 kg. After that you need a vest to operate it. I have yet to try it with the Canon 7D that I got the other day, but I think it might prove challenging give the shape of the thing. But as people have successfully balanced 5Ds, it should be doable.

Shot in 50i, converted to 25p. Graded with Tiffen Dfx. Last scene is in slow-motion at 70% of original speed.

Sony HDR-XR500v
Unknown wide adapter lens (I've disposed of it since then)
Steadicam Merlin

Music: Chopin, Prelude #4 E Minor, Op. 28/4

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