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Freefly’s latest handheld gimbal stabilizer, the MoVI Pro, has been rebuilt from the ground up to improve upon almost every aspect of the original family of MoVIs. There is very little on the system that has not been given the deluxe treatment; from the integrated tuning stand by way of the ring with attached feet, to the dual battery system allowing hot-swapability.

In this blog, I’ll walk you through some of these improvements, including the ability to control RED cameras through the MoVI itself and how you can set that up for yourself.

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I met with Alan and Brian of Freefly Systems to discuss their new MoVI Pro as well as other recent product announcements. The new MoVI Pro features a number of improvements over the original MoVI family, including hot swappable batteries and an integrated stand to allow for all day shooting with minimal downtime. Additional updates include new, stronger motors, integrated RED camera control and a built-in LCD screen allowing for auto-tuning and further adjustments, without the need to connect to a computer or smartphone.

One of the new products Freefly has announced this year is the Pilot system, which is essentially a modular take on the MoVI Controller. The system is based around the MIMIC at its core, and allows users to configure in a variety of setups based on their specific needs. Modules are available for a single axis lens controller, as well as a handle module for complete control of focus, iris, zoom and MoVI settings. Dennis from Freefly demonstrates how customizable the system is by showing it used on a shoulder mounted rig.

Lastly, we check out the new MoVI XL, Freefly’s largest gimbal to date. Designed utilizing a lot of the same upgrades found on the MoVI Pro, this is the heavy duty version, allowing up to 50 lbs of total payload for working with heavier camera packages and longer lenses. The MoVI XL is extremely flexible with mounting options as well. Here, Alan shows it to us mounted on a Technocrane. Check out the video above for more information.

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In this Tech Talk, Alan Yates and Justin Brown from Freefly stopped by our booth to show off the new ALTA 8 UAV. The ALTA 8 octocopter is a ready-to-fly system, capable of carrying payloads of up to 20 pounds. The multi-rotor comes fully assembled and can be ready to shoot in under 5 minutes thanks to its innovative design. Quick release top and bottom trays allow you to mount a MōVI on either side of the system, allowing shots from any perspective. The system will ship with an inverted landing gear for top mounting on the drone, but an Aero landing gear (for bottom mount configuration) can be purchased as an accessory. At the heart of the ALTA 8 is Freefly’s industry-leading SYNAPSE Flight Controller, which provides intelligent flight control. The Freefly ALTA app utilizes the SYNAPSE Controller in order to help the operator set up, tune, and monitor critical flight information. The app is available for both iOS and Android. Watch the video above for more details.

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Red Bull Media House is no stranger to epic footage. In one of their recent videos, Chain Reaction (which you can watch above), Director Nicholas Schrunk and his team had to find a way to capture multiple, specifically-timed stunts on a tight shooting schedule and in a remote location. Opting to shoot anamorphic added another layer of complexity, though it definitely paid off in the final footage. Nicholas was nice enough to answer some questions about what went on behind the scenes to make Chain Reaction happen. To see some footage from the shoot itself, make sure to check out the official Behind the Scenes video under the cut.

…continue reading Behind the Scenes: Red Bull Goes Anamorphic for “Chain Reaction”

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Freefly Systems has released the beta version of its latest firmware update, nicknamed Akira. This firmware makes extensive updates to MōVI performance and functionality. Three major updates included in Akira are HiPER Stabilization, Timelapse Mode, and Target Mode.

HiPER Stabilization increases overall performance, particularly with longer focal length lenses. Timelapse mode sets up your camera to capture motion along coordinates you define with keyframes. These can be set by physically moving the camera on the MōVI to frame the sequence, or by using the app. The MōVI app itself has had a major overhaul; screens are easy to navigate and the functionality is intuitive.

Target Mode, which is still in development, will allow the MōVI to stay locked onto a subject regardless of where the MōVI travels in space. While still in beta, the Akira firmware certainly adds valuable updates to the MōVI’s functionality.

For more information on the Akira firmware and to download it, visit Freefly’s Software & Manuals page. Also, make sure to check out all the dates for our three-day MōVI Intensive, coming soon in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York!

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Recently Freefly announced a major update, nicknamed Akira, to the software controlling the MōVI. A host of improvements are included; below is a full list of the updates:

  • High Performance Stabilization (HiPer) — Freefly has increased the control loop 2X. This means that long lens shots are possible and overall stabilization should be improved 30-50%. Additionally, there will be advanced tuning configurations.
  • Timelapse Mode — The new software will permit pre-programmed motion maths for time-lapse sequences. These can be set using the MōVI Controller or configuration software.
  • Target Mode — If you have a strong GPS signal, the MōVI can be set to lock the camera on a GPS position. The mode will also dynamically follow a Mimic transmitter as the camera’s target.
  • Fixes & Enhancements — This update features improved communication protocol as well as improved Mimic support.
  • Updates to iOS and Android — The beta apps have been updated to match the look, feel, and functionality of the Alta app. All apps can be downloaded from Freefly’s Software & Downloads page.

The public beta will be available as a free download on Freefly’s website starting February 8.

To see the new firmware in action, watch the video below:

 

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One of the biggest crowd pleasers at the AbelCine booth this year was the Freefly MIMIC, especially as attendees saw how intuitively it controlled camera framing. We previously covered the MIMIC at NAB, but when we received our beta kit, we were eager to set it up and have an in-depth look. The MIMIC ships with the sensor package mounted on MōVI crossbars, and includes a 5v USB battery and a MōVI Controller Receiver. If you already own the MōVI Controller, your existing receiver can be used with both your MōVI Controller as well as the MIMIC, although you’ll have to re-bind when you switch between the two.

…continue reading Cine Gear 2015: Camera Mobility with the Freefly MIMIC

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