9.solutions introduced a very interessing new product at this years NAB show: The so called C-Pan Camera Guide Arm or just C-Pan arm in short. What looks like a hybrid of a jib, a crane and a slider could change the way you work on set.
The all in one C-Pan arm
In the last hours of this years NAB we discovered the booth of 9.solution. They talked us through their latest product, namely the, well, C-Pan arm. Unfortunately there was no time left to shoot a video – it’s kind of tough to explain what this thing does, so make sure to watch this video by Rick Young of moviemachine.tv and be sure to also check out his site.
With the aid of this arm you can move a camera mechanically in a variety of different ways, for example
- straight pan
- outward curve
- inward curve
All the above is possible at a sloped angle, too. Even forward or backward moves are possible. So you can push the camera through the window of a car for example.
How it works
The device makes sophisticated physics accessible to the filmmaking process in a very clever way. All you have to do is to set up you camera or the mounting of your camera to be precise depending on how you want to pull off your given shot and that’s it. The C-Pan arm will move accordingly. There are quite a lot of (tool less) screws all over the arm, for example you can adjust the parallax on different axis to achieve different kinds of camera moves.
At the bottom there is a standard 3/8″ screw so mounting the C-Pan arm on to a tripod is a breeze.
There are nearly endless uses for this device, have a look at this exerpt from their press release for example:
If the arm moves in an outward shaped curve, then the camera will stay directed towards the centre of the curve and if the arms are set for a smaller radius curve, then the camera adjusts accordingly to stay pointed at the centre.
Another way of using this arm is to mimick a slider, so the resulting move is a straight line. In that mode the arm functions as a traditional straight-track dolly slider, but without the tracks. Actually it feels more like a jib arm rather than a slider. Neat.
With just a twist of a knob, you can switch the whole sytem from horizontal to vertical mode of operation (and every angle in between, actually). Every aspect of the C-Pan Arm is highly adjustable and it is designed for complete toolless operation which is a very nice feature to me!
Since the whole unit is a purly mechanical system, you won’t need any batteries or powering solutions in order to operate it.
Specifications and pricing
The unit is about 33 inches (84cm) wide, 10 1/2 inches (27cm) tall and it weights about 24 pounds (11kg).
When using in ‘slider mode’ it gives you about 63 inches (160cm) of movement. It can handle camera packages up to 15 1/2 pounds (about 7kg). The comany is already planning on a version which can handle even more payload.
The retail price of the C-Pan arm is expected to be around 1,500 € and it comes with a bag and dumbbells which can be used to counter weigh vertical movements and/or to smoothen and stabilise horizontal moves.
Check the 9.solutions website for more details