Whether you’re capturing the perfect shot for a project, or just are a videography enthusiast, a quality camera slider opens up new possibilities in the world of film and photography. With the right camera slider, projects become more professional and dynamic. You can capture action and motion in exciting new ways. Instead of a slideshow of static shots or shaky motion, you can put together a wedding video with sliding reveals of the whole setting.
There are lots of different slides that are ideal for different kinds of projects. We’ve got sliders optimized for smartphones and ones that can accomodate professional cinema cameras. You’ll find dolly sliders that can move on wheels, and sliders that are most comfortable on tripods. Here are our picks for 12 camera sliders that will make your next project really pop with some action:
One of the more innovative models on this list, the Moza Slypod has a 2-in-1 slider and monopod technology which allows you to combine motion control with a high amount of stability. Unlike a smaller slider that has four legs, the monopod has a single stable base that allows you to glide the camera along the central pole.
With a carbon fibre body, the Slypod is super light and really easy to use, even in tough conditions. The design protects it from wind and sand, so even in rough conditions you can keep shooting. The Slypod takes craftsmanship seriously, giving you simple parts that easily lock and unlock for setup and take down.
You can attach everything from a smartphone to some cinema cameras. You can control the motor directly from an app, allowing you to set the speed and the distance. And yes, obviously the motor technology used in the Slypod is the same stuff that was used in the Mars Rover. It’s a high power, small motor that can produce enough torque to move even 20 pound cameras.
Plus, in the app, the movements of the Slypod are fully programmable. You can change where the camera moves, how fast it moves, and how fast it accelerates. While the built in battery only gives you a runtime of 2 hours, you can also hook it into a power supply for nonstop shooting.
What can achieve a better, smoother, more customizable slide than a motorized slider? A manual slider. The Kamerar slider has an easy-to-operate knob that you can turn to glide your camera back and forth with precision unmatched by motorized sliders. While there are some great perks to having a motorized slider, it’s also great to remember that manual sliders might actually be better for some projects. If you need to take video selfies of yourself, then an automatic slider might be ideal. But if you plan to be on camera the whole time, then a manual slider lets you maintain control over the project. The belt drive and counterweight make the whole slider feel like a puck sliding across ice.
If you’re not looking for a whole lot of bells and whistles, but just want something simple that moves easily, this is a great slider. With a counterweight, you get ideal acceleration and deceleration when moving the camera. The belt drive helps everything stay calm and quiet. And the belt drive won’t wear down or become clunky after using it for a while. If you keep it clean and take care of it, you’ll get used to the smooth movements–which would help you nail more difficult shots first try, cutting down on production time.
There are 6 different rollers on this model, which means that the weight is distributed over more surfaces, decreasing the resulting noise from friction. The legs are totally adjustable, both height and angle, helping you craft and execute the perfect shots time and time again.
If you’re not looking for a stationary slider, but are trying to get something with a bit more mobility to it, then you might be looking for the Kamerar Slider Dolly SD-1. This slider dolly has four ball-bearing wheels that can glide across flat surfaces to give you a lot more camera mobility. While the weight is only limited to 5 pounds, that should be enough to mount your camera onto the right.
And the dolly isn’t just for straight lines. You can adjust the position of the wheels and lock them into place in different angles, allowing the dolly to move in curves. You could adjust the dolly to glide in a circle or with a gentle curve. This opens up the possibilities for dynamic shots far beyond a simple slider.
The best part of the SliderPLUS is the fact that the rail moves on the center fulcrum and the camera moves along the rail. With a normal camera slider, you can’t bring the camera too far back past the center without getting the actual rail in the shot as well. But with the SliderPLUS, since the rail moves with the camera, you can get about double the amount of movement without getting the rail in the shot.
Now, this obviously won’t be as big of a deal in a situation where the camera is traveling horizontally or where the lens is aimed above the rail. But it will certainly be helpful in situations where the camera is aimed at something straight ahead or has a shot that might get the rail in view.
With the SliderPLUS you also get the option to motorize the rig with the slide module. Motorizing the slider is a great way to get even more professional shots. You can also use this slide module in combination with the edelkrone App to get a professional time-lapse video. You can move between multiple keyposes, or convert a complex camera motion into time lapse with an automatic button. Also, the dynamic interval and step size features allow you to move the speed of the shot and the speed of the camera independently of each other.
Specifically optimized for tracking shots, the Manfrotto camera slider can quickly let professionals get a whole new type of creativity. The solution is lightweight and portable, and is easy to set up on a tripod on a level surface. It gives you a great choice of different options for the perfect shot, while still making sure that you can achieve some balance. The sturdy solution has aluminium and steel ball bearings, which help the camera glide smoothly and also make sure that things stay really quiet.
It’s one of the more simple solutions on this list. If you need something that doesn’t cost a lot of money and gives you sliding shot options, this is a great choice.
The ROV Mobile is a slider that is specifically designed for you to create professional tracking shots using your phone. If you need a bit more curation in your social media or if you shoot your videos on your phone, this slider opens up some new professional options. It comes with a smartphone mount that can be adjusted to hit different phone sizes.
The motorized slider comes standard on the model, easily allowing you to perfect the movement of the shot. In fact, since you’re shooting on your phone, you can just use the ROV app to control the precise movements of your video. Simply touch a button to move the ROV and record simultaneously. The battery has up to 24 hours of motion, which means you’re never going to have to take time off the shoot to recharge.
Built from a lightweight, high-strength aluminum, the ROV is really portable. It’s easy to store and show up to each shot. The time-lapse mode allows you to capture the pitch dark or the streaking lights of cities. If you do a lot of filming with your phone and are looking for the slider to extend the cinematic possibilities, the Rhino is a great choice.
With a standard motor and a 48” reach, the GVM is a great choice for professional videography. The adjustable motor gives you the option of setting the precise speed of the slider. You won’t have to manually slide the camera or monitor the ways that it is moving. And there are plenty of settings–set the torque anywhere between 1% and 100% to cut down on the work that you have to do in post-production. The slow speeds are really great for subtle, interesting interviews.
While some sliders can begin to squeak and creak after a short amount of time, which can really hurt production if you attach a microphone to the camera, the GVM stays quiet over time. With a bit of care and cleaning, the motor and the gears will stay silent and out of the microphone’s reach.
As any good slider will, the GVM supports great time-lapse shooting. It can move dynamically or be set to intervals before you start. You can even set up the slip speed and intervals, coordinating the camera and slider. With both ¼” and ⅜” screw holes, you can support a lot of different cameras and tripods. The GVM is an excellent choice if you need a simple slider that has a lot of options.
The caterpillar gives you 20” of motion, and up to 30” of motion when mounted on a tripod. It is a belt driven slider that can accommodate up to 13 pounds of gear. The rig boasts a really cool flip-break which allows you to lock the slider into a position in a single instant. There are lots of cool possibilities for stunning visuals when you can smoothly slide a camera and then abruptly lock it into place, without any shake or rattle.
Instead of a mounting screw, the Caterpillar has a plate that has ¼” and ⅜” inserts. You can easily remove the plate and screw it onto a camera, sliding the camera into the sliding deck when you’re ready. It’s easy to maneuver the knobs on the sides of the carriage so that you can extend the slider for bigger cameras.
The sliding carriage comes with a bubble level built in so you can know what angles you’re working with. If you’re looking for an easy, manually operational sliding deck that won’t cost you a ton of money–this is a great model. Plus, the instant braking system allows you to quickly maneuver a camera into position on the slide deck and then set it for professionally-stabilized shooting.