Jun 5, 2016 | By Alec

Have you ever wondered why some of the videos you shot with your smartphone or GoPro have such a poor quality? Of course any shivers or disturbances can ruin film quality, but even very careful camera operators don’t always produce adequate results. The root of the problem is the so-called moiré effect, a common and complex visual issue caused by patterns superimposed over each other. While you could spend hundreds on professional equipment to solve this problem, Polish 3D printing service Nixa has a far cheaper solution: low-cost 3D printed gimbals that guarantee high quality footage, even when you’re walking, driving, skiing or playing tennis.

The company itself is a 3D printing service that provides a wide range of graphic design and 3D printing solutions. Firm believers in 3D printing technology, they have recently been working on a range of excellent accessories for sports cameras. Shocked by the crazy prices of GoPro accessories, Nixa decided to take matters in their own hands. Using Zortrax’s new M200 flagship 3D printer, they have developed a range of adjustable and durable gimbals that can be used with most of the common sport cameras, including the GoPro or Sony Action Cam.

While they have produced a number of 3D printed gimbals, they all have a few common properties. All provide the necessary support for any camera, and enable smooth three-axis movement. Each features a stabilizer that has been 3D printed and is completed with gyroscope, an accelerometer, brushless motors and a 32 bit processor. This system ensures steady movement, camera consistency and reduces shakes. But most importantly, they are very flexible in use: they can either be operated by hand, or can be attached to anything from a car, a drone to a tennis racket. No matter how rigorous they are being used, Nixa argues that they stable filming.

The Fig-Rig

Especially the Fig-Rig, visible above, seems simple but actually features a very clever design. It has been set up in such a way that users hold it with both hands, evenly spreading out the weight to reduce shaking. The camera is mounted in the middle, while the upper section can even hold a flash or an LED lamp setup. A smartphone or other device can also be added to the bottom section of the Fig Rig – creating a semi-professional tool that vastly improves video quality with little more than a clever design. What’s more, it costs just $35 USD – much less than similar ‘professional’ accessories.

The Nut-Crusher

But Nixa has also thought of the more active users, as their $15 Nut-Crusher can easily be attached to any type of sports equipment. With a name reflecting its design, this special clamping ring has been 3D printed and its makers say it is far more durable than typical camera clamps. While 3D printed ABS components might not appear to be very suitable for active athletes, Nixa says the Nut-Crusher will provide a stable grip on any tool – even on tennis rackets that are exposed to a lot of energy. Featuring a diameter of just 15-30mm (depending on what it is clamped on), it also shouldn’t hinder the user.

The Shark

But that Nut-Crusher becomes even more versatile when combined their $16 Shark 3D printed camera case. Capable of holding a wide range of cameras, it features a double mounting system that can be installed just about everywhere. “Because of the double mounting system, you can decide in what way you want to record your films and choose where to place the camera. [The] Shark can work well mounted to the mirror of your car, helmet or even a tennis racket (with a little help of the previously mentioned Nut-Crusher),” the Polish designers explain. 3D printed in Zortrax’s ABS-u, it is also durable and impact resistant and perfect for GoPro setups.

As you can see in the clips above and below, these 3D printed gimbals could be the low-budget camera solutions so many people have been waiting for. Why spend hundreds if a 3D printed alternative can realize similar results? If you’re interested in these remarkable and low-cost camera mounts, check out Nixa’s webstore here. The files can also be found in the Zortrax Library and 3D printed at home.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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