The Ghost is a Robotic Camera Stabilizer for DSLR's, micro 4/3rds, Blackmagic Pocket Cinema, and Small Video Cameras. Read more
This project was successfully funded on August 28, 2013.
About this project
We are now including a free Motorized 3rd Axis in your kits. This is an additional $150 in savings just for our kickstarter backers.
Camera stabilizing rigs have become more and more poplar as the video industry grows and people realize smooth video is essential for a professional product.
Steadicam rigs are one of the only products on the market that allow for these professional shots, but they are expensive and take years of operating to master. That is, until The Ghost. The Ghost is a robotic camera stabilizing rig programmed to stay level. This revolutionary camera rig couldn't make smooth filming any easier. It is very lightweight, durable, and so easy to use that even a child can operate it. It is primarily made out of carbon fiber to minimize weight and withstand the abuse of field use. The electronics are simple with two silent brushless motors and a pre-programmed control board. Just attach the battery, turn it on, and track your subject to get that cinematically smooth footage.
The Ghost requires only one operator. You also have the option to connect a receiver and transmitter for remote operation, or to include a second camera operator.
The Ghost supercedes old-fashined physics and eliminates human error from the equation. Let The Ghost do the work for you as it glides smoothly and effortlessly around. This allows the operator to be more creative in his or her shots.A new revolution of robotic rigs has just materialized (so to speak).
The idea was developed from building a stable camera platform for my multi-rotored helicopter. I have been a professional aerial cinematographer for 3 years and I'm always striving to get the smoothest footage. I realized what I designed for use in the air, should also be applied to use on the ground. I put my steadicam in the closet and started using my aerial camera mount for filming on the ground. It was just easier and lighter. I am not physically built to be a steadicam operator, but because the Ghost is so light and designed for small and medium sized cameras, I can use it all day without becoming fatigued. You have the option to use two hands, so one arm won’t get too fatigued. Or, you can mount it to a steadicam vest and arm.
With the release of the new Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, you don't need a huge, expensive camera and steadicam rig to film amazing shots. This is also the case with the new magic lantern firmware for the Canon 5D Mark III. Cameras are getting smaller and better, so The Ghost follows suit. It is designed to be your silent partner, shadowing your every intention and hardly being noticed.
The Ghost is Designed, Machined and Fabricated in our shop in Missoula, MT, USA
Despite The Ghost’s minimal dimensions, it supports cameras such as the Canon 5D Mark III, or Nikon D800. The system can support up to 3.5lbs. This is about equivalent to the Canon 5D Mark III with the 24-105mm Lens.
The Ghost Specifications
- Weight: Approx. 39oz/ 1105 grams
- Dimensions (W x H x D): Approx. 18 x 12.5 x 8 (450 x 320 x 200mm)
- Startup time:Approx. 5 seconds
- Runtime: Approx. 2.5 hours/battery
- Maximum Camera Dimensions (W x H x D)Approx. 7 x 8 x 8 in. (18 x 20 x 20 cm)
- Camera Weight: Up to 3.5lbs/ 1500
- Runtime: Approx. 2.5hrs
- Weight: Approx. 5oz/ 141g
- Dimensions (W x L x H)Approx. 2.5 x 4 x 1 in. (63 x 101 x 25mm)
- Materials:Carbon Fiber Construction
- Adjustable Axis:Fully adjustable in all 3 axis to achieve perfect balance
- Firmware: AlexMos
- Motors: Rewound Brushless Motors
- 100% designed and assembled in the USA
A Summary of the Process
- Construct 2-axis gimbal for mulirotored helicopter
- Added 3rd axis (geared with servo) to aerial gimbal
- Designed and Conceptualized a brushless gimbal
- Manipulated aerial gimbal for ground steadicam use
- Combined steadicam gimbal with electronic gimbal for first prototype
- First Brushless Gimbal Prototype – mini gopro version
- Tested different control boards and motors
- Tested new, larger motors
- Programed control board – tested new firmware and settings
- Re-designed prototype for more adjustability
- Tested new motors
- First mini-ghost gimbal for up to 1 pound
- Designed new gimbal parts for larger motors and larger camera
- Constructed larger gimbal parts for SLR
- Completed a fully functional prototype of “The Ghost” – up to 3.5lbs
- Agreed upon naming the prototype "The Ghost”
- Field Tested “The Ghost”
- Re-did website including “The Ghost” and online store
- Filmed/Edited Kickstarter Video
- Designed Kickstarter
- Launch Kickstarter
- Continue Field Testing The Ghost
- Develop 3rd Axis
First Complete Prototype of The Ghost
I designed a simple, stable platform to keep production costs down and make The Ghost affordable. It only has two axis of programmed stabilization, while the third axis is manual (smooth bearing). We will soon offer a 3rd axis of stabilization in an upgrade kit with more programmable features.
Our goal is to ship the kits before Christmas and the pre-assembled Ghosts in January. Assembling the Ghost takes some time, and we will send them off as soon as they are complete. If we finish the assembly early there’s a chance you could get The Ghost before Christmas!
The Ghosts will be shipped in the order pleadges are received.
We include a 4000mah battery with built in on/off switch and charger. But, if you would like an extra battery, please include an additional $60 in your pledge.
Purchase the cheese plate to mount any extras to The Ghost like a monitor, microphone, light, etc.
The Ghost Stand: Pledge $135 to receive the Ghost stand, which is lightweight and durable. The stand supports up to 25lbs and only weights 27oz. The stand is constructed out of carbon fiber and aluminum and is also collapsible making it easy for travel or storage. This stand allows you to easily adjust the Ghost, swap out cameras, lenses, or provides a safe place to set it while not in use.
Risks and challenges
I currently run a small production company and need YOUR help to mass produce the Ghost and keep the costs low for everyone. We have the suppliers lined up, but we need to place a bulk order. Everything will be made and assembled here in Missoula, Montana. We want this product made in the USA at an affordable cost, but we need your help to kickstart this project.
Be among the first to own and operate the Ghost. We'll use your generous pledges to place our first order with our suppliers and begin manufacturing. By donating to this kickstarter you will receive our products before anyone else and below retail value. We want to reward you for helping the project succeed.
The Ghost is completely silent.
No! The monitor and any extras are attached above all the motors on the grip bar, so it will not alter the amount of weight the gimbal is capable of stabilizing.
Pledge $1 or more
Every dollar helps! Join us on this journey and receive Backer Only updates that document the project.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or more
Receive a Personalized Postcard!
We know not everyone wants or can afford The Ghost, but if you still want to help us, donate ten bucks and we'll send you a personalized postcard in the mail.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $25 or more
Get a SIC T-shirt.
Men's or Women's size S-XL.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $135 or more
The Ghost Stand - will ship with your Ghost purchaseEstimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,595 or more
50 backers All gone!
The Ghost: You get the Ghost Kit. Includes all Ghost parts. Assembly is required. ($200 below MSRP).Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,595 or more
5 backers All gone!
The Ghost Camo Kit.
You get the full Ghost Kit with limited edition Camouflage Carbon Fiber Grip Bar. Includes all Ghost parts. Assembly is required.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,995 or more
22 backers Limited (28 left of 50)
The Ghost Pre Assembled. We will assemble and test your Ghost, so everything is set up to film when you open the box. $250 below MSRP.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $1,995 or more
5 backers All gone!
The Ghost Camo: The Ghost is pre-assembled and tested, but comes with the Special Edition Carbon Fiber Camo Grip Bar.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
- (48 days)