About this project
SOLOSHOT automatically rotates your camera to keep it pointed at you, from a distance, with NO camera operator.
SOLOSHOT is great for filming a variety of outdoor activities from your surf sessions to your kid's little league soccer games, without the pain of someone having to hold a camera for hours. It’s also great for making amateur films and professional documentaries too.
SOLOSHOT consists of a waterproof and shockproof “Armband” worn by the subject and a “Base” tripod that your camera attaches to. After an initial two step pairing process, your Base will automatically rotate to continually keep your camera pointed at your Armband. Any camera that can mount to a standard tripod will attach to the SOLOSHOT Base. The pairing process ensures that no matter how many SOLOSHOTs are in the vicinity, your camera only follows you!
SOLOSHOT was designed for robustness. When we were faced with a design decision, our motto was "overkill".
- Works with any camera or camcorder (up to 5 lbs) that can attach to a standard tripod (please note that no camera or camcorder is included, simply mount your own family camcorder, professional dSLR, or anything in between to the SOLOSHOT base).
- Batteries last 5 hours.
- Tracks at distances up to 2000 feet.
- Base can continuously spin 360 degrees.
- Maximum pan speed is over 40 degrees per second.
- Maximum speed of target is over 140 mph (we haven’t had a chance to test anything faster yet)
- A super bright tracking LED with 15 degree shine angle lets you know SOLOSHOT is pointing at you.
- We designed in a security feature that gives you an access point to lock your camera to the Base and the tripod can be locked to nearby stationary objects (the same as you would lock up your bicycle).
- The pairing process allows multiple people to use their own SOLOSHOT next to each other. Each Base will only follow the Armband that it is paired to.
The concept for SOLOSHOT was born from our desire to get video footage of ourselves surfing, but no one ever wanted to be the guy standing on the beach for three hours holding the camera. As we dug into the development, we started designing it so everyone from proud parents, to skateboarders, to Hollywood filmmakers could benefit from it.
With SOLOSHOT you can relax and enjoy watching your child's little league game knowing that SOLOSHOT is doing all the filming from the sidelines.
Entrepreneurs can set up a SOLOSHOT rental business. For example, if you live near a crowded beach or busy soccer field, rent out SOLOSHOTs for people to capture their day's activities.
As a filmmaker, you can shoot additional dynamic angles of your scene without hiring additional camera operators. The video below demonstrates how videographers can benefit from SOLOSHOT:
Ultimately, SOLOSHOT is about preserving memories and sharing your greatest moments with friends and family. Moments in life don't repeat. You only get one shot - SOLOSHOT!
Activities to film using SOLOSHOT
- Land and field sports: Skateboarding, soccer, baseball, flag football, track and field, etc.
- Water sports: Surfing, wakeboarding, kiteboarding, waterskiing, paddleboarding, kayaking, rowing, windsurfing, sailing, etc.
- Snow sports: snowboarding, skiing, snowmobiling, ice skating, etc.
- Motor sports: motocross, motor cycle racing, drag racing, car racing, drifting.
- Equestrian: horse racing, showing, polo, etc.
- Production: Filming movies and documentaries.
This project was kicked off almost four years ago during a surf trip by biomedical engineer Chris Boyle to Tortola in the British Virgin Islands. A meeting of the minds followed as Chris met Scott Taylor, a like minded engineer with a passion for board sports, while both were riding out the financial crisis in a little surf and kiteboarding town called Cabarete on the North Coast of the Dominican Republic. Once they had a working prototype, Chris and Scott moved to San Antonio, Texas to be close to Alex Sammons, a former colleague who is a one-of-a kind product development and manufacturing guru. The growing team set up a design studio in Texas (far from the distractions of the beach) which they basically lived in while eating, sleeping and breathing SOLOSHOT.
So far, the SOLOSHOT project has been 100% funded for by our savings accounts, friends and family.
“We been having a great time surfing, wakeboarding, kiteboarding, bike riding and moto-ing with SOLOSHOT prototypes and we are looking forward to bringing SOLOSHOT to the world!” - Chris & Scott
“Cool Idea Award” - from ProtoLabs (NYSE:PRLB) the world's fastest source for custom CNC machined and injection molded parts
From the Media:
From our Facebook page:
From our YouTube channel:
We are especially proud of the shock-proofing and water-proofing technique we developed for the SOLOSHOT Armband electronics. When we were ocean-testing one of our first crude prototypes, we bought some "waterproof" walkie talkies so we could communicate while one of us was in the water and the other on shore with the equipment. Chris was the first to paddle out with the walkie talkie and by the time he got past the break, it was already broken. From then on we knew we had to come up with our own method for waterproofing electronics that was far superior to the traditional standard techniques. What we came up with, not only made the armband truly waterproof, but also robust enough to handle anything we could throw at it... including throwing it. See the video below for our destructive testing of the Armband:
The SOLOSHOT Armband easily survives getting pounded by huge waves over and over again. We wouldn’t be able to show our faces at the beach unless the SOLOSHOT armband was truly waterproof. The Armband easily handles the unforgiving ocean environment and the types of impacts associated with huge wipeouts.
Where we are now
Currently we hand build each SOLOSHOT individually starting with the assembly of each circuit board, an incredibly time consuming task. We knew from the beginning that we would kick off the manufacturing ourselves here in the USA, so we have been collecting used and broken production equipment which we have cleaned up and refurbished.
We also already have our injection molding tools made by ProtoLabs, as well as the first batch of plastic Base unit shells on the shelf ready for assembly.
Your pledge will allow us to build SOLOSHOTs efficiently in large batches. We have already arranged with our vendors to supply certain subcomponents in bulk and pre-assembled once we get the funding. While waiting for those components to be delivered, we will build a few pieces of processing equipment that will allow us to build SOLOSHOTs in large batches. Your Kickstarter pledge will allow us to quickly make this happen.
Special thanks to Blisses B for letting us use their song "Yesteryear" in our kickstarter video, and special thanks to Big Eyes for letting us use their song "Pretty Sure" in our destructive testing video!
You can adjust the tilt manually during set up, before you begin recording. If you follow our motto "when in doubt, ZOOM OUT," you can capture most footage, both on a horizontal and vertical axis. Later, during the editing process, you can zoom in to get a tighter, close-up shot.
If you are doing a sport like kiteboarding where there is a lot of up and down motion, set the zoom and tilt appropriately to capture your jumps. If you are snowboarding, angle the tripod so it is perpendicular to the mountain, then as you snowboard down the run, it will rotate in the plane you are traveling.
No, a camera is not included with your SOLOSHOT purchase. However, SOLOSHOT works with any camera up to 5 lbs that can attach to a standard tripod mount. Simply mount your personal camcorder, handheld camera video capabilities or professional dSLR to the SOLOSHOT base and you're ready to go!
No, but really that's the best part! Think about it: you don't want to have to deal with deciding when to press "record" when you're about to catch an awesome wave or hit a great jump, and you wouldn't want to miss an awesome wipeout because you weren't recording. Come on, everyone wants to see those parts too! And it's super easy to edit your footage using iMovie later.
Au contraire! An individual would pay over $150 USD to ship their SOLOSHOT Internationally. We ship UPS, not only because they have great service, but because the US Postal Service disallowed shipping lithium batteries just days before we began shipping out to customers. (We use a lithium-polymer rechargeable battery. Still has great battery life and capacity, comprable to lithium ion, but considered safer.)
Luckily for both you and us, because we ship larger quantities than the usual person, we get a discount to ship our products through UPS. But please know, we still have to pay for shipping in the US, and many places that we ship to Internationally are over $79 USD. We just wanted to make sure our supporters caught a break and shipping was less of a burden for them.
Also important to note: Your base unit is attached to a tripod already, so the box that your SOLOSHOT arrives in is 4x4x16", and is 6 lbs- quite sizable.
*Please note that as is customary with most international purchases, anyone receiving a package Internationally is expected to pay duties and taxes upon entry into their country.
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