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Steadicam M-2

Tiffen is proud to announce the newest high-end rig in the Steadicam line, the M-2. The M-2 is the most integrated and modular body-worn stabiliser ever created with seamlessly integrated Volt technology and an unprecedented ability to customise and personalise each rig.

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The Evolution of the Steadicam M Series

Features and Benefits:

  • Integrated Volt technology minimizes weight and height while providing industry leading motorized horizon assist capability.
  • Modular design allows operators to build rigs from M-1 and M-2 components for customized design and simple upgrades for longer ROI.
  • Light weight yet highly rigid design for more comfortable operating without sacrificing performance.
  • Variable post widths and lengths to suit individual operator styles.
  • Optional integrated 3rd battery plate with 12/24v switch.
  • Hundreds of possible configurations to build the perfect rig for each operator.

The Steadicam M-2 is the most integrated and adaptable Steadicam system ever created. Not only does the M-2 offer a lighter weight and lower cost high end system, it also features the revolutionary Steadicam Volt™ technology directly built in for a sleeker, more versatile rig.

The Volt electronics, which measure the roll, tilt and pan motion of the camera, are seamlessly integrated into the camera top stage to decrease the distance between the top of the gimbal and the top of the stage as well as reduce weight. Volt controls can be configured on either side of the stage for unobstructed access for the operator.

The “M” in M-1 stands for “modular” and the M-2 takes the concept of modularity to a whole new level. Almost every component of the sled offers options for customization. Rigid carbon fiber posts are available in a variety of lengths and diameters (1.75” 2 or 3 section post 1.58” standard or short post). The sled base can be built with either Gold mount or V-lock battery plates. A hot-swappable 3rd battery mount is available. The lightweight redesigned quick-release monitor mount uses industry-standard 60mm rod spacing and is compatible with a variety of professional monitors. And both standard and tilt top stages are available with or without Volt electronics built in. In total the M-2 can be configured in multiple combinations to suit each operator’s preferences, or additional pieces can be purchased for adapting the sled based on the needs of the project.

About The Volt

For those who have not yet experienced the Volt, this revolutionary technology is designed to complement rather than oppose normal operating by actively assisting in holding virtually any tilt or roll angle, including a perfectly level horizon. This gentle assistance helps remove the effects of wind, acceleration, or natural body movement in the captured image. The amount of resistance can be fine-tuned to match each operator’s personal preference and provides haptic feedback that emulates the fluid-like friction in a tripod head. The Volt assistance can be engaged or disengaged with a single push of a button.

The Volt works in two parts. A control board is either mounted on the top stage, or directly integrated in the case of the M-2. The control board measures the movement of the camera using an accelerometer and gyroscope sensors and communicates with the Volt motor drive unit mounted on the gimbal of the rig. The motor drive unit applies the desired torques based on the operator’s choice to maintain the tilt and roll angles set by the operator. Operators have the ability to work against this torque to adjust angles on the fly with the benefit that when they release pressure the sled returns to the preset angle without pendulating.

The G-70X Arm (Optional Accessory)

The G-70x is the third release of Tiffen’s G-Series arms. The revolutionary, patented Geo spring geometry optimizes performance throughout its lifting range. It tames high/low arm travel with adjustable-length crankshafts that dynamically rock the spring termination as the arm is boomed up or down. Powered by coaxial titanium spring sets, the G-70x arm smoothly carries any load from 13 to 70 pounds (5.8 to 32 kg). The all new bearing performance enhancements on the G-70x arm makes even the slowest camera moves ultra smooth.

Steadicam's design criteria for the G-70x arm was: Light weight (10.8 lbs / 4.9 kg), user maintainable, and a 29 inch (73 cm) boom range. It has soft bumpers at each end of travel so the arm can be boomed right to its limits without shot-disturbing clunks. The G-70x also has a Ride control that adjusts the iso-elastic™ response of the arm.

G-70x innovations include arm posts are locked in place by a single lever, so switching arm posts is quick and easy. All parameters are user adjustable. This quick-change mechanism also has an adjustable drag for the post’s rotation, from completely free to totally locked. At the socket block end of the arm is the “kick back” link, which gets the arm further out of the way as the sled crosses the operator’s body and keeps the arm from banging against the stops in normal operation. Increased structural strength, improved geometry, tough type III hard anodize on the main arm components and sturdy component design helps provide years of lasting durability.

The new G-70x arm comes with an industry surpassing standard 3-year full parts and labor warranty that includes all components including springs and socket blocks. The transferrable standard warranty also includes one complimentary factory tune-up to insure your arm is performing at its best.

Features of optional G-70X Arm

  • 70 lb. (32kg) lifting capacity
  • 29 in. (73cm) boom range
  • Performance Adjustable
  • Smooth Operating
  • Durable
  • Innovative Design
  • Backed by an industry surpassing 3-year warranty

The Steadicam Fawcett Exovest (Optional Accessory)

The Steadicam Fawcett Exovest™ is a semi-rigid exoskeletal vest that transfers the weight and torque of supporting a Steadicam system into anatomically appropriate areas, without interfering with natural movement.

Primary weight transfer is to the pelvis via four pads ergonomically placed around the waistband and primary torque transfer is via a pad system at the upper back. Lower pads avoid compressing the abdomen in front and the base of the spine in back. Upper pads avoid compressing the neck, shoulder joint, shoulder blades, and spine.

Crucially, the absence of chest straps allows for unrestricted breathing and arm movement. Pad systems are connected by rigid sliding components and tightened by double and triple-purchase straps for precise fit under load, so weight-bearing characteristics can be fine-tuned on the fly. The exemplary rigidity of the outer structure extends the torque-resisting lever-arm from mid-back (on existing vests) to high-shoulder level—halving the force required to counterbalance a Steadicam rig.

Symmetrical twin-rod spars, rising fore and aft from the waistband, increase vertical range of the socket block and uniquely permit both front and rear arm mounting. Four integral pivots allow the vest to conform to natural body movements. The rise and fall of the hips as weight is shifted from one leg to the other is accommodated by a lower pivot system so the socket block remains level and at the same height when walking—resulting in less muscular strain and better overall stability and balance.

The upper system allows free movement of the shoulders. The resultant feel is of increased lightness and control. Between takes, the entire vest may be relaxed by means of one over-center lever, as the upper pad system beds in only under load. Compared to conventional vests, the Fawcett Exovest™ is lighter and less constrictive—allowing for better respiration, circulation, transpiration, and movement and is especially comfortable for female operators.

Chris Fawcett operates and teaches Steadicam® worldwide and has extensively studied the physiology of human weight-bearing appliances. He is the author of Steadicam® Posture. The Fawcett Exovest comes with a standard three year parts and labor warranty, backed by the industry pioneers and leaders in camera stabilization.