Inexplicably expensive iPhone accessory (video stabilizer)

Nathan Bobinchak says:
This is a $300 "professional" video grip for the iPhone 3Gs. However, I can't imagine any "professional" choosing to shoot video with their iPhone, much less have a KIT to do it.

"Zacuto has the first serious solution for shooting video with the iPhone 3Gs."

The advantage, as far as I thought, with cellular video, was that you could whip the phone out of your pocket and capture whatever is going on, without the hassle of carrying equipment around with you. This, of course, completely negates that.

And for heaven's sake, it costs $100 more than the 8GB model! I'd love to interview anyone who actually buys this item.

Inexplicably expensive iPhone accessory (video stabilizer)


  1. Bwahahaha! Some people’s children.
    This is completely silly and unnecessary. It reminds me of the DVD Rewinder that came out when the DVD boom started. You know someone somewhere is going to buy this shit.

  2. I suppose it would sort of make sense if that iphone lug could be remove and replaced with a standard tripod mount. In that case it wouldn’t be the first $300 pistol grip. But then why wouldn’t they just be selling the iphone lug by itself for way cheeper as well?

  3. It’s actually totally crap, unless you plug it in with an adapter that’s going through a gold audiovisual grade outlet.

  4. The metal iPhone cradle looks identical to what’s sold by ThoughtOut for $23… I guess the hand grip and rigging accounts for the additional $277?

    Actually, you could accomplish the same thing with the flexy Naja King, though it wouldn’t necessarily be *as* stable, it could be hands-free.

  5. That’s about as silly as all the abs exerciser equipment that currently litters the basements and garages of most American homes.

    Billy Mays could have sold that, but it’s a $19.99 item at best, with 5 lens chamoissys, and iPhone poising creme.

  6. I can totally believe this. I saw a “radiation-blocking” iPhone cover the other day, that supposedly blocked the deadly EM radiation that comes from all cell phones; it was, of course, open on the side that you put right up to your head. Fools and their money, I tells ya.

  7. If someone really wanted to put a scene in a movie that was shot from an iPhone, and they wanted it to be stable, wouldn’t it be easier to zip tie the phone to a couple of large metal pipes to make a cheap ass steady cam?

  8. Zacuto has a lot of fanboys, I have no doubt they will sell some of these. I am surprised, though, that its ONLY 300 dollars, I guess the price point is designed to meet the expectations of amateurs. There are a few film fest, mostly online stuff though, for works shot soley on cellphone cameras… I imagine they are looking for that market and to get those people, often film students, into the habit of buying Zacuto stuff for their production packages.

    On the plus note, I think this will proabably mate with other of their products, so maybe the purchaser can use it to hold a very small monitor, data recorder, sound recorder, or something- and use the pistol grip elsewhere… I suppose you could even mount an iphone onto one of their shoulder mount setups. Nifty gizmos but very very spendy.

  9. An interesting window into the near future when even pro-grade cameras will be as small as iPhones. But now? Um. Period.

  10. Oh, I know why it’s so expensive. It’s made to such exacting standards and high tolerances that “This rig will not work if using a case with your iPhone”.

    So if you want to shoot video with your iPhone, be sure to carry *both* this rig, and your phone without a case.

    For fuck’s sake….

  11. Beyond and in addition to the chorus of WTFs already posted, I have another question burning a hole in my brain about this fine technological advancement:

    How does this thing help stabilize the iPhone? It’s still hand held (although I see there is also a tripod mount, to which my question does not apply). Especially, how is this handheld rig for a handheld phone more stable (especially with the optional 10″ extension rod you can buy)?

    I even visited the site, but I remain unenlightened. (Maybe my problem is that IANAP.)

  12. Xeni, didn’t you use this device to shoot some iPhone video earlier this year? Can’t remember the date/link, but it was of some waterfall/water-related footage -possibly on one of your Central American trips.

  13. I could see this used by live bloggers who don’t want to bother with the technical issues involved in interfacing their cameras to cellular modems.

  14. As far as why does a thing like this stabilize video, it’s mostly about moving the pivot point and muscles used. It makes sense for, say, a DSLR, but for an iPhone, it kind of negates the point of the small format, like you say.

  15. Personally, I think it would be really useful and I could see myself using it. It’s just too expensive. For fifty bucks I would buy one.

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