Edelkrone has announced the HeadPLUS and HeadPLUS PRO motorized pan and tilt heads. These can be used in conjunction with edelkrone sliders to create compact and powerful motion control devices, but they can also be attached directly to things like a tripod.
Motorized pan and tilt heads have been around for a long time and we have seen companies such as Kessler and iFootage (just to name a few) come out with systems that are capable of producing very complex camera moves in either real-time or during a time-lapse. The edelkrone HeadPLUS and HeadPLUS Pro units also appear to be capable of similar functionality.
Edelkrone HeadPLUS Payload capacity
The HeadPLUS can take camera payloads of up to 10 lb (4.5 kg), and the HeadPLUS PRO can handle up to 20 lb (9 kg). Having a 9kg payload capacity on the HeadPLUS PRO is a nice feature, and it will allow you to use quite a lot of camera and lens configurations. You will have to be aware that if you are going to use HeadPLUS PRO you have to be mindful of what type of slider or tripod you mount it to so it can correctly handle the weight.
What can the Edelkrone HeadPLUS do?
The HeadPLUS and HeadPLUS PRO can be used in a variety of different ways, including:
You can manually adjust the pan and tilt angle of the HeadPLUS. This way, instead of using a remote control, you can program your cameras motion by hand. Some users may find this an easier way to do things if they don’t like messing around with apps.
If you add an optional Laser Module to HeadPLUS, you can teach the position of a stationary object to the system. By just aiming at the target and pressing OK, the camera will instantly frame and focus on the target. This is nice for doing quick moves where you want to end up on a stationary object.
Automatic Object Tracking
HeadPLUS can keep the targets in frame & focus even when it’s sliding on SliderPLUS. With this automatic feature, you can achieve elegant parallax shots without spending any time for programming the system.
Motion Recording and Repeating
With the record feature, you can record all your button actions (target transitions, speed adjustments, slide triggers, etc.) and then repeat them over and over again.. This is the fastest way to compose complex shots for motion time-lapses or visual effects.
Live Target Switching
You can teach the system to remember up to 3 targets so you can make a smooth transition between these targets by just pressing a single button. During every transition, HeadPLUS frames the new target, focuses on it and keeps it in the frame & focus as the system also slides.
In a nice touch, the edelkrone HeadPLUS units are able to fold down for easy transportation. This makes them a lot easier to travel with and carry out to locations.
Smartphone or tablet control
The HeadPLUS and HeadPLUS PRO can be controlled via free iOS or Android app. This allows you to change parameters and also set up and create complex moves that can then be repeated.
The HeadPLUS is compatible with edelkrone Slide module, Focus Module, Laser Module, SliderPLUS X, SliderPLUS M, previous generation SliderPLUS, SliderPLUS Pro. (DollyPLUS, SliderONE PRO / Upcoming features.) It can also be mounted on any other device such as a tripod for standalone use.
None of these come cheaply. Even the HeadPLUS will cost you $1,849 USD and you will still need to buy a battery plate solution and a shutter release cable (if you are doing time-lapse). You also need to factor in the cost of additional accessories such as a slider, focus module and laser module. If you bought all of these accessories you are looking at an addition amount of around $3500 USD. As you can see things soon become very expensive.
The HeadPLUS PRO (which probably won’t start shipping till the end of the year) is $2,649 USD.
As I mentioned earlier, these motorized pan tilt heads are not a new concept. Other competition comes from products like the Kessler Second Shooter Bundle – Complete ($1,639 USD) and the iFootage Motion X2 Pan/Tilt Head Bundle ($1,400 USD).
The iFootage Motion X2 Pan/Tilt Head has a payload capacity of 17.63 lb (8 kg). The Kessler Second Shooter can handle 50 lbs. for the Pan axis and 10 lbs. (at 3.5″ center of gravity) for the tilt axis.