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Is It Possible To Mount A DJI OSMO on a 20' Pole To Shoot Elevated Video?

In: 
Published: 04/01/2016
By: larry

2015-12-30 17.23.48David in Washington asks:

Is it possible to put the DJI OSMO on a 20 ft pole to get a more aerial view of a house and not use a drone? Has anyone tried it and have some video results? I know you can buy 3 ft extension but I want to get higher. I sometimes use a painters pole with my go pro and thought maybe it would work with the OSMO.

Sounds to me like this would work. But to be sure I checked with Fred Light and Jim Barnes both who have DJI OSMOs that they are testing. Here's what Fred and Jim have to say:

Fred Light:

Probably possible - not sure why not! The iPhone holder unscrews from the side and you can screw in pretty much anything (just a regular tripod screw size). I'm sure something can be jury rigged - the thing really isn't very heavy and it is controlled by the phone so as long as you have the wifi connection, you can see what you're doing.

There are several OSMO groups on Facebook (DJI OSMO Owners Group) and (DJI OSMO Community) and I've seen some pretty goofy rigs people have thrown together .... for everyone who's OSMO didn't get bricked this with the recent firmware update (lots of people have to send them in to be repaired!).

Jim Barnes:

This should be totally doable. I scrounged up some miscellaneous light stand accessories I had laying around to see if I could accomplish the same thing. (Note: The photo above shows how Jim was able to attach the OSMO to a light stand with a few miscellaneous light stand parts).

So it should be possible. The benefit would be that you could get some low altitude video of homes without flying a UAS but of course, video from a pole would not look as good as it would if it were shot from a UAS. Sort of a UAS on a pole.

Has anyone out there tried this?

5 comments on “Is It Possible To Mount A DJI OSMO on a 20' Pole To Shoot Elevated Video?”

  1. David, Is there a reason you don't want to use your DSLR on a pole? I have a Phantom 3 which I use for difficult, elevated front shots, but prefer using my Canon 70D if possible. I just built a pole (goes up to 16') for the Canon that was engineered by Rich Baum and shared to a Facebook group that I belong to so I don't think he'll mind me sharing it again. What's nice about my Canon (don't know what your shooting) is being able to use the Wifi Canon connect feature and running the camera with my iPhone and not having to buy a Camranger ($300.00). Here's the link. If it doesn't initially take you there just keep following it.

    https://richbaumphotography.wordpress.com/2014/07/29/pole-photography-101-or-how-to-build-a-better-pole/

  2. You could, but it wouldn't get you drone-like shots. Part of using any gimbal based stabilization is having a fairly stable platform to begin with. A drone is somewhat stable, and walking has some stability BUT... you have to be able to "duckwalk" to get stable video with any handheld gimbal. Every x or y axis that moves beyond a small degree shows up even video shot with a gimbal. Adding a pole not only adds weight (up and down motions), but also adds tilting and sway at the top, which the gimbal is not going to counteract. It's meant for vibrations, not larger lateral or vertical moves or drops.

    Secondly, a drone doens't need decent ground, it floats. Many properties have uneven ground, or even rugged ground, and all of that will translate to an OSMO, and then be exaggerated by pole movement.

    As an experiment this year, I mounted a Polaroid waterproof HD cam on a pole and tried to walk with it next to a pool. Even though the pole felt like it was floating as I moved it through the water, every doggone footstep showed up in the test footage... the water didn't stabilize any of it whatsoever. i thought it might damper vibration, but nope, not at all. Then I tried the same camera on a small RC boat... same problem. Every surface vibration from small waves to boat motor vibration showed up, which makes me think that maybe only a submarine style camera might work, or maybe to actually swim (push off and then glide) might be stable.

    But bottom line, Drones work with gimbals only because they are somewhat stable in the first place.

  3. Yes, it's possible to use the osmo on a pole. Used it on a 15meter pole and using the iPhone mounted below to controls the pan and tilt. No you can't move and walk around but for an impression of the location and surroundings it's very capable to use this way.

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