T-Rex 800E - DSLR Camera Gimbal

by FliteTest | January 21, 2013 | (27) Posted in Reviews

Eric shows off his modified Align T-Rex 700E which has been equipped with a PhotoShip ONE 2x Pan/Tilt DSLR Camera Gimbal.  

The RC helicopter has been modified with an extended tail boom and 820mm carbon blades, making it a T-Rex 800E mounted with a Canon 5D Mark ll DSLR camera for aerial video!

Eric is one of the camera men for Flite Test and over the summer we documented him testing out his T-Rex 800E Aerial Video Helicopter for the first time. 

Along with shooting video for Flite Test, Eric owns a production company that specialized in aerial videography.  He started out with custom built multirotors carrying GoPro cameras and with the desire to capture higher quality video moved up to flying DSLR cameras like the Canon 5D Markll. The lens he's using in this test is a Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L lens.  

Among the benefits of getting amazing aerial video and photos with the DSLR camera mount, there are some down sides. The helicopter only gets about 7 minutes of flight time with it's two 6-cells wired in a series.

The T-Rex is setup with a PhotoShip ONE 2x Pan/Tilt gimbal that he has setup to be controlled separately by an operator. 

This helicopter is another tool that Eric uses for his video work.  He still uses his other multirotors for specific video shoots; like indoor events and smaller budget productions. 

There are more photos in the forums!  Click the 'Join the Discussion' link below and join in on the discussion on this article in the forums, and check out more photos!

More details to the items mentioned in this episode:

Check out more of Eric's video work:

T-Rex 700E - Extended to an 800E

Photoship ONE x2 - Pan/ Tilt Camera Mount


Mirabile Visu on January 22, 2013
Erc is a brave man, putting a Canon 5D up in the air (and obvioulsly a much better pilot than me....)
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StoneBlueAirlines on January 22, 2013
Cool episode. I have a 7d that I plan to test down the road but going multi for now.
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Dji f450 on January 23, 2013
Beautiful documentary as usual. a lot of explanation and you bring it funny and happy. you guys are the best but you already know that.
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Cyberdactyl on January 23, 2013
Very nice feature video. But I agree totally with Josh in that a six or eight prop multi-rotor provides allot of redundancy. I can't imagine putting two or more grand in the air when pretty much any single point failure will cause a catastrophic crash,over a multi-rotor that provides a chance of landing even after losing multiple ESCs and motors.
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cloud9photos on January 30, 2013
I got a question that maybe someone here can answer. I really want to go into doing aerial video work via RC. I've been doing Aerial photography for about 10 years now (out of Cessna 172's & 182's) Shooting video from a Cessna is pretty difficult without some sort of big & expensive gyro stabilization system. I was under the impression that using an RC Model for commercial purposes is against FAA regulations. That said, I don't know how they would enforce it, and major networks use RC aircraft all the time. Is it really a regulation against commercial filming with RC, or is it just the big time aerial video guys trying to scare off cheaper competition?
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Pitchlink on June 2, 2013
Why are they saying the single rotor can lift more than the multi-rotor? Also, I've seen videos on Youtube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CpCxIL3r5dM ) from a company called Cinechopper ( http://cinechopper.com/ ) where they used a large Octocopter from Quadrocopter ( http://www.quadrocopter.com/?gclid=CJifktf4xrcCFZBj7AodwmcAMw ) and they used the same system as this T-rex where they had one person flying the airframe and another operating the camer in FPV. So other than autorotations, where does that put the conventional helicopter setup?
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T-Rex 800E - DSLR Camera Gimbal