Nikon’s New Robot Copies Your Handheld Motion and Does it Better

Cinebot Mini

Nikon subsidiary Mark Roberts Motion Control (MRMC) has launched the Cinebot Mini, a compact and lightweight live-action camera robot that is designed to simplify make complex motion control moves by copying hand-held actions.

MRMC has been a Nikon Group subsidiary since its acquisition in 2016 when the Japanese camera company said that it wanted to strengthen its position in the automated imaging industry as well as leverage MRMC’s strong market position in the film and broadcasting sectors.

The company produces a wide range of robotic camera control units, from turntables and spinning camera rigs, to simple heads and robotic arms, to more elaborate motion control robots. Its latest, the Cinebot Mini, combines a bunch of features from its larger robotic arms and compresses them into a more compact and also simpler to use device.

For starters, the Cinebot Mini makes it easy to create a perfect camera move without having to learn the complexities of a controller. Instead, a camera operator can grab hold of the camera that is attached to the robot and guide it into various positions. The Cinebot Mini will record those motions and play them back at any speed.

“[The Cinebot Mini is] a compact, lightweight, live-action camera robot that gives users full manual control over camera positions — making complex motion control movements simple!” MRMC says.

“Cinematographers can hand-hold the camera in various positions, and the robotic arm will record them. They can also push the track like a standard dolly, and this movement can be recorded and played back.”

Calling it the ultimate tool for accessible and dynamic camera movements, the Cinebot Mini can handle a camera payload of up to 10 kilograms, works on both a track or pedestal, can run on a battery if necessary, and can be operated from a smart device like a phone or tablet.

The Cinebot Mini is available today and the company plans to give hands-on demonstrations at upcoming trade shows. However, since this is a high-end device designed for serious productions, MRMC doesn’t provide pricing for it on its website. Interested parties will have to reach out to the company to request a quote. MRMC does also have a rental service.

Image credits: MRMC