Swandle | DSLR Video Handle Review
DSLR’s are all the new rave, and they should be, as most of the new models have great HD video capabilities. Skateboarders of course are now using them as well to shoot video, but since these dslr’s don’t have handles built into them like some video cameras, filming lines and fisheye shots in general can be a pain.
Enter Swandle. A pretty straight forward, strong, light, and easy to use handle setup designed by and built for skateboarders. (but also very usable for BMX’ing, and many other non-skateboarding shoots)
The Swandle is designed to be used with dslr’s & small mini dv cameras. It’s built out of lightweight steel, it does not bend, nor does it bounce, and is even more sturdier than I thought it’d be. The handle overall is pretty simplistic, but works great, gets the job done, and it’s small and light. The handle, with a dslr, is centrally weighted really well. It does not favor any of the sides. But north and south wise, the weight depends on the lens. (found it to pretty close to even with a Canon 15mm fisheye on a Canon 5D mkii)
The Swandle attaches to the bottom of your camera, via a standard 1/4″ screw. So be sure to have a skate tool with philips head, or a small screwdriver in your camera bag.
The Swandle does cover up the battery compartment & memory card slot (Canon dslr’s), but you can loosen the screw a bit, turn the handle, and access both without taking off the handle.
The Swandle also has enough clearance to access the hot shoe, to attach most external mics, or most camera lights.
The Swandle also has good clearance on the side, so it will not scratch your dslr.
Since the design of the Swandle has it go around the left side of the camera, there is no obstruction to the lcd or any of the buttons, dials, or wheels on the back of most dslr’s.
In conclusion, I would definitely recommend the Swandle to anyone looking for a skate handle to film lines, fisheye shots, or any other type of shots. It’s rugged, it’s light, it’s strong, and it’s easy to use. It easily beats out the competition out there right now.
A short Swandle video is below.
There is of course other “handle” options out there. Some use a Redrock Micro kit, but it’s a rail kit, and not small. (well over $300) I myself previously used a Manfrotto Magic Arm as a makeshift handle. Worked, but it was cumbersome to setup and use, and more expensive.
Below are a few more pictures of the Swandle.