For professionals, having the best camera slider for the videography scenario you’re in is important if you want to be able to capture a wide range of different shots.
Sliders are great because they allow for a smooth and fluid motion with your camera that you’re not able to achieve if you’re walking or even using a stabilizer.
Walking around with your camera can result in vibrations and just using a tripod doesn’t offer much when it comes to fluid motions in your videos.
It used to be that only crews on TV shows or in moves would use these dollies, but now there are some pro-sumer options available to choose from whether you’re a hobbyist or you’re hoping to take your YouTube videos to the next level.
The way a slider works is basically by moving a camera along a set of tracks so that you can get a wider range of different shots like panning, various angles, or just different angles.
This style of footage really helps to add another dimension to the look of your shots and can help to make your videos stand out more and be more unique compared to other less interesting and engaging shots.
You can even use a slider to take awesome time-lapses or do hyper-lapses with less effort.
If you’re in the market for a new camera slider, then you’ll want to check out my compiled list of recommendations down below.
The Best Camera Sliders in 2017
Neewer 39″/1m Carbon Fiber Camera Track
The Neewer 39″/1m Carbon Fiber Camera Track is well-built, easy to use, and my top recommendation if you’re looking for the best DSLR slider for your videos or photos.
This slider can be used with a wide range of DSLR cameras and you could also use it with a mirrorless or point-and-shoot, depending on what you’re filming or shooting with.
As for its design, this Neewer Track is designed from carbon fibre and this helps to keep it lightweight while still offering the durability you’re looking for in photography or videography gear.
The height of the legs can be adjusted so you can capture different angles or shooting styles, and with the threaded holes in the slider you can use shoot in a vertical, horizontal, or 45-degrees mode.
The legs can be locked in a variety of different positions so you can really find a great angle for the shots you’re trying to capture.
It comes equipped with a universal slider plate that’s designed to hold nearly every DSLR, and any other camera using standard tripod screws for attachment.
What I really love about this Neewer slider is that it comes with a dedicated carrying case that makes it easier to carry with you and also helps to protect the frame from accidental bumps or impacts when you’re out with it.
Neewer Tabletop Mobile Rolling Slider Dolly
The Neewer Tabletop Mobile Rolling Slider Dolly is a really interesting piece of gear that helps to add a level of professional quality to the look and style of your videos.
This nifty device is a rolling slider, so you basically attach your camera, choose the angle you want it to roll in, and just push it in the direction you want to go.
This results in a smooth, fixed angle shot as the camera rolls along while attached to this dolly.
It’s designed to be used with a wide range of shooting devices so you can use it with your DSLR or mirrorless (I recommend using it with a ball-head for more versatility), and you can also use it with a GoPro or smaller point-and-shoot.
I was actually looking for the best camera dolly when I came across this little guy and I thought it was pretty practical so I wanted to recommend it.
It’s not as capable as some of the more heavy-duty sliders in this post, but for beginners or anyone looking for a little bit of versatility when it comes to making videos, I would definitely recommend taking a look at the Neewer Tabletop Mobile Rolling Slider Dolly.
The IMORDEN 48″/120cm slider is a ball-bearing slider and comes equipped with 48-inch long rails that offer a max load of 15 lbs.
There are smaller options available, though I recommend the longer option for more versatility when you’re out capturing video.
The slider itself is made from aluminum and this helps to keep it lightweight and easy to manage for a variety of different shots.
It doesn’t take long to set-up the IMORDEN 48″/120cm so you can quickly get it ready to use and start getting the shot you need without spending too much time fumbling around.
On its own you can use this slider for smooth and straight horizontal shots, though you can combine it with a tripod if you want to capture something vertically or sloped depending on your preferences.
The design of the feet, in an eagle-claw style, also helps to keep the slider stable when you’re using it and prevents it from skidding around when it’s placed on a smooth surface.
For portability, the IMORDEN 48″/120cm come with a carrying bag and this also helps to protect it from bumps and accidental impacts when you’re out in the field.
The StudioFX 40″ video stabilizer slider boasts a decent length of 40-inches and a max camera load of 15 lbs.
You can use this slider with most cameras, including DSLRs with bigger lenses, and it comes equipped with two different mounting screws for more versatility.
When it comes to the slide system, the StudioFX 40″ uses a ball-bearing design and this allows for smooth and steady shots when you’re trying to capture video.
There’s even a level that you can use to make sure the shot you’re capturing is level in-sync with what you’re shooting.
It’s sturdy, made from a lightweight aluminum steel body, and to make it easy to carry and portable it comes with a dedicated carrying case.
The StudioFX 40″ makes for a suitable choice if you’re looking for a portable and steady slider to use with your DSLR.
KAMERAR SD-1 Mark II
The KAMERAR SD-1 Mark II slider is an awesome choice when it comes to the best camera dolly, especially if you’re looking for something with wheels.
Interestingly enough, this slider dolly can actually be mounted on a tripod so you can use it in a fixed position if you don’t need the motion that the wheels provide.
Having the wheels really helps to add another dimension to the style and quality of the video you’re able to capture.
The rollers themselves are lightweight and made from nylon, which helps them to glide effortless and reduces the chance of any vibrations in your footage.
There are even these balance weights on either side of the slider that you can use for a steadier shot or to create a pulley system if you were so inclined.
I would recommend taking a look at the KAMERAR SD-1 Mark II if you’re looking for a DSLR dolly to add another dimension to the style of footage you’re able to capture.
Neewer Portable FilmMaker System
The Neewer Portable FilmMaker System is a handheld camera platform that comes equipped with a slider and is well-suited for videographers capturing footage while moving around.
The shoulder bracket really helps with stabilization and the two hand grips give you plenty of control when you’re trying to capture whatever is going on in front of you.
Not only does this set-up help for filming stability and control, but there is even a nifty slider system that’s great for video zooming and getting unique shots without having to physically adjust the lens itself.
Alternatively, you can fix the Neewer Portable FilmMaker System to a tripod if you’re shooting in a fixed position and still take advantage of the slider for your shots.
The other, more traditional sliders might be better if you’re not creating anything in a move-style of filmmaking, but otherwise I would recommend taking a look at the Neewer Portable FilmMaker System for portability and versatility when you’re out recording.
Grip Gear’s Movie Maker Set
The Grip Gear’s Movie Maker Set is a great option if you’re looking for the best time-lapse slider to use with your GoPro, smartphone, or point-and-shoot camera.
It comes equipped with an electronic slider and it even has a 360-degree panoramic time-lapse head.
This design really allows you to capture time-lapses or videos in a unique way compared to just setting up a tripod and getting something so common.
The one drawback is that it does have a 550g weight limit, although it’s really ideal for smaller cameras and a GoPro.
It’s possible to use this slider horizontally for a flat shot, and it can also be used vertically for more unique angles.
To control the movement and change settings there’s a handy remote that makes it so much easier to use.
The Grip Gear’s Movie Maker Set is a great option if you’re making videos or time-lapses with a smaller camera and you want something super versatile for unique angles and interesting video shots.
How to Use a Slider
There are a wide range of different styles and techniques that you can take advantage of when you’re using a DSLR slider for capturing footage.
They are a powerful tool that many photographers and videographers find useful to use on a regular basis for unique angles and more engaging shots.
Let’s take a look at the different uses that sliders have.
Single Angle Movement
This method is the most common and easiest way to get started using a slider.
To start, you simply set everything up, mount your camera, and essentially just move the camera along the rails from one side to the other.
You don’t need to worry about any tilting or panning just yet, for a single straight shot you should just be focusing on moving the camera as smoothly as possible.
This is a very basic capture and it’s a good place to get started if you want to enhance the quality of your final footage.
This capture style is very similar to the style I just mentioned, but with this method you’re actually having the camera pointing forward along the track.
When it’s mounted forward you can simply move the camera forward into a scene.
This is great for introduction shots or showcasing special locations or unique products in an interesting perspective.
Alternatively, you could opt to pull the camera back along the rails, instead of pushing it forward.
This technique is a good idea for closing shots or just to add another layer of depth to an otherwise normal scene.
Using panning shots while sliding the camera really helps to make the shots much more dynamic and interesting.
Head on, stationary shots can be quite boring and uninspiring so it’s great to use a slider for moving, panning shots to add some more life to your scenes.
Tilting the Slider
Along with being able to use one to capture shots on a steady plane, you can also tilt the slider for a more unique perspective.
This helps to add another dimension to the look and feel of your footage and it’s a great feature to use for tracking people or for outdoor shots that differ in elevation.