axiiio nano: What is it good for?

Sometimes it's hard to explain all the things the axiiio nano system is able to do – so here goes...

Sometimes it's hard to explain all the things the axiiio nano system is able to do for filmmakers and photographers. And in this edition of the newsletter we try to explain it all :)

A Flexible, Efficient Motion Control System

Adam designed the axiiio nano system based on his years of production experience, and thinking about speed and efficiency in every aspect of the system. In his own words:

One of the reasons I developed this system is because I was getting sick and tired of packing gear for different types of shoots. Having all these different types of rigs just burned time on sets, so lots of gear just sat in its box never being used, unless the shot absolutely needed it.

Rig Configurations

What we're trying to do with this system is avoid the need for lots of different types of rig when you go on set. Or, if you are taking multiple rigs, you just take one set of electrical control components (the motors and receiver). You can prebuild the different mechanical rigs (using our nano motion pancakes), and, when you have finished one shot, you just unplug the control components from that rig and plug them in on the next one. If you have saved the rig configurations in the ProMoCo software, getting the new rig working is as simple as loading your preset rig and hitting auto-calibrate, the receiver does everything else.

Workflow Automation

The ProMoCo software uses a very simple premise for creating a motion shot. Set a start point (including lens control, focus, iris and zoom) set an endpoint, set your ease-in and ease-out and hit go. It literally takes a few seconds to create a program. This leaves you free to do the important stuff which is framing and lighting that shot. You can run that program in one of several modes (video motion, timelapse and stop motion). If you doing composite's, each mode leaves you with a clip that when processed will be exactly the same length and motion across all modes. This makes making composite shots much simpler than any other system.

Simplifying the Power Source

A very simple idea that every motion control system I've ever used has never implemented is being able to connect to a single power source. The receiver powers up to 4 motors. It can work on a wide variety of voltages making it ideal for single source power distribution and with the addition of a power hub you can power everything from one source. When I'm on set I only use v-mount batteries, so I only have one battery which runs an entire rig (including the camera). You can bet your lunch money we are engineering power hubs and single battery systems so you don't have to carry around lots of different types of batteries and you only have to monitor one battery. Watch this space!

Programmable Camera Motion

The production uses of the axiiio nano system are unlimited; here's a list of examples.

Automate Camera Movement

You can use the axiiio nano system for a wide variety of motion shots, across multiple disciplines. axiiio components can be easily added to your existing camera equipment through standard mounts and adapters. axiiio makes it easy to incorporate motion control into your DIY camera rigs. Let your imagination go wild.

Timelapse photography

Generate stunning motion timelapses with up to 4 axes of lens, rotational or linear motion. axiiio nano is flexible enough that you only need to take the axis you need to a location.

High Speed Filming

The axiiio nano motion system can move very fast. Rotational axes are capable of up to 420° rotation per second, linear axes up to 200mm (7.8 inches) per second.  That kind of speed, combined with a nano pancake, making high-speed moves for slow motion cinematography possible. Frame accurate motion control means you can do composite shots at different speeds from the sped up motion of a timelapse to slow motion like these strawberries.

Product Photography

The axiiio nano system is flexible enough to automate photographic tasks. A single motion pancake and motor combined with a turntable can automate product photography for catalogue shoots.

Stop Motion Animation

You can use the axiiio nano system to create camera movement in your stop motion animation scenes. We're also working on integrations with popular stop motion capture software which will become available in future firmware upgrades.


Composite Shots

Predictable motion enables you to do multilayered composite shots with camera movement. Frame accurate digital compositing across different program types is a reality with the axiiio nano system.

This shot was performed with only one motor, pancake and receiver. Two passes were performed, the first as a timelapse and the second as a standard motion take. The two were comped together to create this shot.

Automating focus

Our ProMoCo software enables you to automate many tasks in filmmaking and photography, including focus pulls. In this example were pulling focus between four distances using cues. The tip of the gun, the Lego man's face, focus target one and focus target two. You can tweak many parameters in ProMoCo to make the focus pull fit the shot.

Dolly zooms

Because you can control any combination of lens rings and motion axes, fully automated dolly zooms are simple to set up and do. You can also create the Hitchcock effect as a timelapse like we did here:

Focus stacking

The axiiio nano systems flexibility allows you to connect to a wide variety of third-party equipment. In this example we've used it on a focus stacking rig to create beautiful high-resolution close-ups.

Focus Pulling

ProMoCo opens a world of possibilities for the axiiio nano system. You can pull focus, automate control of the lens entirely, or keep parts of the lens under manual control while other parts are automated

That's certainly not the end of the list. And we've got some impressive DIY project videos coming soon to demonstrate just how flexible the system really is.

Please Share

If you're excited to see what axiiio can do, please share a link to our site (, to anyone you think would be interested.  It's a long road to bringing a product like this to market and we appreciate all the help we can get. The more interest we can generate early, the more chance our Kickstarter campaign has for success.

And, of course, all subscribers go into the running to win 1 of 2 free pre-production axiiio nano kits! If you know anyone who'd like a free kit, let them know so they can subscribe before the campaign launch.

Thanks, and keep on filming!