After much anticipation, the Syrp Magic Carpet Pro is here. This is a professional-grade, manual slider that can handle up to a whopping 70 lbs and will be beefy and strong for most possible uses.
About the Magic Carpet Pro
This is a very heavy duty manual slider that can deliver amazingly smooth tracking footage with pretty much any camera you want to put on it. The Magic Carpet Pro has a gorgeous, modern design built with aluminum for strength and is endlessly extendable with ease, due to the quick connect levers on the ends. Join as many tracks together as you like.
The Magic Carpet Pro features a flywheel carriage design, and the flywheel can be disengaged at the click of a button. There is a handy carriage lock lever for quick locking to move the slider to a new position or for transport to and from the job.
From merely clicking the adjustable legs, I could immediately tell this slider is serious business. Everything is commercial grade. It's quite overkill for the weight of my camera setup, and a lighter slider would do the job, but I prefer to have heavy duty beyond my needs, as it makes me feel comfortable knowing I'm not even close to maxing it out.
Out of the box, the included simple instructions will get you up and running quickly.
To Manual or Not to Manual?
The slider can facilitate the use of a Syrp Genie. The Genie can click right into the carriage itself. It is quite clear this design was well thought out and made to be future-proof.
I actually prefer the use of the manual slider most of the time for a multitude of reasons. First, there's less setup time and I don't have to worry about batteries or power sources. I'm on the go a lot, and something that sets up so quickly and simply is worth a lot to me, and with the flywheel resistance of this manual slider, I do not feel there's any quality loss vs powered for what I currently shoot, which is mostly cars.
Another huge factor of manual versus powered is that the powered options have a certain maximum speed. I often like to shoot at 120 fps and slow my footage down in post (which also allows me to shoot wider apertures due to a higher shutter speed), and the manual slider lets me move the carriage really fast. For me, this results in smoother footage without the added setup time of programming a motorized slider. This makes it much more feasible for me to actually use this on a job, especially for my clients with high-end exotic cars who value their time heavily.
Here is some quick test footage of my own car to determine how the Magic Carpet Pro would handle my style of shooting cars.
I am pleased to say the setup time was less than two minutes, and for never having used the slider before, I was pleased with how smooth and easy the footage was to create. I'll definitely be using it for a real session in proper lighting conditions for what I expect will be very nice results.
What I Liked
I love the build quality and the attention to detail. This product was super easy to get up and running in minutes. Not having motors, I could see using this for years and years and never having a problem. I enjoy not messing with apps and batteries, and with a little practice, the footage is incredibly smooth. You can also us it with pretty much any camera in existence. If I hit the lottery and buy a RED camera, it's still ready to go.
The overall impression and feel even from simply the detail put into the case and packaging really gave me a good feeling about the company in general. It could be smart marketing or they really do care about the details; either way, it translates to a great feeling for me. I have seen many products before that are presented poorly but work well, and that sadly could prevent some folks from going past the initial appearance. Syrp seems to have managed to handle this both on appearance and actual functionality.
What I Didn't Like
It's honestly difficult to find anything wrong with this slider. The time it took Syrp to release this product was worth the wait, as they were taking every possible scenario into consideration, and that shows. Attaching tripods to the tracks is a little less than fun to do by yourself, having some sort of quick-detach latch that could screw onto the tripod and then snap into the track bottom would make the setup just that much easier.
I cannot say enough about how much detail is really in this particular slider and how well it actually works for daily use. The expandability options such as hooking up a motor or using the counterweight cable option make is suitable for anyone's needs or just for use as is.
You can order the Magic Carpet Pro kit here for $1,469.