Halo Rig vs Fig Rig – Two Amazing Handheld Rigs
With so many handheld rigs on the market, I wanted to take some time to share with you some experience I’ve had with my Halo Rig and this style of camera stabilizer.
The Halo Rig or Fig Rig, or Circular style camera stabilizer for that matter, offer you a single piece of equipment that allows for the mounting of various accessories such as a light or an external mic. Although the rigs do not give you a true steady cam movement, they help tremendously in reducing the micro movements that are so signature with shooting video on a DSLR or Mirrorless camera.
Halo Rig Mini Video Camera Stabilizer – (Amazon)
Manfrotto 595B Fig Rig Video Camera Stabilizer – (Amazon)
Halo Rig First Impressions
For my DSL I love my Halo Rig. I was using it for years on my Canon 5DmkII and it also works well on the Sony A7rII. It takes out all that little jitter and give a more natural professional handheld feel. Plus, it’s almost a must for doing any tracking for compositing.
That being said. It does not completely eliminate hand held motion, but stabilizes the image a TON.
Now for the pro’s and cons between the two.
The Halo Rig is cheaper, which is a huge plus. But the main reason I bought it over the Fig Rig was it’s ability the mount onto tripods. Big plus for me. I shoot with an H4N and a shot gun mic often times all mounted to the thing. And sometimes I just want to pop the rig on a tripod for a quick static shot without having to unhook everything. And vise versa. Can’t do that with the Fig Rig which sucks.
It also comes in a few sizes which is nice. I bought the small one. Works great for my 5Dmkii.
First con the Halo Rigs build quality. For one the camera plate on that thing although sturdy enough is poorly designed. When mounted to a tripod the release for the camera plate is directly above the release for the tripod. (Depending on the type of tripod you use) So what can happen is you go to release the rig off your tripod and you accidently pop the camera off the rig and it falls to the ground and dies and horrible death. I had this happen twice. Luckily the camera was very low to the ground so no problems, and I use all cannon gear which are built out of scrapped German tank parts from World War II (not really). The mount does have a lock but for some reason the lock didn’t engage even though I had it on. Maybe mine is just machined poorly? I don’t know, the little Chinese kid that made the part that day might have been sick or was tired or something.
Second con, is when you have the Halo Rig mounted to a tripod, it seems to weaken the bolt that mounts the rig to the camera and tripod. On mine it eventually sheered away. Now I have to get a replacement.
You’re really getting what you pay for with quality. It was designed by a professional for professionals. It’s got nice grips and a better camera plate. It’s just all around looks and feel a bit more professional.
It’s more expensive.
You can’t mount it to a tripod or even really set it down. You have to build some sort of sand bag mount or something to set it on for when you get tired of holding it, which you will, these things are heavy when mounted up.
Halo Rig vs Fig Rig Comparison Conclusions
If I had to do it all again, I’d still buy a Halo Rig. I bought the smaller one for my 5Dmkii. Reasons are for the tripod mounting capabilities. But you just have to be extremely careful not to accidentally unmount the camera.
One con for both of them that nobody seems to mention is, it will not stabilize the camera on the Y axis. So if you shoot with longer lenses you’ll get a lot of forward and backward till. Might be better on the Fig Rig because you can position your hands differently to compensate for it. Or maybe get some type of 3rd party sliding plate to balance the camera out a little.