My first memory of noticing the parallax effect was probably when I was in second grade playing an NES game called “Snoopy’s Silly Sports Spectacular”.  This was a side scrolling game and for one of the challenges the cartoon character Snoopy was in a sack race and as he moved forward the background plate never moved but the houses a little further away would slightly advance and the street under Snoopy would advance the fastest as Snoopy neared the finish line.  I thought this effect was so cool.

Slider with Accessories

Slider with Accessories

Fast forward about 19 years to 2009 and sliders start gaining popularity.  They opened up a whole new way to create shots and could make less than interesting scenes hold an audience’s attention.  They do require a little bit of time to set up but require much less space and time than a traditional dolly.  One of the downsides however is that it can be difficult to keep the sliders rail  out of the shot if the camera is pushing in on a subject, and the lengths of the moves are usually limited to under five feet.

Slider in Action

Slider in Action

I purchased the Kessler Pocket Dolly in April of 2009 for $549.95 after being amazed at seeing what other people were doing with them.  I  tested it at a balloon glow with my roommates  Canon 7D and a 24mm f1.4 L series lens.  The results were so good that I knew it would be getting a lot of use.  I found it strange that less than a year earlier I had been working at a TV station that was still using Beta SP cameras on fluid head tripods that when new probably cost over $40,000 and I could now create nicer looking videos for under $5000.


Since purchasing the Pocket Dolly, Kessler has released an updated version of it to overcome some of the initial flaws.  This review will be for the first version of the slider.


The slider has a few cool features.  The track has a 3/8’s hole drilled in the center and also a ¼” 20 hole on each end.  This is very convienient when you want to get the camera up off the ground on a tripod.  The slider can be centered over the tripod and a magic arm can hold up one or both of the other sides of the slider to keep the ends level as the camera travels to ends.  This makes for a pretty light weight and very portable rig and adds a lot of production value to a shoot quickly and easily.  Another cool feature is that the slider is belt driven and comes with a weighted hand crank so you can crank the camera along the track.  I find that hand cranking provides somewhat jerky results.  Instead push or pull the slider at the camera’s base with the hand crank still attached.  The crank works like a flywheel to smooth out the move and reduce sticking.  Even with the hand crank attached the slider will sometimes bind if the camera is not balanced well enough over the slider, and your moves probalby will never be completely consistant since we aren’t as precise as motors are.  To get really consistant speed moves, Kessler offers a motor upgrade that is compatible with both the old and new version of the slider.  It’s an expensive upgrade but if you want to do more advanced things with your slider it’s nice to have.  If you’re just pushing the camera on the slider you will be limited to doing real time moves which isn’t bad, but with the motor upgrade you can repeat a move precisely over and over again which is neat for motion control compositing.  The motor upgrade also enables the slider to be used for timelapses.  Obviously the motors can also imitate hand moving the slider but requires much less concentration to get a smooth take.  At some point in the future I’ll do a more in depth review on the motors, but this post is primairly about the slider.

Slider Moving Towards House

Slider Moving Towards House

I believe that the original version of the Kessler slider used Igus parts and if you want to pick up a stripped down version of these check out the Igus site at the following link.

On the page there should be another link you can follow to their page and the price should rangefrom between $130 to $250 depending on the slider you want.  Alternatively ebay has tons of sliders also available and some are almost an identical rip off of the original Kessler slider.  If you can afford to go with name brand stuff for paying work I would spend a bit more and buy gear from companies who continue to invent and push camera technology further instead of reverse engineering an existing product.  After all research and development take time and money and I would like new and exciting products to continue to come out in the future.


Overall the slider was a very good purchase and has gotten an incredible amount of use and will continue to.  The Pocket Dolly Version 2 has overcome many of the drawbacks of the original but does cost a bit more.  If a used original Pocket Dolly goes up for sale it’s still a worthwhile buy but I wouldn’t want to spend more than $300.


  1. Spot on with this write-up, I absolutely believe that this website
    needs much more attention. I’ll probably be back
    again to see more, thanks for the info!

  2. Hello, Neat post. There is an issue together with your web site in web explorer, could test this?
    IE nonetheless is the marketplace leader and a huge part of folks will
    omit your fantastic writing because of this problem.

  3. Remarkable! Its really remarkable paragraph, I have got much
    clear idea regarding from this paragraph.

  4. These are in fact impressive ideas in regarding blogging.
    You have touched some nice things here. Any way keep up wrinting.

  5. What i don’t understood is actually how you are not really
    a lot more neatly-preferred than you might be right now.
    You are very intelligent. You understand therefore
    significantly with regards to this matter, produced me for my part imagine
    it from so many numerous angles. Its like women and men are not
    fascinated until it is something to do with Lady gaga! Your individual stuffs excellent.
    Always take care of it up!

  6. After looking into a handful of the blog articles on your blog, I honestly appreciate your technique of blogging.

    I saved it to my bookmark webpage list and will be checking back soon. Please
    visit my web site as well and tell me how you feel.

  7. I am curious to find out what blog system you’re
    utilizing? I’m experiencing some minor security issues with my latest site and I’d
    like to find something more risk-free. Do you have any solutions?

  8. This design is steller! You certainly know how to keep a reader entertained.
    Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog
    (well, almost…HaHa!) Excellent job. I really
    enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it.
    Too cool!

  9. I always used to study piece of writing in news papers but now as I am a user of net thus from now I am
    using net for posts, thanks to web.

  10. excellent issues altogether, you just received a new reader. What would you suggest in regards to your submit that you simply made a few days ago? Any certain?

  11. I every time used to study post in news papers but now as I
    am a user of net thus from now I am using net for articles, thanks to web.

  12. Exceptional post however , I was wanting to know if you could write
    a litte more on this topic? I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit more.
    Appreciate it!

  13. Because the admin of this site is working, no question very quickly it
    will be renowned, due to its feature contents.

  14. I love it when folks come together and share opinions. Great blog, continue the good work!

  15. Incredible! This blog looks exactly like my old one! It’s on a completely different topic
    but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Superb choice of colors!

  16. Thanks for your personal marvelous posting!
    I definitely enjoyed reading it, you can be a great author.I will make sure to bookmark
    your blog and will often come back in the foreseeable future.
    I want to encourage you to continue your great posts, have a nice

  17. Very descriptive post, I enjoyed that a
    lot. Will there be a part 2?

  18. What’s up, yeah this piece of writing is really good and I
    have learned lot of things from it about blogging. thanks.

  19. Wonderful items from you, man. I have consider your stuff previous to and you’re just too excellent.
    I really like what you’ve bought right here, really like what you’re stating and the way in which wherein you
    assert it. You make it enjoyable and you continue to care for to keep it smart.
    I can’t wait to read far more from you. That
    is actually a wonderful web site.

  20. Thank you a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually recognise what you are speaking approximately!
    Bookmarked. Kindly also consult with my website =).
    We can have a hyperlink trade contract between us

  21. I believe that is one of the such a lot important info for me.
    And i’m satisfied studying your article. However should commentary on some normal issues,
    The website taste is great, the articles is in reality nice : D.
    Excellent activity, cheers

  22. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger,
    and I was wanting to know your situation; we have created some nice practices
    and we are looking to trade techniques with others,
    why not shoot me an email if interested.

  23. Do you mind if I quote a few of your articles as long as I provide credit and
    sources back to your website? My blog is in the exact same niche as
    yours and my visitors would really benefit
    from a lot of the information you provide here.
    Please let me know if this alright with you. Many thanks!

  24. It’s awesome in support of me to have a web page, which is good designed
    for my know-how. thanks admin

  25. Thanks for finally writing about >Sliders <Loved it!

  26. Hi there, I discovered your blog via Google at the same time
    as searching for a related subject, your website came up, it seems good.
    I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.
    Hi there, just turned into aware of your weblog through Google, and found that
    it is really informative. I am gonna watch out for brussels.
    I’ll appreciate for those who continue this in future.
    Numerous other people might be benefited from your writing.

  27. Hi! I just want to give you a huge thumbs up for your excellent info
    you’ve got right here on this post. I will be coming back to your blog for more soon.

  28. Great article, just what I wanted to find.

  29. naturally like your website but you need to test the spelling on several of your posts.
    Many of them are rife with spelling issues and I find it very troublesome
    to tell the truth nevertheless I’ll certainly come again again.