ROVR Robotic Camera Platform

Figure 1: The completed ROVR camera platform.

360 Labs, a production company specializing in 360 degree video, has developed a robotic camera platform they call “ROVR”. ROVR has proved to be a useful addition to their array of tools. The primary benefit of a platform like ROVR is that video can be recorded without a camera operator appear in the footage.

ROVR is built around a ServoCity Prowler chassis with the stock motors swapped out with the 118 RPM version so that the camera platform moves at the slow pace. The project’s builders state that with the motors they chose the platform moves at a top speed of 2 mph, which is what the projects ROVR is designed for demand. The four motors of the Prowler chassis are controlled by a RoboClaw 2x30A motor controller. For traction ROVR can be equipped with two different sets of tires, an off-road version and one smoother set, the smoother set are used for indoor filming to minimize camera shake. To further improve the stability of ROVR additional weight was added to the top of the robot.

Figure 1: A late prototype of the Super Gamer case.

ROVR is operated via a radio control transmitter and the drive configuration is a differential drive. The differential drive configuration allows the platform to make very tight turns. The RoboClaw motor controller used in the build natively features a radio control input which makes projects like ROVR easy to configure.

A variety of cameras can be attached to ROVR for different types of projects. ROVR’s builders chose to use a riser and Nodal Ninja pole for attaching cameras to the platform. Below is a sample video of footage captured with ROVR. More details about the build can be found on the 360 Labs blog.

We thank the people at 360 Labs for posting the details of their build and for choosing to use a RoboClaw motor controller to complete their project.