When To Use Motorized Dollies and Sliders: A Comprehensive Guide

I love creating free content full of tips for my readers, you. I don't accept paid sponsorships, my opinion is my own, but if you find my recommendations helpful and you end up buying something you like through one of my links, I could earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

The ultimate tool for smooth camera movement is the motorized dolly. It allows you to move the camera in any direction, and you can control the speed and direction of the camera movement.

But there are so many different types! When should you use a slider instead?

What is a motorized camera slider system

What Is A Motorized Camera Dollie System?

A motorized camera dolly consists of:

  • Stepper Motors
  • Stepper Motor Drivers
  • Motor Drivers
  • Power Supplies
  • Motors
  • Motor Controllers
  • Linear Actuators
  • Linear Actuator Controllers
  • Linear Actuator Limit Switches
  • Linear Actuator End Stops
  • Slider Rail
  • Slider Rail Mount
  • Camera Mount
  • Wheels or Bearing system

A camera slider (here are the best ones we’ve reviewed) has a smooth movement that is perfect for shooting video or pre-programmed stop motion shots.

Motorized Camera Dolly: A Must-Have Tool for Filmmakers


This bad boy is like a remote-controlled car for your camera! Control the speed levels (1.4cm/s, 2.4cm/s, 3cm/s) and change directions from up to 19.7’ (6m) away. Just be aware that it can get a bit noisy when you’re recording audio.


Angle Adjustable Wheels

Two wheels with 90° angle adjustment let you get creative with your shots. Plus, the 1/4” to 3/8” reversible screw is compatible with almost any video head, ball head, and phone holder. You can even use it with camera sliders for zoom effects.

Lightweight and Durable

This dolly is made of high-quality aluminum alloy and ABS plastic, so it’s strong enough to support DSLR cameras, camcorders, and smartphones up to 6.6lb (3kg). Plus, it’s lightweight and fits in your palm, so it’s perfect for traveling filmmakers.

Getting the Right Gear for Cinematic Shots

What is a Camera Slider?

A camera slider is a nifty piece of equipment that allows you to get those smooth, cinematic shots you see in movies. It’s basically a motorized rail that your camera sits on and moves along, allowing you to get those awesome tracking shots and reveal shots.

Choosing the Right Slider

When it comes to choosing the right camera slider, there are a few things to consider:

  • Weight and load capacity: If you’re a travel photographer, you’ll want to go for something lightweight like an aluminum or carbon fiber slider. For heavier cameras, a steel slider is a better option.
  • Length: Sliders come in a variety of lengths, so you’ll want to choose one that’s long enough to get the shots you need. Shorter sliders are great for traveling, but they won’t give you as much travel.
  • Brakes: Make sure your slider has brakes so you can lock the camera in place and keep it from moving out of position.


You’ll also need a few accessories to get the most out of your camera slider:

Getting started with your own stop motion storyboards

Subscribe to our newsletter and get your free download with three storyboards. Get started with bringing your stories alive!

We'll only use your email address for our newsletter and respect your privacy

  • Quick-release system: This will help you attach and lock down your camera to the slider.
  • Pro video camera slider cases: For maximum protection and durability of your gear.

So there you have it – everything you need to know about choosing the right camera slider. Now go out there and get those awesome shots!


When it comes to motorized dollies and sliders, the decision of which one to use depends on your needs. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, go for a carbon fiber track slider. If you’re looking for something more portable, the Smartta SliderMini 2 is your best bet. And if you’re a smartphone filmmaker, the JOBY Swing Complete Kit is the perfect choice. No matter which one you choose, you’re sure to get smooth, professional-looking shots! Just remember to brush up on your sushi etiquette before you start shooting – you don’t want to be the one who drops the chopsticks!

Hi, I'm Kim, a mom and a stop-motion enthusiast with a background in media creation and web development. I've got a huge passion for drawing and animation, and now I'm diving headfirst into the stop-motion world. With my blog, I'm sharing my learnings with you guys.