ReelSteady Go Works on Linux with Wine

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Google didn’t turn up any results, so I had to test this out for myself. ReelSteady Go works just fine on Linux with Wine. It didn’t work with the ancient version of Wine that ships with Ubuntu 18.04, but it does work with the wine-platform-4-devel snap package. The only caveat is that ReelSteady Go doesn’t work correctly in its own window. You have to run it in a virtual desktop.

What is ReelSteady Go?

ReelSteady Go takes your shaky, jarring GoPro footage and turns it into smooth, buttery footage. The full version of ReelSteady is an Adobe After Effects plugin. That version works with any camera, but it is much slower and much more persnickety than ReelSteady Go.

ReelSteady Go uses the accelerometer data that your GoPro encodes in each video to render a smoother version of your clip. I’m using ReelSteady Go to create buttery-smooth Cinewhoop-style videos using my 4” Kestrel micro drone and my GoPro HERO 5 Session. I’ve had success with footage from my 5” freestyle quad, too, but the solid mount I use on the 5” transfers too much vibration into the GoPro, and this goofs up ReelSteady Go’s algorithm a bit.

How to use ReelSteady Go on Ubuntu

This is Linux, so there’s definitely more than one way to do it. For simplicity’s sake, I’m just going to tell you what I did.

I used snap to install the latest development version of Wine:

snap install wine-platform-4-devel

Then I installed ReelSteady Go using this command:

/snap/wine-platform-4-devel/10/opt/wine-devel/bin/wine explorer.exe /desktop=name,1920x1080 ReelSteadyGoSetup.exe

Then I created a ReelSteadyGo.desktop file in ~/.local/share/applications:

[Desktop Entry]
Name=ReelSteady Go
Comment=ReelSteady Go
Exec=sh -c "/snap/wine-platform-4-devel/10/opt/wine-devel/bin/wine explorer.exe /desktop=name,1920x1080 ReelSteadyGo.exe"
Path=/home/wonko/.wine/drive_c/Program Files/ReelSteadyGo

You’ll have to replace my username with your own. It didn’t let me use a tilde or $HOME in a desktop file.

Why are you telling us about this? There’s a demo, so anyone can test it!

This is true. This is what I did. I just figured it would be worth documenting so you can just ask Google about ReelSteady Go and Linux and quickly find an answer!

What’s Pat doing with ReelSteady Go?

I’ve mostly just been goofing around in my front yard pretending my 4” Kestrel is a Cinewhoop even though it doesn’t have prop guards. I figure that practicing at home can’t hurt, because I need to do a better job at maintaining altitude with the 4” build. ReelSteady Go does a fantastic job at making my movements seem smooth and at leveling the horizon, but it can’t do anything about me bobbing up and down like an idiot!

I’m reasonably happy with the job I did following Brian and his Exway skateboard. On our first and only take, we managed to record nearly 90 seconds of chase footage. For long stretches, I think I maintained altitude quite well. I was also keeping an eye out for pedestrians and branches, while trying to find interesting lines.

I’d like to practice more before we revisit that flight!

Do you really need to soft mount your GoPro HERO5 Session?

The Kestrel’s built-in vibration damping seems to work well. I’ve tried running footage from my 5” freestyle quad through ReelSteady Go, and the results have been mixed.

Most footage on the 5” comes out just fine. ReelSteady Go tends to do odd things when I do a 180-degree yaw and start drifting backwards. It also does weird things during propwash sometimes. The original footage looks clean through the propwash, but when you can hear the motors fighting to keep the craft smooth in the wash, you will almost certainly see ReelSteady Go add oscillations to your footage.

I imagine I could have chased Brian with the hard-mounted GoPro HERO5 Session on my 5”, and the video would have been smooth. I didn’t do any maneuvers that seem to mess things up in that clip.

I’d say you’re better safe than sorry. If you soft mount your GoPro, you’re less likely to be disappointed when you get home!


ReelSteady Go works on Linux. It does a fantastic job, and it is well worth the $99 price tag.

I’ve been more than a little jealous of other pilots’ footage when they use HyperSmooth on their GoPro HERO7 Blacks, but it seemed disappointing that you can’t use an ND filter with HyperSmooth.

With ReelSteady Go, it seems like I can have my cake and eat it too. I can fly with an ND filter, and I can still smooth out my footage. Even better, I don’t have to make that choice before I fly. If I decide that something needs smoothing while I’m editing, I can run the clip through ReelSteady to see how it looks!

What do you think? Are you using ReelSteady Go? Are you using it to smooth your flight videos? Are you using it on Linux? Let me know in the comments, or stop by the Butter, What?! Discord server and chat with me about it!