Ever since the release of the Zhiyun Crane 2 with its 3.2kg load capacity, other companies seem to be pushing the boat out just a little further each time. The original MOZA Air came out to match it, followed by the DJI Ronin-S, which can handle a rather impressive 3.6kg. Now, Gudsen has announced the new MOZA Air 2 which takes a whopping 4.2kg.
Ever since I got to play with the original Zhiyun Crane at Photokina 2016 I’ve wanted to put one of these things to work and see how it handles. I’ve used a number of smaller gimbals for phones, but the ability to load up a DSLR or mirrorless camera offers huge benefits. I almost never invest in the first generation of anything, but then they released the Zhiyun Crane 2.
GearBest got in touch with us to see if we wanted to check one out for ourselves and how it might help with the content we create here on DIYP. With The Photography Show and other events coming up where we need to shoot video, it seemed like a great opportunity to give it a good workout and really put it through its paces. But it’s quickly become one of my favourite video creation tools.
DJI’s Osmo Mobile gimbal has been hugely popular since it was first released. But, one thing that gave the competition so much advantage was its cost. Being released at $299, the $150 or less alternatives were much easier for customers to swallow. DJI’s first answer was to drop the price to $199. But now they’ve have answered that price difference again with the new Osmo Mobile 2, at a mere $129.
Gimbals can be a wonderful filmmaking tool. They’ve become quite popular over the last year or two, very popular in fact. But are they becoming overused? That’s the argument put forth by Jakob Ownes from TheBuffNerds. He feels that gimbals are overused and take away from not only the story being told, but the storytelling power of gimbals themselves.
Well, this is pretty awesome news. Zhiyun have updated its 3-axis motorised handheld gimbal for DSLRs & mirrorless. To be clear, this is the “Crane-2”, it is not “Crane v2”, which is a revision of the original Crane. I know, it’s confusing, but that’s what it is.
Zhiyun have doubled the load capacity with the new Crane-2 to a whopping 7lbs. They’ve also added an integrated follow focus control, an OLED display, and battery life has increased from 12 to 18 hours.
A motorised gimbal is one of the most useful tools you can get today for camera stabilisation. They’re much easier to get to grips with than a steadicam style stabiliser, and their prices have come down dramatically in the last year or so. For mobile phones, action cameras, DSLRs or even big RED setups, they are absolutely invaluable. But using them effectively can be challenging.
The temptation is just to hold them static in front of you and shoot away. But this can lead to pretty boring footage. This video from DP Justin Jones for Aputure’s Four-minute film school goes through 13 essential movements that you should know. You don’t need to use all of them in every production, but they will give you many interesting and exciting options when it comes time to edit.
Camera stabilisation has always been a big deal. It’s the difference between a good shot and a piece of footage you can barely watch. Until fairly recently, stabilisation was the realm of Hollywood. Mere mortals could one day only hope to see a Steadicam in person. Now, though, that’s all changed. There’a a whole plethora of camera stabilisation tools on the market.
Two of the most popular are the Glidecam range of gravity stabilisers and motorised gimbals. Photographer Ed Gregory puts the two to task in this side-by-side comparison. The Glidecam HD-2000 goes up against the mighty DJI Ronin M in this side-by-side comparison. The comparison shows some fairly common but also quite tough shooting tests. And, just for a laugh, the Canon G7X with its electronic image stabilisation (EIS) is thrown in, too.
Getting clean stable footage is often one of the more difficult challenges with video. Especially while you’re still figuring everything out. Recently, we showed you several tips for getting stable handheld footage. Even relatively smooth handheld footage, though can benefit from a little extra assistance.
As technology advances, there are many ways to make your footage more stable. Using both software and hardware solutions. This video from YouTuber eevnxx goes through four of those methods to help get your footage as smooth as possible.
Steadicam, the devices famous for stabilising Hollywood’s footage for decades, are refocusing their efforts towards phones. Tiffen, Steadicam’s owners, have just announced the Steadicam Volt. Taking square aim at the influx of motorised handheld gimbals launched recently, the Volt works a little differently. It also offers advantages over those motorised gimbals we’ve come to know.
It’s also been awarded as an Honoree of the 2017 CES Innovation Awards. Tiffen have released smartphone stabilisers before. The Steadicam Smoothee, for example. Unlike the Smoothee, though, this one is electronic. They’ve teamed up with drone makers, Yuneec to load it up with some pretty cool stabilisation tech. This lets it achieve camera moves no current motorised stabilisers can.[Read More…]
Handheld motorised gimbals are fantastic pieces of kit. Whether it’s for an action camera, phone, DSLR or even a RED camera, they do their job extremely well. One thing that’s been an issue for a lot of people so far, though, is that they’re not really “all weather”. Even though your phone or camera might be in some kind of waterproof housing, trying to operate a gimbal in the rain isn’t exactly the best idea.
This has been a bit of an issue for me, personally, too. Living in the almost perpetually wet UK, I am at the mercy of the weather when I want to use mine outdoors. Feiyu are starting to solve this problem with the release of the new Feiyu G5 3-axis handheld gimbal for action cameras. Designed specifically for the GoPro Hero5, which also features built in weather proofing, it will also work with other action cameras, too.