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Zach Fine

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  1. If this morning's test run in inverted mode (vimeo link) is any guide, it works great with my 1620g of camera+lens. I also did a test of it upright last night and it seemed fine as well. Never heard the motors struggle, it moves like butter.
  2. They should add that slogan to the product brochure! I'm not laughing too loudly -- her English is much better than my Mandarin. I understood the meaning, she's got lots of faith in their product.
  3. The thing that gets me is that the Beholder EC1 and DS1 are basically the same weight as the Zhiyun Crane, yet they claim to be able to carry almost double the Crane's payload. This leads me to wonder how that could be -- if the Beholder gimbals were significantly sturdier or featured more powerful motors than the Crane, it'd seem likely that this would add weight. It is a big assumption to make such a comparison based on weight alone -- it could be that the Beholder models feature superior engineering or that the price difference between them and the Zhiyun is due to the cost of stronger (but not heavier) materials or motors. It's the best I've got to work with, but I'm a little wary of taking the Newsshooter.com max capacity test at face value. Allard's 1200g+ test was of a light mirrorless camera attached to a very heavy lens. Unless the Crane's camera stage can slide far back to compensate for a setup that he calls "very front heavy", I wouldn't be surprised if the camera was well off balance. This would cause the motors to have to work much harder just to keep the camera level let alone counter any movement. If it wasn't balanced, then this test would not be relevant to the experience one would encounter using a more balanced camera and lens combination that exceeds 1200g, such as a Canon 5D3 with 16-35mm f2.8 lens (total: 1448g) as seen here on a Zhiyun Crane on the manufacturer's instagram page. Here's another heavy 5D3 and unidentified lens combo shown on their gimbal on their instagram. Speaking of motors -- when I compare the apparent size of the pitch motor in this gimbal that's made for heavy loads to the apparent size of the pitch motor in that second instagram shot of the Crane above, they kinda look to be the same size. Not that this necessarily means much. If Ivanka at Zhiyun wasn't speaking out of turn, the thing is capable of working well with that 1448g load in the picture. Or it could be that her definition of "works well" is different from mine and I'd run into the same issues as did Allard. I guess I'll either have to wait and see if someone else is foolish enough to try using the Crane for a heavier setup, or give in and jump on it myself.
  4. I've been posting about this on dvxuser while researching, but maybe I should ask here as well -- has anyone tried the Crane with more than 1200g? I've been keeping an eye on all the pistol-grip gimbals that include encoders, and am trying to decide between them. The Crane's a very appealing option, unfortunately its stated max capacity is insufficient for my needs - but just barely. When I look through the stats of competing gimbals, I see that others are within the same weight class, but claim to be able to fly a larger percentage of their own weight. For example, the Beholder EC1 claims to be able to carry 227% of its own weight, but the Crane only claims to be able to loft 126% of its weight. Is the Beholder actually that much more capable, or are Beholder and Zhiyun just being respectively optimistic and conservative when estimating the carrying capacity of their gimbals. I noticed images on Zhiyun's instagram feed of people using the Crane with 5DmkIII and Canon 16-35mm lens + filter, which is around 1500g. So I wrote via email and via instagram comment to ask whether that much weight can be flown on the Crane. The response: This matches up with my guess. But I'd love to see some footage of that kind of load on the Crane, or hear some firsthand reports. I don't really care about the life of the motors - if I only get 2 years out of a gimbal rather than 10, that's ok by me. But I do care about vibration, etc. I suspect with a larger load, one would have to increase the power allocated to the motors to avoid them shuddering or vibrating. This is a control available in SimpleBGC for the Alexmos-based gimbals, maybe there's an equivalent for the Crane? In case it's of use to anyone, here's the table I've been putting together while doing my shopping. I had to guess at the weight of the came-tv optimus, that it's the same as the came-tv single, as I can't find the optimus's weight specified. TL;DR: The Zhiyun Crane may well be able to loft a Canon 5DmkIII and 16-35 or 24-105 (or smaller lenses) just fine, judging from the fact that the manufacturer's own instagram feed shows such combinations on it and that similarly-sized gimbals with encoders do advertise the capability of carrying such loads. But more information is needed.
  5. For what it's worth, I've seen the "black spot in the sun" problem in footage from Red One MX, Arri Alexa, and Canon 5D. I think it's an artifact common to CMOS sensors, and is not at all unique to the Blackmagic. 
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