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My Review of the Zhiyun Crane 3-Axis Gimbal

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38 minutes ago, Alex Uzan said:

Here's my two issues :

First, when I tilt too much, the Gimbal doesn't like it and reset its position.

Even if the camera is quite lig

Second, when I try to flip to revert mode, it's not smooth, as the arm try to maintain before suddenly change the position.

I tried replicating both of your tests, using a Lumix GH4 and Sigma 30mm f/1.4 DC DN for MFT, a very small, lightweight lens. Using the toggle switch, I tilted the camera downward as far as it would go, like in your first video. The camera does not suddenly swing back up. I tried this several times and could not get the gimbal to behave like yours. However, when switching from upright position to inverted mode, the movement is not smooth, the motors are working too hard, and the arm gives some resistance, so I think that is normal. 

On 12/1/2016 at 9:16 AM, 43md said:

This is what happens when I turn the gimbal on. The same exact thing happened to both the first and second set that I purchased. I have a windows 10 and my computer does not recognize the gimbal, app keeps crashing. I may have the worst luck here.

Gimbal Issue.MP4

You aren't supposed to hold the gimbal by the motor, that's what the handle is for. :) Inverted mode doesn't mean holding the stabilizer by the pan motor.

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

Ok, so I,ve seen many video on yt and vimeo, and I can definitly say that my unit is defective.

Even in full mode, without using the joystick, the gilbal can not maintain vertical pitch above 45°.

I sent a mail last week to the Zhiyun support, but still no answer.

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Guys, I have read most of this topic but I'm still not sure, most of the sellers online use what looks like original listing, where it says 1200grams for Crane.

But original site says: 

http://www.zhiyun-tech.com/index.php?m=content&c=index&a=show&catid=132&id=190

350-1800grams.

OPTIMAL: 1600 grams???

I quote:"compatible with the payload of 350-1800g (cameras with lens),   but we recommend 1600g would be the best performance."

So I wonder how and why would anyone write 1200. I have 550D (530 grams with battery and card), I have 18-35mm Sigma 1.8 art, 634 grams, that is 1164grams, which would be on the edge. I plan to go for Sony 7S II, with metabones adapter and again sigma, it would be again around 1.2kg or bit more, as Sony is 627grams, + sigma, it is already 1260 + metabones adapter, at least another 100-200 grams, would be 1.4kg.

Please advise. I'm about to buy it, but I'm afraid, I have as well 5D Mark II. But as I would use it for wide angle shots, not sure which lens on FF. 

 

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Guys, my camera-lens combo is Sony A7R2 + Sony (Zeiss) FE 4/16-35 ZA OSS. I bought this Crane gimbal last week, upgraded to the latest firmware. Fantastic performance via joystick as well as Zhiyun Assistant on my Samsung Note 4. No problems whatsoever. Nonetheless, is it possible for me to gainfully use the slider-switch (shifter lever) of the gimbal somehow? If so, wiring up the camera microUSB port to the gimbal microUSB port by an ordinary cable - will that do? Appreciate your kind advice.

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15 hours ago, Tomislav Kovačević said:

Guys, I have read most of this topic but I'm still not sure, most of the sellers online use what looks like original listing, where it says 1200grams for Crane.

But original site says: 

http://www.zhiyun-tech.com/index.php?m=content&c=index&a=show&catid=132&id=190

350-1800grams.

OPTIMAL: 1600 grams???

I quote:"compatible with the payload of 350-1800g (cameras with lens),   but we recommend 1600g would be the best performance."

So I wonder how and why would anyone write 1200. I have 550D (530 grams with battery and card), I have 18-35mm Sigma 1.8 art, 634 grams, that is 1164grams, which would be on the edge. I plan to go for Sony 7S II, with metabones adapter and again sigma, it would be again around 1.2kg or bit more, as Sony is 627grams, + sigma, it is already 1260 + metabones adapter, at least another 100-200 grams, would be 1.4kg.

Please advise. I'm about to buy it, but I'm afraid, I have as well 5D Mark II. But as I would use it for wide angle shots, not sure which lens on FF. 

 

The Crane was originally built and sold as a gimbal for camera+lens combos of 350-1200gr. Nevertheless, its motors are quite powerful and soon users realized they could get very close to 1200gr and even over that limit and the gimbal still worked. Turns out 1200 gr. is a very conservative limit. Zhiyun, acting responsibly -which is unusual nowadays-, provided a wide margin so that the product would work as advertised.

Having said that, after so many enquiries from some users and answers from other users going over the limit, Zhiyun released an "alternative" firmware that extends the payload limit to 1800 gr, though it also raises the minimum required weight. Therefore, if you are going to use a small mirrorless, bridge or compact camera the "regular" firmware is recommended but if you plan on using a larger DSLR, you can dowload and install the "alternative" firmware from the same Zhiyun page. Hope the explanation is clear!

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I got my crane yesterday - I've only messed around with it at home, but am finding it fairly intuitive to use. I have a Sony A7sii with the 24-70 coming in at 1050g, balances easily and seems to offer no strain to the gimbal whatsoever. However, my small Sony 35 f2.8 lens is causing me a headache. I just can't seem to balance this thing. It appears the lens is too small and light making the camera back heavy no matter how far forward I move the camera on the mounting plate.

 

Anyone else tried a Sony A7 camera with the Sony FE35 2.8?

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On 23/11/2016 at 10:16 AM, scotchtape said:

That sucks but you could just add some weight to your camera and be good to go.. 

 

hello

 

Can someone inform me as to how to add weights on this gimbal? I am new to the whole gimbal science and all that. Thanks 

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5 hours ago, Rest|Less said:

hello

 

Can someone inform me as to how to add weights on this gimbal? I am new to the whole gimbal science and all that. Thanks 

Use a quick release plate under the camera, use a camera cage, a lot of possibilities.

 

I really used the Crane the first time in Venice a week ago and loved it. Surely beats my shaky handheld footage even though I still have to practice walking better. Just wish it was a hint shorter to better fit into my camera bag.

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On 12/13/2016 at 9:55 PM, scotchtape said:

I just got this gimbal too, it's fun!  Haven't had a chance to do any real shooting yet but tests at home seem great.

If you need it even further forward you can run the mounting plate the other way around (tilt motor on left side instead of right side).

Genius!

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17 hours ago, Phil A said:

Use a quick release plate under the camera, use a camera cage, a lot of possibilities.

 

I really used the Crane the first time in Venice a week ago and loved it. Surely beats my shaky handheld footage even though I still have to practice walking better. Just wish it was a hint shorter to better fit into my camera bag.

 

Thanks for the reply but i didn't ask the correct question. 

If i try to add a panasonic gx8 with the kit lens then i can't get the camera to stabilize (with the gimbal turned off). One solution is to use a manual lens (which is heavier) but i lose the autofocus. Also i can't add a quick release plate under the camera because the screw wont fit or so i believe. any thoughts on that?

Best Regards

Panos  

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On 03/11/2016 at 10:41 AM, jonpais said:

One negative of using the Nokton with the GH4 on the Crane is, it must be re-stabilized each and every time it is refocused because the elements are moving, which is a pain in the butt. On the plus side, even when shooting at wide apertures, say between f/2.8 and f/4, when set at hyperlocal distance, the images are sharp as a tack. Which brings up a point I'd really like cleared up, if anyone can: why is it that so many here say to focus the camera at infinity when shooting with drones, which is obviously not a good thing to do, when what they should be doing is setting the lens at hyperfocal distance? Or have the rules of optics changed since I graduated in 1984? I hope to post the 100th review of the Crane since it was released a few months ago and move on. I'd really like to share some stuff shot with the iFootage Shark S1 slider, most likely the best slider on the market nobody's heard about, as well as their superb Wild Bull T7 carbon fiber tripod, not as sexy as the Olympus OM1 or Fuji XT-2 for some, but for me, they are.

Hi jonpais, do you really need to calibrate the Zhiyun after you change the focus with your voigtlander lenses ?! This is crazy , i plan to use it with gh4 and voigt lenses , but i can't if it's like this . 

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My mistake. I meant to say 'rebalanced', not 'recalibrated'. The elements are moving inside the lens, changing the balance. Of course, many people disregard this and simply shoot away, but the motors will be working harder and battery life will be shortened. This is not only true of the Nokton, it is true for many other lenses as well. I wouldn't let it stop you from getting the gimbal. 

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On 15.12.2016 at 10:57 AM, Rest|Less said:

 

Thanks for the reply but i didn't ask the correct question. 

If i try to add a panasonic gx8 with the kit lens then i can't get the camera to stabilize (with the gimbal turned off). One solution is to use a manual lens (which is heavier) but i lose the autofocus. Also i can't add a quick release plate under the camera because the screw wont fit or so i believe. any thoughts on that?

Best Regards

Panos  

The GX8 weighs 490g, what is the kit lens for that camera? Is it the 14-42mm Mega OIS II? That has 110g. As a reference, today I balanced the A6300 (410g) with the 35 1.8 (160g) and the problem is that the lens is too light to actually use my camera cage. So I think your problem isn't solved by adding even more weight to the camera but flipping the mounting plate to have the motor on the left side so you can move it even further forward?

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@pilsburypie and @Rest|Less 

Someone actually came by with a G7 that I couldn't get to balance on the crane.  Now I understand the problem.

Even if you flip the crane baseplate the otherway, it might not solve the problem because the weight of the plate is heavily unbalanced.  If the lens is too light then you cannot find a balance point in either direction of the plate.

If that is the case you will need to add a quick release plate that can slide.  Any arca swiss should be fine, lots of options on eBay... Just get a longer plate and you should be good to go.  @Rest|Less - the clamp of course will accept the screw with the 3/8 adapter that usually ships with the clamp.

 

Like this plate:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/PU-120-Quick-Release-Plate-for-Benro-B1-J1-Arca-Swiss-Tripod-Ball-Head-120mm-GBN-/152222735957?hash=item23712e9e55:g:UWEAAOSwV0RXv7B9

And this clamp

http://www.ebay.com/itm/QR-50-Quick-Release-Clamp-Plate-For-Arca-SWISS-Manfrotto-Gitzo-Tripod-Ball-Head-/302043703982?hash=item4653352aae:g:upkAAOSw6n5XsoIq

 

That's like $10 USD

 

Most of us have a whole bunch of these floating around (I assume).

 

In the meantime if you don't have those items, you can try the following:

1) tape some weight to the front of the lens

2) if you have a flat piece of metal or something lying around you can make a plate that puts some weight in front of the camera (sandwiched between the camera and the plate, put a 1/4 inch hole through it to secure, add some weight to the front).

3) try using the 1/4-20 connection on the front of the crane base plate (where they show the lens support being added) - screw in a longer bolt and attach some weight to the end (like a few washers, tape them in place, or if the bold is threaded the entire way just secure them with a nut).

 

3 would probably be the easiest if you live near a hardware store, quick and cheap.  I have uploaded an image as an example, but you would tape the washers or other weight you are adding.  Normally the plate will flop backwards, but you will see that even adding just one bolt and a few washers tips it forward.  Should be easy enough to balance the camera then.  Hopefully it will not be in the shot, otherwise just adjust closer, and/or tape the weights flat instead of through the bolt.  You might also want add a nut to the bolt and/or tape it because it will just screw through the attachment point if it moves.

cranebalance.jpg

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On 16/12/2016 at 4:29 PM, Phil A said:

The GX8 weighs 490g, what is the kit lens for that camera? Is it the 14-42mm Mega OIS II? That has 110g. As a reference, today I balanced the A6300 (410g) with the 35 1.8 (160g) and the problem is that the lens is too light to actually use my camera cage. So I think your problem isn't solved by adding even more weight to the camera but flipping the mounting plate to have the motor on the left side so you can move it even further forward?

i did what you said and it worked (i never thought that there was another way) ^^ . Thank you

On 17/12/2016 at 6:06 AM, scotchtape said:

@pilsburypie and @Rest|Less 

Someone actually came by with a G7 that I couldn't get to balance on the crane.  Now I understand the problem.

Even if you flip the crane baseplate the otherway, it might not solve the problem because the weight of the plate is heavily unbalanced.  If the lens is too light then you cannot find a balance point in either direction of the plate.

If that is the case you will need to add a quick release plate that can slide.  Any arca swiss should be fine, lots of options on eBay... Just get a longer plate and you should be good to go.  @Rest|Less - the clamp of course will accept the screw with the 3/8 adapter that usually ships with the clamp.

 

Like this plate:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/PU-120-Quick-Release-Plate-for-Benro-B1-J1-Arca-Swiss-Tripod-Ball-Head-120mm-GBN-/152222735957?hash=item23712e9e55:g:UWEAAOSwV0RXv7B9

And this clamp

http://www.ebay.com/itm/QR-50-Quick-Release-Clamp-Plate-For-Arca-SWISS-Manfrotto-Gitzo-Tripod-Ball-Head-/302043703982?hash=item4653352aae:g:upkAAOSw6n5XsoIq

 

That's like $10 USD

 

Most of us have a whole bunch of these floating around (I assume).

 

In the meantime if you don't have those items, you can try the following:

1) tape some weight to the front of the lens

2) if you have a flat piece of metal or something lying around you can make a plate that puts some weight in front of the camera (sandwiched between the camera and the plate, put a 1/4 inch hole through it to secure, add some weight to the front).

3) try using the 1/4-20 connection on the front of the crane base plate (where they show the lens support being added) - screw in a longer bolt and attach some weight to the end (like a few washers, tape them in place, or if the bold is threaded the entire way just secure them with a nut).

 

3 would probably be the easiest if you live near a hardware store, quick and cheap.  I have uploaded an image as an example, but you would tape the washers or other weight you are adding.  Normally the plate will flop backwards, but you will see that even adding just one bolt and a few washers tips it forward.  Should be easy enough to balance the camera then.  Hopefully it will not be in the shot, otherwise just adjust closer, and/or tape the weights flat instead of through the bolt.  You might also want add a nut to the bolt and/or tape it because it will just screw through the attachment point if it moves.

cranebalance.jpg

thank you also but i have nothing regarding your suggestions. Will order today. ^^

 

 

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Hi there Guys, so i took the pluge and decided to purchase the crane -excuse my color grade - still learning, but here is some test footage...all in all i think it works really really well and i am excited to start creating contect with this fantastic piece of equipment soon!!

 

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1 hour ago, Evan said:

Hi there Guys, so i took the pluge and decided to purchase the crane -excuse my color grade - still learning, but here is some test footage...all in all i think it works really really well and i am excited to start creating contect with this fantastic piece of equipment soon!!

 

May I ask what firmware you're using? What camera/lens combination?

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