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3-Axis Brushless Gimbal Stabilizer: buy or alternative?


JazzBox
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On the Nebula 4000, there are two ways you can balance the "roll" of a camera.  The first, is to mount it in any plate slot, looses the screws attaching the roll arm to the motor, and move the roll arm until it balances.  The second way is mount the camera on a plate mount either closer, or farther, from where the roll arm attaches to the pitch motor.  The problem with the GH4, A7, and any larger camera, is that you can't get it balanced, for roll, unless it's in a plate slot that puts it right up against the pitch motor adjustment screw; that is, the roll arm doesn't move to the right far enough that you can mount the camera on the right side of the plate where you can get the wrench into the pitch motor screws.  Dave Dugdales's videos show him wrestling with this problem.  The bottom line is that with a smaller camera you can easily adjust the pitch bar position because you can mount the camera away from it.  With the GH4, you'd need to figure out the pitch balance BEFORE You mount the camera.  That makes balancing the camera very difficult.  In order to get a good balance, you need the camera mounted on the gimbal where you can move each part around and test.

The second problem is that if you put any sort of long, or heavy lens on the GH4, you start to stress the Nebula out.  The motors aren't designed for heavy cameras.  So you'd have to have it balanced perfectly.  

I don't want to dissuade anyone for using a Nebula with the GH4.  I just want to point out that it's much easier with a smaller camera.  The sweet spot cameras are probably the A6000, LX100, EOS-M, GX7, etc--and not with heavy glass.

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Here's a photo of the Nebula 4000's pitch motor compared to motors you typically find on DSLR stabilizers.  The gimbal in the picture is one a friend had, which broke, he could never get it working again, so I'm trying to fix it.  Not easy!  This photo gives you an idea how little the motors are on small gimbals and why they work best with small cameras.

 

NebulaComparedToCame.JPG

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http://dict-creative.com/#/dslr

This thing looks really interesting ! 

You have an invert mode, onboard monitor, follow focus, extra controller, etc...

It looks a little heavy (around 3kg). And the footage in their video looks weirdly shaky... Not sure if it was a demo/beta version ?

Anyway I think its worth keeping an eye on it, especially since it is priced the same as Moza and Defy.

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Pretty straight forward and quick. I was thinking on holding off for a little longer, but this one manages to spike my interest. More so than the Nebula at least. There's also -10% on pre-orders on http://copter-rc.com/en/catalog/60-pilotfly-h1-microdslr-3asix-stabilizer-pre-order.html jfyi. For us Europeans... they might be opening an overseas branch office (actually, they say they are on Facebook), which means we might get to order one locally sometime 'soon'...

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  • 4 weeks later...

@Cinegain you bought the pilotfly H1 yet? seems good and I'm keen to get one, the Ronin M looks good and could have a nice price but this is a more compact creature. Ken Asanos been building a pistol grip one he calls the S Monster for 5D etc. and has better motors http://kenasano.net/ can't understand everything but his prototype video looks impressive if a bit unwieldly.

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@Cinegain you bought the pilotfly H1 yet? seems good and I'm keen to get one, the Ronin M looks good and could have a nice price but this is a more compact creature. Ken Asanos been building a pistol grip one he calls the S Monster for 5D etc. and has better motors http://kenasano.net/ can't understand everything but his prototype video looks impressive if a bit unwieldly.

​Ooh, that looks interesting as well. To get back to that Pilotfly H1 deal, nope, with them setting up shop in Bayern, Germany and NAB coming up and indeed, it being a 8-bit controller on there, when they might do a 32-bit version... I felt like holding off a bit longer was the best thing to do. I guess I can even wait for Photokina when hopefully the GX7 successor will be announced. If that's the case I might not even get one altogether. With a lot of full manual glass in my possesion a great part of getting a stabilizer is just to be able to shoot handheld with unstabilized lenses (was on the verge of trading in my E-M1 for the E-M5II, but unfortunately the E-M5II didn't live up to my expectations). For sweet camera movements and use with e.g. the new Micro Cinema Camera however a gimbal stabilizer is pretty nice to have too. Now, I don't really mind the controller being 8-bit on the Pilotfly H1 now, I don't know how they put it to use, but it's one of the most effective things I've seen out there. So if a 8-bit wins from a 32-bit one, I'm not going to argue it should suck more. Anyways. There's tons of MOVI like stabilizers out there now. It's a matter of time for the people behind the Nebula 4000 and Pilotfly H1 to up their own game and others to try and catch the wind from their sails, so I'm sure that in a few months it's the best time to make a choice and the concept of pistol grip gimbals has matured a little more.

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I can't believe no alternative have been announced at nab ?? I tought we would see price drops or 32 bits alternative and tons of pistol gimbals 

​Well, not officially, but I just saw a video in which the not-so-articulate Came-TV rep announced they were working on a pistol 3 axis gimbal with 32 bit board to be released in the coming months. Given Came-TV's greater experience in the gimbal world, I'm guessing it should be more reliable than the Nebula or the Pilotfly. Still, they just released the "Came-TV mini" addressed to the same type of camera but with a traditional gimbal design, which I would deem obsolete if they release a pistol gimbal with the same hardware...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah, if you dont need them now you can always wait, while for those who do either one of them can do the job, and by the time 32bit comes out you already master the gimbal compare to those who still wait, and you gonna beat them since your brain and body knows how to "fly" those well, and you will know which pid works and what not.

 

This one is done on Nebula 4000 with GH4 + Olympus 12 2.0, 25 1.8, 45 1.8, Sigma 60 2.8,  7-14 4.0, Nokton 25 0.95 and GH2 Samyang 7.5 3.5 on monopod

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah, if you dont need them now you can always wait, while for those who do either one of them can do the job, and by the time 32bit comes out you already master the gimbal compare to those who still wait, and you gonna beat them since your brain and body knows how to "fly" those well, and you will know which pid works and what not.

 

This one is done on Nebula 4000 with GH4 + Olympus 12 2.0, 25 1.8, 45 1.8, Sigma 60 2.8,  7-14 4.0, Nokton 25 0.95 and GH2 Samyang 7.5 3.5 on monopod

 

Yes, I think the step and parameters are the key factors influencing the stabilizer. 8bit and 32bit is only a secondary factor.

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