Zhiyun Crane V2 3-Axis Gimbal (Mirrorless Camera Stabilizer) Review

Zhiyun Crane V2 3-Axis Gimbal (Mirrorless Camera Stabilizer) Review

Buy it at Amazon: Zhiyun Crane V2 3-Axis Gimbal Review (Mirrorless Camera Stabilizer) [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: Smooth cinematic video, compact for travel, durable build, good on-board controls and remote app.

The gimbal comes in a plastic briefcase that cushions and stores all its components. Inside you'll find an instruction manual, the gimbal, the battery tube, microUSB charging cable, one pair of IMR 26500 3.7V 3600mAh flat top batteries, a battery charger, two 1/4" mounting thumb screws, and a lens bracket. Every item has its place in the case and can neatly be stored away after each use. This kit also includes a mini tripod which is made of steel and rubber which is super useful for using the Crane remotely and balancing your camera.

The gimbal is straight forward to assemble, but must be disassembled to be put away in the case. It only takes a minute to set up though. With the included tripod, balancing the camera goes pretty quick. The tool-less adjustment thumbscrews make balancing the Crane easy, though I recommend adding a quick release adapter to save even more time if you have a primary camera that you use exclusively. The gimbal is designed for mirrorless cameras, but you can also use it with DSLRs that have mirrors too. I've mounted my Canon T3i to it and it supported its 2lb weight and has a max payload weight of around 4 lbs. Keep in mind though, the gimbal weighs 2.5 lbs itself so you'll be carrying all that weight with one or both hands. I also used the gimbal with my Sony a6300 and LG G5 smartphone for some awesome smoothly cinematic video shots. It's nearly fully articulated, but at some angles and rotations, the balance plate and/or may knock into the top of the handle, so that's something to watch out for.

There are three modes on this gimbal: the default mode on startup is the Pan follow mode. This mode keeps the camera level allowing you to pan left and right as you move around and twist the handle for very smooth traveling shots. You can change the tilt in this mode by using the joystick in the handle. If you single press the mode button it will switch to locking mode which locks the pan and tilt so that the camera is always facing forward. This is great for shots where you change the height and don't want to accidentally pan side to side. If you do want to change the pan and tilt you can use the joystick on the handle to do so. The third mode is following mode and basically the camera will smoothly follow the direction that you move the handle whether you twist from side to side to turn or tilt back to point higher or tilt forward to point down. The joystick in this mode controls the roll axis if you want to change the level of the horizon. The mobile app for this gimbal also comes in handy if you want to control the gimbal remotely like if it's attached to a tripod. You have access to all the modes and can control the pan, tilt, and roll for each mode. The gimbal can be inverted quickly for low and near to the ground shots as well. If you have a compatible camera, you can connect via a camera USB cable to use the on-board shutter and zoom controls on the Crane's handle.There's also an optional Bluetooth remote control that you can buy separately if you don't want to use the smartphone app, or rather so you can control the gimbal and use a different smartphone app to control/view your camera remotely.

Overall, the Crane helps you create awesomely smooth and stable video. You do have to practice how you walk and move as you film and there's some technique involved, but the gimbal takes care of most of the stabilization. It's got a 10-12 hr run time on a full charge so you can film all day.

Buy it at Amazon: Zhiyun Crane V2 3-Axis Gimbal Review (Mirrorless Camera Stabilizer) [Affiliate Link]

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