Zhiyun Weebill 3 Evaluate: Compact, however Succesful

The Zhiyun Weebill 3 is without doubt one of the finest compact gimbals that may assist heavier payloads. Whereas it lacks some refined options of the competing DJI RS3, the Weebil 3 is smaller, lighter, cheaper, and nonetheless has a better payload (in concept). With its new wrist relaxation and sling grip, this is without doubt one of the most handy and best to carry gimbals. It additionally comes with a built-in gentle and microphone designed for run-and-gun filmmaking.

Specs
  • Model: Zhiyun
  • Most Payload: 7.3 lb (not official)
  • Bluetooth: 5
  • Battery: 7,800mAh
  • Weight: 2.5 lbs
  • Charging Time: 2 hours (approx)
  • Runtime: 21 hours (approx)
  • Tilt Mechanical Vary: 310°
  • Roll Mechanical Vary: 340°
  • Pan Mechanical Vary: 360°
  • Dimension: 342*207*73mm
Professionals
  • Very compact and light-weight design—can slot in a backpack
  • One of the reasonably priced gimbals that may deal with heavier payloads
  • Attachable wrist relaxation helps distribute weight higher
  • Sling Grip permits for extra inventive angles and safe maintain
  • Smaller and lighter than the Weebil 2
  • Constructed-in gentle is actually handy
  • Cheaper than the competitors
Cons
  • Joystick controls are awkwardly positioned
  • Constructed-in microphone not very spectacular
  • Proprietary quick-release plate doesn’t match on customary mounts
  • No flip-out display
  • Vertical capturing is restricted
  • Not designed for left-handed customers
  • Constructed-in battery so you possibly can’t carry spares
Purchase This Product

Constructing off the Weebill legacy, the most recent Zhiyun Weebill 3 continues to be among the best compact and reasonably priced gimbals that punches effectively above its weight class. New for this yr, Zhiyun has determined to give attention to bettering the Weebill’s ergonomics to make it simpler to pack, arrange, and transfer easily, even maintain with one hand.


Along with their elective wrist pad and grip arm attachments, the Weebill 3 now has a built-in 1000 lumens gentle in addition to a noise-canceling microphone, each of that are useful for run-and-gun filmmaking. In comparison with its closest competitor, the DJI RS3, the Weebill 3 is cheaper and extra compact however manages to have a better max payload and some different distinctive options.

There are a variety of quirks and limitations, nevertheless, in my time utilizing it, I’ve largely been capable of adapt. Regardless of a few of its flaws, customers will recognize the extra compact design.

As an expert videographer who shoots commercials, weddings, and different shopper tasks, I have been capable of put this gimbal to the take a look at and see the way it stacks as much as my bigger DJI RS2 Professional. Whereas not essentially in the identical class, surprisingly, the Weebill 3 comes nearer than I anticipated to matching the efficiency of a gimbal that is a lot bigger and twice the worth.

The query is, does the Weebill 3 supply sufficient to make me need to utterly change from the DJI RS2?


Normal and Combo Kits

Zhiyun is ditching its iconic Weebill design which included a mini sling mode deal with that was completely hooked up to its important grip. As an alternative, they’ve opted for a extra conventional design as discovered on most different gimbals.

This has allowed them to make this yr’s mannequin smaller and lighter, and some of the compact and reasonably priced gimbals you should purchase for its payload. For $450, the usual package consists of the tripod ft, quick-release plate system, fill gentle filters, lens assist, a storage case, and a collection of charging and digital camera cables.

To make up for the shortage of a sling deal with, Zhiyun now provides an elective extendable grip arm and wrist pad for improved dealing with and luxury. These two equipment, together with a duffle-shaped carrying bag, are included as a part of their combo bundle which retails for $530, $80 greater than the usual package.

I feel the wrist pad and grip arm are one of many key promoting options of this gimbal and I’d suggest choosing them up if attainable.

The bag, nevertheless, is outsized and considerably impractical, which utterly defeats the aim of getting a small and compact gimbal. Zhiyun does appear to run promotions the place the wrist pad is included at no cost as a part of the usual package as an alternative of its traditional $30 worth. On the time of this evaluation, the grip arm is not offered individually, however is perhaps sooner or later.

Why Select the Zhiyun Weebill 3

I have been utilizing and reviewing gimbals for over six years. In reality, it has been a love-hate relationship. Once they’re totally arrange, correctly balanced, and dealing accurately, they are often unbelievable instruments for capturing clean footage with minimal effort. They’re much better than hand-holding a digital camera and are far more versatile and exact than any fluid head could possibly be. Newer gimbals have come a good distance, however they nonetheless are inclined to fall quick in a number of key areas which at occasions makes them extra of a trouble than they’re price.

Gimbals are normally huge and awkward to pack, take valuable time to arrange and steadiness, and so they’re heavy and onerous to carry for a protracted time frame. For probably the most half, the Weebill 3 would not appear to have these points, however it has some fascinating quirks of its personal.

The Weebill 3 is way from an ideal gimbal, and actually lacks superior software program options I’ve come to depend on, akin to programmable actions. Nevertheless, at its core, it is a way more handy gimbal to decide on for many of my video shoots.

I’ve used the Weebill 3 for 5 weddings thus far, and apart from the lacking programmable actions and some different minor quirks, the expertise was nice. Considered one of its greatest promoting options, which might’t be conveyed in a specs sheet, is how a lot you will gravitate to utilizing it.

The DJI RS2 is arguably a greater gimbal on a technical stage, but I nonetheless discover myself utilizing the Weebil 3 extra due to how small and succesful it’s. Whereas it is not as clean when dealing with bigger lenses like the two.6 lb Tamron 35-150 (particularly when totally prolonged out), the efficiency is on par for extra cheap setups.

In most of my testing with a caged Sony a7siii and Sigma 24-70, I really discovered the Zhiyun Weebill 3 to be the extra handy selection over my DJI RS2. Lots of the core points I’ve with utilizing gimbals appear to be addressed with the Weebill 3.

Efficiency, Payload, and Battery Life

Zhiyun doesn’t formally state the Weebill 3’s max payload, nevertheless, I discovered its {hardware} efficiency to deal with my roughly 3.9lb digital camera setup together with the cage and the Sigma 24-70 lens with ease. When strolling at 24mm, it does an unbelievable job at eliminating undesirable movement, although for one of the best outcomes you will nonetheless need to make use of a “ninja strolling” method.


At 70mm the Weebill 3 continues to be capable of pan, tilt and roll with out difficulty. The motors additionally saved up very effectively even in underslung mode. In distinction, I had numerous points when utilizing the Zhiyun Weebill 2 underslung at 70mm. Except the gimbal was balanced completely with the lens already prolonged at 70mm, it skilled numerous shaking once I would change to underslung. This was a giant let-down and one of many greatest causes I prevented utilizing the Weebill 2.

The Zhiyun Weebill 2 had a max payload of three.3 kg / 7.3 lb, so it is perhaps protected to imagine that the Weebill 3 can be someplace on this vary, and even barely higher. If the motors themselves did not obtain an improve, it will appear that their software program tuning at the least has. Even when poorly balanced, the Weebill 3 would present little indicators of motor stress.

By the gimbal’s menu, you possibly can rapidly use the Auto-Tune mode to squeeze out some extra efficiency. This not solely lets you seize the smoothest footage but additionally helps you when I haven’t got time to completely re-balance the gimbal, akin to when altering lenses. This is not an choice on earlier fashions and far of the competitors.

Whether or not you are strolling, operating, or simply standing in place, the Zhiyun Weebill 3 may help you seize nice movies even in the event you’re not probably the most regular or do not have one of the best method but. With the Sony a7siii and the Sigma 24-70, I feel the Weebill 3 is totally on par with the DJI RS2 for normal use. The place the RS2 and its stronger motors nonetheless have an edge is in maintaining with sooner and extra jerky actions. A degree I prefer to stress about gimbals and their max payloads is that it is one factor for the gimbal to have the ability to easily transfer your digital camera setup, however that does not at all times inform the total story.

When following fast-moving topics whereas I used to be operating, I felt extra assured with the RS2 as I may inform that Weebill 3 was not maintaining as rapidly. That is particularly obvious as effectively with the inception spinning mode that rotates the digital camera constantly. The Weebill 3 is considerably slower, and at some angles wasn’t highly effective sufficient to spin the digital camera in any respect.

Moreover, whereas the Weebill 3 is able to supporting my longer and heavier Tamron 35-150, at 150mm it throws the middle of gravity off, inflicting the gimbal to wrestle way more. Outcomes even strolling slowly and even panning in place had been shakier in comparison with the RS2. When pushing the Weebill 3 to the extremes, though I used to be nonetheless technically effectively beneath its max payload, these are nonetheless functions the place an even bigger gimbal would be the more sensible choice.


That stated, supplied you are not trying to push your gimbal too onerous, the Weebill 3 must be lots robust for many different makes use of.

The Weebill 3 has a 7,800mAh inner (non-removable) battery in its grip, which now supplies as much as a claimed 21 hours of use. I’ve by no means wanted to swap out batteries, however I perceive some operators like the power to convey further totally charged batteries. This is not attainable with the Weebill 3, however with its quick charging, you possibly can reliably energy the gimbal off an influence financial institution or rapidly cost it with a wall outlet.

The PD quick charging helps from zero to full in a formidable two hours. It additionally helps pass-through charging to cameras ([email protected]) which helps maintain your digital camera totally charged always. However I discovered I used to be getting nowhere near 21 hours with my setup. Beginning a 6-hour marriage ceremony shoot with 100% battery, I used to be capable of finish the day with roughly 50-60% cost left. I used to be not utilizing pass-through charging to my digital camera, so this didn’t have an effect on my outcomes. I are inclined to push my gimbals fairly onerous with my quick actions, in order that most likely provides stress to the motors and reduces battery life, nevertheless, I can not think about a sensible software the place the Weebill 3 is ready to get 21 hours whole.


Dimension, Portability, and Setup

Except for needing to reliably assist my particular digital camera payload at any angle, it is also crucial to me {that a} gimbal might be packed and assembled rapidly and simply. Considered one of my greatest gripes with the Moza Aircross was how massive it nonetheless was, even with all of its axes folded and locked. It wanted a whole bag only for itself. As such, it made me very reluctant to pack and use, particularly for non-paid video tasks. If I simply wished to movie for enjoyable, it was uncommon for me to convey the Moza Aircross together with me.

Regardless of being way more succesful, the Weebill 3 manages to be considerably smaller and measures simply 13.5 inches tall and eight inches broad when folded. It may slot in most baggage with no need to be dissembled. As such, I am really capable of pack this in the identical bag as my different digital camera gear.

Apparently, regardless of being a good deal bigger, the DJI RS3 is technically extra compact, however provided that you take away its battery grip. With its grip eliminated, you’ll be able to shave a few third of its whole top off making it somewhat shorter general than the Weebill 3. The Weebill 3 doesn’t have this potential as its grip is non-removable. The elective wrist relaxation and extendable grip do add some bulk to the gimbal, particularly the footprint.

Disappointingly, the wrist relaxation cannot fold in utterly to grow to be flush with the underside of the gimbal. As such, I at all times maintain the arm hooked up however ceaselessly take away the wrist pad when needing to pack the gimbal in tighter spots.

Just like different gimbals, the Weebill 3 makes use of a proprietary double-layer quick-release plate system that lets you rapidly set up or take away your digital camera from the gimbal. As long as the digital camera setup hasn’t modified, you possibly can pack or transport the gimbal with no need to rebalance every time.

This was true for probably the most half, nevertheless, once I later added my a7siii cage, it required the axis to be prolonged out additional. In flip, the gimbal was not capable of fold its arms totally down except I retracted the axis. And so, my preliminary setup with every use nonetheless requires me to steadiness the gimbal, nevertheless, I can nonetheless depend on the quick-release plate system once I must take the digital camera off, however it doesn’t assist me as a lot for transportation.

The balancing course of is fairly regular for a gimbal. With its quick-release system, I used to be capable of mount my digital camera and have the whole lot balanced in a few minute. The RS2 and the brand new DJI gimbals have an adjustment knob that lets you fine-tune your steadiness extra exactly with out the necessity to utterly loosen the stress and probably trigger the changes to slip an excessive amount of.


Whereas the Weebill’s extra conventional changes do exactly positive, that is one other space the place DJI’s larger price ticket provides worth. An even bigger difficulty, although, is that the Weebill 3’s proprietary quick-release plate is considerably bigger than a conventional plate. Whereas DJI additionally makes use of a proprietary system, its plate is identical customary plate width which lets you nonetheless connect your digital camera to different tripods and fluid heads with no need to swap it out. This was fairly irritating particularly once I had forgotten to convey an extra customary quick-release plate for my different gear.

Weebil 3 vs Weebil 2: What’s Modified?

The Weebil 3 design for probably the most half seems indistinguishable from different gimbals. As a part of its smaller and extra simplified replace, the Weebill 3 has additionally eliminated and adjusted up a number of different options. Most noticeably is the absence of the flip-out display. As an alternative, Zhiyun opted for a a lot smaller monochrome display that solely shows settings, and cannot be used as a video live-feed monitor.

As I by no means used Zhiyun’s elective focus motor and video transmitter package, I did not really feel like I used to be lacking an excessive amount of. In reality, once I initially reviewed the Weebill 2, I had considerations in regards to the sturdiness of a big display that stands proud from a gimbal. You will additionally discover the same old lock knobs for every of the three-axis which maintain the arms safe for transport or storage. The lock switches are somewhat bigger than earlier than and simpler to toggle in comparison with the Weebill 2. With a mixture of plastic and steel supplies, the Weebill 3 feels very well-built and sturdy.

The brand new wrist relaxation does add some bulk to the gimbal, however it does a terrific job serving to distribute the burden of your setup which. I actually appreciated this new accent, particularly for longer shoots or when switching to a one-hand operation, which wasn’t actually possible with a heavy setup. Its adjustable sling grip supplies one other arm for supporting smoother pans, tilts, and motion, but additionally helps you seize extra inventive angles together with decrease views.

Controls

The assorted buttons and knobs of the Weebill 3 will likely be acquainted to anybody who’s used a gimbal earlier than. The thumb buttons are used to vary mode and enter the menu.

You will discover a finger set off on the rear that may be customized programmed, although it is to “Go Mode” by default, which when held down causes the gimbal to react to your actions extra rapidly.

Subsequent to the set off, there may be additionally a big wheel. I’ve opted to have it management the roll axis. This helps me repair the horizon if I ever discover it is off. It can be programmed to regulate the comply with focus motor if one is hooked up.

A smaller dial is positioned on the again that toggles your gentle on/off and adjusts its brightness.

Lastly, you even have a joystick for handbook motion controls.

The joystick is angled on the left facet of the gimbal, which makes the Weebill 3 supreme for right-handed customers. The offset joystick feels extra ergonomic than gimbals with central controls, however in the event you’re left-handed, it may really feel very awkward to make use of. As somebody who’s somewhat ambidextrous and likes to swap the gimbal from hand at hand, I didn’t get pleasure from utilizing the Weebill 3 with my left hand.

The handbook controls are good, however cannot match the precision of programmable actions, that are sadly restricted to inside their ZY Play smartphone app. Having the ability to rapidly create begin, center, and endpoints in addition to their length, proper from the gimbal itself, was one thing I rapidly missed.

I additionally discovered the position of the facility button to be problematic at occasions too. When performing a tilting shot of a marriage costume, the gimbal would constantly flip off mid-shot. I used to be extraordinarily confused and at first thought, that the gimbal was improperly balanced or that the motors had been failing. Seems, that the proper facet of my wrist was unintentionally urgent in opposition to the facility button whereas I used to be utilizing the wrist pad to assist distribute the burden.

Constructed-In Gentle and Microphone

Just like the Zhiyun Crane M3, the Weebill 3 additionally has a built-in gentle.

The Weebill 3’s gentle can get barely brighter at 1000 lumens versus the 800 lumens of the Crane M3, however you may as well management the temperature from 2600k to 5400k, and consists of the identical 4 shade filters to select from.

For topics inside a number of ft, I felt that the sunshine was vibrant sufficient. Being a smaller gentle supply with out a lot diffusion, this generally is a bit too harsh if not cautious. It is not probably the most flattering on individuals both.

In occasions if you both cannot or do not need to use bigger exterior lights, this will nonetheless be a lifesaver. After I would movie weddings, it was particularly nice to have for first dances and cake slicing. I did my finest to not instantly shine the sunshine on my topics, as a result of once more, it was too harsh, however it definitely made an enormous distinction over the horrible venue lighting. Can it substitute my devoted RGB LED with a diffuser? By no means—however for occasions once I want acceptable gentle rapidly, it will get the job performed.

A brand new addition to Zhiyun’s gimbals is the built-in microphone. It is a noise-canceling cardioid sort, with a 2.5mm audio port to hook up with your digital camera. Just like the sunshine, it isn’t going to blow you away, however if you want one thing, it is higher than nothing. It is not akin to a shotgun microphone with a wind sock, however it’s a step-up over your digital camera’s built-in microphone, particularly for out of doors use. Whereas the output was noticeably extra muffled than the Sony a7siii’s, it dealt with the wind and ambient noise higher.

Is It Time to Improve Your Gimbal?

The Weebill 3’s greatest energy is in its simplicity. This permits the gimbal to be extraordinarily compact and quick to arrange and use. Eradicating the flip-out display and underslung arm from the Weebill 2 has made the Weebill 3 one of many smallest gimbals that may assist semi-professional setups.

Added options like the sunshine and microphone are nice if you’re making an attempt to pack gentle or reduce your setup weight. Extra spectacular, although, are the wrist pad and grip arm which go an extended strategy to making the Weebill 3 simpler to carry and transfer round. Sadly, the controls are designed for right-handed customers, which can alienate lots of potential patrons.

Due to its compact measurement, I’m way more prone to pack and use the Weebill 3 than another gimbal I’ve used earlier than. It struggles with bigger lenses, however that is to be anticipated for one thing this small. The brand new options assist make it a really highly effective instrument for a solo digital camera operator, however it does have a number of drawbacks.

The Weebill 3 is nice for if you need one thing that is light-weight and simpler to carry than the larger competitors, however nonetheless will get the job performed. The Weebill 3 at its core handles my important digital camera setup about in addition to my DJI RS2. That stated, there have been a number of quirks in addition to superior software program options and integrations that I really feel DJI nonetheless does higher.


If funds and measurement had been my important priorities, the Weebill 3 could be my gimbal of selection. As somebody who ceaselessly depends upon programmable actions in addition to likes utilizing both hand to carry the gimbal, these are the principle the reason why the DJI RS2 continues to be the higher selection for me on skilled tasks. For a lot of customers, although, I feel the Weebill 3 will likely be greater than sufficient.

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