Pro Moviemaker Nov/Dec - Web



A lightweight motorised three-axis gimbal is a staple of most filmmakers’ kitbags nowadays. With DJI, Zhiyun, Gudsen and a host of others all battling for business, Italian tripod giant Manfrotto wanted a slice of the action, and the first products to hit the market are a pair of well-priced gimbals. Manfrotto’s offering consists of the 220 and 460motorised gimbal stabilisers. The 460 kit, pricier at £700/$750, has a larger 4.6kg/10lb maximumpayload, so it’s ideal for larger cameras, while the 220 is better for mirrorless cams as it has a maximumpayload of 2.2kg/4.85lb. The Gimbal 220 is available on its own or in the Pro Kit that we tried. It comes with a focus motor, underslung handle, quick release plate, mini tripod and shutter release cables. This provides you with everything you need to turn it from a single-handed gimbal, ideal for fast use, to a two-handed unit with a follow focus, for more precise work. And it all comes in a very light, custom-fitted carrying case with all the tools and bits you need to fully rig it up. At £389/$410, that’s a bargain. One of the biggest issues with using any gimbal is getting it balanced quickly. The Gimbal 220 has an independent lock on each axis that makes balancing easier since you can unlock and balance one axis at a time, as long as you follow the instructions. The quick release systemuses two mounting plates. There’s a built-in platform and a removable top plate, both with an Arca-Swiss fitment. The top plate can be used to switch your camera between the gimbal and tripods with an Arca-Swiss head. This

SPECIFICATIONS Type: three-axismotorised gimbal Payload: 2.2kg/4.85lb Battery life: 7 hours Connections: 1/4inmounting sockets, USB-C Connectivity:

Bluetooth 5.0, USB-C Dimension (LxHxD): 373x204x159mm/ 14.69x8.03x6.26in Weight without battery: 1090g/2.4lb

“The touchscreen allows you to enter differentmodes directly, such as time-lapse or selfie”

means you don’t have to rebalance the gimbal whenmounting the camera back on. However, not everyone uses tripods with Arca-Swiss plates. The internal battery is charged via a USB Type-C port, using one of the included cables, and runs for up to seven hours in normal operation. There is a small touchscreen on the handle of the gimbal with obvious icons that allow you to set the most usedmodes, such as pan, tilt, pan and tilt or lockedmode. Swiping the screen opens other menus. There is also a large knob on the left of the unit to adjust the pan or tilt movements, or a rear joystick if you prefer to use that. A button on the front instantly resets the gimbal to its normal position. If you have any experience of gimbals, it’s easy to get up and running quickly. And set up in basic mode like this, we were up to speed in a fewminutes, using a Sony A7S III with a 24-70mm lens. The movements are smooth, predictable and steady, even in this stripped-down, one-handedmode. But the kit also comes with an underslung handle that can be attached to aid low-angle shots. It can even be used as an additional support at other angles. Many cameras can be connected to the gimbal with the

included cables, enabling control over their settings through the touchscreen. You can bolt on the focus motor too, which is operated by the large control wheel. All the mounting accessories are included, along with a lens gear for photo lenses. So, you can use the Gimbal 220 as a fully functioning, two-handed gimbal with camera control and follow focus from the handle. That’s impressive. The touchscreen allows you to enter different modes directly, such as time-lapse or selfie mode. It also lets you set up nearly all the parameters of the gimbal. Otherwise, the free Manfrotto app offers an alternate way of changing settings and can be used for remote operation. All this adds complexity, but it’s good to know that Manfrotto’s Gimbal 220 can handle just about anything, from customising the settings to motion-lapse and time-lapse and lots more. PROMOVIEMAKERRATING: 9/10 It’s affordable and comes with everything you need, if you use mirrorless cameras. Pros: Very smooth results, lightweight Cons: Limitations on camera size

ABOVE With the gimbal stripped down, it’s ideal for single-handed operation

BELOW The Pro Kit comes with everything you need in a lightweight carrying case



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