New Gear – Swivi LCD View Finder

[Disclaimer: is now a distribution partner with Photography and Cinema. The Swivi LCD View Finder below is sold through]

If you've used one before, you'll know how important a simple LCD View Finder is when shooting DSLR Video outdoors on a bright sunny day. Or how an LCD View Finder can add additional stability as another point of contact during hand held shooting. For cameras like the Canon 5D Mark III, there aren't many options. For under $30 dollars you'll find the the cheaper magnetic stick on types and for over $230 dollars you'll find one or two other great options. Here's a new LCD View Finder available at Carry Speed at an introductory price of just $120 dollars

IMG_8854_1024x1024Carry Speed LCD View Finder Swivi

Fits on most DSLR cameras with a 3" LCD, but from corner to corner it's actually 3.11" inches, so it's almost perfect on cameras like the Canon 5D Mark III. The brackets are designed to adjust for a variety of different cameras, something shooters will appreciate if you own more than one model (Nikon, Canon, Sony).

D7000 Nikon Carry Speed View FinderD7000 Grip Carry Speed View Finder
(Above) Perfect fit on a Nikon D7000 with or without OEM Battery Grip!

(Above video) Fits perfectly on Canon T4i / 650D with or without Battery Grip.

Canon T4i Door
Without the battery grip, you can still access the Battery Door on a Canon T4i.

The new Carry Speed View Finder can flip up to be used as a quick sunshade, and locks in place when closed. There's a built in diopter, build in lens cap, and attaches to the camera through a quick release base plate system.


Very solid mount to the camera, yet easy to unlock and remove entirely. The base plate is Arca Swiss designed to attach to most Arca Swiss tripods, and has a few 1/4-20 threads for mounting other QR plates. Find out more about the LCD View Finder at the product page (here).

Carry Speed Swivi LCD View Finder
find-price-button Carry Speed LCD View Finder

136 thoughts on “New Gear – Swivi LCD View Finder

  1. MB

    I just got one of these and though impressed overall, the diopter is ridiculously loose, i mean just gravity alone will cause it to turn. If i point the viewfinder up, the diopter unscrews, down, it screws the other way. Crazy.
    Anyone else have the same experience?

  2. John

    Is there pictures online i can see with the Canon 5D Mark III? Can I express order one to arrive to Guam before this weekend?

  3. I've been using this on a D7000 and it's a good fit; you can access the buttons decently on the camera back. Entire LCD is visible.

    However, there's one glaring, major fail: when you attach a QR plate to the bottom, your camera is now 15mm off-center... try lining it up with a matte box. You'll need a DSLR baseplate with left-right adjustability.

  4. Kim

    Sorry forget to share this too:

    My Carry Speed VF-3 did come in different color then video/pictures showed.. My diopeter ring did not come in grey! It did come in a red color..
    Dont know what up with that.. Anyway it does match my Rokinon 35mm red ring, in a suitable way.. I like it..

    And Emm, thnx for the review. Was your vf-3 a beta maybe?

  5. Kim

    Got mine vf-3 last week. I live in Sweden and I got my carry speed vf-3 after 7 days shipped from Shanghai, Great!!

    Very well made viewfinder for a great price. I use it on my Canon 60D without any batterygrip and it fits perfectly!

    I dont need that diopeter thing so I could live without it...
    The construction on it is very loose. To easy to turn it. As written above, it does crop the viewfinder in corners in a circular way.. Very bad constructed and not very well though about..
    The shutter does not close properly when closing it to the viewfinder... Still some opening for the sun to hit...

    Im litte afraid the screws will loose the color after a while, the screws has no weight in them at all, feels like they are made of cotton..

    For the price.. A real bargain.. Just $10 for internationall shipping..

  6. Hey guys, just wanted to let you know, my friend bought this loupe for her 5D3 and we have been working together on a shoot where I used my 5D2 with this one if you search ebay for "PROAIM View finder eyepiece" 2 come up as of now, and I also went to B and H a while ago where we compared the PROAIM with a bunch of different loupes and guess what, PROAIM beats them all, sure I love this one here with it's flexibility but it has some major flaws like not being wide enough for eample, I mean how the heck do you design and manufacture the thing and it's not wide enough to cover the whole screen on 5D3? I don't get that... we compared it with the acuto loupe with which the PROAIM is almost identical and the PROAIM is better, that's the opinion of a few B and H guys from the counter not just mine.

  7. I received the VF-3 SWIVI three days ago and have made several test videos using it with my Canon 5D Mark III. Between the 3x magnification of VF-3 and the magnify support on the camera, pulling manual focus is now quite simple.

    Every aspect of the VF-3 is well conceived and well-made. The LCD is clear, it fits snug on my camera, it's easy to adjust, and the eyepiece is comfortable.

  8. I received this the other day to fit onto my 60d. I do like that it's a solid build, and the flippy thingy is pretty cool when you need to see the lcd screen without taking it off. However......I absolutely HATE the diopeter thing!! It creates a rather annoying vignette when viewing through the eye piece. I now have to physically move my position to see the upper right corner of the screen to see if I'm recording or not. With the older Carry Speed viewfinder that used magnets, I was able to see the whole LCD screen. I would be an extremely happy camper if Carry Speed created a Mark 2 version WITHOUT the diopeter.

  9. Paul Abrahams

    I picked up the SWIVI a few weeks ago for my 60D & it fits perfect on the LCD. The bracket has a good range of movement which should accomodate battery grips. The bottom plate has 3 threaded holes for mounting direct to equipment but attaching a QR system will next for me.

    The diopter works well for my eyesight & the open/close shutter is a nice touch to protect the eye piece glass/plastic. I find the rubber eye cup a little stiff & uncomfortable & will be looking for a foam insert or replacement.

    Any ideas?

    This is quality gear for under $200.

  10. Kam

    Emm, great product BTW!

    Lot of people are interested in how it looks on Nikon D600 & D800 as two of the leading cameras from Nikon.

    Can you please take some picture or make a short video with these two Cameras? I believe that would help a lot to many users and you will see a good rise in sale as nobody has made this video on internet yet!! so be the first :)

  11. Emm

    Post author

    @Kirk Stromberg - Yes, it will fit over the LCD but the buttons on the left side are slightly obstructed. You can still access this if your fingers aren't very big, or just slide the VF back with it's QR plate.

  12. Kirk Stromberg

    Emm, Have you tried the Viewfinder with a Nikon D600 yet? If not can you do so soon. Thanks

  13. Emm

    Post author

    @Ben - It will work with the extension adapters, but you won't be able to use a battery grip (on a larger camera) or another quick release plate.

  14. Ben

    I saw this same question asked above but not sure it was answered. Will this work with the new P&C gearbox? Just worried there won't be enough room from top to bottom with the plate of the View Finder.


  15. Emm

    Post author

    @Dick Nastee - Your first question was about a Follow Focus, but you seem to want to do this all day. You really want to get into high end Matte Boxes now? Look carefully on this video at 1:02

    The mounting platform can be dialed in left or right. So again, sorry but you're wrong and it's all possible..
    Just for kicks, here's another uber cheap mounting plate to perform left / right alignments: Video Rig 15mm Camera Mounting Platform

    So they exist, just need to look instead of assume.

  16. Dick Nastee

    Emm, can you show me a pic with the Swivi on a rail system with a centered Matte Box? Yes it may work, but not with a Matte Box.. Prove me wrong

  17. Dick Nastee

    Perhaps. But please explain/show how it works with a rail system. The Swivi base plate screws into the camera base which is centered with the lens. The holes to fix the Swivi to the Rail system Base plate are off set so now the lens is off set. It doesn't align with the centered Matte Box. Also, the width of the Base plate prevents the follow focus from getting close enough to the lens to function properly.

    Any ideas?

  18. Emm

    Post author

    @Dick Nastee - This will work with a rail setup, shoulder rig, and follow focus. FF systems for DSLRs are adjustable.

  19. Dick Nastee

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but this setup, as is, cannot be used on a shoulder rig. The base plate doesn't allow the camera lens to be centered in the rail system, and the width of the base plate prevents use of the follow focus. Which viewfinders, with base plates are designed for railed shoulder rigs?

  20. Emm

    Post author

    @Mark - Thanks for the input. The ON/OFF switch obstruction on the 5D Mark II was noted in the video, but that's about the only issue on the Mark II. I've been able to work around it since I rarely have to power down my camera once I get started shooting.

  21. Hola... so, I got this in the mail today. It arrived quickly and shipped in a very small box. Immediately I noticed its quality construction. I like so many things about this and only there's really only 1 thing I don't... which is because I have it on a 5D mark II, so, here's my Pro & Con list (vs. the Z-Finder I've been borrowing from a friend for about 3-months):

    - VERY high quality construction (in my opinion, as good, if not slightly better than the Zacuto)
    - Well thought out design (in my opinion, better than the Zacuto)
    - Firmer, more substantial eye-cup, which is great for having a more stable 3rd point of stability (my face) when going hand-held
    - More recessed lens, so unlike with the Z-Finder where I sometimes put a greasy eye print on the lens, with this finder, that won't happen
    - Flip-up option. With the Z-Finder, your options are either "on" or "off." Flipping-up is a great feature. Hinge feels firm and of good quality. (It would be nice to have a user-tightenable screw/bolt/allen-screw in case the hinge ever loosens)
    - Built-in iris for closing off from accidental sunshine melting the camera's LCD (the Z-Finder has a damn little cap that flops around on a string). Just flip the switch back-n-forth and the iris opens & closes
    - Better mounting mechanism (in my opinion)... because it's low-profile AND does NOT include the LCD frame. Instead of clipping onto a frame (like the Z-Finder), this one simply slides into the mount, screw-locks, and then slides out by loosening the same thumb-twist screw lock. VERY COOL.
    - Mounting frame is on the finder, so when it's not on your camera, there is NO frame on your LCD... GREAT!!
    - NO knocking it off... unlike with the Z-Finder which only clips on with friction, this finder won't just bump off during a shoot.

    - Width - this thing is very adjustable, both horizontally and vertically; however, with the vertical adjustment screws & rails being on the outside of the finder, the extra width makes it tough to access the buttons on the left of my 5D mark II and REALLY tough to work the on/off switch. I ended up cheating the finder all the way to the left, which mostly obstructs the info/play/trash buttons (but you can still press them) and kinda opens up enough room to access the on/off switch. BUT if you have big meaty thumbs/fingers... then GOOD luck. You're gonna be the guy unhappy about releasing the finder to turn on/off.

    - In my opinion, that is the only real "con" to this viewfinder... especially compared to the Z-Finder.

    - The optics are fine for me... but I know what people are talking about regarding the vignetting

    - As far as I'm concerned, even if this and the Z-Finder were priced identically, I'd still purchase this one... so, that says a lot. I ordered it a few days ago for only $120 and for that price, it is pure bliss. It's still even well-worth the "original price" of $180. Like I said, except for not fitting my 5D mark II perfectly, I feel it's a superior product to the Z-Finder... and that's without price even being a factor.

    Enjoy and happy filming. Thanks Emm for this GREAT blog. Much appreciated!!


  22. Steve

    I just picked one of these up myself and really like this. Selling the other 2 that I have and using this from now on. This in my opinion is much better than the Zacuto finder. My buddy has that one and when you look through it you see way to many pixels on the LCD. Also the Zacuto only snaps on tot he frame so you can still knock it off. With the Swivi its locked in and will not come off but still has the quick release which is nice. I really like the lens hood built in nice touch there. I will be doing a review on this myself soon after I have used it a bit. This is all medal and not plastic like all the other LCD finders out there. Get one you will love it.

  23. Emm

    Post author

    @Magikman53 - Yes, I was able to test this early on and verified it did not work with the GH2. Seems like this is a popular camera that people want a viewfinder for.

  24. Does not work with the GH2. I purchased the Swivi without digging deep into compatible cameras. It is just a little too tall or short, however you want to look at it. There has to be a fix, but I havent figured one out yet.

  25. KDune

    Well built, but one issue that diminishes an otherwise very good deal.
    - As mentioned in the last comment, the Optics are distorted and, especially with diopter correction used (I need it all the way to max) corners of the display vanish completely, view becomes circular, still vey good for pulling focus, but not for composition and bit distracting.
    - Also the construction is indeed quite wide, the way its mounted, so access to control keys left of screen on my 5D II is a bit constrained, still accessible though. As mentioned on this site's video review, the on/off switch of the 5D II becomes very hard to reach.
    - If the Optics would show the entire screen (even with distortion) this would be a no brainer. In all fairness though, the price of this viewer warrants some compromise in construction.

  26. Tai-Stik

    Thanks for the comment Emm.

    After three hours of Jerry rigging, I actually managed to get it to fit. I had to attach the sliding clip to the bottom of the u-bar (screws on top instead of bottom). The u-bar is mounted with the longer edge of the vertical lip facing out. Next I added a rubber pad to lower the baseplate just a mm or so. Doing all of this got the u-bar/loupe within 3mm of the screen without jamming into the grip. Screwing in the q-release plate also moved the loupe op and further away from the screen (due to the pin pushing the trapezoidal sliding plate up) so I compensated by bending the sliding clip, and voila, it fits rather well and I'm received to retire my sticky frame.

    That said, the optics are not on par with my ancient lcdvf as the corners are cropped from the rather narrow opening at the front, and there's also considerable distortion which sucks. All in all, it's still better than the flimsy sticky frames now that at least it's fitting my 7D with battery grip and won't pop off every time someone picks up the camera.

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