Many times people complain about the horizon being offset, or possibly the camera's horizon may drift over time. This could easily be caused by the 'mode' or 'profile' the gimbal is currently working in, and not necessarily a problem with the gimbal itself. Understanding the profiles, how and when to use them is important if you want to achieve best results. Many of you may be surprised at how much the profiles can affect the results your getting with your gimbals.
This video covers the different profiles on the new tool-less CAME-MINI2 Gimbal, and how these different profiles can influence camera's position during operation. It also covers how to modify the service modes so that you can manage the gimbal and calibrate it without a computer connected. It also covers troubleshooting your Joystick RC Trim if you believe your camera position 'drifts' over time. Keep in mind, that these settings are not unique to this gimbal, but for any gimbal operating with the same SBGC software.
So the next time you're running around operating your gimbal, and things may not appear level or squared up, think about what mode you're working in. Your gimbal may just be following directions, and not necessarily out of calibration. Profile 2 seems to be a good fit for tracking subjects and setting your Joystick to control 'only tilt' will help you manage your gimbal while keeping the horizon level. You can easily change the 'speed' of your joystick so that the camera movements will still appear smooth.
Also, take advantage of your Service Modes by using the Profile 4, Profile 5, and Long Press options. When you're out in the field make it a habit to square up your frame, level your camera, and calibrate your sensors (set a new home position). Unfortunately this video was probably very boring, but hopefully informative in some ways. If you have any questions, leave your comments below.
With the Joystick installed, I can remain static and allow the gimbal to perform Pan or Tilt moves much like a tripod with a fluid head. Or I can enable 'Follow Mode' to which I control the Pitch and Tilt simply by maneuvering the handles. One profile allows me to disable follow mode completely so that I can track a subject straight on without drifting. I'm also able to calibrate the entire gimbal on location without the need of software by reserving Profile 4 & 5. My long press option is reserved for Inverting the Gimbal Frame which can be handy when I want to place the handles below the camera and when not using a monitor.
Here's a rundown of the different profile settings i'm using.
Profile 1: Follow Mode ON Pitch + Yaw
Profile 2: Follow Mode ON Yaw | Pitch OFF
Profile 3: Follow Mode OFF Pitch + Yaw
Profile 4: Calibrate ACC (sensors)
Profile 5: Calibrate Gyros
Long Press: Invert Gimbal Frame
The camera and lens combo i'm using was too light and didn't sit far enough forward. I needed to add a QR base plate system to add more weight and allow the camera to be pushed more forward. Because of the plate I had to remove the top bar and relocate the Camera IMU sensor. After recalibrating the sensors and balancing the camera, she seems to be responding really well.
Earlier today I had a comment about the CAMETV 7800 Gimbal and how people may want the 'camera over handles' mode. In this mode you don't have to raise your arms very high and will have less fatigue. Not exclusive to the 7800, any 32 bit Alexmos / Basecam gimbal can perform various positions and remain incredibly stable. In this video (below) i'm demonstrating just how stable these gimbals can be with the right configuration.
Now I realize the DJI Ronin is the best bang for the buck and it is an amazing system to carry heavy payloads. The main reason I use other gimbals is because i'm typically working with smaller cameras. I don't need to travel with the bulk, and I don't need to run around with the weight of the Ronin. If you watched the video above, you can see how even me (small guy) can man handle these all carbon fiber gimbals with just one hand [try that with a Ronin]. Even while switching through all of the different positions, the 7800 remained completely stable.
With this stability in a sub $1300 dollar gimbal like the 7800, you can see why it's really hard for me to go with a heavier gimbal like the Ronin. Unless of course there's a need to carry such a heavy payload, i'd rather just borrow a friends or rent one. Otherwise i'm happy to work with a more convenient system. As you can see in my video i'm using a heavier Canon 5D Mark III with Sigma Lens. If you're shooting with a GH4 or Sony A7s, these smaller lighter gimbals should make your life much easier when you have to pack, travel, and shoot all day.
Now the tricks I show on the CAMETV is not limited to nor exclusive to the 7800. Any gimbal running the new 32 bit software that has a properly balanced camera can operate just the same. It's extremely time consuming, but i'll try to do more videos on showing you a step by step process on balancing soon, but if you guys have any questions let me know.
Now that CAME-TV is offering up several different gimbal options, the popular question right now is whether to go with the 7000 or the 7500 model. The CAME-TV 7500 model is listed as a 'Ready to Run 3 Axis Gimbal Stabilizer'. Price is just $200 dollars more than the DIY 7000 Kit.
Though it's delivered mostly assembled, many parts are left loose for you to adjust and balance your camera. Once you have your camera balanced, it's a good idea to run through and make sure that every bolt is tightened up. This is VERY CLOSE to the 7000 32 Bit DIY model with a few exceptions. The big difference with the 7500 (as opposed to 7000) is that you don't need to build it yourself.
The CAME 7500 will also come preloaded with a few different profiles that are loaded by clicking on the center of the joystick. [NOTE: The video I share above was an earlier model, so your profiles may be different]. Aside from paying extra for a preconfigured system, they claim the CAME-TV 7500 model is using more powerful motors and also provide a case mounted to the back to protect the control board with an ON/OFF rocker switch. Considering there are not many '32 bit' complete gimbals coming in at this price this is a great addition for those who don't want to build it themselves.
Now just because the system comes assembled or 'Ready to Run', it will still benefit you greatly to have an understanding of the different parts, pieces, and software configurations in case you need to troubleshoot or fine tune for your different applications. I would suggest that you continue checking in with my sub-website at http://gimbal.cheesycam.com.
Of course you won't have the third axis (Pan stabilization) which is extremely helpful as you walk swiftly or run. If you just plan on stabilizing your handheld shots free from rolling shutter and keeping the horizon level, this compact super lightweight carbon gimbal works perfectly.