Pentaprism Vs Pentamirror: Two types of viewfinders

One of the many noticeable and talked about distinctions between a high end and low end SLR/ DSLR is the Viewfinder. The viewfinder is the upper most part in a SLR/DSLR camera, which looks more like a roof.

The basic function of a viewfinder is to transmit the image from the lens to the human eye. For this the OVF employs the use of two kinds of mechanism the pentaprism and the pentamirror.

Currently, there are two types of viewfinders found in all cameras, The OVF (optical viewfinder) & the EVF (electronic viewfinder).

The OVF works according to the laws of optics and reflection while the EVF is an electrical and digital viewfinder.

Earlier photographers had to look down to preview the image they wanted to capture. But with the introduction of the pentamirror and pentaprism viewfinder, the image is directly projected to the naked eye before it is captured.

To a normal eye, there may seem no difference at all between any viewfinders. But the construction and performance of both viewfinders are the biggest difference.

What does a pentaprism do?

Pentaprism is more like a prism, constructed as a single solid block of high quality glass. Pentamirror is of similar shape and size, made by the accumulation of plastic mirrors, with a hollow space in the middle, where air can enter.

If you remove a pentaprism from the camera, you will see that 3 of the 5 sides are coated from outside in black with a special compound so that it doesn’t reflect and retains light. The light from the lens enters from one uncoated side and exits from the other uncoated side onto to the viewfinder. These two sides are also known as the air/glass interface. This mechanism keeps light loss to minimum and produces brighter images on the viewfinder than the pentamirror.

As the pentaprism is made entirely out of glass, it is heavier than pentamirror. It also costs more to produce pentaprism, the reason why cameras installed with pentaprism are costlier than those installed with pentamirror. And it is also found that only high end DSLR cameras have pentaprism, while entry level cameras and cheaper ones are installed with pentamirrors.

What is Pentamirror Viewfinder?

The pentamirror also works similarly. But, the fact that it is not a block of solid glass and is made from separate mirrors causes a bit more light loss than compared to a pentaprism. This is basically because there is air in the middle instead of glass. So, each mirror of the pentamirror has an air/glass interface.

Because of this light loss, images viewed through a pentamirror mechanism would appear darker, making focusing difficult in low light. And even the quality and design is such that, the dust and air entering it can degrade it through time.

Camera installed with Pentamirror usually costs lesser than the pentaprisms.

With the exception of their design and weight, there is not much difference between the pentaprism and pentamirror. Both the mechanism does not affect the quality of the final image. Because the moment you press the shutter release, the viewfinder will go dark for some seconds. At that moment, neither the pentaprism nor the pentamirror is in use, than pentaprism is worth the take.

It would not be fair to rule in favor of any one mechanism, simply based on the cost factor. Although there are some brands like Pentax, that provide pentaprism in almost all of its cameras.

So if you are looking for a more durable and high quality viewfinder and are planning to use manual focus more, then pentaprism would be an ideal choice, especially for shooting in dim conditions. But if your aim is to just own a camera and occasionally capture moments, pentamirror would be pretty good considering it won’t blow a hole through your pocket.

Are mirrorless cameras better?

Mirror-less cameras have become the best seller in the recent market. It has the same built up as the SLR/DSLR Cameras. The most basic difference between a DSLR camera and a mirror-less camera is that the DSLR constitutes of a mirror behind the lens which reflects the light from the lens into the viewfinders. This mirror flips upwards when the shutter is released, so that the light passes from the lens, directly onto the sensor hence capturing the image. On the other hand, the mirror-less camera, does not include a mirror behind the lens. The light directly reflects on the image sensor.

Because of the absence of this mirror and the pentaprism/pentamirror viewfinder, the mirror-less cameras are less bulky. It uses the EVF viewfinder.

There are 2 types of mirror-less, pocket cams like cyber-shot and MILC- mirror-less interchangeable lens camera, where you can attach a lens just like a DSLR camera.

There are some other differences too between the dSLR and mirror-less cameras, which can make it easy for you to select the best.

Size and weight

Body is smaller and thinner than a DSLR, making it easy to carry around. But there are some mirror-less camera that share the same built as the DSLR cameras.

Shooting speed

Because there is no mirror flipping upwards while releasing the shutter, mirrorless cameras can shoot more photos per second, at higher shutter speeds.

Display of information on the viewfinder

The EVF of the mirror-less camera is also quite impressive. It displays any information you want from histograms to live-exposure data, Unlike the OVF installed in the DSLR, which just frames. As it uses an EVF, the LCD uses the battery faster compared to the DSLR. So, mirror-less cameras might have batteries that drain faster.

Auto-focus

The major difference is that of auto-focus. Recent mirror-less cameras have hybrid autofocus, which utilizes both phase and contrast autofocus. This makes it more suited for video. It also has in-body stabilization.

That said, most photographers still rely heavily on what their eyes can see before they capture the image. So they are in favor of the DSLR camera. But many are converting to mirror-less because of its advantages. Also mirror-less cameras are not that expensive compared to a DSLR.

Future innovation will give us the decisive winner. But until then these are some of the factors based on which you could decide which is best for you.

Mirrorless cameras are usually lighter, more compact, faster and better for video; but it has fewer options when it comes to lens and accessories. DSLRs, offers a wide range of lenses and better optical viewfinders. Due to this, mirror-less cameras are a better choice if you are a beginner or a videographer. But the choice becomes difficult if your focus is capturing still images, with occasional filming.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Panasonic LUMIX G95 20.3 Megapixel Mirrorless Camera, 12-60mm F3.5-5.6 Micro Four Thirds Lens, 5-Axis Dual I.S. 2, 4K 24p 30p Video, Pre-Installed V-Log L, 3” Flip-Out Touchscreen - DC-G95MK (Black)
  • Focus on Your Creativity: Perfect for photographers who are ready to excel, the LUMIX G95 has a superb, powerful 20.3 MP Digital Live MOS sensor and advanced technologies for both photo and video
  • Versatile and Portable: Lightweight Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera is weather sealed with a flexible, free-angle monitor, ready for any adventure; LUMIX G 12-60mm F3.5-5.6 POWER O.I.S. lens ensures crisp, clear images
  • Exceptional Flexibility: 4K 24/30P video capture, plus preinstalled Vlog-L, features log characteristics with 12 Stops of dynamic range for maximum freedom in editing. Send out 4: 2: 2/ 8 bit video to an external monitor simultaneously while recording
  • Features for Maximum Expression: Live View Composite mode lets you compose a single image out of many; adjust focus after shooting; develop, and retouch inside this photography camera
  • High Sound Quality: External microphone/headphone jacks let you record and monitor sound using external equipment
Bestseller No. 2
Panasonic LUMIX GX85 4K Digital Camera, 12-32mm and 45-150mm Lens Bundle, 16 Megapixel Mirrorless Camera Kit, 5 Axis In-Body Dual Image Stabilization, 3-Inch Tilt and Touch LCD, DMC-GX85WK (Black)
  • Fine Detail Performance: 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensor with no low pass filter resulting in a near 10 percent boost in fine detail resolving power over existing 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensors
  • Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera Kit: With 2 super compact lenses 12 32mm F3.5 5.6 and 45150mm F4.0 5.6, shoot lighter and faster with the modern hybrid photography performance of a mirrorless camera and nearly half the bulk of most DSLRs
  • Class Leading Dual Image Stabilization: In body 5 axis dual image stabilization works in both photo and motion picture recording—including 4K video—to produce clear handheld shots even in low light conditions. Battery AC Adaptor (Input 110 - 240V AC) (Included, connect with USB cable). Battery life (CIPA standard) Approx. 290 images (rear monitor), 270 images (LVF) with H FS12032
  • Live Viewfinder and Tilting LCD Display: Integrated eye level electronic viewfinder (2764K dots) and rear touch enabled 3 inch LCD display (1040K dots) provides 80 degrees of up tilt and 45 degrees of down tilt to maximize viewing. Recording media-(Compatible with UHS-I UHS Speed Class 3 standard SDHC / SDXC Memory Cards). Direct Print-Pict Bridge compatible
  • 4K VIDEO CAPTURE: 4K QFHD video recording (3840 x 2160), plus exclusive Lumix 4K photo and 4K post focus allows you to record photos up to 30fps and set your desired focus points after the photo has been taken. Minimum Aperture: F22
Bestseller No. 3
Canon EOS M50 Mirrorless Vlogging Camera Kit with EF-M 15-45mm Lens, Black
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF for fast, accurate autofocus that helps you get the photo you want right as the moment happens
  • 241 Megapixel APS C CMOS sensor and the DIGIC 8 Image Processor delivers incredible color, clear details, and stunning range
  • Vari angle touchscreen LCD has a flexible tilt range ideal for high angle and low angle shooting, and reviewing your photos
  • Built in high resolution electronic viewfinder features approximately 2,360,000 dots to see high amounts of detail when capturing
  • Use the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software (Mac and Windows) to turn your compatible Canon camera into a high-quality webcam

Best camera for real estate photos (Wide angle compatible)

There are plenty of use cases for cameras in real estate. Most of the time, it’s for selling a house, but you can also utilize real estate photography to showcase your home for AirBnb and rentals. In this post, we’ll take a look at the best camera for real estate photos. We’ll look specifically at wide angle cameras because they do a much better job of capturing a full room.

Wide angle capability is usually obtained by using specialized lenses, so the cameras we will look at will be compatible with wide angle lenses.

Ideally, you want to pick up a decent SLR camera, but there are a few mirrorless cameras or even point and shoot cameras that will do the trick. Still, if you’re selling a house worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, you’ll want to buy a good camera to help sell your property faster!

Nikon D750 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body

Best Cameras For Real Estate Photography: Buying Guide

Sensor type: full frame or cropped frame?

The sensor your camera is equipped with will make a huge difference in the kinds of photos you’ll be able to take. Generally speaking, a larger sensor can take in more light, so the image will be higher quality.

Additionally, some specialized lenses are only compatible with full frame sensors, so if you want to take proper wide angle photos, you’ll need a full frame sensor to use a wide angle lens.

The lens you use will have a direct effect on the outcome of your photographs, and using good lenses will enable to you take your photographs to the next level. You can also use specialized lenses to progress from real estate photography to landscape photography.

Landscape photography of course can add a whole new level of depth to your real estate listings!

Switchable lenses

As we mentioned at the beginning of the post, you can use point and shoot cameras, but we really advise against it. Having the ability to swap lenses is almost like getting an entirely new camera by just switching out a single component.

Whether you want a telephoto lens, a wide angle lens, or a macro lens, it’s really convenient to be able to use them all with a single camera body rather than having to carry multiple cameras.

Video

Most good SLR cameras have video capability. However, some lenses shoot better video than others. It all depends on how the lens focuses – some lenses focus in jerky motions, where you’ll be able to see and hear the jerks in your video. Other lenses focus smoothly, resulting in cleaner video.

To learn more about this, check out our post on STM vs USM lenses.

1. Nikon D750

The number one camera on our list is the Nikon D750. It takes the number one spot because it’s budget friendly compared to other similar models, and has a 24 megapixel full-frame sensor, meaning you can easily put a wide angle lens on it.

You’re getting a lot of performance and functionality for the price. You can either use the viewfinder for taking photos or you can use the LED screen that tilts out to a variety of angles. This will help you easily set up your shots for taking photos of real estate properties.

A huge plus point is that the camera automatically meters the light depending on how lit or dark the subject already is. This makes it a lot easier to take photos of indoor areas with bright windows. In other situations, a bright window will darken the rest of the frame.

One drawback(if you’d like to call it that) is that there is no 4K video, though in all honesty, you don’t need 4K for most real estate applications.

Sale
Nikon D750 FX-format Digital SLR Camera Body
  • Full frame 243 megapixel CMOS image sensor and expeed 4 image processor
  • Full HD 60/50/30/25/24p video
  • Built in Wi-Fi connectivity and compatibility with the WT 5a plus UT 1 communication unit
  • Shoot up to 65 fps at full resolution frame size (pixels): 1920 x 1080
  • Pro video feature set including: Simultaneously record uncompressed and compressed, manually control ISO, shutter speed and aperture while recording even use power aperture control for smooth iris transitions and auto ISO for smooth exposure transitions

2. Canon EOS 5D Mark IV

The Canon EOS 5D comes at number 2 only because of the higher price range. As far as features go, the EOS 5D Mark IV is a killer dSLR camera.

It sports a full frame sensor and has a resolution of 30.4 megapixels. You can also shoot 4K video.

One really interesting feature is that this camera can take Dual Pixel Raw images. This is a single image with a ridiculous amount of data in it that lets you make really small adjustments to focus after taking the photo. For regular photographs you can also utilize the 61-point autofocus system.

You can also use it to remove and correct for sun flare.

Overall, the 5D Mark IV can take really good low light photographs, too.

Finally, the WiFi feature lets you sync photos from the camera to your phone or computer.

Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Full Frame Digital SLR Camera Body
  • New 30.4 Megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor for versatile shooting in nearly any light, with ISO range 100-32000; expandable up to 50-102400 (equivalent ISO).
  • 4K Motion JPEG video (DCI cinema-type 4096 x 2160) at 30p or 24p; in- camera still frame grab of 4K 8.8-Megapixel images; multiple video options include Full HD up to 60p, and HD up to 120p.
  • Superb Dual Pixel CMOS AF for responsive and smooth AF during video or live view shooting; LCD monitor has a full touchscreen interface, including selection of AF area.
  • Excellent performance - up to 7.0 fps continuous shooting speed with high-performance DIGIC 6 plus Image Processor for improved speed and excellent image quality.
  • Use the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software (Mac and Windows) to turn your Canon camera into a high-quality webcam, or do the same using a clean HDMI output.

3. Sony a7 III Full-Frame

Number three on the list is a mirrorless camera sporting a full-frame sensor. This camera actually competes head-on with dSLR cameras. The Sony a7 III has two versions – the a7 III and the a7 IIIR. The only difference between the two is the resolution. The a7 III has a 24MP sensor and the a7 IIIR has a 42MP sensor.

The stabilization technology is built into the camera body rather than the lens, which allows for a better result. This is useful for low light photos where the aperture is larger(learn about aperture and f/stop here) and the shutter speed is slower. In these cases, it’s easy for small shakes to be visible in the photo as well.

In-body stabilization will do a better job of minimizing the shakes.

Sony a7 III ILCE7M3/B Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable-Lens Camera with 3-Inch LCD, Black
  • Advanced 24.2MP BSI full frame Image Sensor w/ 1.8X readout speed
  • 15 stop dynamic range, 14 bit uncompressed RAW, ISO 50 to 204,800. Compatible with Sony E mount lenses. Can be connected via Bluetooth with smartphones featuring (as of the date of release)- Android (Android 5.0 or later, Bluetooth 4.0 or later), iOS (Bluetooth 4.0 or later)
  • Up to 10fps silent or mechanical shutter with AE/AF tracking. Battery life (Still Images): Approx. 610 shots (Viewfinder) / approx. 710 shots (LCD monitor), battery life (Movie, continuous recording): Approx. 200 min (Viewfinder) / Approx. 210 min (LCD monitor)
  • 693 phase detection / 425 contrast AF points w/ 93 percent image coverage. Focus sensor: Exmor R CMOS sensor
  • In the box: Rechargeable battery (NP FZ100), AC adapter (AC UUD12), shoulder strap, body cap, Accessory shoe cap, Eyepiece cup, Micro USB cable. Metering type: 1200 zone evaluative metering

4. Nikon D850

Sporting a full-frame sensor, the Nikon D850 is an excellent choice for great wide angle real estate photographs. Not only is the sensor full-frame, but it’s a newer iteration in which the far edges of the sensor are better suited to picking up light. This means the edges of the resulting image are much better lit.

You can shoot 4K video and the ISO range starts at just 64, which should be enough to handle even the most brightly lit situations.

WiFi is available but only using Nikon’s proprietary app.

Nikon D850 FX-Format Digital SLR Camera Body
  • Nikon designed back side illuminated (BSI) full frame image sensor with no optical low pass filter
  • 45.7 megapixels of extraordinary resolution, outstanding dynamic range and virtually no risk of moiré
  • Up to 9 fps1 continuous shooting at full resolution with full AF performance
  • 8k6 and 4k time lapse movies with new levels of sharpness and detail; file system : DCF 2.0, exif 2.31, Pict bridge
  • Tilting touchscreen, focus shift shooting mode, outstanding battery performance and much more; total pixels: 46.89 million

Related:

5. Pentax K-1

For the features Pentax has managed to pack into this camera, it’s actually quite reasonably priced. You’ll get a full-frame sensor with a resolution of 36 megapixels to start.

On top of that, the Pentax K-1 has an excellent autofocus system and feels really solid in your hand. It’s a great choice for shooting real estate photos. The very wide ISO range from 100 to 204,800 will help you take better quality images in brightly lit and low light situations.

Pentax K-1 Mark II Full Frame 36MP Weather Resistant DSLR with 3.2" TFT LCD, Black
  • 36 MP AA filter less shake reduction sensor with APS C crop mode for compatibility with Pentax k mount lenses
  • Hand Held Pixel Shift Resolution that allows 4 images to be complied into an superior image with increased color rendition and sharpness
  • Engine Accelerometer for reduced image noise, faster focusing and increased image sharpness
  • Magnesium Alloy, Weather Resistant body for every demanding situation
  • Astro tracer extended exposure mode with reduced star trails

6. Canon 6D Mark II

Number 6 on the list is the Canon 6D Mark II. Sporting a full-frame 26MP sensor, there is more than enough resolution for your basic real estate photography.

The reason I like this camera is because it is comparatively budget friendly especially when you consider some of the other models that we have listed here.

Since it is an entry-level camera, you won’t be able to shoot 4K video, but you can certainly shoot 1080p video which is enough for most real estate photography needs.

You’ll get the best results when you mount this camera on a tripod. Some people have noted that the dynamic range is not the best, but you’re getting what you’ve budgeted for. An amateur photographer may not be able to notice the difference, but once you get better, you may start realizing there are some places where the camera is a little lacking.

Sale
Canon EOS 6D Mark II Digital SLR Camera Body, Wi-Fi Enabled
  • 26.2 Megapixel full frame CMOS sensor
  • Optical viewfinder with a 45 point all cross type AF system. Compatible Lenses: Canon EF lenses (excluding EF S and EF M lenses)
  • Dual Pixel CMOS AF with phase detection and Full HD 60p
  • DIGIC 7 Image Processor, GPS, Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth low energy
  • Vary angle touch screen, 3.0 inch LCD

7. Canon 1D X Mark II

In an ideal world, the Canon 1D X Mark II would be at the very top of our list. But considering it costs as much as a commission on a house, we’ve stuck it in between other cameras!

The Canon 1D X Mark II is one of the best dSLR cameras, period. Even though it is quite expensive, it will last a long time and continue to deliver results consistently and without fail.

It sports a 20MP full frame sensor and you can shoot 4K video. One of the biggest advantages of this camera is the ability to take really good photographs even with low exposure.

The body is really solid and well built, and you can feel the value in your hands and in the photographs you take.

Sale
Canon EOS-1DX Mark II DSLR Camera (Body Only)
  • Fastest shooting EOS-1D, capable of up to 14 fps full-resolution RAW or JPEG, and up to 16 fps in Live View mode with new Dual DIGIC 6Plus Image Processors
  • Achieves a maximum burst rate of up to 170 raws in continuous shooting at up to 16 fps, and 4K movies using CFast cards in the new CFast 2.0 slot
  • Improved AF performance through 61-point, wide area AF system with 41 cross-type points, improved center point focusing sensitivity to -3 EV and compatibility down to f 8
  • Turn your Canon camera into a high-quality webcam Learn more: Canon.us livestream
  • Use the EOS Utility Webcam Beta Software (Mac and Windows) to turn your Canon camera into a high-quality webcam, or do the same using a clean HDMI output.

Wide angle lenses

Check out our picks for the best real estate photography lenses here.

Bestseller No. 1
Nikon AF-S FX NIKKOR 20mm f/1.8G ED Fixed Lens with Auto Focus for Nikon DSLR Cameras
  • Compact, lightweight, FX-format lens that combines the ultra-wide perspective of a 20mm focal length, the low-light capabilities and shallow Depth of field of an F/18 maximum aperture and the superb optical characteristics of an advanced NIKKOR prime lens
  • Maximum reproduction Ratio: 0.23x.Aspherical lens elements and extra-low Dispersion glass elements with Nano Crystal Coat combat sagittal flare and chromatic aberration for superb, sharp Rendering across the entire frame
  • Innovative silent Wave Motor (SWM) uses ultrasonic waves for fast, accurate, near quiet autofocusing as close as 78-inches from your subject
  • Delivers a 20mm, 94 Degree angle of view that's ideal for stills or motion capture, minimum focus Distance is 0.66 feet from focal plane
  • Produces beautifully blurred backgrounds in your photos and HD videos and lets you shoot at lower is settings to retain high image quality at its maximum aperture setting of f/18
Bestseller No. 2
Sigma 10-20mm f/3.5 EX DC HSM ELD SLD Aspherical Super Wide Angle Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras
  • Super-Wide: 10-20 with maximum aperture of F3.5 throughout entire zoom range
  • Includes: Petal-type Hood supplied
  • Filter Size: 82mm
SaleBestseller No. 3
Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 IF ED UMC Ultra Wide Angle Fixed Lens w/ Built-in AE Chip for Nikon
  • Lens not Zoomable
  • Minimum Focusing Distance of 10.8 inches
  • Focal Length -14 mm
  • 18 elements in 12 groups, Aperture range:f/2.8-F/22, 10 diaphragm blades
  • This lens is compatible with all Nikon cameras that have full frame or APS-C sensors (which is all Nikon DSLR models)

Bestseller No. 1
Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM Lens
  • EF S ultra wide zoom lens. Drive System Lead screw and rack system driven by stepping motor
  • Focal Length and Maximum Aperture: 10 18 millimeter, 1:4.5; 5.6
  • Closest Focusing Distance: 0.72 feet. ; 0.22 meter
  • Stepping motor for noise free video shooting
  • Optical image stabilizer
Bestseller No. 2
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM Ultra Wide Angle Zoom Lens for SLR Cameras
  • 17 40 millimeter ultra wide angle zoom lens with f/4 maximum aperture for Canon SLR Cameras. Diagonal angle of view 104° 57° 30'
  • 3 aspherical lens elements and super UD glass element create superior optics in all conditions, Closest focusing distance: 0.9 feet
  • Powerful ring type ultrasonic monitor (USM) produces fast and silent autofocusing, Focuses as close as 11 inches, supports screw in 77 millimeter filters or up to 3 gel filters. Rounded seven-blade diaphragm contributes to a pleasing out of focus quality that benefits the use of shallow depth of field and selective focus techniques
  • Suitable for Wedding/Nature Photography, Weather resistant construction, Water and Dust Resistant, measures 3.3 inches in diameter, 1 year warranty
  • Purchase this product between May 1, 2016 and July 30, 2016 and get 13 months of free damage protection from Canon. The product must be registered within 30 days of the purchase date to be eligible
Bestseller No. 3
Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM Lens
  • Wide angle lens for Canon APS C cameras (equivalent to 38 millimeter on a full frame camera)
  • Focal length & maximum aperture: 24 millimeter 1:2.8, maximum magnification of x0.27
  • Slimmest and lightest lens of the EF S series
  • Circular aperture (7 blades) delivers beautiful, soft backgrounds
  • Full time manual focus allows manual focus adjustment while in One Shot AF mode

Final thoughts

Photographs are undoubtedly a critical part of selling real estate, since good photographs are what will entice a buyer to come for a showing.

As a result, it’s definitely worth looking into getting a good camera that will last you a long time. The cameras we have listed here all perform really well in low light and have good dynamic range, which allow you to take indoor photographs, especially if light is coming in through the windows.

What is a gimbal? (plus how it works and types of gimbals)

Have you ever wondered how your favorite YouTubers are able to get silky smooth videos, even if they seem to be walking or running?

It’s not like they have any special cameras, but rather, a special camera accessory called a gimbal. In this post, we’ll talk about what is a gimbal, how it works, and why you may want to buy one.

Once you set up a gimbal, it uses motors to essentially cancel out any unwanted movements, making it seem like the video is smooth.

Zhiyun Smooth 4 Professional Gimbal Stabilizer for iPhone Smartphone Android Cell Phone 3-Axis Handheld Gimble Stick w/ Grip Tripod Ideal for Vlogging YouTube Vlog TikTok Instagram Live Video Kit

What makes gimbals so handy

A gimbal(also referred to as a brushless gimbal) is really good at producing silky, stable, smooth video. Though gimbals are newer developments, you rarely see camera shake in older movies, even in action and chase scenes.

That’s because the precursor to the gimbal was something called a Steadicam. Steadicams were complicated, since they used a lot more moving parts and you’d have to be trained in using one. They’re still used today in many professional filming situations.

Gimbals, on the other hand, are much cheaper, lighter, and geared towards everyday users. You don’t have to be a professional filmmaker or cinematographer to use one!

How does the gimbal work?

Brushless gimbals work using a special sensor called an IMU. IMU stands for internal measurement unit, which contains tiny sensors called accelerometers that detect motion.

Accelerometers used to be quite expensive but they’ve since become really cheap and a lot of devices from video game controllers to mobile phones use them.

If you’ve ever played the Nintendo Wii, the way the Wii was able to detect the speed and direction you swung the remote was through accelerometers. This is the same technology your phone utilizes to know if it’s in landscape or portrait mode, too.

In addition to the sensors, the gimbals have very efficient and quiet brushless motors(hence the name brushless gimbal). The brushless motors are able to make micro-movements to each of the three axes that counteract any movement detected by the IMU, resulting in all camera shakes being cancelled out.

It’s really simple when you think about it! If the IMU detects a 5 degree movement in one direction, the computer directs the motor to turn 5 degrees in the opposite direction, cancelling the movement out.

The whole process happens so fast that you can’t notice any lag with your eyes in the resulting video.

This form of stabilization is present in nature, too, and the results are both stunning and cute!

Understanding the three axes

When shopping around for gimbals, you’ll see three terms thrown around:

  • pitch(also known as tilt)
  • yaw(also known as pan)
  • roll

These are the three axes that a camera can rotate on, and the gimbal will cancel out any movements on these axes.

Pitch is when the camera tilts up and down, like you would move it if you wanted to transition from the sky to the ground.

Yaw is when you pan or turn the camera left and right as you would if you wanted to transition from one corner of the room to the other.

Roll is when you rotate the camera from landscape to portrait and vice versa.

As you may imagine, pitch and roll are the two movements most people would like to cancel out, so 2 axis gimbals will cancel out pitch and roll, but they won’t cancel out yaw. This is going under the assumption that if you’re panning the camera left to right, you’re probably doing it on purpose.

Three axis gimbals can also cancel out unwanted yaw movements, which results in even more stable footage.

While three axis gimbals certainly produce better video, you may wish to opt for a 2 axis gimbal if you want to save a few dollars, or if you want to save on weight, since the extra motor does mean the gimbal will weigh a little more.

Related

How to use a gimbal

There’s just one thing that you need to take care of before using your gimbal. When you put your phone or camera into the mount, it is ideal to balance the camera or phone as much as possible before powering on the gimbal.

It’s also super important to not power on the gimbal unless you have a phone or camera mounted! The gimbal motors are sensitive and can easily overheat.

Upon powering up the gimbal, you’ll generally have a choice of modes. You can either choose to lock all axes, or keep one axis following your movements. This is useful if you are not going to keep the camera in one position and you want to pan from left to right or tilt from top to bottom.

If you don’t relax these axes and try to pan or tilt, the gimbal will fight your movement and mess up the shot.

Types of gimbals

Since the gimbal uses motors to stabilize the camera, it follows that bigger motors are required for bigger gear. Here are some of the most common types of gimbals available:

Mobile phone

Mobile phone gimbals are arguably the most common today and they are the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a gimbal.

These are inexpensive and easily accessible for most people to use since smartphones are so common. Now that most modern smartphones shoot really good 4K video, you can produce nearly professional-quality video yourself for very little investment!

Read my review of the Zhiyun Smooth 4 here, one of my favorite mobile phone gimbals.

GoPro

Another kind of gimbal commonly available is an action camera gimbal or GoPro gimbal. These gimbals are almost the same as mobile gimbals since the average weight of a smartphone and the average weight of an action camera is not too far apart.

However, the difference will be in the camera clamp. Mobile gimbals have clamps designed to hold mobile phones, whereas GoPro gimbals will have smaller clamps that will fit action cameras. You will not be able to use one in the other without a special adapter.

dSLR

Gimbals are also available for dSLR cameras. Naturally, these will be much bigger and pricier, but if you have an application for it, it will be worth the investment.

Say you’re producing high-quality content for YouTube. In this case, you’ll want a really good camera and in order to stabilize said camera, you’ll need a gimbal that can handle it!

SaleBestseller No. 1
DJI Ronin-SC - Camera Stabilizer, 3-Axis Handheld Gimbal for DSLR and Mirrorless Cameras, Up to 4.4lbs Payload, Sony, Panasonic Lumix, Nikon, Canon, Lightweight Design, Cinematic Filming, Black
  • Lightweight & Compact - Opening possibilities for filmmakers and content creators in almost any situation, Ronin-SC was built to go anywhere.
  • Tracks the Action - The Ronin app, and Ronin-SC work together seamlessly to achieve smooth, precise gimbal movement at all times, allowing you to focus more on creating the shot that matches your vision.
  • Dynamic Stability - Even in action-packed scenes, Ronin-SC gives a perfectly stable shot. Continuous stabilization makes Ronin-SC more effective in fast follows, sudden motions, and even complete changes in direction.
  • Automated Features - Ronin-SC offers a suite of advanced capturing features to unleash your imagination.
  • Easy to Handle - The buttons and trigger are easy to reach for every essential control. A flared battery grip makes extended holding easier and slip-resistant, letting you capture moments throughout the day.
Bestseller No. 2
ZHIYUN Crane Plus 3-Axis Handheld Gimbal Stabilizer for DSLR and Mirrorless Camera compatible Sony Panasonic LUMIX Nikon Canon POV Large Payload Timelapse Object Tracking New Version ZHIYUN Crane V2
  • A massive capable payload of 2. 5kg. If you have long lens, counter weight is required. Search B079JKKPJ2 on amazon
  • Motion Memory feature with Crane Plus allows you to setup advanced camera movements.
  • Newly designed POV (Point of View) mode providing up to 45 degrees of synchronous motion on the roll axis.
  • Intelligent object tracking via phone app control.
  • Night Lapse which can creating gorgeous, long-exposure time lapses that add in a new dimension of motion and depth.

Drone

Finally, we have drone gimbals. These are the gimbals found on the DJI Phantom, DJI Mavic, and other camera platforms.

The DJI gimbals are really specialized and have the camera built into the drone. In some models like the Mavic Mini, they’ve been able to use a really tiny camera, so they can get away with using a really tiny gimbal, too!

Separate 3 axis and 2 axis gimbals are also available for using with home-built drones but those are getting harder and harder to find since you really can’t beat the cost and functionality of DJI with something home-grown.

Related

Interested in learning how to film? Check out some great documentary schools

You can use a gimbal for shooting stop motion video

Gimbals vs Steadicams and other mechanical stabilizers

The last thing I want to talk about is gimbals vs mechanical stabilizers.

Mechanical stabilizers have been used for years and they work! However, they involve a lot of mechanical parts like counterweights, springs, nuts, and bolts.

A combination of all of these things effectively eliminates camera shake.

Gimbal motors are just not strong enough to handle the heavy cameras that are used for professional filmmaking. That’s why you’ll still see steadicams and mechanical stabilizers in studios.

If sometime in the future someone makes a motor big enough to carry a large camera, maybe mechanical stabilizers will go the way of the dodo.

Otherwise, professionals will have to stick to Steadicams while hobbyists, Instagrammers, YouTubers, and amateurs can produce really smooth and professional video with their brushless gimbals.

Best camera bag insert (6 ideal solutions for backpacks)

Carrying around a lot of camera gear can become quite cumbersome, especially if you have to use a separate bag. Fortunately, many people make special inserts you can just slide into a backpack to use it as your camera bag. In this post, we’ll look at the best camera bag inserts, why they’re an ideal solution for backpacks, and how to choose the best one.

Tenba BYOB 10 Camera Insert - Gray/Black (636-223) Soft Shell Camera In-Bag Holder with Padded Adjustable Compartments

The problem with camera bags

Even though you can go out and buy a dedicated camera bag, most of them are quite expensive, and they’re very limited in purposeYou can only carry a camera, some lenses, and other accessories. Good luck trying to fit any other items! At best, you may be able to sneak in an umbrella or water bottle.

Additionally, most camera bags have fixed compartments, so if you’re not using all of them, you’re essentially wasting space because there’s not much else you can fit in those dedicated lens/camera gear compartments.

So unless you’re a seriously professional photographer that needs a dedicated bag for all the specialized camera equipment you carry, you don’t need to spend your money on a dedicated camera bag. Instead, you can pick up a simple camera bag insert, which will fit into your existing bag.

Camera bag inserts have the advantage of protecting your camera gear and still leaving enough space for your other daily carry, like a laptop, a book or two, and anything else you may need.

Another advantage camera bag inserts provide is comfort. Let’s face it: camera bags are not comfortable, and you probably already have a favorite backpack which is so comfortable you hardly feel it on your back.

Backpacks also comparatively less expensive(or at least more value for money) than camera bags. So if you could combine a backpack and a camera bag into one without a significant difference in cost at worst, or saving money at best, why wouldn’t you?

Not only can camera bag inserts work with backpacks, but satchels, shoulder bags, and tote bags too. You just have to find the right size.

So if you don’t like hauling a backpack, but instead prefer to sling a shoulder bag or tote, an insert will be a good solution for you.

At the end of the day, hikers, students, and hobbyists will find camera bag inserts to be the ultimate solution of convenience

Hikers won’t want to carry an entire extra bag, and this would solve their problem.

Students already have a lot to carry and an extra bag is just cumbersome, and this would solve their problem.

Hobbyists don’t want to haul an extra bag around just for fun, and this would solve their problem.

Finally, an added secret benefit is being able to fit everything you need in a compact manner, which will make a huge difference in air travel!

Related

Best Camera Bag Inserts: Top 6 picks

1. Tenba BYOB 10: Best overall camera insert

Tenba BYOB 10 Camera Insert - Gray/Black (636-223) Soft Shell Camera In-Bag Holder with Padded Adjustable Compartments

Normally BYOB means something else, but here, I’m assuming it means bring your own bag!

The BYOB camera insert is really awesome and I think it’s the BEST camera insert out there. It’s a bit more expensive than the other ones but it’s totally worth the money in my opinion.

The reason being is that you can fit a DSLR/mirrorless camera and up to 4 lenses and accessories.

Whether you have a backpack, a messenger bag, a duffel, or a carry-on, or what have you(!), the BYOB 10 should fit easily.

The exterior of this camera insert is very well padded, and the dividers are also padded to keep your gear from bumping into other pieces of gear.

Another really nice design touch is the mesh side pockets that stretch out to fit a wide variety of items like your wallet, phone, or even a small water bottle.

There’s also a D-ring to attach keys or a carabiner for hanging a lot more accessories.

There are also front and rear pockets for even more storage. It’s also got a little handle on top so you can use it as a lunchbox style carry.

All in all, Tenba have taken a limited amount of space and turned it into a very functional and expandable bag. If you don’t mind spending the slightly extra money(and you may want to considering it will house $1000s of dollars of camera gear), you should stop reading here and pick up the Tenba BYOB 10 🙂

The Tenba BYOB is also available in smaller sizes.

Sale
Tenba BYOB 10 Camera Insert - Gray/Black (636-223) Soft Shell Camera In-Bag Holder with Padded Adjustable Compartments
  • PROTECTION IN ANY BAG: Designed to carry & protect a camera inside a larger backpack, suitcase or handbag, the BYOB's soft shell easily molds to the shape of a carrying bag. They work with a variety of camera systems, with pockets to organize accessories
  • INSERT YOUR CAMERA: The BYOB 10 fits a DSLR or mirrorless camera with 2-4 lenses & accessories & features padded dividers that are adjustable to fit multiple configurations, & a zippered top cover that can be folded back to allow quick access to gear.
  • INDUSTRY LEADING EQUIPMENT PROTECTION: For 40 years, Tenba has been building industry-leading equipment cases for rental houses, studios and professional imagemakers. Our cases can withstand being shipped or checked as luggage while ensuring protection
  • HEAVY DUTY: Our Transport series is a collection of maximum-protection cases for everything from cameras to computers, lighting to grip gear & more. Made with ballistic & Cordura nylon, YKK zippers, seatbelt-grade webbing, & heavily reinforced stitching.Features interior dimensions of 10 inch W x 7.5 inch H x 4 inch D ( 25 X 19 X 10 centimeter )
  • COMPARE THE QUALITY: Compare our camera bags, air cases, messenger bags, laptop bags & travel bags to similar products from Timbuk2, Travelon, Tous, Herschel, Vera Bradley, Chrome, Manhattan Portage, Eastpak, Tokidoki, Asus, Patagonia or Kenneth Cole

2. Mountainsmith Kit Cube: great for carry-on bags

Mountainsmith Kit Camera Cube - Large (Heritage Black)

Featuring a striking black and yellow design, the Mountainsmith Kit Cube is a really nice insert that fits easily into a backpack or roller bag.

The internal compartments are padded and you can switch around the sizes of the cubicles to adjust the sizes for fitting a variety of equipment from your camera, lenses, memory cards, extra batteries, and chargers.

The outer covering is a water resistant fabric that will help keep your camera gear safe even if you’re in the field and have to set your bag on some wet or damp grass.

It should be noted that it’s water resistant and not water proof, so don’t plan on dropping it into a swimming pool anytime soon.

A zip closes all around the cube for a secure and easy open and close.

There’s also a zip compartment in the inside of the top closure for throwing in some memory cards or flat items.

Mountainsmith Kit Camera Cube - Large (Heritage Black)
  • Padded compartment with internal dividers for custom camera carry
  • Water resistant exterior fabric panels
  • Color-coded pockets to organize new vs used memory cards, storage devices, etc.
  • Water resistant 5000mm PU fabric panels for extreme durability in the field
  • Fits most FAA carry-on sized lugagge and bags

3. S-ZONE Water Resistant DSLR SLR Camera Insert Bag: great for messenger bags

s-zone insert for messenger bags

If you have a messenger bag or satchel style bag, the S-Zone insert is a really good choice. It’s comparatively sleek and tall, ideal to fit into a messenger bag.

It’s made out of nylon and is water resistant. It’s also really lightweight, and when you’re not using it, you can fold it up by removing the inner dividers and flatten it down to condense the size to a certain extent.

You have two dividers in this bag insert that you can adjust to a variety of configurations. The really cool thing about this insert is that you can use it to carry one camera with a large lens, a camera with a small lens and one extra lens, or just use it to carry three lenses.

This model is available in 4 different sizes which you can choose depending on the size of your bag and the size of your camera.

For really small DSLR cameras and just one lens, the smallest size will do the trick.

If you use a bigger lens that has more zoom, you’ll need the medium or large size.

Of course, you’re also limited to the size of your backpack/messenger bag. For a large backpack, you can use any of the sizes. For a messenger bag, you’ll probably be limited to small or medium.

S-ZONE Water Resistant DSLR SLR Camera Insert Bag Inner Case Bag(Medium)
  • Material: High density nylon, Raindrop proof, Light weight, Foldable and Portable.
  • Dimensions: 9''Lx7''Hx4''W inch,suitable for a DSLR/SLR camera and ONE camera lens
  • Absorbing shock and vibration to protect your camera against damages, dust and scratches
  • DIY a camera bag, you could insert this case into most of S-ZONE backpacks or messenger bags
  • Detachable divider enable you to adjust the space of this case to match your camera well

4. Tenba Tool Box

Tenba Tool Box 4 (636-241)

Since we’re talking about camera inserts in general and not specifically DSLR camera inserts, it’s worth mentioning the Tenba Tool Box too.

Essentially, the Tenba Tool Box is the same as the Tenba BYOB, except it’s much flatter and more compact. That makes it a really good choice for carrying GoPros(or similar action cameras) and smaller, compact cameras and their accessories.

It doesn’t have any of the extra bells and whistles that the BYOB has(the mesh pockets and extra compartments, but you can still rearrange the inserts to any configuration and fit quite a bit of smaller gear in it.

One other huge difference is that the top is NOT padded but it is see through. So you won’t get protection from all sides.

Since it’s smaller, you can fit it in even smaller bags, too!

Tenba Tool Box 4 (636-241)
  • Rigid, padded Tool Box provides protected storage and organization for equipment and accessories inside any bag.
  • Clear, PVC-free TPU window so contents are visible at a glance.
  • Durable elastic loops keep cables untangled without the need for individual cord wraps, and are also perfect for batteries.
  • Fits GoPro camera systems, professional shoe-mount flash units, radio triggers, mirror less cameras and lenses, and so much more.
  • Movable dividers can be repositioned to any configuration. Rigid design keeps contents from moving.

5. Lens wraps

Domke F-34M, 15x15 Protective Wrap, Red.

Sometimes you don’t really need anything special for your camera itself but you do need something to carry your delicate lenses in. In case your camera insert does not have enough room for yet an extra lens, or you just need something safe to put your lens in before putting it in your everyday bag, consider using a lens wrap.

Some companies make dedicated lens wraps, while others make general protective wraps that you can use for anything from lenses to the camera itself.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Domke F-34M 15-Inch Protective Wrap -Black
  • Wrap around lenses, tools, or anything else that needs protection
  • Solid black color for easy organization and quick ID
  • Medium 15-inch square size
  • Made of padded, Velcro-compatible knit with a non-scratch nylon backing
  • Velcro tabs on all four corners let each wrap be self-secured in any number of ways
Bestseller No. 2
Selens Camera Protective Wraps Kit 11/15/19/21 Inches 4 Pack for Lens Shock Protector Photo Studio Accessories
  • Protect Your Equipment from Damage -- Wrap cloth is made of waterproof and oilproof neoprene material which protect your electronics from scratch and water spill.
  • Fit with Most Electronics and Camera Gear- It will shape easily to your DSLR camera, telescope, flash light, lenses, lens cap, spare battery, memory card,etc.
  • Ideal Protection for Travling -- Protective wraps is flexible and gives additional cushioning in the camera bag when you walking around.
  • Easy to Wrap -- Fastening Tape provide more secure to your gear. It's easy to set up and take down.
  • Lightweight & Compact -- Small 11-inch Square Size in Gray and Black.
Bestseller No. 3
CamDesign 3mm Flexible Neoprene Equipment Lens Wrap Cloth Scratchproof Dustproof Camera DSLR Wrap Compatible with Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Panasonic, Fujifilm (21 inch x 21 inch, Gray)
  • Our product is a lens wrap that keeps equipment from scratches and bumps in your carry case or bag. It’s a durable DSLR wrap sleeve made of dustproof neoprene material. Perfect for keeping out dirt from touching your gadgets. Never worry about packing your gear for travel ever again!
  • This camera wrap thickness is 3mm, designed with a soft but durable nylon backing. It prevents any scratches from gracing the surface of any expensive equipment to preserve its quality as much as possible. You can never be too careful. Give your camera lenses the care they deserve. Get your camera neoprene wrap now!
  • The velcro tabs in this camera wrap cloth are designed with hook-and-loop closures that fasten things in place. These fasteners are secure and strong which prevent your camera lenses from falling out of the sleeve.
  • This neoprene wrap conforms to a variety of shapes to fit your lenses better. The fflexible material doesn’t fill up the space in your camera bag and provides additional cushioning for any movement that can affect the contents of your case.It’s easy to wrap around the lens and no hassle to take off.
  • Our camera lens wrap is perfect for different types of equipment, not limited to camera lens. Great for other small items like phones, chargers, and other camera accessories you want to pack while travelling with extra padding to boot.

6. Lens pouches

You can also use lens pouches instead of lens wraps. Pouches may be a bit more secure and snug and have a more secure zip open and close.

The only disadvantage is that you’ll have to buy a pouch that is the same size as your lens. With wraps, you have more flexibility and a single wrap can fit many sizes of lenses.

SaleBestseller No. 1
(4 Pack) Altura Photo Thick Protective Neoprene Pouch Set for DSLR Camera Lens (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Tamron, Sigma, Panasonic, Fuji) - Includes: Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large Pouches
  • (4 PACK) Includes: Altura Photo Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large neoprene lens bag / lens case for DSLR and Mirrorless camera lenses.
  • BUILT TO PROTECT CAMERA LENS BAG: Thick water-resistant neoprene camera lens case protects against moisture, sand, dust, and accidental bumps or scratches.
  • LENS POUCH WITH DUAL ATTACHMENT POINTS: A belt loop and Snap and swivel clip for convenient and secure transport.
  • Lenses Pouch COMPATIBLE with lenses from Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Fuji, Pentax, Panasonic, Sony, Leica, Sigma, Tamron, and more.
  • Backed with DigitalGoja 90-Day 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
Bestseller No. 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Lens + 3pc Filter Kit + Lens Pen + Blower + Hood + Lens Pouch + Cap Keeper
  • This Lens Bundle comes with All Standard Canon Supplied Accessories and Includes:
  • Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Lens, 49mm Lens Cap, Rear Lens Dust Cap
  • Neoprene Soft Lens Pouch, 49mm Lenshood, Lens Cap Keeper, Dustblower, 2 in 1 Lenspen, 3 Pc Filter Set (UV, Circular Polarizer, FLD)
Bestseller No. 3
Powerextra 4X Zipper Lens Case Lens Pouch Bag with Thick Protective Neoprene for DSLR Camera Lens Fit for Canon Nikon Sony Olympus Panasonic Includes Small Medium Large XL Size
  • 【4 PACK INCLUDE】Small, Medium, Large and Extra Large Neoprene Pouch Bags for DSLR Camera Lens + MagicFiber Microfiber Lens Cleaning Cloth.
  • 【COMPATIBLE MODELS】Compatible with almost all camera lenses. Works for Canon, Sony, Nikon, Olympus, Fuji, Pentax, Panasonic, Leica, Sigma, Tamron, etc.
  • 【PRACTICAL LENS CASE】With waterproof, dustproof, moistureproof and shock absorption function, protecting lens against bad weather, keeping your valuable camera equipment safe and dry, search ASIN: B06XPQ3327 for the waist strap that matched with the lens cases.
  • 【THICK WATERPROOF FABRIC】Thick soft neoprene protects lens, telephoto zoom from accidental bumps and scratches.
  • 【AFTER SALES SERVICE】If there is any question about the products, please feel free to contact us, Powerextra offers 24 hours friendly customer service!

MOZA Mini-MI Review(Best Value Smartphone Gimbal?)

As you know, we’re huge fans of gimbals and you’ve probably read our reviews of the Zhiyun Smooth 4 and the Smove Mobile. In this post, we’ll be reviewing another gimbal: the Moza Mini MI.

While gimbals used to be an expensive piece of equipment to have, thanks to 4K capable smartphones being so common, lighter, smaller gimbals have been developed which are much cheaper.

Another thing that really helps is the fact that so many Chinese manufacturers are making gimbals now, and that has really driven the price down.

The Zhiyun Smooth 4 and the Smove Movile are both good gimbals in their own respects, but the Mini Mi actually jumps out ahead of those two and the DJI Osmo Mobile 2. Plus, it actually costs less!

So in this review, let’s see what is so special about the Mini MI and if it is worth your hard earned money or not.

Moza Mini-MI 3-Axis Smartphone Wireless Charging Gimbal Stabilizer, Multiple Subjects Detection, Inception Mode, Timelapse for iPhone 11 Pro X Xs Max/8/7/7 Plus/6,Samsung Galaxy S8+/S8/S7

Hands on with the Mini Mi

Many features are pretty standard on these budget smartphone gimbals. Even if you did not know the brand name, you can probably expect to find a plastic body in a rubber/plastic case, along with a usb cable and sometimes a small tripod that screws into the bottom of the handle.

Tripods are really useful because they let you balance the gimbal anywhere. I once used it to shoot a timelapse of my toddler and the results were adorable!

Since this is a budget gimbal, the overall build quality does not seem as solid as say the Osmo Mobile, but it kind of makes up for that with the other innovative features it has.

Namely, there are 3 quarter-inch threads all over the gimbal. This is quite interesting as it allows for a lot of expansion options, like screwing in a tripod at a different angle, or adding a microphone.

The microphone option is really cool because smartphone mics are usually terrible for audio quality and having a proper mic makes a huge difference in sound quality.

Interestingly enough, the gimbal weighs quite a bit more than other similar models. It’s around 50 grams heavier than most other smartphone gimbals. 50 grams may not seem like much but if you’re used to holding the other ones then this one may take a short time to get used to.

It’s kind of like the joke Jim from The Office played on Dwight where he slowly filled his phone with coins to make it heavier and suddenly removed them once he was used to the heavier weight!

Which phones will the Mini Mi work with?

There is a spring-loaded clamp that you can adjust to slide your phone in, and the friction will hold it in place. This is pretty standard across all gimbals.

In our earlier reviews of the Zhiyun Smooth 4 and the Smove Mobile, we noted that the maximum weight capacity was around 210 grams. This meant that large phones like the iPhone XS Max(which comes in at 208) grams would really tax the gimbal motors.

The Moza Mini Mi has a capacity of 300 grams, so as of today(and presumably well into the future), I don’t think there will be any phones that the motors of the Mini Mi won’t be able to handle. The clamp also expands from 61 to 92 mm, which is super wide and can accommodate even the widest phone.

Related

What sets the Moza Mini Mi apart from other gimbals

At the start of the review, I mentioned that the Mini Mi packs features that are not found on more expensive gimbals. The most important of those features in my opinion is wireless charging.

The Mini Mi supports the standard Qi charging protocol, so many modern smartphones will support it.

Most gimbals do function as power banks where you can connect your phone using USB, it adds to the bulk of a dangling wire and needing a wire with you at all times.

In the Mini Mi, just placing your phone in the gimbal will start charging it wirelessly be default. So as long as your phone is in the clamp, it will charge, keeping your phone juiced up for the whole day!

Note: Of course, this will drain your gimbal battery too, considering there is a 2100 mah battery in it.

Shooting modes

Most gimbals have three standard shooting modes:

  • locked, where all axes are stabilized
  • pan-follow, where roll and tilt are locked but the phone will pan with your hand movements
  • follow, where only roll is locked and yaw and pan will follow your hand movements

The Mini Mi has these three modes, as well as the ability to lock each axis on command, resulting in 8 possible combinations.

For most everyday users, the 8 combinations may seem overwhelming and they’ll be happy with the three default modes, but the extra combinations do allow for some creative shooting when you want to experiment.

If you use the app, there are some extra modes you can take advantage of:

  • Sports mode, in which the motors will speed up to keep up with fast, jerky movements
  • Selfie mode, where the phone will flip 180 degrees to take a quick selfie
  • Inception mode, where the phone will do a barrel roll and give a funky, trippy shot

How does the Moza Mini Mi perform?

A gimbal can have all the features in the world, but ultimately, the results need to do the talking.

So how does it stack up?

The stabilization is good, but just about as good as other budget gimbals you’ll find. It’s not quite as good as the DJI Osmo Mobile or the Zhiyun Smooth. But then again, it’s also not as expensive as those!

Who should buy the Moza Mini Mi?

For the price, there is no doubt that the Moza Mini Mi is possibly the best value your money can buy. While the performance is that of a budget gimbal, the extra features give it a huge boost over other similarly priced gimbals.

If you have a bigger phone like the iPhone XS Max or the Galaxy Note, this gimbal will give you the best performance since the other higher end gimbals just are not able to handle them.

Sale
Moza Mini-MI 3-Axis Smartphone Wireless Charging Gimbal Stabilizer, Multiple Subjects Detection, Inception Mode, Timelapse for iPhone 11 Pro X Xs Max/8/7/7 Plus/6,Samsung Galaxy S8+/S8/S7
  • 🌟【Wireless Phone Charging】Keep your Apple iPhone or Samsung Phone fully charged with the MOZA Mimi-MI Smartphone Gimbal. Works with all wirelessly-charged phones or using inductive charging technology and magnetic coils in the phone holder, the Mini-MI lets you charge your mobile phone wirelessly
  • 🌟【Un-limited Inception Mode】Limitless 360°Axis Rotation;The Mini-Mi's advanced software technology allows a user to setup the gimbal's roll arm to either side. Right or Left side, you decide which side to mount your phone on;The Mini-MI can achieve 360°rotation from all 3 axes based on customized settings. Go from a slow Dutch tilt to a quick pan. With unlimited range of movement the Mini-Mi offers limitless cinematic potential
  • 🌟【Cinematic Control of the Camera with Ergonomic Buttons】Gain cinematic control using the ergonomic buttons built into the handgrip. Within a fingertip’s reach are a joystick and dial wheel, which can access camera settings and filming modes. Instead of touching the smartphone screen directly, use the buttons in the handgrip to adjust ISO, shutter speed, exposure, focus, zoom, and white
  • 🌟【Super Follow Modes】The Mini-Mi features independent control system for each axis; Roll, Yaw, and Pitch. These axes can be controlled individually by 8 follow modes, giving you the same professional functionality that comes from MOZA’s advance control technology. Use one or all of the eight follow modes to capture smooth cinematic motion
  • 🌟【MOZA App】Intelligent APP control system, using a newly designed UI interface, set the shutter, sensitivity, time-lapse shooting and other parameters, easy to achieve precise control of photography effects.The MOZA app also supports RGB settings to achieve customized filter effects

Smove Mobile Review: Is it really worth the price tag?

Like most of you, I am a huge fan of smartphone gimbals. One smartphone gimbal that caught my attention was the Smove Mobile, so in this post, let’s go ahead and review it.

Overall, the Smove Mobile is a 3 axis stabilizer, which means it covers all three movements: roll, pitch, and yaw. You can mount your smartphone into the bay and when you turn on the stabilizer, it will lock your phone into position and you can take smooth, creamy videos.

I suppose the word smooth was the inspiration for the brand name, “Smove”. Interestingly enough, you can no longer find this gimbal on Amazon, but it is available on their website.Please read the whole review before making a buying decision!

Which phones can fit in the Smove?

When wondering which phones to mount, there are two criteria that you need to take into account: the width and the weight of the phone. Length does not really matter since there is no space limitation there.

The Smove Mobile can fit any phone as long as it is between 57 to 84mm wide. As of this writing, nearly all phones: iPhone and Android are within this size range and it’s no coincidence that the manufacturer has made the gimbal universally compatible.

Weight-wise, the gimbal motors can handle a max of 210 grams. This is actually the same capacity of the Zhiyun Smooth 4, which we have reviewed here.

The biggest phones out there today, the Samsun Galaxy Note 9 has a weight of 201 grams and the iPhone XS Max 208 grams. In theory, these phones could work, but you’d be pushing it. Even though the gimbal is rated for 210 grams, it’s safer to stay well below that range.

If you want good performance on a heavier phone, then consider a gimbal like the DJI Osmo Mobile 2. You already have a $1000+ phone, so why pinch your pockets on a gimbal?

Related:

Smove Mobile features, bells, and whistles

Perhaps the most defining and stark difference between the Smove Mobile and other popular gimbals is the extendable arm. You can basically pull out the bottom of the handle to extend the arm by 7 inches, making it really easy to shoot selfies.

The extended arm also opens up avenues for getting better angles in other shots too, especially chase and overhead shots. I’ve used an extendable arm gimbal a few times when I had to shoot in tight spaces, and the arm was able to give me a little extra clearance to get a clear frame.

There is also a USB charging port for plugging in your smartphone. The battery inside the gimbal also doubles as a power bank. Just be aware that you’ll now be powering two things with the one battery, so it will drain much faster. You’ll have to decide if you want to keep your phone running or your gimbal!

Shooting modes and using the Smove

Like most gimbals, your phone snaps into the clamp and is held in place with friction. The foam pads do a great job of generating a lot of friction against the smooth phone surface and it is secure in place.

The first time you use it, you’ll have to pull the cradle out a little or push it in to get the phone to balance as well as possible before turning the gimbal on. Trying to find a balance point before turning it on will put less load on the gimbal motors.

There are three modes for shooting:

  • Locked: In locked mode, all three axes will be locked and no matter what you do, the gimbal will maintain it’s orientation. This is useful for shooting whilst running or walking.
  • Pan: In pan mode, roll and tilt will be locked, but the camera will follow your arm movements left and right. This is useful for shooting targets that are moving on the horizontal plane.
  • Follow: In follow mode, the roll axis will be locked, meaning the phone can’t move like a steering wheel, but it will try to follow your arm movements by tilting up and down and panning left and right.

For most everyday uses, you’ll probably find yourself using locked mode. Pan is also useful, and follow is good if you’re trying to film something like an RC aircraft.

Build

As you’d expect from a budget Chinese gimbal, the body is made out of plastic. More than a money saving measure, plastic is usually used to keep the price down. Even then, higher end gimbals, made of plastic themselves, still feel higher quality in your hand than the Smove Mobile.

For the price(which is comparable to the Zhiyun Smooth 4 and indeed the DJI Osmo Mobile 2), the Smove Mobile doesn’t really deliver equal quality.

The twist: FeiyuTech Vimble clone?

Remember when I said at the beginning of the post to read the whole review before making a buying decision? Well, here’s the big twist. The Smove really seems like a FeiyuTech Vimble 2 with the Smove logo slapped onto it.

Interestingly, my everyday gimbal is the FeiyuTech Vimble 2, and I really happen to like it. As a budget gimbal, it shoots really nice videos and does a great job of stabilizing and smoothing.

However, the Vimble 2 is half the price of the Smove Mobile, and the Vimble comes with a little mini tripod(like the one that comes with the Zhiyun Smooth).

Conclusion

For something that costs double and is not very different from the original, I just don’t think there is enough added value to justify spending extra money.

If you liked the features of the gimbal that I described so far, go for the Vimble 2 and save yourself some money!

To recap, the features are:

  • 3 stabilization modes
  • Good compatibility with most smartphones
  • Built-in power bank functionality
  • Extendable arm for more shooting possibilities

Feiyutech Vimble 2 Smartphone Gimbal 3-Axis Handheld Stabilizer Extendable Pole Tripod for iPhone X 8 7 Samsung S8+S9 Plus XIAOMI Mobile Phone (Black)
  • Newly added 18cm long extension bar can easily frame scenery.
  • Have better using experience when taking selfies and being in live show.
  • Connect the gimbal with Feiyu ON App, and continuously click the function button three times, the smart phone camera lens will shift from back and front quickly.
  • Face & Object Tracking, the Feiyu ON app,allowing you to easily focus on the people you want without having to move anything
  • Compatible with iPhone 5s/6/6S/6Plus/7/7Plus/8Plus iPhone series / HUAWEI P9 / Mi 5 / MEIZU MX6 / SAMSUNG S7 / S7 or other Android phones with the similar dimensions

Rangefinder vs SLR: Pros and Cons of each and Comparison

One interesting discussion in the camera world is the difference between rangefinder vs SLR cameras. SLR cameras are undoubtedly the king of the camera industry today, but it seems that rangefinder cameras can take really good pictures, too, and in some cases, better than SLR cameras.

So that begs the question: how come SLR cameras are more dominant?

In this post, we’ll compare rangefinder and SLR cameras, and take a look at their pros and cons.

Leica M9 18MP Digital Range Finder Camera (Black, Body Only) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)

Rangefinder cameras

Rangefinder cameras took a foothold in the camera market in the 1950s.

Rangefinder refers to the focusing mechanism used in these cameras. The camera uses two lenses to line up an image and once they line up, you’ll have a nicely focused, crisp image.

Unlike SLRs, in which you’re looking through the lens, rangefinder cameras have you compose your shot through a small viewfinder on the top right of the camera.

There are actually three windows in rangefinders. The top right window is for composing the shot, the window on the left is for capturing the image. When you focus the camera, the images from these two windows will line up.

In high end cameras, you’ll find a third window as well which is for extra light. This adds to the crispness of the image.

Rangefinder camera pros

Better pictures

The biggest difference between rangefinders and SLRs is that there is no mirror in rangefinder cameras. In SLRs, the mirror has to kick up every time you press the shutter button, and to accommodate the flipping mechanism, the lenses need to be a minimum size.

In rangefinders where there is no mirror, wide-angle lenses can be made in such a way that the elements of the lens can be in very close proximity to the image plane.

This results in less distortion and sharper images.

Additionally, the mirror mechanism can cause vibrations, which are non-existent in rangefinders. Finally, rangefinder cameras focus much sharper in wide lenses.

Size and weight

Since the lenses are so much simpler and smaller, the overall weight of rangefinder cameras is much less. The size also shrinks because there’s just not that many elements to fit in the mechanism!

More efficient shutter mechanism

One of the biggest ironies of the SLR camera is that your viewfinder has to black out at the very instant you wish to capture! This is because the mirror flips up, blocking the light from the viewfinder and letting it onto the sensor. This is why you’ll end up with so many eyes closed and funny faces in shots with flashes!

With a rangefinder camera, you can see everything as the picture is taken, so you’ll know then and there if you need to take a second shot.

Note: While this may seem like a minor inconvenience, especially since you can just review the image right away on a digital camera, in film cameras, this would have been huge!

The absence of the mirror also results in a much quieter shot. SLRs can be noisy!

Finally, a little-known issue about SLRs is that there is a tiny bit of lag! Because the mirror has to get out of the way to let light onto the sensor, there is a tiny fraction of a second lag between the moment you click the button and the image is actually captured.

Rangefinder camera cons

Separate viewfinder

Since the viewfinder and the lens are not exactly aligned, there is a slight difference in WYS vs WYG. In every day use, that’s not going to make much of a difference. We used to use point and shoot cameras built this way for the longest time and were pretty happy with the way photos turned out.

However, if you’re shooting macro or have a long lens where the lens element is very far from the body, it’s going to make a big difference and you may notice that shots are not aligned as you had imagined.

Also, depth-of-field is hard to perceive since the viewfinders are always in focus.

Another issue that the separate viewfinder leads to is that if your lens is long, it may actually block part of your view in the viewfinder!

Limited number of lenses

Rangefinders don’t have a really wide variety of lenses available. SLRs by comparison have a lot more variety. However, some may argue that you don’t need so many lenses and you can get perfectly good shots with a regular lens too!

Limited focus capacity

Although we noted above that rangefinders actually focus very well, the caveat is that the crisp focus happens with wide lenses. Long lenses, not so much.

Another issue with focusing that these cameras face is that you can only focus in the center of the image. SLR cameras have much more flexible focusing capabilities.

Finally, good luck taking macro photographs with rangefinders! You can’t focus any closer than half a meter or so. And even then, as noted above, the viewfinder and the lens will no longer be aligned.

Related:

How to use rangefinder cameras

SLR cameras (and dSLRs too)

SLR stands for single-lens reflex, meaning a mirror is used to reflect light from the main lens into the viewfinder. A prism is used in the middle to flip the image right side up again.

Even though rangefinders seem like they are superior cameras, SLRs are actually a lot more versatile and they’ve taken over the market.

Related

SLR camera pros

WYSIWYG

WYSIWYG, or what you see is what you get is one of the biggest advantages of SLR cameras. The image in the viewfinder is exactly what the lens sees, right down to the focus and bokeh of the image.

You can use any kind of lens and you’ll always see an accurate image in the viewfinder.

Focus on any point

Especially with digital SLR cameras, you have the ability to focus on any point in the frame, not just the center. dSLR cameras often have a little grid overlaid in the viewfinder which you can use to spot focus too. This makes them really good for macro photographs such as jewelry photography.

Use any lens you want

Because SLRs are so flexible, you could use conceivably any kind of lens, even a telescope! It does not matter what kind of lens you use because as long as the lens itself is focusing well, the image will come out the way you expect.

You can also use macro lenses, and since you’re looking through the lens itself, the image you see is exactly what you will click.

The same goes for fisheye lenses which can let you capture a much wider field of view.

SLR camera cons

Wide angle lenses not as good as rangefinders

Wide angle lenses tend to be flatter, and because the lens needs enough space inside to avoid the mirror mechanism, manufacturers have to use something called a retrofocus system to get these to work. As a result, SLR wide angle lenses will experience a lot more distortion.

More mirror problems

The movement of the mirror also results in a very minor but sometimes noticeable vibration, especially in low-light shots with slower shutter speeds.

What’s more, because the mirror has to get out of the way once you click the button, there are actually two mechanisms taking place: first, the mirror has to move, and second, the shutter has to open and shut. There’s a tiny fractional-second lag, which may be an issue for some applications.

Size and weight

Rangefinder cameras are really nice and sleek, whereas SLR cameras are quite bulky. One of the main reasons I don’t take my SLR everywhere is because it’s just too much of a hassle to carry!

Especially if you are using bigger lenses, they can get quite cumbersome to transport, especially in tight spots.

Excessive features

While not exactly a con, the huge number of settings on the dials of most modern dSLR cameras can be overwhelming and if you find yourself shooting in auto mode or manual mode most of the time, all the settings in between can seem superfluous.

Difficult to focus in low light

Most SLR cameras have a little LED light that helps you focus in low light. This is because you really can’t see much in low light to be able to focus your shot correctly, and this is also why autofocusing takes longer in low light than in bright daylight.

Electricity consumption

SLRs and indeed dSLRs are quite power hungry and you’ll drain a battery within a few hours of shooting. To last a whole day on the job, you’ll need a few spare batteries too.

Rangefinder cameras on the other hand have very few electrical components and a single battery can last for a really long time.

Why you should get a rangefinder camera

If you’re concerned about weight and portability, rangefinders are definitely better.

Landscapes, wide angle shots, and nature shots(not animals) are best shot with rangefinder cameras.

They’re also really handy to just throw into a backpack or suitcase for traveling.

Why you should get an SLR camera

SLR cameras are really versatile, and they’re ideal for shooting fast objects and action(sports, kids, your kids playing sports).

They’re also really good at taking macro and extreme zoom photographs, as the composition is aligned with what you see in the viewfinder.

And if you’re shooting in a studio, SLRs are great too.

Good SLR and rangefinder cameras

Obviously, the two cameras are very different and the applications are also quite different.

However, you can shoot good landscapes with SLRs, though perhaps not to a ridiculous degree of professionalism, unless you use a really stable tripod.

In todays market, I think that the wider availability of SLR cameras and accessories designed for SLR cameras makes them a better bet for the average consumer/prosumer.

The only time I’d recommend getting a rangefinder camera is if you really know what you are doing and have a very specific use for it.

Plus, digital rangefinder cameras are super expensive and can burn a serious hole in your wallet. You can find second-hand 35mm rangefinders in decent condition, but with each passing day, developing and indeed finding 35mm film is getting harder and harder.

Leica M9 18MP Digital Range Finder Camera (Black, Body Only) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)
  • It has 2-years warranty
  • Newly developed cover glass to elimate infrared light contamination , no IR filters needed.
  • 18 megapixels which allow the full 35mm format.
  • First Rangefinder camera with a 24 x 36 mm Format Sensor.
  • Custom designed CCD sensor for optimal performance.

Sale
Fujifilm X-Pro 2 Mirrorless Digital Camera, Black (Body Only)
  • Newly-developed 24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III APS-C sensor reduces moiré and false colors to dramatically improve image quality and X-Processor Pro engine increases response times, achieves faster AF, lower noise and better color reproduction
  • Advanced Hybrid Multi Viewfinder featuring a Multi-Magnification function that automatically switches view-finder magnification according to the lens and simultaneous EVF over OVF display
  • Electronic shutter maximum speed of 1/32000 sec and a focal plane shutter with a top speed of 1/8000 sec. with flash synchronization of up to 1/250 sec.
  • Intelligent Hybrid Phase detection AF with 273 selectable AF points, Dual SD Slots. Operating temperature is minus 10 degree Celsius to plus 40 degree Celsius
  • 16 Film simulation modes including the new ACROS monochrome mode and Grainy effect

Bestseller No. 1
Canon EOS 2000D / Rebel T7 Digital SLR Camera w/ 18-55MM with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DC III Lens (Black) + PixiBytes Advanced Accessory Bundle
  • This Bundle includes: Canon EOS 2000D Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 DC III LensLens + 50-Inch Tripod + Lens Pen + Dust Blower + 32GB SD Card + Card Reader + IR Remote + UV Filter + CC2 Camera Bag + Lens Cap Keeper + 58mm Wide Angle Lens + 58mm Telephoto Lens + Pixi Cleaning Cloth
  • DIGIC 4+ Image Processor
  • 3.0" 920k-Dot LCD Monitor
  • Full HD 1080/30p Video Recording
  • 9-Point AF with Center Cross-Type Point
Bestseller No. 2
Canon EOS 2000D (Rebel T7) Digital SLR Camera Body Bundle + Neck Strap + Battery + Charger + Cap + Cleaning Cloth
  • This Canon Camera Bundle Comes with all Manufacture supplied Accessories and a 1 Year Seller Warranty
  • EOS 2000D body, Eyecup Ef, Camera Cover R-F-3, Camera strap EW-400D, Battery Pack , Battery Charger , Power cable for battery charger,
  • Take beautiful photos and movies with background blur
  • Easily connect, shoot and share on the move
  • Explore the power of DSLR and interchangeable lenses
Bestseller No. 3
Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera with 18-55mm is II Lens Bundle + Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III Lens and 500mm Preset Lens + 32GB Memory + Filters + Monopod + Professional Bundle
  • This Canon Camera Bundle comes with Manufacturer Supplied Accessories and One Year Seller Warranty.
  • Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera - 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor - DIGIC 4+ Image Processor - 3.0" 920k-Dot LCD Monitor - Full HD 1080/30p Video Recording - 9-Point AF with Center Cross-Type Point - ISO 100-6400, Up to 3 fps Shooting - Built-In Wi-Fi with NFC - Scene Intelligent Auto Mode - Creative Filters and Creative Auto Modes
  • Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II Lens is a sleek and flexible option for everyday shooting. Spanning a 28.8-88mm equivalent focal length range, this lens covers wide-angle to portrait-length perspectives + Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III Lens + 500mm f/8 Telephoto Preset Lens
  • SanDisk 32GB SDHC Memory Cards, Camera Shoulder Case, Slave Flash, High Definition UV Filters, High Speed USB Card Reader
  • The bundle also includes many high quality accessories like HD filter kit, Monopod, Flexible spider tripod, T-Mount for 500mm Lens and more.
Bestseller No. 4
Canon EOS 2000D Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm Lens Kit (Black) + 16GB Basic Accessories Bundle (International Version)
  • Bundle Includes : Canon EOS 2000D Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm is II Lens Kit (Black) + + 16GB SD Card + SD Card Reader + Fiber Cloth + Manufacture Accessories
  • 24. 1 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor with is 100–6400 (H: 12800)
  • Built-in Wi-Fi* and NFC** technology. // 9-Point AF system and AI Servo AF
  • Optical Viewfinder with approx. 95% viewing coverage
  • 3. 0-Inch LCD with 920, 000 dots.Not compatible with UHS speed class cards
SaleBestseller No. 5
Canon EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera Bundle with Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 is II Lens + 2pc SanDisk 32GB Memory Cards + Accessory Kit
  • This Camera Bundle Kit comes complete with all manufacturer supplied accessories and includes:
  • The EOS Rebel T7 DSLR Camera from Canon has a 24.1MP APS-C CMOS Sensor and DIGIC 4+ Image Processor. It has a 3.0" 920k-Dot LCD Monitor with Full HD 1080/30p Video Recording capabilities. It offers sharp details, accurate colors and low-noise imaging in both bright and low-light shooting situations. The Rebel T& can continuously shoot up to 3 fps.
  • Canon 18-55mm II Lens - a standard zoom compatible with Canon APS-C format cameras. It features a focal length range of 18-55mm which is equivalent to 29-88mm in the 35mm format
  • 2 x SanDisk 32GB SDHC Memory Cards + Deluxe Padded Camera Case + Flash Light + 3pc Filter Kit + Extra Battery Pack + AC/DC Car & Home Charger + High Speed USB Card Reader + 50" Camera Tripod
  • 0.43x Auxiliary Wideangle Lens - it conveniently mounts to the front of your fixed or zoom lens, and allows you to capture a wider field of view, 2.2x Auxiliary Telephoto Lens - brings you twice as close to the action. Perfect for long-distance photo situations such as sporting events
SaleBestseller No. 6
Digital SLR Cameras & Photography For Dummies
  • For Dummies
  • Busch, David D. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 352 Pages - 10/13/2014 (Publication Date) - For Dummies (Publisher)
SaleBestseller No. 7
Nikon 2137 50mm f/1.8D Auto Focus Nikkor Lens for Nikon Digital SLR Cameras (Renewed)
  • Includes all original accessories plus a 90-day warranty
  • Great for travel and for shooting full-length portraits in available light, Distortion-free images with superb resolution and color rendition
  • Provides high-contrast images even at maximum aperture
  • Autofocus is not supported by DSLRs lacking an autofocus motor, such as the D40, D40x, D60, D3000, D3100, D3200, D3300, D5000, D5100, D5200, D5300, and D5500 cameras, and the lens may be used with manual focus only.
SaleBestseller No. 8
Bower SCB1450 Digital Pro Sling SLR Backpack - Black
  • Weather- and stain-resistant
  • Sling design allows swift, easy access to equipment on-the-go
  • Compartmental storage keeps accessories organized and secure
  • Fits two SLR lenses and camera body, along with multiple auxiliary accessories
  • Protects contents from falls, drops and spills
SaleBestseller No. 9
Canon EOS REBEL SL3 Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm Lens Kit, Built-in Wi-Fi, Dual Pixel CMOS AF and 3.0 inch Vari-angle Touch Screen, White
  • Lightest, smallest EOS DSLR camera
  • High image quality with 24. 1 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor
  • Fast and accurate dual Pixel CMOS AF with eye detection AF
  • 4K video, 4K time lapse movie
  • Vary angle Touchscreen, 3. 0 Inch LCD, built in WiFi and Bluetooth technology with auto image transfer. , DIGIC 8 Image processor, is 100-25600. , optical Viewfinder with a 9 point AF system. , Easy operation. among current lineup, as of April 10, 2019. Compatible with iOS versions 10. 3/11. 4/12. 1, Android smartphone and tablet versions 4. 4/5. 0/5. 1/6. 0/7. 0/7. 1/8. 0/8. 1. Data charges may apply with the download of the free Canon camera connect app. This app helps enable you to upload images to social media services. Please note that image files may contain personally identifiable information that may implicate privacy laws. Canon disclaims and has No responsibility for your use of such images. Canon does not obtain, collect or use such images or any information included in such images through this app. compatible with select smartphone and tablet devices (Android version 5. 0 or later and the following iOS devices: iPhone 4S or later, iPad 3rd Gen. Or later, iPod touch 5th Gen. Or later) equipped with Bluetooth Version 4. 0 or later and the camera connect app Ver. 2. 4. 10. This application is not to operate on all listed devices, even if minimum requirements are met
Bestseller No. 10
Digital SLR Camera Reviews
  • Digital SLR Camera Reviews
  • Nikon D3100 Review
  • Canon EOS 1100D Review
  • Nikon D3200 Review
  • English (Publication Language)

9 Best Canon FD Lenses(including zoom lenses)

Canon FD lenses are amazing lenses that have withstood the test of time. Even though some Canon FD lenses are over 30 years old, they still do an amazing job and take fantastic photos. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the best Canon FD lenses currently available.

Now more than ever, FD lenses are a steal to pick up considering that purchasing a new set of lenses can cost quite a lot of money. You can pick up some second hand FD lenses for far cheaper and if you get a bundle of lenses, you’ll have a huge array of photographic opportunities in front of you.

There are quite a few types of FD lenses so we’ll check them out, and also talk about what to look for when getting a lens.

Why buy a Canon FD lens?

FD lenses are really easy to use and great for shooting video as the aperture adjustment and focus rings are fully manual. This gives you the greatest level of control, and if you’re shooting video, you can change the aperture and focus as you are shooting.

This is not possible to do with modern lenses.

However, this means there is a trade-off as well: since these are older lenses, there’s no autofocus, you’ll have to set the aperture manually every time, and there’s no image stabilization.

Additionally, because they’re older lenses, you’ll need to buy them second hand, and that means the body or the lens may have scuff marks and you’ll need to give them some TLC.

Best Canon FD Lenses: 9 to choose from

1. Canon 1:2.8 28mm lens

Canon Lens FD 28mm 1:2.8

The Canon 1:2.8 lens is a fairly simple, straightforward lens. It’s not too fancy, but does the job really well. It’s made of a hard plastic called polycarbonate. Even though it is plastic, the construction is still very solid and when you hold it in your hand, it does not feel low quality in any way.

The tough construction makes the lens suitable for use in tough environments and it can easily survive a ding or drop here and there.

You should be aware though that the center of the subject will be extremely sharp and crisp, but the edges tend to lose a little bit of the focus and may appear softer or blurry.

2. Canon f/1.4 50mm Lens

Canon 50mm f/1.4 FD Manual Focus Lens

Canon’s 50mm FD lens shoots really clear and crisp images and because of the manual focus and aperture, it’s ideal for videography. You can get an indie film effect really easily if you use this lens.

The aperture can go really high on this lens, all the way up to f/1.4, but at that point, the image will start to go soft. Even though you can go so high, try keeping it a little lower in the f/2 and f/3 range for ideal shooting.

It’s a little bit on the heavy side but that actually adds to the quality feel of it. Just be mindful of the weight when you attach it!

Canon 50mm f/1.4 FD Manual Focus Lens
  • Compatible with all Canon FD-Mount Manual Focus Cameras such as AE-1
  • Manual Focus Only. It will not auto focus on any camera.
  • Fast f/1.4 aperture
  • Comes in either breech mount or bayonet mount

3. Canon 100-300mm FD Zoom

Canon Zoom Lens FD 100-300mm f5.6 for Canon A-1 AE-1 AT-1 Film SLR

Number 3 on our list is an FD lens with zoom capability. The closest it can focus is 2 meters, which is quite impressive. Additionally, the magnification makes a huge deal.

Even though it looks quite imposing, it is in fact quite light and you won’t really notice the extra weight any more than you would on a similar sized lens.

The zoom is all the way from 100 mm to 300 mm. That makes it ideal for shooting really awesome portraits and even for wildlife photography.

Note: use a tripod for best results.

Canon Zoom Lens FD 100-300mm f5.6 for Canon A-1 AE-1 AT-1 Film SLR
  • Quality Canon Telephoto Zoom Lens with FD Mount
  • For Film SLRs such as F-1 A-1 AE-1 AT-1 AV-1
  • Powerful Zoom from 100-300mm
  • Great for portrait to wildlife photography

4. Canon FD f/4.0 70-210mm Zoom

Canon FD 70-210mm f/4.0 Zoom Lens

The next lens on the list is another zoom lens, but this time, the zoom is from 70-210mm. The above lens had a minimum focus distance of 2 meters, whereas this one can focus up to 0.44 meters close. The effective zoom is 3 times (70 x 3 = 210).

At 70mm, this lens is really good at capturing macro photographs, much more so than the 3rd lens on our list. As such, this FD lens falls in a sweet spot between something that’s capable of up close shots and can zoom quite a bit too.

The one issue is that in some cases, you’ll experience some aberrations.

Canon FD 70-210mm f/4.0 Zoom Lens
  • Medium telephoto to full telephoto
  • Offers more than above average optical performances and easy portability
  • Compatible with all Canon manual focus film cameras that accept FD-mount lenses
  • Zoom ratio of 3X and closest focus distance is 0.44 meter

5. Canon FD f/4 200mm

Canon FD 200 mm F/4 MF Zoom Lens(S/N:103852)#47903

This FD lens from Canon is another awesome piece of equipment in an already awesome lineup, partly due to the 7 elements inside. It focuses smooth, fast, and the focus ring allows you a high degree of accuracy

The glass used in this lens has a very high refractive index. It is ideal for shooting fast-paced action, such as sports or following a subject in a documentary.

Aperture wise, the lens performance is quite adequate and you’re able to capture a decent photograph even if light is a little scarce.

Canon FD 200 mm F/4 MF Zoom Lens(S/N:103852)#47903
  • Canon ZOOM f=200 mm
  • FD MF LENS MADE IN JAPAN φ52
  • MPN:Canon FD 200 mm 4

6. Canon FD 35-105mm Macro Zoom

Even for second hand lenses, you may find that the Canon FD Macro Zoom lens is a bit on the expensive side. Perhaps this is because this lens was just more expensive in general, or that it is now harder to find.

Either way, sporting a wide range of aperture and a fast shutter speed, it shines amongst zoom lenses. Wherever you’re shooting photographs and in whichever situation, this lens will not let you down.

Overall, it’s well built, solid, and you have two rings to adjust the zoom and the focus.

The macro mode can leave a little bit wanting some times, but on the whole, it’s great value and performance.

7. Canon f/2.5 135mm Zoom

CANON FD 135mm F/2.5 S.C. MF Zoom Lens(S/N:64435)#47275

This lens has been going strong for nearly 50 years! Even though the lenses are so old, you’ll still find most of them to be in great shape. This is one of the earlier lenses to be made of plastic, but even so, the build quality is really solid.

Plastic is light, so you can actually use this to your advantage as the lesser weight will let you carry it around with more comfort.

The manual focus ring is really accurate and you can fine tune as you wish, but at really high apertures, you may sometimes experience slightly softer pictures. For best results, you’ll need a more mid-range aperture.

CANON FD 135mm F/2.5 S.C. MF Zoom Lens(S/N:64435)#47275
  • 135 mm f/2.5: introduced in 1971 as one of the first lenses in the new Canon FD mount.
  • Like all of the very early Canon FD lenses, it does not indicate the type of coating on the front lens ring. All lenses from 1971
  • (indeed, from the very early 1950s forward) were coated in one form or another.[1]
  • 135 mm f/2.5 S.C.: The marking for Spectra Coating (SC) was added in 1973.

8. Canon f/5.6 100-200mm 11150 lens

Canon 100-200mm f5.6 FD 11150

This Canon FD lens is a classic “budget” FD lens. It’s pretty standard by most respects, but you’re getting an FD lens for a pretty decent price that has a small degree of zoom functionality.

The maximum aperture only goes up to f/5.6, so if you’re shooting a lot of indoor or low light shots, you may struggle if you don’t use a flash.

It’s a pretty big lens (though not to the point where it is difficult to carry around).

Really, the only reason we’re recommending this lens is that it’s super inexpensive compared to the others and it’s FD after all.

Canon 100-200mm f5.6 FD 11150
  • 100-200mm
  • 1:5.6
  • Aperture: 5.6, 8, 11, 16, 22, 32
  • No.: 178548

9. Canon f/4 FD 35-70mm

Canon FD 35-70 mm F/4 MF Zoom Lens(S/N:172187)#47900

Finally, the last lens we’d like to bring to your attention is the Canon f/4 FD 35-70mm lens. It’s a pretty old lens but it’s still going really strong even after all these years.

The max aperture is f/3.5 at 35mm, and f/4.5 at 70mm. While this is fine for most well lit indoor areas, in darker areas or at night, you’re not going to get good performance out of this.

Overall, it’s a really light lens that does the job well.

Canon FD 35-70 mm F/4 MF Zoom Lens(S/N:172187)#47900
  • Distance scale: (m) 0.5 (35mm at 0.5m, 0.08X magnification) (70mm at 0.15); 10 OO (ft) 2 - 30.OO
  • Focusing mechanism: Rotation of front lens group
  • Zooming: Rotation of zooming ring; Minimum aperture: f/22 . A
  • Diaphragm: Automatic; Filter size: 52mm; Hood: W-62
  • Length x max. diameter: 85.5mm x 68mm; Weight: 315g

Related

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need an adapter to mount this lens?

In most cases, yes. Since these are older lenses, they will not work without an adapter on newer cameras.

How much do Canon FD lenses cost?

Canon FD lenses can be found for quite cheap. Since you’re buying second hand, many of the lenses you’ll find will be quite a steal compared to brand new lenses with similar specs.

However, since they are older lenses, you’ll be giving up some of the advanced features like autofocus and stabilization.

What is meant by aperture?

Aperture means the amount of light being let into your lens. A smaller aperture number means the lens is open more, and a higher aperture number means the lens is less open, letting less light in. This is a point of confusion for many photographers!

Zoom lenses or prime lenses?

Zoom lenses and prime lenses are two different types of lenses. Which one should you get really depends on what and how you are shooting.

If you’re shooting closer subjects, a prime lens will do the trick just fine, and you’ll also be able to get bigger apertures. Zoom lenses are great if your subjects are far off and you need to get in close, but you will sacrifice the aperture a little bit. The more you zoom, the less the aperture will get.

Are FD lenses well built?

Back in the day, manufacturers used to build things to last! Most lenses had metal housing which was incredibly durable and could survive years and years. Ironically, newer lenses don’t have such a long lifetime because manufacturers use rubber and plastic parts to cut costs. Oh well!

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that Canon FD lenses are extremely high quality lenses and great for shooting video. If you use your SLR camera to shoot video, then an FD lens will give you a lot of flexibility and let you get really creative with your shots. Plus, with the wide variety available, there’s no limit to the kinds of shots you can create.

Zhiyun Smooth 4 Review: An awesome smartphone gimbal

When it comes to smartphone gimbals, there are plenty of cheap options out there. But two companies really stand out: Zhiyun and DJI. In this post, we’ll talk about and review the Zhiyun Smooth 4 gimbal. Is it a viable competitor to the DJI Osmo? Let’s dive in and have a look in this review.

Zhiyun Smooth 4 Professional Gimbal Stabilizer for iPhone Smartphone Android Cell Phone 3-Axis Handheld Gimble Stick w/ Grip Tripod Ideal for Vlogging YouTube Vlog TikTok Instagram Live Video Kit

Why do you need a smartphone gimbal?

Gimbals are essentially mechanical stabilizers for cameras. With a gimbal, you can take silky smooth video in which your hand movements and vibrations are completely invisible. The gimbal works with 2 (or sometimes 3) motors than compensate for any sudden movements.

Gimbals have long been used in filming and cinematography, and since smartphone cameras are getting better and better and more capable of taking stunning photographs and recording 4k video, in many cases, you no longer need bigger cameras to take great photos, especially on the go.

Once you start taking videos with a gimbal, you’ll never want to take videos by hand again. The Zhiyun Smooth 4 has three axes: pan, tilt, and roll. These are the three directions your camera can move in: tilting up and down, tilting side to side, and tilting back and forth.

The motors will spin just enough to negate any movements you make, resulting in smooth video free of any shakes and vibrations.

Stabilization is especially useful when you’re walking and filming at the same time. Holding the camera in your hand will show all the movements from your walking, but if you use a gimbal, it will look really fluid and smooth.

Overview

When you receive the Zhiyun Smooth 4, you’ll get two accessories with it: a USB-C charging cable and a small, folding tripod. If most of your stuff is USB-C, you’ll be a happy camper. However, if you still have stuff that uses micro USB, then you’ll need to carry an extra cable.

However, it’s not that big of a deal 🙂

Upon first glance, the handle of the Zhiyun Smooth 4 may seem a little intimidating given the myriad buttons there. Most gimbals including the DJI Osmo are quite simple in terms of controls, and just 2-3 buttons do everything.

There is a LED battery indicator and the gimbal arm locks into position when you want to store it, so it doesn’t swing around everywhere like other gimbals do when they are not powered on.

Overall, the construction is plastic, which is not all that bad considering it cuts costs and keeps the device quite lightweight.

Related:

1. Pan and follow

In pan and follow mode, the camera will maintain the horizon. This means that any up/down shakes and movements will be canceled out by the gimbal, but if you turn the camera left or right, the camera will move with your arm.

2. Follow mode

In follow mode, both pan and tilt will move(smoothly, of course). This means that you can turn the camera up/down/left/right and the motors will follow. However, if you try to tilt the camera left or right(spinning it), that movement will be counteracted.

3. Locked mode

In locked mode, the camera will hold whatever orientation it is in and you won’t be able to change its direction – any movements will be counteracted and the angle and position will be maintained. This is good for using when you’re walking or running and want to get a straight, smooth shot.

PhoneGo Mode

In PhoneGo mode, the gimbal will become more sensitive and the result is even more smooth, which is good for capturing video when there are a lot of sudden, jerky changes in direction.

To activate PhoneGo Mode, there is a little trigger on the back side of the grip.

Photos

There is a companion app for the Zhiyun Smooth 4 called ZY Play, which lets you get creative with taking photos using your gimbal.

You can take single photos using a button on the gimbal, you can take panorama shots(the gimbal can turn really smoothly to capture a lot of imagery), as well as timelapses and a special mode called Vertigo.

How to use the various controls

zhiyun-s4-control-2558851

As you can see from the image above, there are a LOT of controls for you to play around with on the Zhiyun Smooth 4. This means you can actually change a lot of settings mid shoot without having to touch your screen, allowing for even more smoothness.

The large dial on the left is for controlling focus and digital zoom. This is quite a unique feature to the Zhiyun Smooth 4 as it’s rare to find a gimbal that allows you to mess with the focus.

The lightning bolt button in the center, as you can guess, is to turn the camera flash on. As you’re taking videos, if you wish to use a bit more light, just press the flash button to activate the phone’s LED flash.

At this point, you may be wondering how the gimbal manages to control so many features across so many smartphones.

The answer is, well, that you can only use these features if you’re in the ZY Play app. This means all videos and photos must be shot using the app if you want to use these button controls.

If you’re fine with just choosing a shooting mode and then using your phone’s native camera app, that will work, but the buttons won’t function. That’s a trade-off that many folks don’t mind, especially considering that the native apps are often much more robust(especially in the case of phones like the new iPhone).

Additionally, many gimbals have a little joystick that you can use to adjust the pan and tilt of the camera from the gimbal controls itself. This gimbal, interestingly enough, does not have a joystick. It’s not a huge trade-off, but sometimes being able to make small adjustments comes in very handy.

It is not a dealbreaker by any means, but if you like to use the joystick, you’re going to miss it here.

FiLMiC Pro App

As I mentioned above, the button controls can only be used with the native ZY app. Zhiyun has opened up their ecosystem to the FiLMiC Pro app as well, and this app also integrates nicely with the gimbal controls.

What’s more, the app is a really full-featured videography and photography app that lets you shoot really good videos and photographs, so you’ll actually enjoy using it!

For example, I personally don’t like to use the standard apps that gimbals are meant to go with – I just prefer the stabilization and using my own camera app. FiLMiC Pro ticks both boxes in that it is an app of my choice and it works well with the gimbal.

How well does the Zhiyun Smooth 4 work?

From what we’ve seen, the Zhiyun Smooth works wonders for stabilization. Whether you’re walking, running, or driving down a bumpy road, the Zhiyun manages to eliminate all visible shakes and vibrations. The stabilization is really top of the line and can really be considered a benchmark to check other gimbals against.

The lithium ion battery powering the gimbal work for up to 12 hours. 12 hours is a pretty long time especially for a gimbal and it’s more than enough for a day of filming. It’s ideal for using while traveling, too. Once you get home, just charge it up and it’s ready to go the next day.

Using the Zhiyun Smooth 4

The phone clamp can turn into portrait mode and landscape mode so you can shoot selfies and portrait videos as well. Just shoot and upload to your favorite app, whether it’s Snapchat, Instagram, Vine, or Tiktok.

The tripod is really handy, too. Being able to fold it open and closed allows you to both use it as an extension of the grip, as well as place it on a surface as you film(great for filming yourself for a vlog, for example).

Final thoughts

Overall, the Zhiyun Smooth 4 is a really nice gimbal that does not break the bank. For the price point and the features it delivers, you really can’t go wrong. It does its main job really well: stabilizes video, it’s fast, it’s quiet, and if you use a compatible app, there is a myriad of options you can control entirely from the gimbal itself.

However, the buttons can also feel overwhelming, especially if you’re just looking for a simple gimbal without too many bells and whistles.

The DJI Osmo Mobile 3 really is the only thing left to compare this gimbal to, and considering it is actually a little bit more expensive, the Zhiyun Smooth 4 really gives it a run for the money.

Sale
Zhiyun Smooth 4 Professional Gimbal Stabilizer for iPhone Smartphone Android Cell Phone 3-Axis Handheld Gimble Stick w/ Grip Tripod Ideal for Vlogging YouTube Vlog TikTok Instagram Live Video Kit
  • 👍👍【Filmic Pro】The official APP for Smooth 4 is called ZY play. But Filmic Pro has best in class support for Smooth 4, you can use Filmic Pro as an alternative to ZY play.
  • 👍👍【Control Panel】Integrated control panel design,Focus Pull & Zoom Capability
  • ✅✅【MUST KNOW】Balance the gimbal before use: Slide the smartphoone in as close as possible to against the tilt axis motor. Loosen the Roll (Y) Axis Thumb Screw (which is on the back) to adjust the gravity center by sliding the horizontal arm.When phone stays in level in power OFF status, it is balanced.We recommend you VIEW the video tutorials, There are lots of tutorial videos on YOUTUBE that will help you master the gimbal.
  • 👍👍【PhoneGo Mode】PhoneGo Mode for Instant Scene Transition
  • 👍👍【Time Lapse & Object Tracking】Time Lapse Expert and Object Tracking available; Supports Two-way Charging with Longer Runtime

STM vs USM For Photography: Which Canon Technology is better?

On many Canon lenses, you’ll either find STM or USM written which specifies the kind of motor that the lens uses for focusing. In this post, we’ll be talking about the difference between STM and USM and which is better for photography.

STM stands for stepping motor, which is a very smooth but slightly slower way of autofocusing.

USM stands for ultrasonic motor, which is faster and what Canon used to use in most of their lenses. These motors are not as smooth or quiet, though.

Where did STM and USM come from?

Originally, autofocus systems were operated using a motor that sat in the body of the camera rather than in the lens. A mechanical gear would connect the motor to the lens, and the motor inside the camera would rotate the lens to achieve a desired focus.

Back then, there were plenty of big camera manufacturers: Canon, Nikon, Yashica, and Pentax. Of these 4, Nikon, Yashica, and Pentax used a similar design to keep the motor in the camera body.

Canon designers decided to try another method by putting the motor in the lens. As it turns out, Canon’s designers hit the nail on the head and their system was far superior to the others. Eventually, everyone else switched to a system based on Canon’s(with their own tweaks, of course).

Related:

How did we get to STM and USM lenses?

Canon lenses today use one of three kinds of motors: a STM motor, a USM motor, or a regular DC motor.

DC or direct drive motors

Even though most Canon lenses have STM or USM motors, if your lens does not specify it, it probably has a DC motor. a DC motor is the bottom of the pile in motors: there’s no smoothness of STM, no speed of USM, but it can do the job and as a budding photographer, it may not matter to you.

USM or ultrasonic motors

Ultrasonic motors are the most popular kind of autofocus motors and most Canon lenses use these. Ultrasonic vibrations are converted into rotational energy which is used to move the lens. For this to work, you need two loosely coupled rings. By vibrating one of the lenses, the other will rotate.

One ring is on the body, and the other ring is on the focusing part of the lens. USM motors have the advantage of speed. If you need to click really fast, the USM motor can keep up really well. You can also make small manual adjustments without having to turn autofocus off.

Ring USM motors

Even USM motors are of a few different types! Ring USM motors are the most common variation of autofocus motors in Canon lenses.

The motor itself is quite powerful and allows for a level of exact precision. You don’t need any mechanisms to reduce the speed of the motor. Additionally, once the motor has found a good position, you don’t need to keep applying power to it to maintain that position.

They are also very responsive, and it’s no surprise that Ring USM motors are the most common kind of motor found in Canon lenses.

Micro USM motors

Micro USM – as the name suggests – is a much smaller motor so it can fit into much smaller lenses. These are also cheaper so where micro USM motors are used, the price of the lens is less as well.

Micro USM uses a motor similar to the regular USM motor, but in this case, it’s not directly connected to the focusing rings. Instead, gears are used which actually makes it a hybrid between an old school autofocus system and the newer USM system.

Nano USM

Canon’s latest development is Nano USM, which is a high speed autofocus mechanism that is just as good as the regular USM and just as quiet and smooth. It’s probably the best kind of lens to use for everyday photography and even video.

You can shoot good, smooth video in which your camera focus keeps up with your moving subjects. Of course, it will shoot really good photographs, too.

STM or stepping motors

STM motors as you read above are smoother and quieter than USM motors. If you’re looking to shoot videos as well as photos, you can’t go wrong with a lens that uses STM motors.

Because it’s so quiet, your microphone won’t pick up any of the internal noises in the camera and you’ll be able to capture more of the actual subject’s sounds.

Stepping motors are called stepping(or stepper) motors because they can execute very tiny movements down to 0.1mm, and they can do them really fast. In fact, stepper motors are used in 3D printers for this very reason.

The small and precise movements are ideal for keeping up with the constantly changing focal length required when shooting videos.

This system is totally electronic and there are no gears or rings involved.

Gear STM

Smaller lenses using STM motors use gears to change the focus.

Lead-screw STM

Lead-screw motors are used in larger lenses(where you have more space). Lead screw motors are even more quieter and can achieve faster speeds than gear STMs.

Which one should you get?

For professional applications and for shooting higher quality photographs, USM lenses remain the undoubted champion.

For amateur photographers who also shoot lots of video, STM lenses shine – they’re totally silent and can deliver really crisp video. The focus speed is a bit slower but that allows for more smoothness.

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