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Selfie stick vs. Gimbal

My last video was much more popular than expected, but there were some very valid complaints about the shaky video. So I decided to finally bite the bullet and buy my first ever 3-axis gimbal. Gimbals are basically selfie-sticks with some motors on the end that make sure your camera and/or smartphone will only move smoothly by correcting for shakes and jitters. Here’s how it worked out…

In my next video, I’ll be comparing gimbal stabilization to GoPro electronic stabilization. Please be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel to be notified when I release new videos.

TRANSCRIPT


0:00:00.480,0:00:04.900
Whatup nerds? I’m Jay Shareef.
And I just bought my first gimbal.

0:00:13.840,0:00:19.100
Firstly, you’ll have to excuse the weird angle.
I’m working in some very limited space here

0:00:19.100,0:00:21.640
in the spare room. The main rooms
of the house are not available.

0:00:21.640,0:00:27.040
So this is the only angle I could find, in this tiny room, that can get all of this in.

0:00:27.480,0:00:30.100
Right now, the tripod is right up against that wall.


0:00:30.100,0:00:33.580
It’s very very close to me. So this is the best I could do.

0:00:33.580,0:00:34.940
Sorry about that.

0:00:35.360,0:00:39.840
So my last video was a lot more popular
than I expected. Which is wonderful.

0:00:39.840,0:00:42.480
However, there were some complaints.

0:00:42.480,0:00:44.719
Mainly about the shaky camera work.

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Which is fair enough, because all I did was stick
my smartphone on one of these selfie sticks

0:00:51.000,0:00:53.199
and walk down the canal.

0:00:53.200,0:00:57.960
Someone did mention that all Android phones
nowadays have inbuilt video stabilization.

0:00:57.960,0:01:00.360
which sounds fantastic on paper.

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However, when I tried it there were two problems.

0:01:04.040,0:01:10.000
Firstly, it zooms in incredibly closely.
So all you’re going to see is my face.

0:01:10.000,0:01:13.180
Which I’m sure is not what you want.

0:01:13.180,0:01:18.000
And, secondly, there’s some kind of wavy,
warpiness happens in the corners of the picture.

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These are common problems with digital video stabilization that’s done by AI and algorithms.

0:01:24.820,0:01:28.180
It’s never quite right.

0:01:28.180,0:01:31.380
There was only one obvious solution: buy a gimbal.

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However, having done my research what I found was

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that a lot of the cheaper gimbals on the market

0:01:36.479,0:01:39.560
can’t really cope with heavy smartphones.

0:01:39.560,0:01:42.640
And boy do i have a heavy smartphone!

0:01:42.640,0:01:45.820
This is the Ulefone Armor 6.

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It’s the best rugged Android smartphone on the market.

0:01:50.580,0:01:58.540
But all the internal ruggedness means that it weighs
266 grammes and it’s about 84 millimetres thick.

0:01:58.540,0:02:01.700
That’s a lot more than most
smartphone gimbals can cope with.

0:02:01.700,0:02:07.660
Most of them have a maximum rating of about
200-210 grammes and 80 millimetres thick.

0:02:07.660,0:02:09.660
So this is just too big.

0:02:09.660,0:02:13.560
Having done my research, basically
I found that I had two choices.

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Firstly, I could either buy the Feiyutech G6 Plus.

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Which is a fantastic gimbal. Can take multiple devices.

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Smartphones, action cameras, regular
cameras, compacts and mirrorless.

0:02:26.140,0:02:30.300
Anything up to 800 grammes, and it’s weatherproof.

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But… it costs about $200, and
we’re in the middle of a recession!

0:02:34.200,0:02:41.000
Or I could get a cheaper gimbal and use
one of my old, smaller smartphones instead.

0:02:41.000,0:02:45.600
However, the problem with cheaper gimbals is that
usually they’re only designed for one type of product.

0:02:45.600,0:02:49.760
So, either smartphones, or
action cameras, or compact cameras.

0:02:49.760,0:02:52.140
And they’re very rarely weatherproof.

0:02:52.140,0:02:57.380
There simply aren’t that many multi-use
gimbals on the cheaper end of the market.

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Luckily, I came across an online review for
a Feiyutech product that’s under $100 and

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it works with both smartphones and action cameras.

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Which is perfect because those are the two
devices I usually use when i’m out and about.

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And it has arrived!

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Same day delivery. Thank you very much Amazon.

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Not sponsored!

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But, if you want to sponsor me then get in touch.

0:03:20.460,0:03:24.980
I shouldn’t be allowed to use sharp knives like this.

0:03:24.980,0:03:28.400
I’m always worried that I’m going to damage
the product. So I have to be extra careful.

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Because when you’ve paid for something
nice you don’t want to damage it.

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And, secondly, if you have to return it, you
want to keep the box in reasonable condition

0:03:40.480,0:03:43.820
I love this part. It’s like Christmas.

0:03:43.820,0:03:45.580
Amazon goodness!!

0:03:46.960,0:03:48.860
Looks pretty good.

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Obviously, you can do horizontal and vertical
orientation, according to the box anyway.

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“Feiyutech gimbal – the expert of image stabilization.”

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That’s almost a sentence.

0:03:59.860,0:04:03.040
So this is the Feiyutech Vimble 2.

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Specifically, it’s the Vimble 2S.
Which is designed for smartphones.

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There is a Vimble 2A that Feiyutech produce.

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And that is specifically for action cameras.

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I got this one because I was told through online reviews

0:04:18.300,0:04:22.460
that it can cope with both
smartphones and action cameras.

0:04:23.140,0:04:24.420
Looks good!

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There is a Feiyutech app that goes with this gimbal.

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In fact, with all the Feiyutech gimbals.

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However, the reviews on Google Play are so atrocious

0:04:35.200,0:04:40.160
that I don’t dare download it for fear
of wrecking my gorgeous smartphone.

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Luckily, you can use this straight out of the box.

0:04:43.000,0:04:46.900
It will do most of the things that
it’s supposed to do without the app.

0:04:46.900,0:04:51.060
You’ll even be able to connect it
to your smartphone with Bluetooth.

0:04:51.060,0:04:55.199
And that allows you to start and stop
recordings, and take photographs,

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Which is pretty much all I need.

0:04:57.280,0:05:02.120
So this is pretty nice. Costs about $100 brand new.

0:05:02.120,0:05:08.520
Not weatherproof. So I may end up upgrading to
a Feiyutech G6 Plus at some point in the future.

0:05:09.420,0:05:13.040
You could buy a refurbished one for around about $70.

0:05:13.040,0:05:15.520
The price difference between new and refurbished: $30.

0:05:15.520,0:05:17.100
I thought that wasn’t worth it.

0:05:17.100,0:05:20.820
I might as well get a new one direct
from Feiyutech, and it’s brand new.

0:05:20.820,0:05:24.280
So I didn’t want to take the risk, quite frankly, for $30.

0:05:28.480,0:05:31.680
Not bad. All you get is a gimbal.

0:05:31.680,0:05:36.180
This little tripod. I believe that could
go at the bottom of the gimbal.

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What is this…?

0:05:42.400,0:05:50.479
Oh, it’s a lanyard, charging cable, and
a multitude of different connectors.

0:05:50.479,0:05:52.940
Presumably so that you can connect…

0:05:52.940,0:05:57.300
USB-C, Micro USB, Lightning cable.

0:05:58.220,0:06:01.820
It does actually feel quite sturdy for a $100
device. It’s better than I was expecting.

0:06:02.280,0:06:06.300
Now Feiyutech claim that you can get
five hours use out of this per charge.

0:06:06.800,0:06:10.080
Reviews online suggest that’s a bit of an exaggeration.

0:06:10.080,0:06:14.240
You can also use it as a power bank to
recharge your mobile phone on the go.

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Obviously, that will eat into the battery life even further.

0:06:17.520,0:06:22.900
The Feiyutech Vimble 2 does have a party
piece that might interest you, and it’s this.

0:06:23.580,0:06:28.060
You can pull it out for 18 extra centimetres.
(That’s seven inches, ladies!)

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That means that you can use it for more wide-angle
footage when you’re taking photographs or Vlogging.

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I personally don’t see myself using that,
but it’s a nice feature to have, nevertheless.

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The most important question however is:
“Will it work with my smartphone?”

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Let’s charge it up and find out.

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Let’s start with the Ulefone Armor 6. Can this
gimbal cope with the girth of this phone?

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I need three hands to do this!

0:06:59.520,0:07:01.340
That that’s not gonna work!

0:07:02.260,0:07:04.500
Right, the answer is: “No, it doesn’t fit.”

0:07:04.500,0:07:09.440
It absolutely will not fit. It’s a few millimetres too wide.

0:07:09.440,0:07:12.720
That’s disappointing but they didn’t say that it would.

0:07:12.720,0:07:15.060
So I can’t blame Feiyutech for that.

0:07:15.060,0:07:21.640
Next up, let’s see if it will fit my Sony Xperia XA2.

0:07:21.640,0:07:24.680
This is one of my older phones. Still a lovely device.

0:07:24.680,0:07:32.980
Looking at it, it does seem about
the same size(ish) as the Ulefone.

0:07:32.980,0:07:37.720
Maybe a little bit thinner by a few millimetres.
Maybe a few millimetres is enough.

0:07:37.720,0:07:39.200
Let’s give it a go.

0:07:43.520,0:07:48.600
Right so it does fit… just about.

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This is the maximum extension that i’m at.

0:07:51.040,0:07:55.860
However… it does feel a little bit imbalanced.

0:08:01.440,0:08:04.220
Oh okay. That’s gone a bit weird.

0:08:05.440,0:08:08.479
Error message. That can’t be good.

0:08:08.480,0:08:14.140
I’ve never used a gimbal before. I really should
have looked at the instruction booklet… I can’t…

0:08:14.140,0:08:16.100
I’ll come back to you!

0:08:20.000,0:08:24.320
OK, so I’ve managed to get it to fit. Which is fantastic.

0:08:24.780,0:08:31.160
The only concern is that it feels still a little bit heavy.

0:08:31.160,0:08:33.740
As in, it it feels a little bit lopsided.

0:08:33.740,0:08:35.980
The centre of gravity doesn’t quite seem right.

0:08:36.860,0:08:39.620
See what I mean? It’s it’s just kind of slightly…

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Yes! Stabilized!

0:08:52.700,0:08:56.860
OK. So it fits the Sony…. barely.

0:08:56.860,0:08:59.860
This is my GoPro Hero4.

0:08:59.860,0:09:05.340
It can cope with the GoPro… just about.

0:09:05.340,0:09:10.740
If I had a slightly bigger GoPro or
action camera it would probably fit.

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Anything smaller than this GoPro
Hero4 probably wouldn’t work.

0:09:15.580,0:09:18.240
Oh it’s doing some weird juddery thing!

0:09:18.720,0:09:20.340
Gonna turn it off.

0:09:20.840,0:09:25.940
So what I need to do then is take this out
in the real world and see how it performs.

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Let’s go!

0:09:29.020,0:09:32.800
I’ve come out here to the canals to test out my gimbal.

0:09:32.800,0:09:39.200
But immediately we have a problem, because
it’s raining and the gimbal isn’t waterproof.

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Or weatherproof. Or even splash proof.

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Right now you’re looking at me on my rugged
waterproof camera, on my rugged waterproof phone,

0:09:50.080,0:09:53.120
on my rugged, waterproof selfie stick.

0:09:53.120,0:09:59.120
But I’m a little wary getting my non-rugged,
and non-waterproof, gimbal out.

0:09:59.120,0:10:02.060
Because I might want to send it back.

0:10:02.060,0:10:04.660
And if it gets ruined they’re not going to accept it.

0:10:05.160,0:10:12.480
It’s only drizzling. I may just risk it for
a little bit… just for your sake, OK?

0:10:17.500,0:10:18.660
It works.

0:10:19.540,0:10:20.960
Pictures looking good.

0:10:21.760,0:10:23.700
Oh… joystick’s a bit weird.

0:10:23.700,0:10:29.820
Because you have to push it in the opposite direction
to the direction you want the camera to go.

0:10:30.060,0:10:34.600
Thankfully, the weather’s cleared up
a little bit so I feel confident going out.

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Hopefully, this gimbal is giving you a much,
more stable image than the selfie stick here.

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Just going under one of our classic canal bridges.

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Isn’t it wonderful?

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All right and we’re done.

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Canal barges used to go through these.

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We don’t really have that many of the canal
barges running at the moment, as you can see.

0:11:00.340,0:11:03.720
There’s never anything… whenever I come here.

0:11:04.880,0:11:09.140
OK, so now I’ve got both my
gimbal and my selfie stick working.

0:11:10.140,0:11:12.080
Which is smoother?

0:11:12.420,0:11:14.940
Is this worth the extra effort and the money?

0:11:15.300,0:11:20.079
Because it is a hell of a lot of setup. Plus,
you’ve got to charge the batteries as well.

0:11:20.080,0:11:22.640
Which is giving me the nicer picture?

0:11:25.200,0:11:31.060
Is there much jittering on the
selfie stick versus the gimbal?

0:11:32.040,0:11:35.200
I’d hope the gimbal would be much, much smoother.

0:11:35.200,0:11:37.460
Now, of course, both of these can be extended.

0:11:37.460,0:11:40.420
The gimbal can be extended as well as the selfie stick

0:11:40.420,0:11:42.880
But this is just a gentle walk you

0:11:42.880,0:11:50.020
You’ve probably noticed that the image coming
from the gimbal camera is much, much sharper

0:11:50.020,0:11:53.800
than the image you’re seeing on the selfie stick camera.

0:11:53.800,0:11:56.600
That’s not because of the devices they’re sitting on.

0:11:56.600,0:12:01.440
It’s purely because the phones that
I’m using have very different qualities.

0:12:01.880,0:12:10.140
The Sony sitting on the gimbal is much, much better than the Ulefone Armor phone sitting on my selfie stick.

0:12:12.420,0:12:14.540
Don’t worry about the picture quality.

0:12:14.540,0:12:18.420
Just have a look at the stability of the video.

0:12:18.940,0:12:23.140
Shall we try running and see what happens?

0:12:31.680,0:12:33.120
What do you think?

0:12:33.580,0:12:37.260
Yeah, it’s pretty obvious the gimbal is far, far superior.

0:12:37.880,0:12:42.320
But… it’s a hundred quid. It’s not waterproof.

0:12:42.320,0:12:44.280
I’m scared of using it the rain.

0:12:45.300,0:12:46.760
I may have to give it back.

0:12:47.260,0:12:49.520
It does have this fun joystick.

0:12:49.520,0:12:51.660
Which means you can do stuff like this…

0:12:54.800,0:12:56.660
And all the way back…

0:13:02.720,0:13:06.280
Yes! That is quite fun. I like it.

0:13:06.280,0:13:08.320
So what do we think?

0:13:10.240,0:13:12.160
Should I hold on to the gimbal?

0:13:13.300,0:13:15.840
Not weatherproof. Not splash proof.

0:13:16.560,0:13:18.520
Bit of a risk in the rain.

0:13:20.900,0:13:25.200
Now the other question I had was:
“Does this gimbal work with action cameras?”

0:13:25.200,0:13:28.600
So, I brought out my GoPro Hero4.

0:13:30.100,0:13:33.500
It’s already on the gimbal as you can see.

0:13:33.500,0:13:35.640
I’m going to turn it on and see what happens…

0:13:39.680,0:13:42.140
Oh it doesn’t like that!

0:13:42.660,0:13:44.660
It doesn’t like that at all.

0:13:45.200,0:13:48.880
Oh we’ve got into error mode.

0:13:49.200,0:13:51.840
Yeah, that didn’t work out well at all.

0:13:52.520,0:13:54.940
Probably needs more weight, I think.

0:13:54.940,0:13:58.100
Yeah, you have to be a certain heaviness for it to work.

0:13:58.100,0:14:01.040
And I suspect that the GoPro is far too light.

0:14:01.040,0:14:05.200
I’m gonna give it another go and see what happens.

0:14:10.320,0:14:12.840
Yeah, that’s really not working out.

0:14:16.220,0:14:18.000
So that’s disappointing.

0:14:18.000,0:14:21.800
Looks like it just does not work with action cameras.

0:14:21.800,0:14:24.220
Or rather with this GoPro Hero4.

0:14:24.220,0:14:26.740
Presumably, because it’s far too light.

0:14:26.740,0:14:29.020
It needs something a little bit heavier.

0:14:29.020,0:14:31.280
Like a smartphone really.

0:14:31.860,0:14:36.080
I think I might have to return the
gimbal and get the other one.

0:14:36.080,0:14:39.180
The one that’s multi-use because…

0:14:40.000,0:14:42.380
I mean that one’s waterproof and weatherproof.

0:14:42.380,0:14:45.280
Or at least splash proof anyway. And this one isn’t.

0:14:45.280,0:14:53.860
And, seeing as I live in Birmingham, where it rains a lot,
in England, that might be the best choice for me.

0:14:54.720,0:14:58.280
So that’s that. I hope you found this useful.

0:14:58.680,0:15:01.200
And thank you very much for watching.

0:15:01.200,0:15:02.600
Later nerds!

0:15:03.300,0:15:07.260
OK, so sadly this is going back. Sorry Amazon.

0:15:07.780,0:15:11.560
Because this one has arrived!

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