Experience next-level stability and precision with the Zhiyun Weebill S, your ultimate companion for professional filmmaking
The Weebill S showcases exceptional build quality with sturdy and durable construction. The compact and lightweight design makes it highly portable and easy to carry around. The version I have here came with a bag, which you would have to pay a little extra to get, so bare that in mind.
Inside the bag is the mini tripod, the gimbal itself, and a bunch of other accessories, like the cables for connecting the gimbal to your camera, irrespective of the camera you’re using, the USB type C cable for charging the batteries and the battery charger, the quick release plate, some other extensions for longer and heavier lenses and more.
Powered by Zhiyun’s latest motor technology, it effectively minimizes unwanted vibrations and camera movements. With an impressive payload capacity of up to 6.61 pounds (3 kilograms), the Weebill S is suitable for a wide range of mirrorless and DSLR cameras. The adjustable mounting plate and flexible balancing options allow for quick and hassle-free camera installation.
So, I have the camera, the lens, and the gimbal. The first thing I do is connect the tripod to the bottom of the gimbal. Taking a look at the quick-release plate, you need to connect the camera with the lens on. The idea is the have the camera set in the way that you would normally shoot. That means, have your battery inserted into the camera, flip the lens hood as always, and pull your screen out if you have a flip-out screen. Also, take off the lens cover, because if you balance the camera with the lens cover on, once you take it off to shoot, this is what happens. Also, make sure to you have a coin at hand for tightening the screw beneath the quick-release plate. Another thing to take note of is that the heavier end of the release plate is facing the lens on the camera and not the other way around.
There are 3 locks on the gimbal. Roll lock, pan lock, and tilt lock. And I’m not going to go too deep into how to balance this gimbal because there are a ton of tutorials on this on the internet, but here’s a summary. Lock all axis, and unlock them one at a time, adjusting the camera at each step. The first one to unlock is the tilt axis, located on the right side of the gimbal. Move the camera back and forth until the camera is stationary on the gimbal. Once done, you tighten the lock on the left side of the gimbal, like so. Still, on tilt, turn the camera with the lens facing up and adjust accordingly until the camera is also stationary. Tighten the screw, and then lock the tilt axis.
Next is the roll axis. Unlock the roll axis on the side and adjust the camera left or right until it doesn’t tilt to one side when you leave it. Tighten up the lock for the roll, right at the bottom of the camera. Then finally, the pan axis. Hold up the gimbal and have the lens facing down. Adjust accordingly until the camera does not swing too much to the left or right even when you move the gimbal.
Now that we have a perfectly balanced gimbal. We can go ahead and turn it on. But wait, it is important to unlock all axis of the gimbal before powering it on. Not doing so could and will damage the motors in the gimbal thereby reducing its lifespan. I mostly put the batteries in the gimbal once everything is set up and then turn on the gimbal. One more thing to do is, to allow the gimbal to automatically tune to the camera, by going to the menu, selecting motor, and then auto. The gimbal will begin to shake a little while adjusting the camera in place. You have to also keep in mind that whiles doing this, you’ll need to keep the gimbal on a well-leveled surface. I prefer a table or the floor. If for some reason your gimbal keeps vibrating after powering on, then the camera is not balanced properly and due to that, the gimbal struggles to balance it.
For an extra grip, I got this grip extension so I do always have to take the mini tripod off from the bottom and put it back on each time.
Here are some resulting footages from shooting with this gimbal. I am using the Nikon Z5 pair with the Tamron 35mm f1.8. remember to also do the ninja walk, where you bend your knees a little to accommodate the shocks your legs make with the ground in each step you take.
Now, there are a bunch of awesome features that I didn’t even go through, mostly because I haven’t tried them myself. But, paired with the right camera and accessories, you can create some interesting content with this.
But bare in mind that this is the setup that I have been using for the past 2 years for all the wedding and corporate videos I’ve shot as of May 2023
As of now, the Zhiyun Weebill S will set you back right about $280. This is still a good deal, giving the fact that the older gimbal I was using, the Zhiyun Weebill Lab is lost in a lot of functionalities as compared to this one and is even more expensive at $350. Don’t get that one, get this instead. But for those of us who own point-and-shoot cameras, smaller APS-C mirrorless cameras, or just have our phones for shooting videos, I would recommend checking out the Zhiyun Crane M2 instead. The video is up here and down in the description below.