Gimbals are becoming an essential part of any indie videographer’s kit. While not quite as ubiquitous as a tripod, many people might find themselves picking up their gimbal more often than their tripod. Being such a useful and popular tool these days has led manufacturers to develop plenty of options – and there are options.
Lately, the Zhiyun-Tech WEEBILL-2 has upset the traditional balance the gimbal world. In this case it takes on the popular RSC 2 from DJI’s venerable lineup. If you are trying to choose between these two then this video from Peter Makholm might do the trick.
Both the Zhiyun and the DJI come in at good price points and have comparable feature sets. The WEEBILL-2 clocks in at around $550 for the base model. DJI hits $500 for the RSC 2. It’s close enough that features will be a bigger factor.
This isn’t the end of the story, as for the WEEBILL-2 you’ll definitely want the back handle and case which will cost $650 in the Combo version. Add a transmitter and follow focus and you are up to $900. The RSC 2 comes in a $740 with all the extra pieces. It’s a big difference if you need a complete set.
As for weight, the gimbals are basically the same. The WEEBILL-2 has 0.1 kg more weight than the RSC 2. The WEEBILL-2 does feel nice with a mostly metal construction that inspires confidence – except for the flip-out monitor.
Also, the controls are configured mainly for right-handed shooters. The handle adds another 0.75 kg. DJI has a standard setup that comes in around 0.2 kg lighter with the acessories included.
Ease of use is a concern, and the DJI’s smaller and cleaner menu is a benefit to Peter. Buttons and controls are easy to learn to quickly get into settings. The adjustment points aren’t the most secure and heavier kits may have issues getting things locked down. The WEEBILL-2 does have a solid locking system.
One point is that the DJI uses a standard quick-release plate you might already use while WEEBILL-2 seems to have opted for a new setup.
As for actual performance, they both come through with flying colors. They both look good and have matched performance when it comes to stability.
These are more “compact” gimbals and if you want to travel with them you will want to know how they pack away. DJI has some quick releases where you can pop off some of the extra pieces and fold it up and you can throw it in a bag.
Zhiyun works the same way. Now, for a photo bag with smaller compartments you may find the larger footprint of the RSC 2 will require you to adjust some of the sliders for balancing, meaning you’ll need to re-balance when you start to shoot.
Operation will make use of the controls, and the RSC 2 appears to have some nicer buttons—like the trigger. The RSC 2 also moved the follow focus to a convenient place where you can just hit it with a normal grip. The WEEBILL-2 also has focus control but it does not have it is a good space. You probably won’t find it as comfortable to operate.
Payload is up next and Zhiyun has upped the load capacity to 4 kg, though you might have issues with balancing some larger cameras. DJI has a better balancing design and even though its payload is 3 kg it can manage cameras like the S1H. This is thanks to additional adjustment points for balance.
Mode selection on the Zhiyun uses a simple switch, but most of the modes are in the menu. DJI has a button to toggle through some modes though you can configure it using the app. Peter prefers the design of the RSC 2.
Battery life is actually a very big concern since the batteries are internal on both gimbals. The DJI RSC 2 is rated to 14 hours, though Peter claims a realistic shooting time of 4-5 hours of heavy use. The WEEBILL-2 states 9 hours, but it probably might not last that long in real-world use.
Which does Peter recommend? The DJI RS 2. It’s actually not the ones looked at in the video, but the extra benefits actually make it worth the extra money. Though, if you are looking to save some money just make sure you know what you are getting when you make a decision. Any of these gimbals will get the job done.
[source: Peter Makholm]