Updated: Aug 19, 2021
A few years ago, gimbals were mostly for your smartphone, or costed quite a bit for one that could handle a DSLR. Now they’ve come down in size and price, and we have the DJI Ronin SC which has been highly talked about.
We’re pairing this with the Sony A9 and 16-35 f/2.8 GM lens and you can see how smooth it is while Bobby’s walking up the stairs.
The Ronin SC is the smaller brother to the Ronin S, which was designed for larger DSLRs. This one came out a few weeks ago and is specially designed for the mirrorless market.
For a lot of YouTubers and filmmakers out there, this is going to be the gimbal for them. The reduced weight is definitely a big draw, coming in at just 1.09kg, which is around half the weight of the Ronin S.
Even though the gimbal itself is relatively light, once a camera and lens is added on, it’s not the easiest thing to hold for longer periods of times. If you don’t work out, you might want to consider starting if you’re looking to use a gimbal.
The Ronin SC can be taken apart into three different sections, with the tripod grip, the grip with battery and then the base and arms is left. That makes it easy to pack it up into a bag for travelling since you can disassemble the gimbal and store it as space allows.
The build quality is also super premium, DJI has used a lot of great materials on this. It definitely feels sturdy and well-made.
The battery life is good, running around 11 hours on a single charge. You can also charge the gimbal via USB-C, which means that you can technically haul along a powerbank just in case that 11 hours isn’t enough for your shoot.
The tripod stand is also super handy, especially if you want to just get the gimbal down on a table to record interviews, or just general scene shots.
But let’s talk about why you might need a gimbal. While they’re good to have and can add some beautiful shots with great stabilisation, there are also limitations to it.
If you’re looking to just have a gimbal handy for an overseas trip or a short shoot, perhaps the Ronin SC might be too much. A phone gimbal could be a better choice for casual videographers, but if you’re looking to bring out your mirrorless camera, then yes, the Ronin SC could be a good choice.
If you’re unsure how to set up and balance a gimbal, then definitely watch the video on top. Bobby brings you through it all, but here’s are some things to remember.
Do take note that if your lens zooms externally, each time you zoom in or out will result in the gimbal being unbalanced. This can be annoying as you’ll have to rebalance the gimbal each time, but can be avoided if you have a lens that has internal zoom.
The Ronin SC is easier to set up than other gimbals but it’s also complicated in one regard, and that is because every little bit makes a difference.
The screw at the bottom of the plate can be loosened for a quick release if you want to remove the camera from the gimbal, but on the Ronin SC, it doubles up as the balance for left to right, or front to back. So if you move the plate even a bit, the camera can come off.
If you’re using a camera with a bigger eyepiece like the Sony A9 or the Canon EOS R, you might have to remove the eyepiece or it’ll end up rubbing against the arm of the gimbal. For the A9, it’s easily popped off, but the EOS R requires some fiddling with screws so we recommend just getting a bigger gimbal unless you’re confident in your skills with the screwdriver and not losing the screws.
To wrap up, we do like the gimbal and think that DJI has done a fantastic job. Aside from the tight clearance for eyepieces and the plate at the bottom pulling double duty, we basically don’t have any other gripe about it.
More information about the DJI Ronin SC and purchasing options can be found at DJI’s website.