Feiyu Tech G4 3-Axis Handheld Gimbal for GoPro Hero4/3+/3 Review
Review by Adrian Apodaca, RealRCReviews Owner
- Feiyu G4Handheld Gimbal
- 2 x 900mAh Batteries
- USB wire
- Easy to use
- Long lasting battery
- Amazing stabilization
- Solid look and feel
- Works with GoPro HERO4, HERO3+, HERO3
- Accommodates LCD Touch Backpack
- 3 great modes
- Screws that hold GoPro are cumbersome and low quality
- No quick way of installing and removing camera
- EXPENSIVE (cheaper now, but was over $300 when I bought it)
How many of you have wanted to use your GoPro as a normal video camera? How many of you have wanted to shoot video of your rc cars or plane and have found out the hard way that your footage looks straight out of the Blair Witch Project. Well, that was me. RC is expensive enough as it is, so not wanting to drop hundreds or thousands of dollars on video equipment is understandable. One day while watching some drone footage with 3-axis gimbal stabilized video, I started to wonder why there weren't readily available hand-held gimbals. I had heard about some DIY gimbals, and even of guys just walking with their drone in their hand, but I had never heard of a commercially available hand-held gimbal
I decided, like many of do, to "google it". The first one to come up was Feiyu Tech. I forget the name of the other I found, but the folks are Feiyu Tech answered my questions in a more timely manner and also guided me to the best gimbal for my needs and for my budget. They are now available through several US retailers, but when I got mine they weren't, so I ordered directly through Feiyu Tech.
Out of the Box:
The package arrived nicely packed, and the actualy G4 box and packaging look like something that came out of the Apple factory. Really sturdy box, thick, absorbent foam. The packaging actually makes for a great way of transporting your gimbal if you want to ensure it's safety. I do wish the included lipo batteries were more of a standard format so I could use them with my lipo charger, but the included charger is certainly adequate. You won't spend much time charging anyway as the batteries last quite a long time with this gimbal.
The G4 has three modes:
Panning Mode - Camera is permitted to pan left or right. Vertical tilts or rolls are restricted.
Panning/Tilting Mode - Camera is permitted to pan left or right and tilt up and down. Rolls are restricted.
Full-Axis-Lock Mode - Camera stays in its current orientation. All panning, tilting and rolls are restricted.
For shooting my RC surface vehicles, I use the panning mode as my head motion moves from left to right and I need the camera to not tilt up or down. I found the Panning/Tilting mode for shooting my RC airplanes as it allows smooth movement of the camera side to side and up and down. Finally, I found the full-axis lock mode the best for holding while running or driving as shown in my videos below. In particular, watch the second video to see footage of me running with the gimbal off, and then with it turned on. The difference in the video is amazing. Excuse the grainy parts of the second video as the sun was peeking in and out as I ran and that caused the GoPro to try to adjust. The videos are truly the best way of seeing the magic the G4 performs. Of course if you search for Feiyu Tech on youtube, you'll see tons of great videos shot by other folks using this gimbal
My one big beef with the Feiyu Tech G4 is the crappy screws that come with it. The standard screws arrive already stripped and didn't even hold my camera tightly. That caused some occasional jerkiness in my footage. I installed the other screws that came with it, and they seemed a little stronger and thicker. They have held up for the several months I have owned the G4. I still wish they used the clip mount they are now using on the newer model gimbals
I know gimbals made for drones are expensive, so it makes sense that the hand-held variety are also. I am not sure why they are so costly, but I guess once you add up the price of the 3 brushless motors and the technology that runs it, the costs add up. That said, the Feiyu Tech gimbals are on par, price-wise with all of their competition. I haven't tested any of the other brands, but I do like the G4. It does what it says it does and is a handsome, solid piece of equipment. If you purchase one, you will be pretty amazed at how well it stabilizes your video. The stabilizing software on the market doesn't even work as well as these gimbals do for stabilization. There are newer models by Feiyu Tech on the market already, but I can't justify the increase in cost when the G4 is now selling for about $250. When I bought mine, the G4 was retailing for $350 and the G3 was $250. The newer . I am sure they are awesome products as well, but for casual use, I'd still say go with the G4. You're going to love your footage!