Zhiyun is heating up the competition with the reveal of its Weebill 3 gimbal, a small but sturdy tool for digital creators and filmmakers.
With DJI making waves with its new release, Zhiyun wasn’t just going to sit back and watch the magic. A competitor to the gimbal and drone juggernaut, Zhiyun hasn’t shied away from making gimbals that are small but feature-rich. So with the DJI RS 3 and DJI RS 3 Pro out in the wild, what has Zhiyun brought to the table?
The Zhiyun Weebill 3, of course, the next iteration of its DSLR gimbal line.
But in a market that’s getting a bit crowded, what has Zhiyun done to stand out? Let’s see what’s new with this gimbal.
New ergonomics, uncertain payload
Gimbals can start to get quite heavy when you start attaching cameras, lenses, and accessories to them. This is why we see such an emphasis on the Zhiyun Weebill 3 being more ergonomic.
For starters, it’s super lightweight at only 2.4 lbs. This brings it closer to the Weebill-S (2.04 pounds) than the Weebill 2, which weighed 3.15 pounds. The weight reduction is probably the reason why the rotating screen is gone, replaced by a 0.96″ OLED touchscreen.
The Weebill 3 also has a new SLING 2.0 design that incorporates a restructured L-shaped handle that is more stable when standing, as well as a new wrist rest and extendable handle. All that extra support should reduce fatigue and allow for more comfort when shooting.
But here’s the weirdest part: we don’t have payload capability. At least not one that we can find.
If we were to compare it, it would be between 7.3 pounds and 7.7 pounds, which is what the previous two gimbals we mentioned could hold. At least we have a camera compatibility list.
Next, the handle of the Weebill 3 also comes with thumb buttons for controlling settings and a mini control stick for movement. There’s also a customizable trigger and wheel that you can adjust to your preferences, such as the ability to change camera settings, control movement along a specific axis, or pull a focus unit from followed. These are all super cool additions, but they seem pretty par for the course with a gimbal of this size and estimated payload capacity.
But with a focus on content creators, Zhiyung has a few tricks up his sleeve.
Audio and light, integrated
With most content creators being solo shooters, it’s hard to find audio and light help. That’s why the Weebill 3 offers a built-in Hi-Fi microphone and 1000 lumen fill light.
The light looks a little small but is dimmable, will provide a color temperature of 2600K to 5400K, and have a CRI of 90+. Audio-wise, the built-in mic will have noise cancellation, and you can run the mic directly into the camera.
We don’t think these extra accessories are going to replace dedicated gear, but they’re nice to have in a pinch and you won’t have to deal with a bunch of wires tangling you in a mess.
Extended battery life
So it’s a nice addition. Compared to the previous version, the Weebill 3 offers up to 21 hours of shooting all day.
This is done by combining three standard 18650 2600mAh batteries. PD fast charging is also included, so you can keep your gear powered up longer or recharge from 0-100% in 2 hours. At least according to Zhiyun. Your camera might even run out of juice before your gimbal does.
Fortunately, creatives will benefit from direct charging for their cameras at 5V/1A, which should cover most of your DSLR/mirrorless camera needs.
Should you buy it?
Well, that depends on what you’re using it for. The Zhiyun Weebill 3 is extremely affordable for what it does. It is lightweight and has a long battery life and some nice little features that can make your vlogging life so much easier.
Should you rely on it for your next independent feature film? Probably not, but it would be a good kit to have, especially with such a low entry point, price-wise. At the very least, it will allow you to learn more complex camera composition.
The Zhiyun Weebill 3 is available now for $449 or with a combo that includes a backpack, wrist rest, and extendable handle for $529. It’s a bit more expensive than previous models, but it’s still cheaper than the DJI RS 3.