Calibrating the Zhiyun Crane Gimbal

screen-shot-2016-09-23-at-1-42-21-pmBalancing a camera lens combination like the Panasonic Lumix GH4 and Lumix G X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 on the Zhiyun Crane is a simple task which even most novices can accomplish in a matter of minutes. Nevertheless, when the gimbal is exposed to extreme changes in temperature, it is still possible that during operation, the camera does not remain horizontal. In this case, it is advisable to calibrate the gimbal wirelessly via Bluetooth using either the Zhiyun Assistant app for mobile devices or the Zhiyun Gimbal Tools app for desktop computers. Here, I’m going to discuss how to use the desktop app, as I found the tiny images on my iPod next to impossible to see.

First, download and install the USB driver, found at the Zhiyun Tech website. Next, download the Tools App and open it. Now, connect the gimbal with the USB cable provided and turn on the power switch, but do not start the gimbal (use the USB located on the handle near the joystick, not the one on the tilt axis motor). The camera does not need to be mounted on the gimbal during calibration. The app should recognize the gimbal. Begin by clicking on the calibration bar at the bottom of the box. You will be prompted to lay the gimbal down in six different positions. Images will appear, showing exactly how to rest the gimbal on a flat surface, and when calibration for each one is complete, a new image will appear. A large check will appear once all six positions have been calibrated. Remove the USB cable, turn off the gimbal and restart. Wait ten seconds, and the camera should now be horizontal. The entire process takes no more than a few minutes to complete.

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If, after completing calibration, the camera is still not level, you can fine tune the pitch and roll axes using the Zhiyun Assistant app. Connect to the app via Bluetooth, then go to the Stabilizer Settings menu. Pitch and roll can be adjusted in increments from +5 to -5 degrees.