Zhiyun Smooth Q3 review: Compact smartphone gimbal with rotating fill light

Nancy J. Delong

When considering a smartphone gimbals for my telephones, two manufacturers right away arrived to intellect, DJI and Zhiyun. Zhiyun makes gimbals/stabilizers for cameras and smartphones. It smartphone models have the Sleek products title and for the previous pair of months I have been tests out the Sleek Q3.

The Zhiyun Sleek Q3 is
offered for $89 or $109

if you want the combo package deal that arrives with some added goodies storage bag, ZY Cami 1-yr key assistance card, and a wrist strap. The zippered carrying/storage circumstance itself is really worth the $20 added price tag. The Sleek Q3 is moderately priced and also a great initially gimbal if you are intrigued in increasing your smartphone video clip outcomes.

Also: Ideal digital camera cell phone 2021: Get the ideal images and movies

Gimbals deliver 3-axis stabilization with inner motors that activate after you mount your cell phone and then transform on the gimbal. The gimbal stabilizes tilt, pan, and roll though also supplying various controls on the gimbal to pan, zoom, and move by way of various digital camera selections. You smartphone is related by means of Bluetooth to the gimbal and smartphone application support manual you by way of capturing written content with appealing perspectives. The gimbal also functions as a selfie stick or even as a tripod and is an necessary resource for video clip creators.


  • Compact gimbal
  • Incorporated tripod attachment
  • Strong smartphone application
  • Cost-effective

Will not Like

  • Battery daily life not as extended as predicted
  • Tons of selections might be baffling at initially


The Zhiyun Smooth Q3  is very close in dimensions to the DJI Osmo Mobile four/five, but is also far more inexpensive. Its lesser type component makes it straightforward to pack the circumstance and gimbal together with you almost everywhere. The Sleek Q3 also arrives with a tripod attachment for the bottom that serves as an prolonged rod for keeping on to the gimbal far too. The tripod foundation is very wide and produces a secure platform for applying the gimbal hands-cost-free.

Get the gimbal out of its package deal and charge it up by means of USB-C. I hugely recommend you see the Rapid Start Guideline that will present you how to complete unlock, extend, and set up your gimbal for use. It is just a handful of methods to set up the components, such as sliding up the most important vertical arm and tightening the screw, rotating the tilt axis repairing buckle, and then rotating the roll axis repairing buckle that has the smartphone mounting bracket connected to it. Slide aside the smartphone clamp, it has rubber braces on both facet, and insert your cell phone with the cameras facing away from you.

A person detail to take note about the vertical arm screw is that this is not intended to fully lock the vertical arm so really don’t crank down far too tough on the vertical screw. It is employed to alter the smoothness of the slide slot and lock in the contact factors so that ability flows to the motors all through the rest of the gimbal.

Prior to turning on the gimbal, you can execute a bit of handbook balancing. In landscape orientation, move the cell phone still left or proper within just the cell phone clamp until eventually it is steady and almost stage with the ground. In portrait method, you can truly slide the cell phone mount itself still left or proper, there are steel bars amongst the two clamp parts that slide still left to proper in the mount, until eventually it is almost stage to the ground. You do not require fantastic balancing considering the fact that the gimbal will align all the things when turned on, but it assists to get the balance close so that you really don’t have the cell phone awkwardly positioned or the gimbal performing far too tough to keep balance.

There is a LED gentle higher than your smartphone, when in landscape orientation, that can be rotated a hundred and eighty levels so you can use the gentle though recording selfie movies far too. Tapping and keeping on the leading of the gentle turns it on and then tapping it toggles by way of a few stages of brightness. The built-in gentle is a great aspect we do not see on the DJI competitor.

Also: Ideal Android cell phone 2021: Top rated qualified picks

On the back again facet of the gimbal tackle is the ability button and induce button. The USB-C charging port is on the proper facet with the zoom rocker on the still left facet. On the performing confront of the gimbal, obtainable and controllable with just your thumb though you maintain the gimbal, are indicator lights, method button, capture button, and a directional joystick.

4 of the buttons have many actions access with one, double, or triple presses. The induce button is 1 of the most employed with a one press toggling on/off Wise Adhere to method, a double press repositioning the cell phone to middle it, and a triple press switching your cell phone amongst landscape and portrait orientation. A press and maintain of the induce also toggles PhoneGo method. Check out the many button selections for the method button, capture button, and ability button. The joystick simply just moves you still left, proper, up, or down.


  • Light-weight: Built-in LED with a hundred and eighty diploma rotation and a few brightness stages
  • Smartphone potential: one hundred fifty to 280 grams
  • Battery: 1300 mAh for seven-15 hrs of battery daily life and a few hrs to fully charge
  • Proportions (folded): forty five x 154 x a hundred and eighty mm
  • Proportions (unfolded): 90 x 127 x 279 mm
  • Pounds: 340 grams


You can use the gimbal alone as a stabilizer for your cell phone, but you is not going to knowledge all of the particular effects and artistic selections except if you use the involved application. The ZY Cami application is offered for Android and Iphone models and delivers you with a complete capturing and editing alternative to the digital camera application on your cell phone. There are selections for video clip, picture, pano, dolly zoom, timelapse, hyperlapse, and wise selections.

The most important use of a smartphone gimbal is to capture video clip written content and the method button on the gimbal is targeted on this knowledge. Pan follow method (PF) implies that the tilt and roll axis motors are locked and the pan axis follows the motion of the stabilizer tackle. The joystick is employed to regulate tilt and pan axis in this method. When Lock method (L) is enabled the a few motors are locked and will not follow the motion of the stabilizer tackle with the joystick yet again controlling tilt and pan. In Adhere to method (F) the roll axis motor is locked with the tilt and pan axis motors subsequent the motion of the stabilizer tackle. 

The Issue of Perspective method (POV) is fairly radical in that all a few motors follow the motion of the stabilizer tackle. Vortex method is accessed from both the POV or PF modes with the POV indicator gentle flashing though in this method. PhoneGo method is enabled by pressing and keeping the rear induce button. The F indicator flashes when this method is enabled and in this method the digital camera pans and tilts subsequent the motion of the stabilizer at speedy velocity though the roll axis is locked.

The ZY Cami application also has a potent editor that allows you fully edit your captured written content proper on your cell phone. You can trim your video clip, include songs, include subtitles, include stickers, adjust playback velocity, reverse the video clip, zoom, rotate, include filters, modify colors, and far more. The Key assistance, 1 yr is involved with the combo package deal, delivers you access to on line editing, on line video clip storage, and far more templates for sophisticated editing of your movies.

Consumer guides, tutorials, and written content from other creators are all contained within just the ZY Cami application. Viewing other written content is good for inspiration and for supplying thoughts of how you can improve your written content far too.

Activities and conclusions

I shot movies applying the Zhiyun Sleek Q3 with a OnePlus nine Professional, Google Pixel 5a, and TCL 20 Professional 5G. My Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 has far too odd of a type component to perform in the gimbal, which was predicted. The cell phone clamp securely held these telephones and the rubber inserts secured the complete on the telephones. You can even mount your cell phone in a circumstance if it is not a bulky circumstance.

The Wise Adhere to method was very outstanding exactly where a inexperienced box appears that you area on your issue and then the gimbal follows that issue wherever they move. This is also practical when applying the tripod to document oneself doing matters in front of the digital camera.

The panoramic method with the tripod is amazing considering the fact that you can established the Sleek Q3 down on a secure floor, help pano in the application, and then hit document to enjoy the gimbal perform with your cell phone to capture a properly aligned pano shot. I always seem to move up or down a bit when I attempt capturing these just with my cell phone.

The dolly zoom alternative is an appealing outcome that we have observed in movies in the previous and it really is in some cases identified as the Hitchcock outcome. You move in the direction of or away from the issue though zooming in the opposite direction. This outcome was employed on Main Brody in Jaws to great achievement. The wise/template selections were also enjoyment as they give you some filters and techniques to experiment with conveniently exactly where you simply just pick out the template and then shoot the video clip.

In general, I was very contented with the Zhiyun Sleek Q3 gimbal’s effectiveness, price tag, and potent capturing/editing application. The gentle is a great addition and it really is a relatively compact gimbal. When Zhiyun advertises seven-15 hrs of battery daily life, my knowledge was that the seven hrs is far more usual and should really be predicted. That claimed, that is lots of time to capture video clip written content all day extended.

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