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    FS7 on Ronin-s... is it possible?
    #1
    Senior Member legrevedotcom's Avatar
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    The answer will disappoint you, but it's not a resounding "no".

    I was just past my best mate who works pretty much the same way I do. They have a Ronin-s for their A7r and it's pretty cool. Of all the single handed gimbals around, this is the one I would get right now if I needed to buy one.

    Anyways, I stripped my FS7 II, put on the 18-110 (3356g in total) and mounted it backwards on the Ronin-s. Space-wise, there is no problem fitting the FS7 II on the baseplate. Even got room to spare towards the arm point of rotation.
    It will also balance and it will stabilize the setup BUT, it will only do so, if what you are doing is simple horizontal tracking or dollying. Pan function also works.

    What it will not do is tilting either way. As soon as you apply the slightest tilt, the tilt motor gives in and drops the camera.

    Another downside is that there is not an obvious solution to mounting the monitor. One might be able to fit it to the handle in some weird way, but oh well.

    It was fun to try and nice to confirm. Maybe DJI will get there in a generation or two, but then the smaller cameras might have caught up. I wonder how hard it would be to get the same motor power from the big ronin into the S version, it can't be far away.


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    Have you compared your rig weight to the max weight specs of the ronin-S? I believe a very stripped down FS7 would technically be within weight of the Crane 2. It's possible it's not balanced on the 3rd axis and sitting too low causing the motors to be overworked when tilting. Getting precise balance is really important towards the max payload of a gimbal.
    Cameras: 2x - Sony FS7, 2x - Sony A6500, Canon 5D IV, DJI Mavic Pro, Canon 5D II, Canon 60D, Canon G16, Canon Rebel XT, GoPro Hero 7, Gopro Hero 6 (RIP), 6x - GoPro Hero 3+ Black Edition, Canon XL2, iPhone 4, iPhone 6, Ricoh KR-10, Fed-2, Fujica Half Frame, Canon ZR-100, Sony DCR-TRV 310.


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    #3
    Senior Member legrevedotcom's Avatar
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    Yes, I admit we didnt go into detail when balancing. This setup is 3356g vs the ronins 3600g payload limit. But is that limit the one it can carry in extreme positions or is it what it can balance without tilting etc.

    Would love to try again when I have the time.


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    #4
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    I believe the Ronin S motors are stronger than the M.. did you use the App.. you can set the motor strengths .. and Auto tune.. (although you can do this on the rig itself too)..amongst a million other things .. quite a few 3rd party plates/clamps/handles for monitors.. have a look on the face book page.. would kill your arms though .. even a A7 gets heavy.. but very good gimbal..


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    #5
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    If the camera is properly balanced on ALL axes you might be able to do it -- though I would definitely cut the weight a little further. Make sure you're using lightweight batteries, and try a lightweight lens (such as a pancake lens or lightweight prime for a stills camera.) I'd also try mounting the viewfinder to the Ronin-S handle.
    I bought an inexpensive 'Simply Gimbal' side-handle mounting device for my Ronis-S:
    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...QAvD_BwE&smp=y
    Have done a couple of jobs with the EVA1 on the Ronin-S and the only problem has been trying to balance with the Sigma 18-35 on it. With smaller/lighter lenses no issues. Trickier part was figuring out the focus pulling part -- ended up getting a GH5s because it interfaces properly with the focus knob on the Ronin-S handle. Have typically been mounting a SmallHD 702 on the Simply Gimbal handle, using a light, flexible HDMI cable from camera to monitor, and then looping out of the monitor's SDI out to send back to client monitor.
    Actually, the toughest thing about the gimbal is getting production to give me the time to balance it properly. And of course the camera needs to be fully built and wired before starting to balance. In my experience, even something as small and light as a lenscap can throw everything off!
    So even though I haven't tried the FS7 on it, I'm pretty certain that once properly stripped down and balanced it should be functional on the Ronin-S


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    Senior Member legrevedotcom's Avatar
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    It was completely stripped but yes, a lighter lens would be an option. I really wanted the 18-110 to work because of AF. The battery was the swit 90 battery, because I thought Id need the counter balance, but with those two I could probably lose another couple of 100g.

    Will check that link.


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    Yes, weight differential between my "96" batts and the U30 is about 13 ounces (just over 350g). With a smaller lens you also won't have to worry so much about the counterweight issue. But definitely try it with a lightweight lens, and of course no handles, VF, cheese plate or mic on the camera. Plus make sure to use a super-thin, light and flexible SDI cable coming out of the canera (and velcro'd in such a way that there is minimal change is stress no matter what the camera position is)
    We were going to try testing one of the producer's FS7's with it on a shoot last week - but of course there wasn't enough prep time to do all the extra balancing and building, since it was more of a docu situation and I knew my typical takes would be 20-30+ minutes coontinuous -- so the lighter weight of the GH5s (and the focus knob interface) were going to be the deciding factor.
    Funny how things work out -- I bought the relatively inexpensive Ronin-S, and to get everything worked out to do the shots I wanted to do with it the total cost has gone up by a factor of 4x!


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    Does that include removing the top handle?


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    #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by FrancisT View Post
    But definitely try it with a lightweight lens, and of course no handles, VF, cheese plate or mic on camera.
    I assume this means removing the top handle. How long does that take?
    (my mistake for double post)


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    #10
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    Top handle is pretty quick - 4 screws. One of the companies I shoot for packs their FS7's for airline carry-on with the top handle removed. Maybe two minutes, or 3 minutes total if you put the screws back in the camera body so they don't get lost.

    But realistically, that's not going to be a limiting time factor -- proper balancing is what eats up the time. I've gotten to the point where, even though I can balance the Ronin-S fairly quickly with several different camera/lens combinations, my clients are impatient enough that I just put a GH5s on the Ronin-S at the beginning of the day and leave it there with a 17-50 stills lens on it - balanced and ready - since when they think they may want a Ronin shot they want to be able to see a run through/preview in less than a minute. Basically the time it takes to turn it and the camera back on, bring it to set and plug it into the client monitor There's no way to convert any camera from tripod/dolly/slider mode to balanced configuration on a gimbal within their time frame. I can get a decent match with the GH5s footage - so i figure the additional time they spend on matching in post is their cost for the time they saved on set.


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