Zhiyun Smooth 4 takes your smartphone videos to a new level: hands-on
The Zhiyun Smooth 3 was released last year at a whopping $300, so it's certainly a relief and unbelievable to find the Smooth 4 at a considerable discount right from the onset! Needless to say, the design of the Smooth 4 has been scaled back substantially to achieve its new, lower price point. And honestly, that's the most striking thing about the Smooth 4 versus its predecessor, seeing that it now features a mostly plastic construction – with a design that can be perceived as more complex than before.
There's significantly far more buttons, controls, and knobs with the Smooth 4, which can be a bit overwhelming at first, but they're appreciated because they provide more control over different aspects of the stabilizer. Setting it up is a breeze by placing our smartphone into the grip and adjusting the balance to ensure it's somewhat stable before turning it on. What's nice, though, is that there's now a locking mechanism with keeps the smartphone holder in place – instead of dangling, which is a common annoyance we have with these stabilizers.
Much like other smartphone stabilizers, there's an abundance of modes to choose from to best fit your shooting needs. From follow mode, to strictly panning, and even locking it in place, we're able to quickly cycle through any of them. There are two buttons with trigger on the back of the handle, where the top one enables follow mode – while the other gets us into this neat "PhoneGo" mode that increases the responsiveness of the movement. This is great for fast moving shoots, such as sports, seeing that the motors are able to quickly move without any jittery movements. The knob on the handle allows for a couple of things, too, like manual focus pulls and zooming – giving creators yet another set of tools at their disposal.
The Zhiyun Smooth 4 is far more advanced than most other smartphone gimbals, making it an ideal choice for serious content creators. Like seriously, this takes shooting video with your smartphone to a new level! And the best part is that it's priced aggressively at $139, giving it a whole lot of bang for the buck. If you've been holding out from buying a smartphone gimbal because of their costly prices, then now's finally the time to take the plunge because the Zhiyun Smooth 4 will be easy on your pockets!