Feiyu Pocket 2 Review 3 Axis Gimbal With Built-in Camera And LCD Screen

Wednesday, August 04, 2021

They say that the best camera it's the camera that you've got in your hand at the moment that you need it. Unless you're a photographer though, the best camera you are likely to carry it's the camera built-in to your phone. Smartphone cameras have come along way and are capable of taking footage to rival that of a professional camera but...

If you want to capture smooth, professional looking video with a camera you have to use a gimbal like the Vlog Pocket 2, which massively improves the performance of a smartphone camera. The downside though, it adds extra bulk and weight to a phone. The new Feiyu Pocket 2 (seen pictured), in the other hand, solves that problem being about the size of a chocolate bar with a built-in camera, LCD screen, microphone and speaker. An external microphone can also be attached, although it requires an adapter, which is not included. The adapter can be bought from Feiyu.

The Feiyu Pocket 2 weighs 131 grams (173 grams with the protective case) and measures 13cm long, 4cm wide, 2cm thick. Feiyu Pocket 2 uses 3 axis mechanical stabilization via motorized axis joints that smoothly tilt (up to 280 degrees), pan (314 degrees) and roll (up to 180 degrees) the camera. The internal electronic sensors do a good job at keeping the cube-shaped camera  balanced and steady while on the move. The motors are whisper quiet so, they don't make any noise when tilting, panning or rolling. 

Feiyu Pocket 2 uses a 130 degree ultra-wide angle lens with f/2 aperture and Sony 1/2.3 CMOS sensor, which works better in daylight than low light. The camera sensor supports 4x digital zoom (no optical zoom), super wide-angle, wide-angle and narrow-angle, as well as video recording in 4k/60fps/120 Mbps (max) bitrate. Other video resolutions supported include 2.7K (2720 x 1520) and 1080p (1920 x 1080).

When shooting in 4k, 2.7k or 1080p, you can adjust the frames-per-second from 60fps, 50fps, 48fps, 30fps, 25 fps and 24 fps. There is a 120fps option too but only available in 1080p. The lower the frames per second, the lower the bitrate, which is a good because you may encounter problems editing videos recorded in 4K 60fps 120 Mbps. This is especially true when using a GPU intensive video editing software such as DaVinci Resolve. If you do encounter issues editing on your computer, there is a workaround to solving this problem. Simply move your computer's operating system and video editing software to one SSD (at least 120GB) and edit the video footage from a separate SSD. 

Feiyu Pocket 2 has an all metal body that gives it a premium feel and weight to it. On the left side of the gimbal, there is the USB-C charging port and micro SD card slot, which supports up to 512 GB cards (FAT32 and exFAT cards). 

The physical power button is located on the right side of the gimbal next to three pinholes concealing the built-in speaker. The speaker is a nice addition, although it has a "tiny" audio output. On the bottom of the gimbal, there is a standard 1/4"-20 female thread to attach the Feiyu Pocket 2 to a tripod. On the front of the Pocket 2 gimbal, there is a small joystick with centre push button, a flat shutter button and a microphone pinhole towards the bottom. Both the joystick and button are made of aluminium alloy.

The display consists of a 1.3 inch IPS color touch screen (240x240) that lets you access all the menu settings. The LCD screen is on the small side but works okay for reviewing photos and as a live viewfinder. Navigating menus is nice and easy, thanks to the dark grey background of the menus, which improves the contrast and readability of the LCD screen. Feiyu Pocket 2 doesn't integrate a smartphone adapter; hence you cannot wire the gimbal to a phone but, you can connect Feiyu Pocket 2 wirelessly via Wifi hotspot connection using the Feiyu Cam mobile app.

Feiyu Cam app requires an account registration but, other than that, it's a nice mobile application that enables you to use your phone as an external monitor. The app can be used in portrait mode and landscape and gives you access to all the functions of the gimbal, including interval photography (timelapse, motionlapse and hyperlapse), which you can shoot up to 4k. There is also follow mode (aka somatosensory mode), which makes Feiyu Pocket 2 camera track you. In order to use follow mode though, the phone has to integrate a gyroscope and not all smartphones do. The Feiyu Cam app also features an on-screen joystick for remotely controlling the gimbal camera, as well as a "selfie toggle", which quickly turns the camera towards you.

Feiyu Pocket 2 supports slow-motion video (2x slo-mo in 4k, 4x slo-mo in 1080p and 8x slo-mo in 720p). There is also three panoramic modes: 180 degree, 2x2 and 3x3 panoramic, which takes a total of nine photos across the top, middle and bottom of the subject and then, merges all nine photos into one single photo.

Feiyu Pocket 2 ships inside a hardbox with a thick foam cutout to store the gimbal and the protective case, which is made of hard plastic with a soft fabric lining and a built-in rubber strap to keep the gimbal in place. The Feiyu Pocket 2 protective case is a sleak-looking case with Feiyu-branding and specifically designed to fit the shape of the gimbal, making the protective case slimline so, it's easy to carry around without taking too much space. 

Taking the gimbal out of the protective case is easy, thanks to the side opening. Simply undo the rubber strap and slide the gimbal out of the case. You can even charge the gimbal on the go using a powerbank via the small hole opening on the side of the protective case. When using a 10-watt charger (5V/2A), it takes around 80 minutes to fully charge the gimbal's internal 875mAh (7.7V) battery, which is a non-removable lithium cell. A full charge gives you 3 hours 40 minutes of battery life in 1080p/ 30fps and around 3 hours 10 minutes in 4k/30fps.

As far as protection, the protective case only offers partial protection because of the side opening, which exposes the gimbal to side impacts. Overall, Feiyu Pocket 2 is a neat little pocket size vlogging camera. Compared to a smartphone gimbal, Feiyu Pocket 2 is much easier to use because you don't have to mount a phone. The camera and display are built-in to the gimbal so, it's just a matter of powering on the gimbal (takes 2-3 seconds) and, you're good to go. Calibration isn't needed, although there is a function built-in for manually calibrating Feiyu Pocket 2. Other accessories you get include a lanyard fabric cord and an unbranded charging cable 

Feiyu Pocket 2 will be on available soon on Indiegogo and, you will be able to place an order after 10th August with a 25% discount. Feiyu Pocket 2 will also be available to buy on FeiyuTech official store and Amazon with a USD 30 discount.

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