On this video wildlife and nature photographer Steve Perry (from backcountrygallery) takes a look at a new product by Wimberley – a monopod mini gimbal that has some interesting features.
Working with long lenses on a gimbal can be a challenge, partly due to finding a good head that is both compact and lightweight enough and capable of the movements that are needed and is also secure and easy to use.
A good heavy duty ballhead might give you some of these features, but not everybody loves the fact that it moves on both axis at the same time and you will need to tighten it down a lot. Using a full-size gimbal head can also be a solution but these are typically pretty large and heavy and have a shape that isn’t too convenient to carry if you need to move a lot from one location to the next while shooting.
The aptly named Monogimbal was designed by Wimberley to be a small and compact solution to all these issues. It can connect directly to the 3/8″ end of your monopod or can be used (as Perry used it) with an Arca Swiss base if you are going to take it on and off. The unit has two large knobs – one will lock your lens securely (the Monogimbal has its own Arca base) and the other will allow you to tilt (or lock it).
Perry explains how to best work with the unit, how to mount the lens (be careful here), how to balance it (pretty simple actually and he even suggests marking the foot of your lens so you can re-balance your lens with ease the next time you use it on the head) and shares his experience which is mostly very positive (we would probably need to get used to the fact that the lens is on the side of the monopod with this setup, but apparently Perry is fine with that).