The Ronin 3-Axis Brushless Gimbal Stabilizer from DJI is a camera stabilization system designed to give the operator close to the freedom of unencumbered handheld shooting but without the hand-shake. Suitable for most camera types and configurations up to 16 pounds, Ronin uses brushless motors that work on three axes: one for side-to-side "roll" - keeping the horizon level - one for tilt, and one for pan. The system is computer-controlled and boasts a precision of control of ±0.02°. An IMU (inertial measurement movement) detects movement and engages the motors to react, using algorithms to differentiate between intentional movement such as pans and tracking shots from unwanted shake. In addition to handheld shooting, the gimbal can be used in vehicle mounting scenarios and other contexts where vibrations or other abrupt movements would make tripods and rigid camera support systems unsuitable.
The Ronin supports dual-operator shooting, much like working with a jib that has a motorized pan/tilt head. In this mode, a second operator would use the included transmitter (radio controller) to manually control camera pan and tilt independently of which way the Ronin moves. The included transmitter/receiver system operates on 2.4 GHz and is proprietary. If you prefer to use a third-party transmitter there is a D-Bus port on the Ronin to install your own receiver.
As with sled and vest style stabilizers, motorized gimbal systems require balancing before use. Once balanced, you can configure the Ronin for your particular camera arrangement using the Assistant Software for compatible iOS and Windows (Desktop) devices with Bluetooth. Because every camera and lens combination has a different mass and weight distribution, there is an ATS (Auto Tune Stability) procedure in which each axis will adjust individually, repeating the process until all three are aligned. A gimbal tuning stand is provided so you won't have to hand-hold the rig during this process.
The included 4S lithium-polymer battery powers the Ronin for up to four hours. It is a "smart" battery, meaning power regulation and protection circuitry is built-in and there is no separate balancing lead, unlike many lithium-polymer batteries. A charger is also included, and it is important to always use chargers designed for the Ronin battery because of the smart circuitry. Two 12V DC PowerTaps and one USB power port on the camera base allow you to power on-camera accessories directly from the Ronin battery to simplify your charging regime and avoid unnecessary added weight.
A hard case is included to store and transport the gimbal and related accessories.
- Wide Camera/Lens Compatibility
- The Auto Configuration feature means the Ronin can adapt to a range of camera sizes from lightweight mirrorless models up to cinema cameras. It is suitable for payloads up to 16 pounds.
- SmoothTrack Control
- SmoothTrack gives a single gimbal operator the ability to translate their tilt and pan movements of the gimbal into smooth and stabilized movements of the camera's angle. This is designed to make framing of broad wide-angle scenes or even shooting in close quarters much easier during single gimbal operator use.
- Auto Configuration
- After balancing the camera with a simple tap of the ATS (Auto Tune Stability) button, Ronin will be automatically tuned for the mass and weight distribution of your camera rig. The gimbal will intelligently adjust parameters based on the camera rig's weight and independently adjust each of the three axes until an optimal setting is found.
- Three Operation Modes
Upright Operation Mode
Upright Mode allows the gimbal to be flipped over so the camera can be operated closer to eye level without straining to lift the gimbal. This can be used in various situations, such mounting on the top of the vehicle.
Underslung (Suspended) Operation Mode
Suspended Operation Mode is the standard operation mode for Ronin. Low slung, close to the ground, or simply holding the gimbal in front of you offers stabilized handheld footage. This mode would also be used when mounted the gimbal on a flying platform such as a multirotor RC helicopter.
When a slimmer gimbal profile is needed - such as when moving through doorways or narrow paths - Briefcase Mode is ideal. It allows the gimbal to be held to the side and close to the legs, much like a briefcase.
- Second Operator Control
- A second operator transmitter (radio controller) is included with the package. Featuring the form factor of an RC aircraft radio controller, the 2.4 GHz Ronin transmitter provides pan and tilt control as well user-assignable speed settings and operation modes via two toggle switches. If you would rather use a third-party transmitter a D-bus port is provided.
- Optional Joystick Pan/Tilt
- Single thumb control is possible for the Ronin Handheld Gimbal System. These Pan and Tilt movements are controlled via the optional joystick attachment, available separately. Additionally, SmoothTrack Mode can be turned on or off using the joystick interface.
- Assistant Software for Mobile and Windows
A mobile device or computer to run the Assistant Software is essential. It is available for select iOS mobile devices and Windows computers. With the software you can:
- Auto Configure the rig based on the weight and weight distribution of your camera after you've balanced it
- Adjust Smoothtrack tuning to user preference
- Enable and configure Second Operator Control
- Run diagnostics and generate stats
- Install firmware updates
- Tool-Free Adjustment
- A built-in balance adjustment system means no tools are needed for setup and adjustment, saving time when changing the setup for different camera arrangements.
- Accessory Mounting
- Dual 15mm (LWS) rods are incorporated for adding follow focuses or matte boxes. Meanwhile top bar accessory mounts let you attach field monitors, lights, microphones, recorders, and other "camera-mounted" accessories.
- Quick Release Smart Battery
- Providing an estimated 4 hours of run time (depending on use), the proprietary Ronin battery system is designed for easy changes in the field and charges using a dedicated charger that is included. The batteries feature indicators so remaining power can be checked directly on the battery itself. Unlike may lithium-polymer batteries, with the Ronin Smart Battery, overcharge and over depletion protection is built-in, as is individual battery cell charge balancing.
- Power Distribution Box
- Two regulated 12V DC PowerTaps, one 500 mAH type A female USB connector, and also a connection point for the DJI Lightbridge Long Range HD Video Downlink are provided. These provide power connection for various accessories, including motorized follow focus systems, video transmitters, and more - all while keeping the wiring to a minimum.
- Quick Release Top Handle
- Designed to save time breaking the system down or transporting it between locations.
- Protective Carrying Case Included
- A watertight, hardshell case with wheels is included for transporting and storing the Ronin. The case features a custom-fitted foam interior with spaces for the disassembled Ronin, transmitter, and two batteries with room leftover for sundry accessories.
- Based on Zenmuse Technology
- The Ronin adapts the same brushless motor technology used in DJI's aerial gimbals for handheld, terrestrial use.
- Aircraft-Grade Aluminum Construction
- Built with taxing professional shoots in mind, the Ronin is designed for durability and features integrated cable management to avoid cable ties or loops that can get snagged.
- Digital Absolute Positioning Encoders
- Implemented at each axis, these help the Ronin achieve a control accuracy of ±0.02%.