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I recently bought a Feiyu Tech MG gimbal camera stabilizer, and I nearly returned it as I endured the tortuous balancing process--a process that could have gone smoother had the cryptic manual been better.  Even after watching a couple YouTube videos, I still couldn't get it to work properly.  The motors made an nasty grinding noise shortly after turning it on.  I thought it was broken.

Long story short, it wasn't.  The camera must be near-perfectly balanced so as not to strain the motors, and there are 4 locations to adjust.  These 4 locations are indeed covered in the manual; however, with its non-native English translation and tiny graphics, that manual haunted my restless slumber over a 3-day bout.  The YouTube videos helped a bit, but they didn't cover all 4 locations--a tragic flaw.  So here are the 4 places you must adjust the balance.

1. Balance the camera on the mounting plate.
* You must do this first, and you must do this each time you attach the camera.  The manual presents this as step 2.  No!  Do it first!
* Take off the lens cap and setup the camera exactly as you plan to shoot.
* I suggest adding the included lens support screw if you have a zoom lens.  Unscrew it a bit so that it supports the lens without lifting it.
* Attach the camera to the mounting plate.  Screw the thumbscrew through the center of the mounting plate and lightly screw it in so that you can adjust the camera position on the plate.
* The camera should be flush against the side where the motor is, touching the rubber padding.
* Adjust the position of the camera on the plate so that it doesn't tilt forward or back, then tighten the thumbscrew.

2. Balance the camera on the tilt axis.
* This is the motor attached to the camera plate.  It's a pain in the ass because you have to keep removing the camera to access the allen screws.  In my case this was the holy grail of the balancing process because it ultimately stopped the motors from making an ugly noise.
* Loosen the 4 allen screws and adjust the height of the camera plate.
* Attach the camera again, being sure to balance it on the plate.  Then tilt it downward so the lens points straight down.  Does it stay pointing down?  It should.
* Keep adjusting it until the camera stays put when tilting it down.  To preserve your sanity, tighten only one allen screw as you do this.  Tighten all 4 when you got it Goldy-Locks-approved "just right."

It's all downhill from here, dudes and dudettes...

3. Balance the roll axis.
* This one is much easier because you can access the allen screws without having to remove the camera.
* Adjust the arm position so that the camera doesn't roll to the left or right, but stays level.

4. Balance the panning axis.
* Hold the gimbal out horizontally with the USB port facing down towards the floor.  Turn the camera so that the lens points toward the panning motor and the bottom of the mounting plate faces the roll motor.
* Does it stay put?  It should.  Adjust those 4 allen screws until it does.

Other Learnings & Tips
* You likely can't adjust the zoom while shooting because that will throw-off the camera balance.  In fact, you can't adjust anything while shooting that will change the camera's center of gravity.  You'd have to re-balance.
* I found it much easier to balance the first 3 locations by attaching the optional bars and putting the gimbal in 2-handed mode.  I adjusted the bars so that they made a stand of sorts.  I put a heavy object on one of the bars so that it stood up straight.  Now I could make adjustments without having to balance the gimbal itself!
* You may want to adjust the motor strength if the motors are still making sounds (see below).  The default setting is strong, which was too much for my camera.

Adjust the Motor Strength
* Put it into standby (1 long press for 1 second).  The light will flash 3 times to tell you it's in standby.
* Press the button 5 times.  This will cycle through the motor strength settings: strong --> weak --> medium.
* Press the button once to apply the setting.
* Observe the sound of the motors.  Repeat to cycle through the 3 strength settings to see which is best for your camera.

Button Presses
Here I summarize what the various button press combinations do.
1 press: Toggles between panning mode and locked mode
1 long press for 1 second: Enter standby.  The gimbal goes to "sleep," and the light flashes 3 times.
2 presses: Tilting mode
3 presses: 180-degree pan, aka "selfie mode."
4 presses: Resets the tilt back to level

Reboot It
* Put it into standby (1 long press for 1 second).  The light will flash 3 times to tell you it's in standby.
* Press the button 3 times.  The light will stay lit as it reboots, then go back into standby.

The Feiyu Tech MG is a superb & affordable piece of technology, but you must dedicate some time and effort to master the balancing process.
* Feiyu Tech MG on Amazon USA: http://amzn.to/25pyaip
* Feiyu Tech MG on Amazon Japan: Amazon Japan - Feiyu Tech MG

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please support this site and my blogging efforts by using the links in the article. Thank you!

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