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Zoom option for X5 gimbal

Aug 17, 2022
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I am setting up my Inspire 1 for inspections.
I am debating getting the Zenmuse Z3 or X5 with a 75mm lens ( no zoom, so I can balance the weight.
Would a dedicated 75mm lens be equivalent to the 77mm zoom the Z3 produces, or would the Z3 be the better option?
I appreciate any and all input.
I looked at a Z3 for my Inspire 1 for cinema. The camera was HORRID for that. A small sensor combined with "less than perfect" stabilization was a deal breaker. But for inspections - especially still photos - I think a Z3 would be an excellent camera. Fully zoomed, the video wasn't "film industry smooth," but it WAS "smooth enough" for inspection purposes. I just don't do that kind of work so I couldn't justify the $600 expense.

I realize from my other drones that zoom and video don’t mix too well. So I was primarily needing it for pictures. I like the size of the Z3 compared to the X5 with a zoom lense and then having to balance it out.
I was already leaning on the Z3 so i guess I will pull the trigger next month.
Appreciate the help!
There's an Olympus 14-42 that works with a plain X5, should come with the balancing ring. It works with the GO app...
There's an Olympus 14-42 that works with a plain X5, should come with the balancing ring. It works with the GO app...
I always wondered about that. How well does a balancing ring work on a camera whose lens counter-weight changes depending on zoom level? It would seem that sometimes the balance weight would be too heavy and sometimes too light, depending on the zoom amount. My understanding is that the gimbal has be nearly perfectly balanced. A zoom lens would insure it was "out of perfect balance" most of the time.


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I was considering that 14-42 lense but I believe that the z3 was closer to 77mm zoomed in. So the weight of a 75mm lense was going to be a lot more balancing. I am purely speculating here.
There's the option of using the balancing ring on this lens, or a filter the same weight. I keep a UV filter on mine, just did a toss of my office and can't find the ring... The ring does go on the front of the lens, and the length of travel must not be enough to throw it out of balance? It's a very compact and lightweight zoom lens.

Some lenses for the X5S and later ZenMuses require a balancing 'ring' to be attached to the _rear_ of the camera, and the X5 doesn't have that option. Some people try to get around it by taping a washer to the camera's rear, but there's not much space between the camera and the gimbal, is kinda risky.

The gimbal will work hard to stabilize an out of balance lens, either on a drone or on an Osmo, and may get an error message.

I've had no problems with my 14-42 lenses on my Inspire 1 V2, or an Inspire 1 with a V2 anti-vibe mount and gear extensions.
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