Ulanzi U-Grip, camera stabilizer review

The Ulanzi U-Grip is a concept that is made by different brands like Brofish, Puluz, Yelangu, the Sevenoak mic-rig, and many others.
Its greatest advantage is that it can be used to mount very different camera models like DSLR, handycam, GoPro, other action cams and also your phone.

The Ulanzi U-Grip and its siblings are very recommended on various reviews and Youtube as the must have video rig.
However, although it’s very cheap to get, the concept has one very big drawback – especially with a heavier camera such as a DSLR, wich I will tell after a brief explanation.

In principle, the intention is to mount the camera in the longitudinal direction of the U shape.
The placement of the camera, the weight of the camera, the U shape and the placement of the handle give this concept a strong stabilizing effect due to gravity. And that is the problem: the way you should hold the U-Grip.

When you hold the grip from above, it is great to film from a low point of view, and the stabilizing effect is very good this way, but if you want to use the U-Grip at eye level, you automatically will hold it at the curve – the side . And that is a lot harder, especially with a heavier camera such as a DSLR. Also, the stabilizing effect is largely undone by this, because of the leverage that the weight of the camera has on the grip, and the placement of your hand, you almost automatically support the U-Grip from below, so that all stabilizing effects are lost.
I have seen that some users place their DSLR in the transverse direction, but this way of holding is not very useful either, and the stabilizing effects are also largely undone. The only advantage that you still have is that you can mount different accessories on the grip.

Is it completely bad then? the lighter the camera, the better you film with it at eye level. The U shape also gives a certain protection, and through the lower supports you can also put the U-Grip somewhere down to film yourself or the environment. The U-Grip is less suitable for filming above your head, for obvious reasons.
Ok, to summarize :
Pro:

  • suitable for filming “low point of view” or certainly below waist level
  • usable as a pocket tripod
  • strong stabilizing effect
  • certain form of protection
  • can mount extra accesories
  • easy to carry

Con :

  • not very suitable for eye level filming
  • not very suitable to use above crowd
  • stabilizing effect almost disappears when you don’t use the upper handle

Conclusion: the Ulanzi U-Grip (and all other comparable U-Grips) has a strong stabilizing effect, but only when used under certain conditions. It is not very handy to use above waist level.
So I think it comes down to how you are going to use it.

Pictures will follow…

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