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Karma Grip Extension Cable Review

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Since the media event in September last year when GoPro introduced the Karma and the Karma Grip they gave us a preview of an accessory for the stabilizer called the Karma Grip extension cable. This extension cable has only recently been made available for purchase and I thought I would check it out to see just how useful it was.

The Karma extension cable is basically an accessory that allows you to mount the stabilizer away from the handle, allowing for a smaller and lighter unit to be mounted. This can be very important especial when mounting the unit on a helmet or wearing the stabilizer on a backpack or chest mount. The karma handle can then be held and used as a remote for full control of your Hero 5 or can be tucked away in a pocket or in a backpack.

Karma Grip Extension Cable: http://amzn.to/2pKfjQ5

Karma Grip Extension Cable

With the cable comes two Velcro straps that helps secure the cable to what ever you are mounting the Karma Grip on. Its pretty simplistic in its design and does function effectively, however I can’t stop wondering if this cable is worth the $100 price tag. It is useful, but when it comes to reducing the overall size, the savings are not significant.

One handy configuration I know I will be making use of this summer is converting the Karma Grip to a stabilized camera crane or jib. I did so by mounting the Karma Grip stabilizer to the new El Grande extension pole by GoPro. I then attached the handle of the Karma to the handle of the El Grande Pole using the GoPro bike / small pole mount. This allows you to fully extend the El Grand and get nice high and low angles while still being able to control the Hero 5 Black. This is an ideal setup for many activities like filming car shows or getting your camera up high in a crowd or really low shots without straining your back, all while being stabilized with the Karma Grip.

Karma Grip Extension Cable: http://amzn.to/2pKfjQ5
Karma Grip: http://amzn.to/2q3gKMo
El Grande Extension Pole: http://amzn.to/2pLs8eW
GoPro Bike Mount: http://amzn.to/2qwAJ5X

Using the Karma Grip extension cable with El Grande extension pole.

 

Using the Karma Grip extension cable with El Grande extension pole.

My final thoughts on the Karma extension cable is very neutral at this point. I think it is a handy accessory, a little over priced and really only useful to some individuals for a handful of activities. This is definitely not a must have accessory and its usefulness will greatly depend on the individual and how they use the Karma Grip. I am however glad that I purchased the extension cable and I know I will be making good use of it myself this summer.

A Quick Tip: When you purchase the Karma Grip extension cable it comes shipped with the ends attached / plugged in together. A significant amount of pull force is needed to get the grip ends apart. The instructions on how to get the grip apart is pretty vague and if your like me you might find yourself a little nervous about breaking the unit. This is demonstrated in our YouTube video review.

You can watch our video review below.

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GoPro Gear / Accessories

iSteady Pro Gimbal Review | Budget GoPro Gimbal For Under $100

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In this review we are taking a closer look at the iSteady Pro, a budget GoPro gimbal that you can pick up for under $100. Before I even get into the review of this new gimbal by Hohem, I want to point out how nice it is to see more competition of GoPro gimbals popping up on the market. Competition fuels innovation and improvements and not to mention forces more competitive pricing. We seen this happen with smart phone gimbals. A few years back DJI release the Osmo Mobile with a price tag of $299. Soon afterwards we seen third-party gimbals launching with prices as low as $99. This caused DJI to lower its price when they launched the Osmo Mobile 2 earlier this year to $129.99.

The Hohem iSteady pro is a simplistic GoPro gimbal that comes packaged in a nice case and even includes a mini tripod for those times when you want your gimbal resting on a suitable surface to create time-lapses. Also included with the kit is a micro USB cable for charging up the unit. I found the gimbal to be very comfortable to hold with its molded hand grip. It is a nice compact gimbal and very light to hold. First impression are good, it is a little plasticky but what do you expect from a $99 gimbal. All in all it does look to be well constructed and even includes a joystick for nice smooth movements.

The Good: The handle features a full-sized USB slot that can act as a power bank to charge any device that can be charged via USB. It also has a micro USB port near the camera mount that can be used to charge your GoPro while using the gimbal. Now this only works for cameras that you mount where the battery door is not blocked by the motor. I found the footage I shot with the iSteady Pro to be quite smooth and was pleasantly surprised. Like all gimbals there is some slight motor vibration noise, however I did find it to be of an acceptable level. Hohem has a nice little app for the iSteady pro that allows you to control the gimbal remotely and make some adjustments to how the gimbal behaves when in use. A very basic app but a nice touch for the price.

The Bad: I did find the gimbal handle would knock the camera on occasion when doing extreme moves/angles, so you have to pay attention to the angle at all times. I also found the horizon a little tilted when doing fast panning, it would correct it self but could be annoying to some film makers while other may like the fluid more natural motion.

All in all I found this to be a nice little gimbal for the price. If you’re looking for a low-cost gimbal you might just want take a look at the Hohem iSteady pro, I am sure you will be satisfied with the purchase. Watch our full in-depth review on YouTube.

iSteady Pro (USA) https://amzn.to/2L5wclP
iSteady Pro (CAN) https://amzn.to/2NUUIUN

 

 

Hohem iSteady Pro packaging.

Hohem iSteady Pro includes a nice case for transporting and protecting your gimbal.

 

The Hohem iSteady Pro includes a micro USB cable for charging and a small mini tripod.

 

Hohem iSteady Pro.

 

The iSteady Pro has nice simple controls including a joystick.

 

Hohem has a nice app to allow you to control and adjust settings of the iSteady Pro.

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GoPro Gear / Accessories

New Updated GoPro Seeker Backpack

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A few weeks ago GoPro quietly updated the GoPro seeker backpack with a few small changes. The first change is they have made the back pack slightly larger and increased its capacity from a 16 liters to a 18 liters. Upon visual inspection this did not significantly increase the overall size of the backpack. When doing a side by side comparison it’s very difficult to see any size changes. The other feature that have added is a new laptop sleeve located in the back compartment beside the water bladder compartment that is now capable of holding a 15″ laptop. This was one complaint that many had with the original GoPro seeker and has now been addressed.

Another nice thing is that GoPro has dropped the price of the seeker backpack. For a long time the seeker backpack retailed at $169.99 U.S however the new price of the updated GoPro seeker backpack is $149 U.S. You can still purchase the original seeker backpack on amazon for under $120. The big question is … is it worth the upgrade if you already own the original GoPro Seeker Backpack. Personally I would have to say no, to me the changes are not significant enough to justify the cost. However if you are looking to get a new backpack, now is the time with the new low-cost and updated model. The seeker is a high quality GoPro backpack that is super comfortable to wear for long periods of time and can hold of ton of gear. I highly recommend it.

Updated Seeker Backpack: https://amzn.to/2L8Z9cA
Old Seeker Backpack: https://amzn.to/2NLJrWO

 

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