We get an honest review of the new Zhiyun Smooth 4 gimbal. Including talk about the problems and issues with the Android version of the ZY play app.
Tuber Scott Dumas gives us his opinion of the Zhiyun Smooth 4 gimbal. Walks through how he uses it to film and shoot video. Also talks about some of the problems with how the smartphone gimbal functions and why the Smooth 3 may be a better choice for some people’s needs.
The Zhiyun Smooth 4 is the latest hot selling gimbal but if you are an Android user you will run into many problems with the ZY play app. Samsung phone users are having the most issues as Samsung phones will not give the ZY play app access. They block many of the permissions needed to make the app and the phone work together as designed. If Samsung won’t give the app the needed permission the ZY play app will never work correctly. Zhiyun will never be able to update the app to work to the quality you get compared to the iPhone.
Problems with Samsung phones and the ZY play app include:
No 4k support – 1080p max recording with app.
Zoom wheel function is very choppy.
3×3 pano option always fails.
The gimbal keeps drifting after you stop moving. (Big Problem)
If you are left handed you can hit the zoom wheel by mistake very easily and ruin your shot. Left handers also can not reach the top button on the back rocker switch. This makes it very hard to use the PhoneGo Mode.
The Zhiyun Smooth 4 is a great option for iPhone users and right handers. But, if you use an Android phone you can expect troubles, especially if you own a Samsung phone. The problems when holding the gimbal with your left hand can cause big problems. Much more than expected. Just a slight bump of the wheel with your finger will cause the phone to zoom in and causes the video to become very pixelated. The zoom wheel blocks you from reaching the PhoneGo Mode button on the back of the Smooth 4 with your left hand. That leave left handed people unable to do fast panning.
You can find the Zhiyun Smooth 4 here with free shipping. Also consider the Smooth 3 here which suits lefty’s and people with larger phones as it can hold 260 grams vs 210 grams like the 4.
22 thoughts on “Zhiyun Smooth 4 Review Test Video And Issues With Android Phones”
This describes most of the problems I hate about my Smooth 4 gimbal. I’m left handed and the wheel blocks my finger from getting to the back switch. That takes away one of the major controls of the gimbal. A bad design flaw. And if you have a Samsung phone you are screwed. Most of the functions don’t work right. And no 4k options, come on! One thing you didn’t mention is most larger phones you have to slide the arm out all the way it get it close to balanced. When you do that the phone hits the body and you can’t pan up. Also that stops you from being able to click the arms into the lock position. If the app does not get fixed in the next 3 weeks I am sending mine back to Amazon as I feel it is defective.
I have had so many problems and issues with the Smooth 4 gimbal. I really wanted to like it but it is driving me nuts. My friend has only a few issues with the iPhone X and the Smooth 4. But, if you are using a Samsung phone you are phucked. The ZY play app is an unfinished piece of junk.
How come Zhiyun have not updated the software for Android yet. I just bought a Smooth 4 and is unable to use with my phnoe Samsung C9 Pro. Dear Zhiyun please update soonest .
Samsung will not let Zhiyun accesses all the phone permissions they need to make the app work well with many Samsung phones. It is likely the gimbal will not work correctly with Samsung phones ever.
I had problems with my smooth 4 and Samsung S7…..bluetooth wouldn’t connect. Had to update phone anyway so tried a galaxy S8 next, still no joy. Then I pdated the firmware on the smooth 4 which fixed the bluetooth issue.
I don’t know enough to understand what is missing, however my S8 now works 100% with the controls (via Zhiyun app) … so for me the only issue is the Zhiyun app doesn’t shoot 4k video.
I have a Samsung S8. I updated the Smooth 4 to the latest firmware and I have the latest version of the app. I still have the panorama function constantly fail. Unusable zoom with the knob as it is very choppy. I also have issues with the gimbal shutting down and I get the red light of death. Even with the S8 balanced perfect. The Smooth Q was great but the Smooth 4 is a huge fail for Zhiyun. I don’t think I would ever buy from them again as I no longer trust Zhiyun.
Im having a problem with the arm failing after about 20 minutes then from then on it just keeps going crazy please somebody help me if your only allowed to use it for a certain amount of time then just let me know.
That always happens to me when the motors overheat. It is due to the weight not being balanced. You have to shut the Smooth 4 down and let it cool off. Then it will usually start working correctly again.
I had problems with my smooth 4 and Samsung note 5…..bluetooth wouldn’t connect. Then I pdated the firmware on the smooth 4 which not fixed the bluetooth issue.
Phone: Samsungj S9
Issue: Time Lapse Not Working
Whenever I use the time lapse feture (both still and motion time lapse), it shows that it’s recording, but when I go back to play, whether in the ZY Play app or my samsung gallery, only a still picture shows. I know the time-lapse feature is present on the s9, but for some reason, it does not work when using the smooth 4. This sucks!
I still have the same problem on the S8. You are not alone.
I have a smooth 4 and a samsung s6 my problem is when ever i take a still photo and i review the photo it is cropped on both sides. I then try using my samsung s5 and takes a photo and it does not have the cropped on both sides. any solutions to this problem ?????????
I have not heard of that issue. I will look into it and comment if I learn anything.
SO MAD, I bought the junk 4, I mean the smooth 4 and have basically toss my money out the window. I have the Samsung S8. The smooth 4 shuts down, functions do not work. Seriously WTF. Its going back to Amazon ASAP. DO NOT buy if you have a samsung or using android. Once again a IOS company trying to fill the android market.
I also have the S8 and I got my Smooth 4 a couple of weeks ago.
The only problem I am having is with panoramas, tracking and timelapse, it seems to be compass based as when i point it in one direction to take a panorama, it swings round to the point where it cant turn around anymore and keeps trying.
I was aware of the fps limitations before I brought it so not too fussed and you can always use the regular camera app without the button controls for that.
Other than that, all the menu bits work, the buttons to navigate around and start stop recording seem to do what they are supposed to, the wheel works fine (for focusing, I don’t use it for zooming, because digital zoom on any device is pointless)
I updated the firmware straight away so not sure if that is the reason mine seems to work ok. Also controlling the gimbal is not as easy as I expected, it does take some skill in knowing how to use and when to use the axis locks, it won’t take the perfect smooth shot following a dog running past the camera just by standing there (as I kinda expected it to 🙂 )
I am having a problem with my smooth. 4 when I set it up and turn it on after a while the pan motor keeps turning in all directions and not functioning as it use to before. Any solution or a fix for this problem
Since a couple days I keep triying to connect the gimbal to my phone right. Set the camera manufacturer in the app and the gimbal controls the camera, but I still cannot use my phone as a monitor. When I set the app to “phone camera” mode, I keep seeing my iphone camera and not my actual camera… what am I doing wrong?
Which brand and model phone do you have?
I have a Note 9 with ZY Play v 2.0.5 (21), every time I used3 x 3 Panorama, Time Lapse , I will loose control of the zhiyun smooth 4 afterwards. I have to turn off the smooth 4 and close the app – for it to work again.
Same problem with the Galaxy S8. You never know what will work correctly with the Smooth 4 and Samsung phones. So far I have found no fix for this. Sorry.
Any fix yet that they maybe fixed on the firmware since this post? Currently thinking about buying either the 4 or Q-3
Still not much better with Android.