In recent years, the popularity of gimbals has skyrocketed, and for good reason! These nifty devices allow videographers and content creators to capture smooth, stable footage on various devices, from smartphones and action cameras to large mirrorless cameras. Today, we are doing a Hohem iSteady MT2 gimbal review because of its unique features and attractive price!
The Hohem iSteady MT2 Gimbal Stabilizer kit first caught our attention for one main reason: It has an AI tracking system, complete with its own camera, that allows vloggers and videographers of all types to ensure that a subject’s face is kept perfectly framed! This is one of the coolest things we have seen in a while, and it really works!
In this review we will delve into all of its features, the build quality, the overall performance, and more, to help you make an informed decision.
Hardware and Specs
Let’s get into the specs and essential details of the Hohem iSteady MT2 Kit Gimbal Stabilizer:
- Price: $329 USD
- Where to Buy: Amazon
- Dimensions: 8.86 x 4.13 x 12.2 in
- Range of Motion: Pan: 360°, (Infinite Rotation) Roll: 200°, Tilt: 290°
- Item Weight: 3.59 lbs
- Maximum Supported Weight Recommendation: 2.65 lbs (1200g)
- Battery Life: Up to 17h, 6-8h w/ AI tracking module & LED light (3h charge time)
- Camera Width: 5.27 inches
- Camera Height: 3.96 inches
- Camera Thickness + Lens Length: 6:94 inches
- iSteady MT2
- AI Vision Sensor & fill light
- Tripod (tabletop)
- L-Bracket (Arca-Swiss style)
- Camera Quick Release Plate (Arca-Swiss style)
- 1 Mobile Phone Quick Release Plate (Arca-Swiss style)
- Adapter for Action Camera (GoPro etc) 1 Thumb Screw Wrench, 1 Thumb Screw
- Type A – C Gimbal Charging Cable
- 7 Camera Control Cables
- Storage Bag & User Manual
Hohem iSteady MT2 Gimbal Stabilizer Review | Primary Features
The Hohem iSteady MT2 offers all of what you would expect from a gimbal stabilizer, and more. It is very nice that you do not need to purchase additional accessories in order to use this gimbal with other types of cameras; everything is included.
Of course, the star of the show is the fact that regardless of which camera you’re using, the iSteady has its own camera for AI subject tracking! The AI module also includes a color-changing LED fill light, which is perfect for adding just a touch of illumination to low-light filming scenes.
The integration of AI tracking in the Hohem iSteady MT2 is the standout feature for this product, so let’s discuss this first. This functionality is incredibly handy, for newcomers to full-time solo content creators alike. You can place the gimbal on a tripod or table, turn on the AI module, and activate the tracking by making the “OK” hand gesture. The AI module’s camera will recognize you and smoothly pan/tilt the gimbal to follow you around! (You can halt tracking with the “STOP” gesture, too.)
The AI Tracking opens up possibilities for capturing dynamic behind-the-scenes shots effortlessly, ensuring the subject remains in frame throughout an active filming scene.
For optimal results, it is recommended to pair this feature with a 24mm or wider field of view lens, and with subjects that aren’t too distant from the camera, of course. Also, smaller or medium size lenses, especially with a hood attached, may partially obscure the view of the AI module. (Just make sure that the AI module can see your face and your hand gestures, though, and you’ll be good to go!)
With the ease of automatic balancing, plus the magnetic AI subject tracker, you can take your content creation to new heights, with far fewer pesky setup obstacles or compositional constraints. Happy filming!
One thing that we did notice is, the AI module uses a purely magnetic attachment without any sort of locking mechanism. This means that if you bump it really hard, it will fall off. While a locking clip would be nice, a small rubber band gave us some peace of mind.
Ergonomics and Intuitive Gimbal Design
The next most impressive feature is the overall economics, design and build quality. The intuitive control layout ensures that even beginners can quickly adapt and operate the gimbal with ease. The MT2 Stabilizer also has a sleek and user-friendly design. Its joystick, wheel, screen, and Axis locks are all intuitively placed for quick and easy navigation. If you have prior experience with other gimbals, the Hohem iSteady MT2 will undoubtedly provide you with a familiar and seamless experience.
Note, of course, that obviously this gimbal, like most, is a right-handed design. As a left-handed person, however, I didn’t find it too uncomfortable to hold in my left hand, though the side wheel is a bit less effortless to operate.
Overall, the physical build quality of the iSteady MT2 is very solid. Basically, all the parts we can see are metal and feel well-made, from the arms to the locking mechanisms and quick-release mechanisms. To keep the gimbal secure during transportation and storage, the MT2 is equipped with locks on each axis.
Balancing the Gimbal
Of course, achieving physical balance is crucial for optimal gimbal performance, as well as good battery life! The Hohem iSteady MT2 simplifies this process with its easy-to-use balancing system, allowing users to fine-tune their camera setup effortlessly.
While the gimbal is off, it is very easy to mechanically adjust each arm to balance perfectly with any camera, large or small, that fits its weight limit requirements. Don’t forget to pre-position your camera’s flip-out LCD, and add any accessories such as a shotgun microphone at this time as well.
Then, simply turn the gimbal on, (preferably while it is resting on a solid, level surface) …and it will self-balance in a few seconds! Or, if you haven’t physically balanced the gimbal yet, or forgot to unlock one of the arms, the gimbal will warn you. (Balancing a gimbal is something you can master in a few minutes, of course!)
Adjusting the Camera’s Height | Vertical Video
Another nifty addition that the Hohem iSteady MT2 offers is a built-in L-bracket! This provides users with the option to easily reposition the camera vertically, which is very useful for social media content.
NOTE: if your camera is small/lightweight enough, you probably won’t need to mechanically rebalance the gimbal when switching from vertical to horizontal!
As mentioned, to aid users during operation, the iSteady MT2 uses a system of beeps and error messages on the screen. These notifications provide valuable feedback, alerting users of any potential issues or errors that may arise during use.
Main Hohem MT2 Gimbal Modes
The Hohem iSteady MT2 comes with a range of gimbal modes to cater to diverse shooting scenarios:
- “PF” (Pan and Follow): The standard mode for smooth and steady tracking shots.
- “PTF” (Pan, Tilt, and Follow): The standard mode, plus vertical (up/down) tilt.
- “L” (All Lock): Locks the camera in position for completely fixed-angle camera movements.
- “POV” (Point of View): Mimics the user’s movements, providing a dynamic perspective.
- Sports Mode: Enhances motor response, ideal for capturing fast-paced action sequences.
Most content creators, especially vloggers, will almost always just use either PF or PTF. These camera angles, combined with the wrist-action movements to “aim” the camera, as well as the thumb joystick, provide more than enough control for all types of filmmaking!
We did find that the “L” mode is also incredibly useful for creative B-roll type camera movements such as filming from a moving vehicle, or doing foreground “reveal” shots.
Mirrorless Camera Compatibility
Despite its relatively small size, the Hohem iSteady MT2 offers compatibility with various mirrorless cameras from popular brands. Even some (though not all) full-frame mirrorless cameras will mount with ease! This makes it an attractive option for professional videographers and enthusiasts alike.
Hohem iSteady MT2 Phone App
The dedicated Hohem iSteady MT2 phone app allows users to unlock additional features and customization options. With the app’s intuitive interface, users can access advanced settings and remotely control the gimbal, adding another layer of convenience to their workflow.
Hohem iSteady MT2 Review | Pros & Cons
Summary of Pros
- Unique AI tracking for seamless subject tracking
- Impressive maximum payload capacity for its size & price
- Ergonomic and user-friendly design
- Durable build quality
- Ample shooting modes for total creative freedom
- Auto-calibration feature allows for quick setup
Summary of Cons
- AI module magnets could be stronger
- AI module view may be obscured by larger lenses or lens hoods
- Arca swiss plate not fully Arca compatible (smaller than standard)
One thing to note is that, although the iSteady’s tripod plate is listed as Arca-Swiss, and appears the same size as most other plates, it is actually a little bit more slim. Therefore, what this means is that the Hohem plate may be too small and therefore unable to lock into certain other Arca Swiss ball head clamps, and some other Arca Swiss plates may be too big for the iSteady clamp. Just keep this in mind!
While the Hohem iSteady MT2 offers an impressive array of features, it faces competition from other leading gimbal stabilizers such as the DJI RS3 Mini and Zhiyun Crane M3S. Ahd while all potential buyers are encouraged to compare these products to find the best fit for their specific needs, we think that the key elements stand out very clearly: The Hohem AI tracking module is a truly unique feature, and it just works incredibly well.
Combined with the AI itself and the hand gesture interface that lets you identify yourself and even frame yourself within the composition, the iSteady MT2 does allow digital content creators to do things simply not possible with any other gimbal.
As a slightly newer product on the market, the iSteady MT2 may not have as totally intuitive as an LCD or mobile interface compared to the biggest name brands, however, getting used to the interface does not take long at all. Therefore, considering all the pros and cons of features and value versus the competition, we feel that the MT2 is our top choice!
In conclusion, the Hohem iSteady MT2 Kit Gimbal Stabilizer excels in providing smooth and stable footage, thanks to its robust hardware, intelligent AI tracking, and ergonomic design. Its versatility in accommodating various cameras and smartphones, coupled with an array of shooting modes, makes it an excellent choice for content creators seeking professional-grade stabilization.
While it may face strong competition from other gimbals in the market, the Hohem iSteady MT2 stands tall as a reliable and feature-packed tool for capturing beautiful video content.