I would never have thought, I’d be making YouTube videos and vlogging, although the latter isn’t too often I have, we do and if Rona wasn’t around this year, we would have been more so at the events we usually attend. And what would make our lives easier, the Joby GorillaPod Vlogging Kit, or I’d like to think so, but let’s find out if it’s any good.
Joby GorillaPods are nothing new, they’ve been around for a long time and we’ve all got them here. They are one of, if not the best portable, versatile tripods, that can be used anyway. Joby has expanded on this and added a number of add-ons to help the lives of Vloggers, which seems to be an ever-increasing career choice for many.
In this bundle you get a GorillaPod tripod, mobile rig, Beamo mini LED light and the Wavo mobile microphone, plus a few different mount adapters, which is pretty much every you need to vlog, just add your smartphone.
The mobile rig is a really neat piece of kit and it’s the heart of the vlogging rig. It connects to the GorrilaPod via the 1/4″ tripod mount and it allows you to sit your smartphone in the grip. The grip section has rubber surrounds, meaning it will protect and secure your smartphone pretty well. It has a screw lock at the rear, unscrew it to make the grip larger or smaller to suit your phone but it also allows you to rotate the grip 90 degrees for landscape/portrait shooting. There is also a shoe mount at the top of the grip too, for the light, the mic, or something else. At the bottom of the mount, there are two further 1/4″ tripod mounts, where you can install two extra Gorilla arms, to extend the position of your accessories, like in the images.
Beamo Mini LED
The Beamo mini LED is a very small, well constructed and sturdy wireless light. It has a total lumen output of 1000 and colour temperature of 5100k, which is a cool white and has a CRI of 95+, which is colour rendering index, the higher the number, the more natural/true to life the colours look. Fear not though, there is a white rubber diffuser provided, which softens the light, making it feel warmer. It is rubber, it just sits on the front of the light and isn’t all that secure, unfortunately.
There are two pushbuttons, one to turn it on and then you use both to dim the light up and down, in stages, 5 total. If you want more, connect the light to your smartphone via Bluetooth, start the Joby app up and gain 0-100% dimming control. The light is magnetic and as there are no wires, you can get quite creative with where to stick it. There are also two shoe mounts and a 1/4″ tripod mount as well. There is a small red compartment, which unclips to reveal the USB C port, under a rubber, used for charging. Why so much protection, it’s waterproof upto 30meters, so you could take this underwater with you. Battery life, Joby state 40 minutes at 100% output, 100 minutes at 50%.
Wavo Mobile Microphone
The last part of the bundle and perhaps the most important one, the one that will add the most to your footage, the microphone. The Wavo Mobile is a cardioid directional mic, which helps pick up audio directly in front of the microphone, i.e. you, and will help reduce surrounding audio. Need to remove more background noise? No problem, a fluffy deadcat cover is provided too. The small microphone sits within a Rycote Lyre mount, which helps absorb any shocks and connects to the mobile rig or a Gorilla arm via a shoe mount. There are both 3.5mm TRS and TRRS connections, so both Android and iPhones are covered.
The End Result
Bringing all these elements together and that is the Vlogging kit ready to go. I am more impressed with the kit, the more I use it. The quality of each component is top-notch, everything is well constructed and a premium item in its own right. The kit as a whole performs very well and delivers exactly what you want it to, it levels up your vlogging game.
The mobile rig caters for all smartphones, but the whole kit isn’t limited to smartphones. Take the rig off, add your mirrorless camera or action cam, and away you go. The rig is well constructed, sturdy, easy to use, and holds your smartphone in place very well.
The light blew me away, literally, it’s very powerful. I like the size, shape and weight of the light, I like that it’s completely wire-free and the 5 stage dimming works really well. The light is very harsh without the diffuser, so I personally don’t think I’d ever use it without it and I wish there was some way to better secure the diffuser. It doesn’t fall off easily, but if it had a safety cord or something, I’d be less worried about losing it.
As for the microphone, I did notice an improvement over my onboard iPhone 11 mic and the amount of improvement will depend on what you’re plugging it in too. I imagine plugging it into an action cam will improve the audio 10 fold. The addition of the deadcat is a must if you’re outside, which is likely, and I’m glad they’ve included that. Make sure you use the correct cable with the microphone, otherwise it will not function.
It’s hard to show the performance of the light and mic through words and images alone, so check out the below footage.
Bringing all the components together, attached to one of the best on the go tri-pods on the market, it’s hard to say a bad thing about it. The kit is so versatile, take it out with you, set it up on a table, use it outside or in and it will help improve your vlogging, home or YouTube videos, or at least make it more efficient and better quality. I can also see myself using these components separately, attaching the mic to my M6 to better that audio, or take the light with me when I go out to help with lighting, or just use the tripod with my go pro to wrap it around a tree. As a kit, it’s fantastic, separately, just as good.
The kit currently retails for £179.99 and my initial thought was, that’s alot of money but now I’ve spent alot of time with the kit, it’s well worth the money and I have no problem with recommending it to you.
For more info and to purchase, head over to the official Joby website.
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