Now, if you are here reading this article, then I guess it is pretty safe and fine to assume that you already have somewhat a good idea of what a gimbal is and what it can be used to achieve. And hence, that part where I explain to you what a gimbal is and what it can do, I will skip for now and jump straight to the part where I explain to you in detail the complete working mechanism of a gimbal as well as how it actually helps to keep your camera completely stable overall.
Breaking everything apart
Well before we can talk about the mechanism employed behind the working of a gimbal, I bet it will profit us more if we first try to break down the entire gimbal into its basic parts and try to figure and understand which part is what and what part does what.
Like most other electronic devices, a gimbal too is one such device which may come with quite a number of controls and buttons which help in easy handling and controlling of the gimbal as well as the camera which is to be mounted.
A handle, I believe is one of the most crucial elements in a gimbal. Otherwise, how else would you carry and handle it. Usually a gimbal comprises of only one handle bar for most cases. However, you may also come across some heavy gimbals which provide you with two or more handlebars for better handling and grip.
A gimbal you could say would not have been a gimbal in the first place if it wasn’t for motors. It is due to these motors and a couple of actuators that are responsible for the real working of the gimbal which involves moving and rotating the mounted object on the various directions and axes specified to give the required stable video output.
Position Sensors (IMU)
The IMU component lastly, I would say is the brain behind the scene for which the entire operation of the gimbal is carried out smoothly and easily. The IMU unit or most commonly known as the Inertial Measurement Unit is one such component which is responsible for sending signals hence and forth to the various parts of the gimbal, so that the position and acceleration of the movement of the pivot element is maintained and balanced at all time to give stable and smooth output.
The Gimbal Working Principle
“Gyroscope and Accelerometer” – is LOVE
Well, the reason I say Gyroscope and Accelerometer is love is because of the simple fact that it is this Gyroscope and Accelerometer behind which the entire working of the gimbal is based. It is due to the presence of various Gyroscopes inside a gimbal that a camera is able to rotate as well as move while focusing on a subject while recording. On the other hand, the accelerometers installed in a gimbal work together with the gyroscopes to measure the acceleration as well as maintain the speed of the gimbal in order to give some really stable and smooth output.
Now, after gyroscopes and accelerometers, the other most important elements involved in the working of a gimbal are the various axes or directions in which the object or camera is let to move and rotate in order to make recordings feel like they are stable and without any kind of vibrations. Typically, a 2-axis gimbal comprise of two working axes whereas a 3-axis gimbal work to give stabilization in all the three axes i.e. the yaw, pitch and roll.
When we say yaw, we mean that the camera or object is made to rotate laterally from left to right and right to left sidewise on the Z-Axis.
Then when we say roll, we mean that the camera can rotate to the left and right on the X-Axis.
And finally, when we say pitch, we mean to say that the camera is able to rotate on the Y-Axis in an up and down motion and vice versa, so that when focusing on a single subject while moving and recording, there is no kind of abrupt shakes and the camera can remain as stable as possible.