Tales from the lockdown
ZHIYUN Crane 2 + sigma lens
Sony E-mount on α7rIII
Francesco Riccardo Iacomino
For some time I wanted to test a Camera Gimbal Stabilizer for my Sony mirrorless and the masterful SIGMA lenses. I wanted to have fun testing the potential of the Sony + SIGMA combo also in the video sector, so when M-trading gave me the chance to test a Zhiyun Crane 2 I welcomed the opportunity with real pleasure.
Crane came with a really stylish black case, inside which everything needed was kept, including the follow focus motor.
M-trading also sent me two SIGMA lenses with high aperture:
Setting up and balancing the camera on the Crane is quite simple, once you get the hang I would say that more or less a minute is enough.
The products arrived during the lockdown, so initially I had fun shooting some scenes near the house, in the countryside.
The video above was shot with the SIGMA 35mm 1.2 ART, a sensational lens.
Filmed in 100fps on Sony a7r3 then brought in slow motion to 25fps on Final Cut Pro X
Shooting is exceptionally fluid and cinematic.
SIGMA 35mm 1.2 is a heavy lens, but on the other hand the Sony mirrorless is light and the Crane is easy to handle, so overall the setting is well balanced and functional.
Then I tried the setting with the SIGMA 56mm 1.4
On this aspect I open a parenthesis: the lens is designed for Aps-c, so at first glance the choice to combine it with a full-frame Sony would seem crazy.

Yet it proved to be a perfect solution for video.
This is thanks to the fact that Sony has a specific 35mm aps-c video mode, with which it essentially uses only the most central part of the sensor and therefore natively crop the view. No halo at the edges and borders, therefore, perfect yield and maximum resolution, up to 4k even in aps-c mode.
So when you use a 56mm on aps-c, it becomes approximately an 80mm, super small and light, with a 1.4 aperture!
Walking and approaching this cute coal with Crane 2 and Sony+SIGMA 56mm was easy, light and fun. And I like the result very much, as the video looks smooth, cinematic and sharp, with cool shallow focus.  
Later, I attempted to combine landscape footage with short clips with people. Again, I used Zhiyun Crane 2 with SIGMA 35mm 1.2 on Sony a7r3.
The result is the video below, shooted on the first meeting with friends after lockdown.
There are some nice clips on the video, like the one at 36s or at 1.14s, but I also made big mistakes. 
As is visible in some parts of the video, some clips are partially "ruined" by a flickering effect due to my inexperience in managing the combination of aperture and shutter speed.
The desire to always push the lens to the maximum aperture (f 1.2 !) to enhance the shallow focus, even when there was too much light, has shortened the shutter speed too much, making the flicker effect. I will learn to manage this problem in time.
Of course, this is a defect to be attributed entirely to my setting error, certainly not to the lens, to the machine, much less to the Gimbal Zhiyun.

Then, after 2 month of lockdown, we were able to go outside our region, so I moved to Tuscany and I made this video below, a day in Chianti region.
I filmed both interior and exterior, experimenting with various camera movements, including POV with roll movement, a feature much appreciated on the Crane 2 (see the video at 30s).
I used both SIGMA 35mm 1.2 and the SIGMA 24-70 2.8, my standard lens that I also use the most for photography.
Even on the road I appreciated the lightness of the Crane 2, and once you get the hang the with the axes balance, even changing lens does not waste too much time., even the change of lens does not waste too much time.
Finally, on this first month with Crane 2 I really appreciated versatility, attention to details in materials and design, and above all the rendering on the videos, which are truly stabilized to perfection.
In combination with the extra quality of SIGMA 35mm 1.2, the effect is wonderful, and I really love the slow motion movement combined to the shallow depth of field.
OLED display on the handle and focus control help you to make every clip precise and cinematic, without the need to change settings on the camera! 
Focus control wheel is a killer extra feature, that seems to be really cool, but I only tried it for a few clips. This one below was filmed with SIGMA 24-70 2.8 Art (real time)
I am really satisfied of this first month with Zhiyun Crane 2. I believe that together with the SIGMA Art Lens and Sony mirrorless, the combo explosive: fun, lightness and extreme quality.
You really want to turn every moment in a cinematic  turn every moment into a cinematic scene! 
Francesco Riccardo Iacomino
Thank you!