Zakuto Smart Z-Finder – a smartphone viewfinder now on Kickstarter
Zakuto recently launched kickstarter crowdfunding campaign For an interesting new smartphone accessory: the Zakuto Smart Z-Finder. This system allows you to attach a viewfinder to your phone and rig up various accessories like a microphone, support handle, or on-camera light. The standard bundle starts at $299, and you have until November 18th to support the project.
When it comes to cinema or mirrorless camera rigging accessories, there are a few names to bear in mind, including US manufacturer Jacuto, which has been in business for more than 20 years. In the Canon EOS 5D Mark II days, the Zakuto Z-Finder was one of the first things filmmakers bought. In fact, this loop magnifies your screen for cameras without a built-in EVF and adds a third point of contact for added stability when shooting handheld. Nowadays, cinema cameras like the Canon EOS C70 can be stable Count on that handy mechanical viewfinder,
Over the years, Zakuto developed the cage, state-of-the-art electronic viewfinders, and more than 500 rigging accessories. The company is now back on one of its landmark products, only this time for the smartphone market – the Zakuto Smart Z-Finder,
Zakuto Smart Z-Finder – Bridge
At the core of the Zakuto Smart Z-Finder, you’ll find a smartphone mounting bracket they call a “bridge.” The bridge sticks to the sides of your smartphone and locks in via a red knob.
The Bridge fits every smartphone with a screen between 6.1″ and 6.7″. In short, Smart Z-Finder is compatible with almost every phone on the market including iPhone 11 – 14 Pro Max, Samsung Galaxy, Sony Xperia phones, etc. According to Jacuto, you can also attach your smartphone to a case, including Moment cases that allow you to mount additional lenses and filters on the front of your smartphone’s camera.
The bridge has industry-standard mounting points, including seven 1/4″-20 mounting screws, three Arca-Swiss mounts, three NATO rails, and three cold shoes.
If you add optional supporting rails to the bridge, you’ll get more cold shoes, 3/8″-16, 1/4″-20, and NATO rail mounts. But the real magic happens when you move the viewfinder across the bridge.
a viewfinder for a smartphone
The viewfinder attaches to the bridge magnetically and magnifies your smartphone’s screen. This is handy for improving manual focus, but also blocks reflections or sunlight. In addition, a viewfinder allows you to compose your shot more accurately.
As I mentioned, when shooting handheld, the Zakuto Smart Z-Finder will create a third point of contact with your body which helps stabilize your footage. The included removable strap will give you a better grip around the viewfinder.
Zakuto really thought everything through: There’s an opening at the bottom of the viewfinder to access your touchscreen. Popping off the Z-Finder and reconnecting it is also straightforward.
If you’ve ever used the Zakuto Z-Finder, you’ll feel right at home with the Smart Z-Finder: it has the same adjustable diopters and anti-fog technology they’re known for.
Zakuto Smart Z-Finder Bundle
If you want to go one step further with the Smart Z-Finder, Zakuto offers director and cinematographer bundles. The director’s bundle includes an auxiliary rail that runs across the top of the bridge and a director’s grip.
The Cinematographer’s Bundle adds a shoulder stock and a “brow” accessory that serves as the matte box’s French flag.
price and availability
Zacuto Smart Z-Finder is available for pre-order now on kickstarter for $299. The director’s bundle is $379, while the cinematographer’s bundle is $465. Shipping of all products should begin in February 2023.
zakuto kickstarter campaign Live until 18 November.
What do you think about Smart Z-Finder? Do you think this smartphone is a handy add-on accessory for filmmaking? Don’t hesitate to tell us in the comments below!
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