So, our regular readers will probably know that we have reviewed a number of popular wearable gimbals over the last few weeks and we have kept seeing constant requests for a dedicated Hohem XG1 review. We have decided to publish this article due to the number of people reaching out each month about this entry-level wearable gimbal and finally had the free time available to publish our own dedicated review.
Although the Hohem XG1 has definatley got off to a slow start, more and more people are starting to become aware of the gimbal and add it to their collection of action camera accessories. This has lead to a direct increase in the well deserved reputation the XG 1 enjoys within the community as well as the number of people reaching out about the gimbal.
Additionally, the recent firmware update released by Hohem corrected the vibration issue that some users were experiencing during use cementing the gimbal as the leading budget-friendly wearable gimbal available right now. This is one reason we feel that the Hohem gimbal range is starting to dominate the entry-level gimbal market across all verticles, they are lightning fast to get a fix out for any issues that their users encounter.
Now, just to get your expectations inline for what you should really be expecting from the Hohem XG1, make no mistake, there is no way that it can compete with the Evo SS that is over double the price and what we consider to be the best wearable gimbal on the market right now. That said, in our opinion, the XG1 is doing a great job for its price point and in our opinion, the performance that it offers outright blows the competing entry-level wearable gimbals out the water.
If you are on a tight budget or just want to pick up a solid little gimbal to record you enjoying your action sport of choice then the Hohem XG1 is probably the best option right now. With the exponential rate that its customer base is growing and the reputation that the gimbal has earned for itself within the community we really don’t see it being knocked off the top spot for its price point any time soon either.
Now before we actually get into the review, we just want to make our readers aware that the Hohem XG1 has had some issues with vibrations for a small number of units. As we touched on earlier, a firmware update has been released to correct the issue so if you do end up adding the gimbal to your action camera accessories, be sure to update it to the latest firmware build available. It is very easy to do and its free and prevents any unwanted issues that can be avoided.
Performance And Functionality
The GX1 officially supports all of the current GoPro action cameras, the Sony RX and SJCAM range as well as the Garmin Virb with a high chance of being forwards compatible with any future releases too, especially from the GoPro range due to them usually using the same form factor for their cameras. In addition to this, there are also a number of unofficially supported action cameras that the Hohem XG1 works with due to so many cheap GoPro alternatives using the same dimensions as the official GoPro range.
Provided your action camera matches the dimensions of any of the officially supported cameras and comes in at under the 0.264-pound maximum load capacity of the Hohem XG1 you should be good to go. Now, we have seen a few people comment on the maximum load capacity of the XG1 being under the 0.3-pound industry standard for action camera gimbals but in reality, concessions have to be made to offer the excellent image quality of the XG1 with its low price tag.
We feel that the below-average maximum load capacity can be overlooked as it still supports a large number of popular action cameras with levels of image stabilization that blow the competition out the water. If the XG1 had an additional $50 to $75 on its price tag then we feel the criticism over its load capacity would be valid but we feel people marking the gimbal down due to this are just nitpicking.
Now, the maximum battery life of the gimbal is another thing that we have seen people comment on but again, this is less than half the price of the market-leading Evo SS that offers a maximum battery life of five hours. Although the XG1 has a battery life of up to one and a half hours, this is pretty standard for its price point in the market. In addition to this, the official GoPro Karma Grip that is more than double the price of the Hohem XG1 has a battery life of under two hours too.
One workaround that we have seen people use who own the XG1 is to carry a USB power bank with them while out and about on their adventures. In their downtime, they then jack their power bank into their XG1 to top it up to extend its battery life as long as required.
With more and more people starting to upload their video footage of their action sports to social media and sites like YouTube, ensuring that you are able to provide the absolute best image quality possible helps you stand out from your competition. This can really help you convert your viewers into subscribers and followers to grow your accounts as time goes on.
Another advantage of the Hohem XG1 is its ability to offer a 320-degree pan, tilt, and roll ensuring optimal range of movement during use. This helps the gimbal provide you with the image stabilization that you require no matter how you aim the gimbal head for your action camera. The Bluetooth connectivity on the gimbal also allows you to connect the gimbal to the Hohem smartphone app to view the video footage that you are capturing in real-time.
All in all, we really think that Hohem have done an excellent job with the XG1 and we are impressed by the levels of image stabilization it is able to offer its users. The performance and functionality are second to none and easily push it to the top of the pack of entry level wearable gimbals on the market right now.
User Interface And Control System
This is not just a limitation for the XG1 but also the premium price point wearable gimbals on the market. Unlike their handheld gimbal variants, the wearable range does not need to be tweaked much as they do one job and do it to the best of their ability. The handheld gimbals have large load capacities with a wide range of camera payloads that can be used on them with a large number of tasks that you can use them for. This is why a solid control interface system is important for the handheld range but the functionality provided for the XG1 via the smartphone app that we will cover below should be more than enough.
As we mentioned in the section above, in our opinion, the smartphone app for the Hohem XG1 is the easiest way to quickly and easily tweak the gimbal settings if needed. Considering that the app is free to download to your smartphone, we would highly recommend that you download it on the off chance you need it for whatever reason. As the old adage goes, it’s better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.
Just like the vast majority of other wearable gimbals on the market right now, the Hohem XG1 is very easy to balance. Now only is the actual balancing system very simple but the fact that action cameras are so lightweight means that the process is nowhere nears as important as it is for a handheld gimbal designed for use with heavy DSLR rigs.
The automatic balance system on the XG1 is ideal as entry-level gimbals are often used by people who have no experience with gimbals and the action camera gimbal market is full of people who rather spend their time doing their sport of choice rather than getting ot grips with their tech. Simply mount your action camera to the gimbal and set off the automatic balance process and then you are good to go.
Build Quality And Design
When it comes to the build quality, of the XG1, it is very robust, especially for its price point making it ideal for use as a wearable gimbal for action sports. This means that you should easily be able to use the gimbal in any sport you take part in with it being able to take any bumps coming its way without breaking. That said, the gimbal is a little heavy but considering its price point, we feel that this can be accepted as we rather have superior performance for the price rather than a super lightweight gimbal.
Question – What mounting thread size does the Hohem XG1 use?
Answer – The gimbal uses the standard quarter-inch mounting thread.
Question – What can you mount the Hohem XG1 to?
Answer – It will mount to a number of chest harnesses, helmet mounts, tripods, monopods, selfie sticks, and extension rods. Additionally, the quarter-inch mounting thread allows you to mount the gimbal to anything that has the standard mounting thread on it too.
Question – Is the Hohem XG1 waterproof?
Answer – No, at the time of writing, there are no waterproof wearable gimbals available on the market. Although the XG1 can be used in rain, we would highly recommend that you dry the gimbal as soon as possible.
That concludes our Hohem XG1 review and we are very impressed with what Hohem have managed to achieve for such a low price tag. We would highly recommend the XG1 to any of our readers looking for a great entry-level wearable gimbal stabilizer. We are confident that it will make an excellent addition to your collection of action camera accessories and help to provide you with the best possible image quality.
There are also a large number of independent reviews of the XG1 online that you can read for a third-party insight into the gimbal from people who use it as their go to gimbal of choice. Additionally, if you have the budget available, the premium price point Evo SS is the absolute best wearable gimbal on the market right now but is around twice the price of the XG1 if you need the best possible image quality.