Reviews |YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider Review

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review
Review

Price when reviewed

£699

$699

Our Verdict

The YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider is a compact slider solution with a fully featured app. There’s plenty of control over the motion directly on the slider or using the Apps interface. The construction is excellent, with a full metal build and clever dual slider design that extends the basic reach while keeping down the overall size of the slider.

While the slider is excellent, some touchscreen options seem limited, enabling you to set A & B points and speed without much more flexibility. Time Lapse and Stop motion offer everything you could want, including the ability to fire the camera’s shutter when connected.

At close to £600/$700, the 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider is a superb option with plenty of potential for filmmakers and anyone wanting to shoot engaging time-lapses.

For

  • Well made
  • Compatible App
  • Plenty of options for use

Against

  • App limited in functionality
  • App not fully translated to English

What is a 52/70CM Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider?

Video sliders are a creative tool used by filmmakers to quickly add interest to what would otherwise be a static scene. The concept is simple, with the camera being mounted onto rails, enabling the camera to slide from side to side. As the camera moves, so does the scene’s perspective, instantly adding visual interest. It’s a trick commonly used in TV and Film and can be so subtle that it’s often overlooked.

While cinematic pans use huge dolly systems with epic results, the smaller table-mounted slider can surprisingly achieve equally impressive visuals. Cheap manual sliders are readily available, and while they are handy, the manual nature cannot compare to the smooth glide that a fully motorised system offers.

The YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider offers a simple and effective solution with a modular design that makes it easy to transport and use. The YC Onion slider stands out because you can use the touch screen interface to quickly set in and out points; it also features motion dampening and integration with Zhiyun and DJI gimbals.

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review

Build and Handling

Sliders are one of those accessories you deliberate over for years, and when you finally buy one, you wonder why you took so long to make the decision. The simple act of slowly moving the camera from side to side can have a dramatic effect on the visual impact of the shot.

The issue is that a decent slider is expensive, and while the YC Onion is well-priced, it’s still considerably more than you would pay for a simple non-motorised alternative. Hence, you need to be sure that it will provide you with the performance and years of service you need.

Starting with the build quality, this instantly stands out, as the full aluminium construction is solid. The design has also been well thought through, with the main top slider extending over a bottom slider, effectively extending the maximum length of motion.

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review

Unextended, the slider is 52cm in length, but those mechanics enable the slider to reach a maximum slide length of 78cm which is impressive and enables plenty of creative scope. In this review, I have the 52cm version, but there is a 70cm version, and if you can stretch to the extra $100 they charge for that length, I’d say it is definitely worth it.

The design of the slider is slightly modular, so when it arrives in the neat carry case, it can be unpacked and quickly set up. Small legs pop out of the bottom, and the motorised block clicks on top. Then an NP battery (Sold separately) of choice is fitted, the tripod head installed, and the camera is placed on top. Setting up takes a few minutes, but the process offers nothing complex.

Overall, the design and build are good and solid. I like that YC Onion also sells support brackets that can be used with the 52CM Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider to give it stability when mounted on a single tripod.

Features

The 52 Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider is an impressive device from the outset and is packed with advanced features that set it out against other motorised sliders on the market. One of the key factors is the strength of the motors and integration with Zhiyun and DJI gimbals.

Regarding weight, larger format cameras can be used with sliders up to a weight of 20kg. Then if the slider is used on a tilt or vertical camera, up to 1.5kg can safely be used. This is far more than many other motorised gimbals of this type, as they would struggle with lifting any weight through the vertical axis.

Another feature that stands out is the high brightness Touch Screen; this is easy to see in bright sunlit conditions and enables you to access the different screens and settings quickly. The touch screen is all part of the detachable motor module that clips and locks into the slider. This makes it easy for transportation. On the back of the motor unit is the battery slot; this takes standard NP-type batteries that need to be brought separately.

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review

Alongside the battery option, you can also plug in an external power source through the USB Type-C port on the front. This is handy for longer shoots, although the battery life of the 52 Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider using an NP-F750 was excellent.

Further enhancing the convenience of use is the small low-profile lens. These can be neatly tucked under the slider on flat surfaces to make a very low-profile device. Otherwise, they can be folded to 90º for more stability or extended away from the slider’s body.

A feature that highlights the company’s attention to detail is the slider mechanism that features hydraulic dampening to help smooth the motion through the slide. This is effective when watching the footage back and helps avoid jerky beginnings and ends to slides.

The mechanical design of the slider is clever, with the double slide mechanism extending the reach from what would be possible within the 50cm length of the slider to 78cm.

When it comes to control, there are plenty of options with the control directly through the touch screen, through the iOS app or disabling the motors manually, but with the advantage of having those hydraulic dampeners to assist with smooth slides.

The motor module offers three modes; the first is video which I have mainly covered with the features above and enables you to use the slider in the standard video format. Then there’s timelapse and stop-motion; timelapse runs automatically while animation enables manual input. With each latter mode, you can plug a shutter release into your camera, then interface with the YC Onion Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider to release the shutter at set intervals.

Performance

Before using the 52/cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider; you need a few additions. Firstly a battery or power source to power it and then a tripod head to interface between the slider and your camera. Once you have these two additional items, you’re set to go into this slider’s most basic functions.

Used as a simple motion slider from point A to point B, there is little to fault with the mechanics and function. Using the touch screen to select the Video mode, tap the left arrow button to move the slider to point A and click set, then move to point B and click set, and you’re done. Then it’s a simple case of tapping, starting the movement from point A to point B. As well as a simple start option, you can tap the Auto button before hitting start; this allows the slider to rotate between points A and B on a loop.

This is where there is a slight loss in translation in the app because, on the set-up screen, there is the option to choose a cycle, which appears to have the same function as the Auto button. It doesn’t make any difference to the use; it’s just that there are two different words and places for a function that is essentially the same.

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review

The other point is if you’re at point A and want to start from point B, then you need to set the slider in motion; there’s no quick back-to-start point option.

Switching over to the app, things get a little more advanced with the ability to set more points and adjust the speed with a simple slider. However, the actual function of the app limits what initially seems possible. In the app you can pick multiple points, which makes you feel like the slider should travel from point A to B to C etc. In reality, it means that you can do a single long slide from point A to C or a shorter one from point A to B.

However, these are small points you quickly overlook as the actual use of these functions would be limited daily.

The slider works incredibly well and offers plenty for any videographer looking to add extra depth and visual intrigue to their videos.

Final thoughts

I’ve been using the 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider for around a month, and it has progressed from test to use smoothly. The function of quickly setting the start and end point is common with motorised sliders, but including that hydraulic dampening system is something new and really does help to get a smooth slide.

I have only briefly tried the link features with the DJI and Zhiyun gimbals, but I will extend this review or break out to a tutorial on the effect of this linkage soon. The initial results are impressive.

YC Onion 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider review

Overall the 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider is solid, robust and performs incredibly well. There are a few issues with the app and workflow, but as these are all in the software, they can be updated. As this stands, however, I’m impressed. When it comes to building quality and features, there is plenty to offer. With the hydraulic dampening, powerful motor, connected App and gimbal link system, the 52cm Chocolate Pro Cheese motorised slider adds to an impressive and powerful imaging tool.

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