Videomaker Reviews SmallHD 502 and Sidefinder

This is a feature rich review on SmallHD's 502 field monitor and Sidefinder. Spoiler alert: what justifies the pricetag for these compact devices is the real-time overlays in the software...Let be your resource for SmallHD 502 and Sidefinder here!

SmallHD 502 and Sidefinder Review

smallhd-sidefinder From Videomaker With a 5-inch screen and a 1080p resolution, SmallHD’s pixel-dense 502 monitor is the perfect companion for any small camera or lightweight gimbal. It’s wide color range, huge selection of helpful overlays and professional build quality gives cinematographers a great tool for getting great shots. They say that seeing is believing. Nowhere is this more true than with on-camera monitors. On a shoot, a low quality monitor can lead to out of focus shots, inaccurate color settings, and worst of all — a bevy of sleepless nights for the editor who is tasked with repairing it all. These are some of the reasons why SmallHD set out to create a new lightweight LCD monitor and viewfinder that they’ve christened the 502 and Sidefinder. With a resolution of 1080p on a monitor only 5 inches wide, SmallHD claims that the 502 is the lightest and sharpest 5-inch camera top monitor in the world. With an incredibly dense pixel count and a handy optional viewfinder to boot, cinematographers now have the perfect set of tools for capturing the perfect shot.

The Build

When SmallHD began planning the design of the SmallHD 502 and Sidefinder, their two overarching goals were to make it small and durable. On inspecting the monitor for the first time, we can honestly say that they’ve done exactly that. Have you ever braced yourself to pick up something that looked heavy only to look surprised and foolish as you stood up with it way too quickly? To our chagrin, that was our first experience with the SmallHD 502. Once we got over the awkwardness of picking the 502 too quickly, we instantly realized the potential that the lightweight monitor afforded cinematographers. By weighing only a little over half a pound, the SmallHD monitor was perfect for mounting on the hot shoe of a DSLR or a hand-held gimbal like the DJI Ronin, where staying light-weight is a huge issue. In addition, that our monitor never slipped on the 1/4-20 threading that it was mounted on — a common problem with heavier monitors mounted to gimbals or extension arms...[continue reading]

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