Desview is back with another update to one of its field monitors for cameras, focusing this time on one of the more common sizes of 5.5 inches. Perfect for DSLRs and other smaller rigs, these monitors take up minimal space while providing much more detail than your typical camera’s LCD display.
We have been testing out the Desview R6II UHB 5.5-inch Touchscreen Camera Field Monitor for just less than a week now to see how well it compares to some of the others we currently use (usually Atomos Ninja) or have used in the past. And thus far, the impression has been pretty good.
Of course, this one is more about preview and adjustment than anything else. It doesn’t offer the ability to record video. It simply passes it on to the next device for that via HDMI-out. But, it can take and pass on a 4K signal, so you can easily work with your favorite external option for records and even swap out for something else without having to swap the screen out as well.
I am getting ahead of myself though. So I’ll dial things back and start with what comes in the box. That being said, it comes shipped in a small profile box as it doesn’t need much. Everything is nicely protected using foam and if you have any experience with using field monitors (especially, using ones from Desview), it won’t take much to be up and running with it.
It comes with a cold/hot shoe adapter (no power is passed through) and an allen key for adjustments. You have a small microfiber cloth for wiping the screen and a USB drive for customizing the 3D-LUT. In addition, you also have two medium-length HDMI cables (micro to regular and mini to regular). So you have everything you need to make it work outside of a power solution.
Like most field monitors, it doesn’t come with a case to store it in during travel. So you’d have to use its box or get a small Pelican solution. This is pretty much the story for most any field monitor product.
It does look a lot like some of the other choices, including the Atomos products. Including your options for input/output. It is advertised as a 4K solution, but this only has to do with its ability to process the signal. The screen itself is a lesser 1080p resolution since you don’t really need 4K in 5.5-inches of space. 1080p looks great, allowing you to confirm clarity and the many adjustments it has to offer. Meanwhile, the signal coming in can be 4K@60 and it can passthrough to your records in 4K@60 as well.
This is strictly an HDMI option (in and out). If the company decides to support SDI in the future, you’d likely see an R6SII model hit the market. But for now, this is the latest for the R6 series and it comes with a lot to play with.
The side that has the HDMI ports is also where your power input is located. Again, it does not come with a power solution. Like many of these screens (especially, the more affordable options) you have to provide this yourself. Most will do this using a battery in the slot on the back. It supports NP-F and E6 batteries. These can be found as name brand or from other third-party manufacturers.
However, if you do choose to use the DC in, you have a lot of wiggle room. It supports DC 7-24V input (5.5mm*2.1mm) options via that port in the above image.
Personally, when it comes to going mobile with our gear, we like to tie our monitor into our V-mount battery source. So our V-mount plate will usually have a lot of adaptations on the side, including multiple DC and USB solutions. A great way to cover all of your gear, including monitors like these. So you can go DC to DC. In some cases, you can even go DC to USB if you had a monitor that supported 5V input (this one and most others do not, though).
It can also pass that power on to another device, providing 8V DC power at the bottom. This can also potentially be used to power your camera if you have the right adapter (DC to dummy battery in most cases). As long as 8V is enough for your camera. So the DC-in can feed both items, or the battery on the back if you choose to go that route.
The bottom-side also has a headphone jack so you can monitor incoming audio. As well as a USB port for the thumb drive, and threads in the center for mounting.
It can also be mounted from the side via threads located there (right-side). This all depends on your camera setup and how it fits in with everything the best for your needs.
At the top, you’ll find a single power button for turning the screen on and off by holding it down. There is also vents at the top of expelling the hot air inside. The vents on the sides pull in air, and the top is the sole location where that air is pushed out. All thanks to fans inside the screen.
Like our favorite monitor of theirs (R7II), it is very bright. It supports up to 2800 Nits of brightness. Allowing you to use this screen both indoors and outdoors without the need of a hood. You can still make use of one. It just isn’t needed and you’ll likely enjoy packing one less item.
Upon turning it on, we had to compare it to the camera’s LCD as well as our recorded output. The R7II didn’t really need much adjustment, although we did find ourselves adjusting color a little on this one to match everything.
You’ll adjust brightness depending on if you are shooting indoors or out. As I said, it can get pretty bright and you don’t need that when you don’t have the sun and other light conflicting with your ability to see everything on the screen.
It comes with so many options and tools of measurement. Like the ability to switch between SDR and HDR. As well as zebra, histogram, peaking, LUT, waveform, vectorscope, and more. All of which can be accessed and adjusted via its touch-screen display.
The touch-screen is easy to make your way around, between shortcuts and a number of menu items to get lost in. Some of which you might not even make use of. While some you may bury yourself with in order to get the right shot.
Fan noise isn’t overpowering, although you wouldn’t want to use it with a shotgun mic that is positioned at the camera. For all other situations, you should never pick any noise up from it within your records. Meanwhile, those fans work hard to keep it cool.
This is a powerful little screen that makes for a great option for those looking to maintain a small footprint within their rig. Perfect for DSLR and similar setups. It comes with a lot of features to dial your shot in with and everything is easy to get to thanks to its touch-screen display. It is versatile when it comes to being powered.
If your eyes require a little more screen space and robust build, we would recommend the R7II over this, but beyond that this fills the need of most. With the exception of recording. If you prefer to compact things further by recording everything from the screen, we’d recommend just getting the Atomos Ninja. However, if you already have a source for your records and/or prefer to record directly to the camera itself, than this should be all you’ll ever need.
The price point feels fair, and like anything, will go on sale from time to time. Making it an even better buy when those windows occur. It does feel like it dominates many of the competing affordable options, including those within the same price range. Yet another great option from Desview.
Currently, it hasn’t exactly made its way around to most retailer just yet. So its availability seems to be limited. But this is likely to change and I’m sure you’ll see it pop up within sources like Amazon in the future.
Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.