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Zacuto Smart Z-Finder – Viewfinder for smartphones now on Kickstarter

Zacuto recently launched a file Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign For an interesting new smartphone accessory: the Zacuto Smart Z-Finder. This system allows you to attach the viewfinder to your phone and equip various accessories with it, such as a microphone, a support handle or a camera light. The Standard package starts at $299, and you have until November 18th to support this project.

When it comes to cinema or mirrorless camera rig accessories, two names should come to mind, including American manufacturer Zacuto, which has been in business for more than 20 years. Back in the days of the Canon EOS 5D Mark II, the Zacuto Z-Finder was one of the first accessories most filmmakers bought. In fact, this magnifying glass magnifies your screen for cameras without the built-in electronic viewfinder and adds a third focal point for more stability when shooting handheld. Nowadays, cinema cameras like Canon EOS C70 can still Rely on easy-to-use mechanical viewfinder.

Over the years, Zacuto has developed cages, the latest electronic viewfinders, and more than 500 equipment accessories. The company has now returned to one of its historic products, this time only, for the smartphone market – Zacuto Smart Z-Finder.

Zacuto Smart Z-Finder – Bridge

At the heart of the Zacuto Smart Z-Finder, you’ll find a smartphone mounting bracket they call the “bridge”. The bridge mounts to the sides of your smartphone and is held in place via a red handle.

Image credit: Zacuto

The bridge fits every smartphone with screens between 6.1 inches and 6.7 inches. In short, the Smart Z-Finder is compatible with almost every phone on the market, including iPhone 11-14 Pro Max, Samsung Galaxy, Sony Xperia, etc. According to Zacuto, you can even attach your smartphone to a case, including Moment cases that allow you to mount additional lenses and filters in front of your smartphone’s camera.

Image credit: Zacuto

The bridge features several industry-standard mounting points, including seven 1/4″-20 mounting bolts, three Arca-Swiss mounts, three NATO rails, and three cold shoe.

Image credit: Zacuto

If you add an optional accessory rail for the bridge, you get more cold shoe, 3/8″-16, 1/4″-20, and NATO rail mounts. But the real magic happens as soon as you catch the viewfinder on the bridge.

Image credit: Zacuto

Camera lens for smartphones

The viewfinder attaches magnetically to the bridge and magnifies the screen of your smartphone. This is useful for manual focus but also blocks out reflections or sunlight. Moreover, the viewfinder allows you to compose your shot with greater accuracy.

As I mentioned, when shooting by hand, the Zacuto Smart Z-Finder will create a third point of contact with your body that helps stabilize your shots. The included removable strap gives you a better grip around the camera lens.

Image credit: Zacuto

Zacuto has really thought of it all: there’s a hole under the viewfinder for access to your touchscreen. It’s also easy to take out and reconnect the Z-Finder.

Image credit: Zacuto

If you’ve ever used the Zacuto Z-Finder, you’ll feel right at home with the Smart Z-Finder: it features the same adjustable diopter and anti-fog technology they’re known for.

Smart Z-Finder Director Pack. Image credit: Zacuto

Zacuto Smart Z-Finder Packages

If you want to go even further with the Smart Z-Finder, Zacuto offers directors and cinematographers packages. The outlet package includes an accessory rail that extends over the bridge and outlet grip.

Cinematographer Pack. Image credit: Zacuto

The Cinematographer Pack adds a shoulder strap and “eyebrow” accessory that serves as a French flag for a matte box.

The development of the Smart Z-Finder is now finished. Image credit: Zacuto

Price and availability

Zacuto Smart Z-Finder is available for pre-order Now on Kickstarter for $299. The director’s package is $379, while the cinematographer’s package is $465. Shipping of all products must begin in February 2023.

The Zacuto Kickstarter Campaign Valid until 18 November.

At the end of each crowdfunding related article, we remind you to be aware of the risks that may arise from supporting a project on a crowdfunding platform. Please read the terms of use of the platform and remember that there may be significant delays when the product is delivered. Some projects are not even delivered at all.

What do you think of the Smart Z-Finder? Do you think it is a useful addon for smartphone movie maker? Feel free to tell us in the comments below!

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