Cinemartin Loyal LT 7″ Field Monitor Hands-on Review: Ultra Affordable HD Screen. What’s the catch?

Field Monitors are an essential piece of kit for me. I use them whenever possible to help me get the shot: It’s nice to able to really see what you’re shooting from focus to exposure.

Pro monitors with pro tools can be expensive. The SmallHD 502 that’s in my kit cost over $1,000 US. In the much more affordable range I have the new CINEMARTIN Loyal LT 7” monitor that sells for only €149.

99€. It’s also available in a “Shooters kit” for 149€. The Shooter’s kit includes a sunshade, Sony and Canon battery plates,  HDMI cable and Mini Ball Head.

The Loyal LT is HDMI only with pass through. The body is made of all plastic. Because it’s plastic, it’s also light. Really light. It comes in at 379g or 13oz. The build is a little on the consumer side so don’t treat it rough. 

The ON/OFF and Menu Buttons are also on the top right along with two tool presets. To access the menu just click the wheel and scroll. Change settings and tap the exit button to the left of the wheel.

To assign a tool to a preset button. Hold it down until the ‘Tool’ option menu pops up. Here you can pick a tool. You will have to go back into the menu to change the settings for the tool. For example if you want peaking as a preset then enter the menu and change the parameters of Peaking from red to green. Then exit. It’s now set up.  Tools on the monitor can also be assigned to always be on when you power it up.

Of all the tools my favorite is False Color, Scan for zooming in and Zebra.

Power

The Loyal LT can be powered by the included AC adapter as well as with Sony L or Canon LP-E6 batteries. It uses a removable locking battery plate. With the Canon battery I got approximately 60 minutes of run time. Not bad – expect more with the larger Sony L battery. I did notice the battery fuel gauge was showing the battery as “red” or dead after only 10 minutes in but the monitor kept working.

It’s nice to have two battery options but I found the plate and mounting design to be an issue.

Some of my LP-E6 batteries seem tight in the removable tray. The plates lock in with this switch. It basically blocks the plate from sliding out but doesn’t lock as well as it should. When swapping out the battery the plate came off with it pretty much every time.

The affordable 7″ field monitor has a lot of nice tools and features. Here is a full list of the tools available on the Loyal LT. 

Picture Menu

  • Brightness
  • Contrast
  • Saturation Tint
  • Sharness
  • Color Temp – USER, 5500K. 6500K, 7500K, 9300K
  • Red Gain
  • Green Gain
  • Blue Gain
  • Red Offset
  • Green Offset
  • Blue Offset

Marker Menu

  • Center
  • Aspect and
  • Safety
  • Marker Color
  • Marker Mat
  • Thickness

Function Menu

  • Scan – Pixel to Pixel, Zoom, Aspect
  • Aspect – Full, 16,9, 1.85;1, 2.35;1, 4;3, 3;2,
  • Underscan
  • H/V Delay
  • Check Field
  • Freeze
  • DSLR

Auxiliary

  • Peaking – Color options; red, green, blue and white, with peaking ranges from 0 to 100.
  • Peaking – on/off
  • Peaking Color – Red, Green, Blue, White
  • Peaking Level – 0 to 100
  • False Color
  • Exposure (Zebra) – on/off
  • Exposure (Zebra) – IRE range from 0 to 100.
  • Histogram

Audio Menu

  • Volume
  • Level Meter

System Menu

  • Language
  • Color Bars 100%, 75%
  • OSD Timer
  • Image Flip
  • Backlight – 0-100
  • Reset

Screen

The IPS screen is sharp with very good detail. I found nailing focus was very easy even without using the zoom feature. The Loyal LT monitor has a native resolution of 1920 x 1080 with more than 400 ppi, up to 16.7 Million colors and up to 600 NIT’s of brightness and a contrast ratio of 1200:1.

The default color is set to 6500K, but you can tweak the color to your liking with the RBG settings in the menu. I did just that and it’s really nice for a monitor in this price range to have image controls like these. If you shoot in UHD you can send up to 3840×2160 in 24p to 30p without issues or changing the settings. It’s not a UHD monitor but it will handle the signal and display in full HD. One thing I noticed is how cool it runs. A lot of monitors run really hot to the touch but the Loyal LT doesn’t.

How I liked it

As for overall usability? I liked using the Cinemartin Loyal LT 7” monitor. It has a very sharp and detailed IPS display that makes focusing easy. The onboard tools are very good, and you get the good pro ones like False Color, Zebra, Peaking, Zoom and Markers.


The color reproduction is impressive and the ability to set it up to your liking with RBG settings in the menu is a plus.
The downside is the battery plate doesn’t securely hold the battery and the build quality doesn’t lend itself to hard use – but it’s so lightweight it could come in handy when the rig is getting heavy or just need a light weight monitoring solution. 

The Loyal LT can be purchased direct from Cinemartin.com.   

 

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