A Quick Overview
Best overall - Editor’s choice
Best value gimbal for DSLR
Best gimbal connectivity with DSLRs
Best gimbal for sports
Best cheap gimbal for DSLR
Our Review of the Top 5 Best DSLR Gimbals in 2022
Best overall - Editor’s choice - DJI Ronin-S2 Gimbal Stabilizer for DSLR
To open our list of the best DSLR gimbals in 2022 is the DJI Ronin-S2. If you’re looking to buy a gimbal for your DSLR that won’t wear you out due to weight and as well put up good stabilization, then this is the gear for you. Finding the right balance between gimbal weight and payload strength can be a bit tricky, but that doesn’t seem to hold with this device. DJI has done their homework in delivering the best weight-to-payload ratio in the market, as the DJI RS2 has a weight of 2.3lbs and can support a camera of up to 10lbs.
After sorting weight and support issues, you should focus next on the construction of this device. That’s the best part of this gimbal stabilizer: it comes with a carbon fiber make which makes it very strong and accounts for the light weight. To back up the innovative build is a strong battery life which lasts up to 12 hours, and supports quick charge within one hour and a half.
Having considered the gimbal’s weight, payload, and battery performance, you shouldn’t rush to purchase this product just yet. Equally important features buyers must consider are compatibility with DSLRs and the stabilization modes available on the gimbal. Owing to the high payload rating, it can support any DSLR weight, the only bone of contention would be mount, which is also adjustable and would fit most DSLR models.
Here’s what you’d want to know next; how does the RS2 stack up on the control front? Overall, this gimbal is easy to use with multiple control options. It has a 1.4”-LCD touch screen you can use to set up the gimbal before recording. As a top alternative, you can control the gimbal remotely using the Ronin app on your smartphone – it’s a more comprehensive option.
Mounting your DSLR on the Ronin-S2 requires a bit of cautiousness, especially for the first time, but once you get the hang of how it’s done, you’ll find setup easier. You can use the gimbal with other professional tools like a tripod, slider, car mount, and more.
Best value gimbal for DSLR - MOZA Air 2 Gimbal Stabilizer
In selecting the best value gimbal for your DSLR, you can’t compromise on features like maximum payload, weight, controls, ease of use, and functional modes. That’s why we’ve selected the Moza Air 2 for this product fit; it has a fair price point and still features high-end gimbal functions. For one, it has a maximum camera weight capacity of 9.25lbs, and weighs about 3lbs. This means it can support large DSLRs and various camera and lens combinations.
The Moza Air 2 is a prime DSLR gimbal stabilizer which comes in a full professional stabilizer kit. This gimbal has a fourth axis added to the pan, roll, and tilt directions using the iFocusM Motor, which allows for stabilization during zoom and target-focused recording. Alongside the four axes of stabilization, you also get eight functional modes including motion-lapse, tracking mode, panorama, and time-lapse modes, among others.
With the Moza Air 2, you also get excellent power backup as the gimbal comes with four Lithium ion batteries. Each battery lasting about six hours means you can substitute batteries between usage and charging on the go.
For quick use purposes, you get to customize this gimbal to fit your recording preferences. This first applies to the joystick, smart trigger, and the smart wheel. Then, you can save up to five of your favorite settings combinations for specific scenarios on the gimbal, also for quick access. All of which you can access using the gimbal quick buttons or through the control OLED screen.
Best gimbal connectivity with DSLRs - Zhiyun Weebill 2 Gimbal Stabilizer
If you’re looking to buy quality gimbals, Zhiyun is a name you’re going to come across a lot. That’s because they’ve got a lot of quality products on the market. And from the mix, the Zhiyun Weebill 2 gimbal is still their best DSLR camera gimbal. With a maximum camera weight recommendation of 11lbs, meaning it can comfortably support a wide range of DSLR cameras and lens combinations.
The Weebill 2 boasts an impressive design with its advanced motor torque and well-designed focus control wheel. The gimbal design not only smoothens video footage by motor movement in designated axes, but also augments camera functions like zoom, low-light recording, and electronic follow focus, to produce professional-level recording.
You also get an impressive battery life with this stabilization device which can reach up to 9 hours with 1.6 hours of full charge. And you can also charge your gimbal on the go with a power pack while filming. One thing I also love about this sleek gimbal is its flip-out touchscreen display. With this, you can operate the gimbal more intuitively. And there’s also the option of connecting a TransMount image transmitter, if you have one, to get high-quality image display straight from your gimbal.
Creativity with the Zhiyun Weebill 2 is easier as there are many options to explore. With the different shooting modes including POV, portrait, hyper-lapse, panorama, and a few other creative options, there’s also the option to add a sling grip that makes it more convenient to switch modes to fit difficult angles. So, you can add that to your accessories if you deem it necessary.
Best gimbal for sports - FeiyuTech AK4500 Gimbal Stabilizer
With the FeiyuTech AK4500 gimbal, you get a tool made to support DSLR cameras, designed to bear the weight of both cameras and a wide range of lens combinations. It is rated at a maximum payload strength of 10.14lbs while weighing about 3.6lbs in itself. So, you can record for hours with this gimbal without much worry of hand strain. On the other hand, the kit also comes with a tripod, should you need to station the gimbal in one position while shooting.
The freedom of movement with this gimbal is quite impressive with unlimited directionality in the roll and pan axes, while the tilt axis can go up to 230°. That’s an assurance of stabilization across so many angles that you can possibly shoot a video. With the splashproof body design, you also have the freedom to record around water bodies, making that gimbal suitable for sports.
On the power front, the FeiyuTech AK4500 gimbal doesn’t perform bad, as it comes with four replaceable batteries with a combined lasting capacity of 12 hours. While using one with the gimbal, you can charge the spares and rotate use, as long as you have a power source.
Controlling the AK4500 gimbal is as seamless as it comes. The gimbal comes with a smart LCD screen and it slides sideways while exploring settings. Other control options include the joystick, handwheel, and a remote control.
Setting up your camera on the gimbal is also quite intuitive. After the first setup of assembling and balancing the camera, you can easily remove the camera after recording without setting off the balance. Using the quick release plates either from the bottom mounting plate or the upper plate. This feature comes in quite handy when recording across multiple locations.
Best cheap gimbal for DSLR - DJI Ronin-S Compact Camera Stabilizer
Apart from the DJI Ronin-S Compact being the best cheap gimbal for DSLRs on our list, it’s also the most lightweight gimbal we’ve got in the mix. Just as the model name suggests, this camera accessory is very compact weighing just 2.4lbs while it can support up to 6.8lbs in camera weight. This means you might not be able to use some camera and lens combinations on this gimbal. However, it works just fine for the most common DSLR cameras.
The DJI RSC comes with an innovative framework that allows it to pack into very small pocket spaces. With this design, it’s quite easy to set up the gimbal. Same thing goes for disassembling it after a shoot. Meanwhile, with the Ronin App, you get to control the gimbal remotely and much more seamlessly. So, if you’re particular about getting comfortable shots with cinematic quality, this can be the gimbal for you.
With the Ronin-SC, you get to use the different stabilization modes without any obstruction to camera use. The camera payload is slightly elevated above the roll axis to ensure you can fully operate your camera screen while using it on the gimbal. And with the various modes enabled on the gimbal, you can record at any angle or position you want. And even boost stabilization by using the axis lock and quick release plate features to retain the exact balance you love, even after remounting.
Why use a DSLR gimbal?
A gimbal is a stabilization device designed to correct camera shakes and eliminate unwanted movements that make videos jittery. What differentiates a DSLR gimbal stabilizer from other types is that these specific devices can bear the weight of DSLR cameras.
Usually, gimbals come in compact builds as they are made for handheld filming. However, there are cases where you need to attach a chest harness to the gimbal for optimal results.
DSLR gimbals, like every other gimbal, carry out video stabilization by using programmed brushless motors (1). Programmed because the micromovements that eliminate shakes are automatic and can differentiate between intentional moves and shakes. And brushless because the gimbal components must move without adding noise to the footage being recorded.
Advantages of gimbals over other stabilization gears
There are different stabilization setups that a videographer can use while recording. But gimbals are so far the best in terms of technological development. Of course, steadicams and camera rigs have their advantages as well, but overall, gimbals are more fitting for everyday use.
Here are some advantages of using DSLR gimbals:
Ease of use
Gimbals are much easier to set up than larger rigs and steadicams. Some of these large cinematic gears need a professional team to set them up before use. With gimbals, you can get your camera balanced and ready to film all on your own without wasting much time and energy.
Handheld gimbals are more easy to carry around than large steadicams and movie rigs that need a wheel. So, filming on the go? A DSLR camera gimbal is your best bet.
Most gimbals are compatible with smartphone apps. Some also come with a joystick or remote control. What this means is that you have the freedom to control the gimbal movement from a distance, no need to always man the device.
With the programmed micromovements of gimbal motors, these devices can provide better stabilization for cameras than some stabilization setups with too many moving parts.
Factors in choosing gimbals
How do you choose the best DSLR gimbal from the host of models and brand names available on the market? Here are the key factors to consider:
The payload is the gimbal part where you would fit your DSLR. Your gimbal of choice must be able to bear the weight of your camera when mounted. You should also consider the weight contribution of the lens you use. Apart from the weight, be sure to choose a gimbal that can fit your camera size as well.
Like most camera accessories used in filming and video shoots, you need good battery life for a satisfactory experience. Going for gimbals with multiple replaceable batteries can be of advantage here.
It’s easy to assume all gimbals would offer the same stability but there are slight differences that you must take note of. Most important are the stabilization axes. The best gimbals for DSLRs come with 3-axis stabilization in the pan, tilt, and roll movements. These can also work with extra extensions that allow you more angular freedom when filming.
The preset modes on a gimbal are essential for quick use. Most gimbals come with options like portrait mode, pov, pan-follow, sports, and so on. These would save you the stress of trying to figure out the best settings in certain scenarios.
This almost goes without saying, but cost plays an important role in hinting the quality of a DSLR gimbal. Though, high cost doesn’t necessarily equate to high quality, but you should know to be wary of absurdly cheap options as they might not be able to handle a DSLR camera.
A mirrorless camera gimbal can work as a DSLR gimbal as long as the gimbal payload can bear the weight of the DSLR camera, and also fits the camera size. The main difference between both gimbal types would be in payload strength.
A budget DSLR gimbal would be worth buying when it features excellent 3-axis stabilization, good camera support, and efficient handling.
Overall, the impact of the gimbal stabilizer on your DSLR videos and images is well worth the cost. And from the myriad of options available on the market, you’re sure to find a device that fits both your camera specifications and budget.
If you’re still contemplating which gimbal is the best for DSLRs, the DJI Ronin-S2 is the top option. It comes with outstanding payload-to-weight ratio, it has impressive battery life, and most importantly, its motors excellently eliminate shakes in all axes of movement.
Which DSLR gimbal do you currently use? Do you prefer shooting with or without a gimbal? Share with us in the comments below.
- DJI Hub. (2019, July 2). The Chase: Gimbal Technology and the Endless Push for Innovation. Retrieved from https://content.dji.com/the-chase-gimbal-technology-and-the-endless-push-for-innovation/