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The Power of Movement: The Best Gimbals for a Small Budget

Jourdan Aldredge

Unleash the power of movement for your video projects with one of these affordable gimbal options. Check out our list.

A quality gimbal is hands down one of the best tools around for anyone shooting on the run. These self-stabilization devices come in all shapes and sizes, with models that work for smartphones, lightweight DSLRs, cinema cameras, and everything in between and beyond.

Let’s take a look at some of the best, budget-friendly gimbals on the market and figure out which one is best for you.


DJI Pocket Gimbal 2

DJI recently followed up its Osmo Pocket with the new DJI Pocket Gimbal 2. Unique to our list here, the Pocket Gimbal 2 is more than just a tool — it’s actually a very capable video camera. And, while it might not out-duel your new mirrorless or DSLR, it does boast a 64 megapixel CMOS sensor and 4K video at up to 60fps.

In reality, it might actually be one of the top new choices for our roundup of the best vlog cameras currently on the market. The Pocket Gimbal 2 has an extremely forgiving, wide 20mm lens with a 93-degree angle of view so you don’t have to worry about framing and composition (unless you really want to). And being a DJI product, its 3-axis stabilization is top notch and capable of handling all sorts of bumpy situations.

We’ll dive into some more functional camera gimbals and stabilizers next, but if you want to work fast, cheap, and with surprisingly solid footage, you might want to consider the Pocket Gimbal 2 first.

  • Camera with 1/1.7″ 64MP CMOS sensor
  • Capture up to 4K/60fps video, 4 microphones
  • Compact 4.1 oz, 3-axis gimbal design
  • Up to 8x zoom, 93-degree angle of view
  • Connects to smartphone via DJI Mimo app
  • 64MP .jpeg or .dng raw still photos
  • Built-in glamour effects and AI editor
  • Optional Wi-Fi and Bluetooth monitoring
  • Time-lapse, motion-lapse, and panorama modes

Price: $299


Feiyu G6 Plus

If you’re looking for an all-encompassing gimbal stabilizer that works well with a smartphone or small, lightweight mirrorless camera, you’ll be pleased with the Feiyu G6 Plus Gimbal.

It’s affordable, lightweight, and specifically designed to put your smartphone and small cameras in motion. (And, before you shrug off smartphone videography with gimbals, check out this detailed tutorial showcasing all the shots you can achieve with a device like this.)

The G6 Plus is a “3-in-1” option for its ability to work with anything from smartphones to GoPros and action cameras to lightweight mirrorless cameras like the Sony a6500 (or anything else up to 1.75 lbs).

This video breaks down how the different cameras can be mounted. It’s really one of the best handheld motorized gimbal options out there for shooting smooth video with a wide range of controls. It also includes its own OLED screen, Wi-Fi controls, some impressive zoom sync capabilities, and up to nine hours of battery life to help you shoot whenever and however you want.

  • 1.75 lb weight capacity
  • Lightweight for freedom of movement
  • Heavy-duty smartphone mount
  • Action camera adapter
  • Syncs with select cameras for zoom/focus
  • Robust build quality, splash-proof
  • 260-degree tilt, 320-degree roll, and 360-degree pan motion
  • OLED screen
  • Optional Feiyu extension poles supported
  • 9-hour battery life

Price: $269


MOZA Air 2

Now, taking a significant leap up from the smartphone and small, lightweight-only options, we have a few gimbals that should cover the majority of your mirrorless, DSLR, and select cinema camera production needs. The first is the MOZA Air 2 which can support up to 9.25 lbs and offers a whole array of controls and functions to help you shoot cinematic video on the go.

The MOZA Air 2 is all about automation and making life easier for both solo shooters and small crews relying on a gimbal camera operator to fill in for more traditional setups and gear. The Air 2 also boasts plenty of customization for joystick controls and twelve programmable buttons for working directly and quickly with all of your camera’s settings.

  • 9.25 lb weight capacity
  • 8 follow modes
  • Supports for iFOCUS Lens Control System
  • 12 buttons for gimbal, camera, and settings
  • Customizable joystick and other controls
  • OLED info feedback display
  • Gimbal/accessories in/out power ports
  • Various time-lapse functions
  • Intelligent auto-tuning
  • 16-hour runtime off four included batteries

Price: $549


DJI Ronin-S

The DJI Ronin-S is one of the cheaper, more lightweight options that should be able to handle the majority of your DSLR and mirrorless camera needs, with a capacity up to 8 lbs. (Want to make sure your camera works with DJI gimbals? Check out the Ronin Series Compatibility Search.)

The Ronin-S is one of the easiest to use gimbals out there, specifically designed for full-functionality and operation with one hand (if needed). In addition to different modes like vlog-style selfie shooting and “sports mode,” the Ronin-S also has bells and whistles like joystick controls, programmable buttons, and flexibility for myriad attachments.

  • 8 lb weight capacity
  • Three-axis motorized gimbal stabilizer
  • Holds DSLR or mirrorless cameras
  • Trigger and mode buttons for control
  • Offset roll motor for screen visibility
  • One-handed operation
  • Camera control via included cables
  • Includes focus wheel
  • Additional functions via Android/iOS app
  • Battery grip lasts up to 12 hours

Price: $559


ZHIYUN-Tech CRANE 3S

The ZHIYUN-Tech CRANE 3S is about as strong and capable as you’ll get in the “affordable” price range. The CRANE 3S can handle up to 14.3 lbs while still being flexible and comparable to the Ronin-S or any of the other gimbals on our list.

With bigger cameras, though, you do need more bulk to help make sure your camera doesn’t fall and can stay securely in control. The CRANE S3 delivers with a stronger design, an axis-locking system, and some familiar remote control features and modular extension options.

With a detachable, angled handle, the Crane S3 can be used in many different ways — one-handed, two-handed, underslung, pretty much however you need. It boasts a solid OLED status screen, its own iOS and Android-friendly app, and up to twelve hours of battery life (up to eighteen hours with an optional battery pack).

  • 14.3 lb weight capacity
  • Zoom and focus wheel
  • Redesigned detachable SmartSling Handle
  • Updated axis-locking system
  • ViaTouch 2.0 remote motion control
  • 55-degree angled roll axis
  • DC input for direct power and charge
  • Mounting threads for accessories
  • Onboard controls, powerful motors
  • 12 hours of battery life (up to 18 hour optional battery pack)

Price: $649


The holidays are coming. Find more gear for your wish list with these roundups and reviews:

Cover image by Virrage Images.