If you planning on filming a project or something in general and you want that little extra stabilization, then you have come to the right place to find the best Steadicam for a DSLR.
In this article, based on my knowledge and a few hours of research, I will cover what I feel are the Best Steadicam For DSLR.
Before I start listing, let me explain in short words what a steadicam is.
Steadicam was developed back in the ’70s by Garret Brown, and originally it was a device that was wrapped around the body.
Pretty much is a mix between a tripod and a gimbal, it is a device that floats and lets you get gliding, flowing shots that add a lot of dynamism to your recordings, otherwise, it is known as a Steadycam.
If any of my listings don’t appeal to you, stick to the end of the article, to get introduced to the buying guide and the difference between a Gimbal, Tripod, and Steady Cam.
|Check Price On Amazon|
|Check Price On Amazon|
|Check Price On Amazon|
|Check Price On Amazon|
|Check Price On Amazon|
Without wasting time further, let’s start with the top 5:
The Top 5 Best Steadicams For DSLR
5. Glidecam HD-PRO – Best Overall
Starting things off with a Steadicam that is one of the main players in this market, the Glidecam HD-PRO. Actually, it is here to give competition even a harder blow, than its prominent predecessor the HD-4000.
The HD-Pro has a fully Aluminum finish that highly rewards its robustness and sturdiness. It has a length of 14 inches that can go up to 25 inches and it weighs around 2.87 lbs, without the counterweight plates; of course. As for the counter plates, there are 16 of them and each one of them weighs around 0.272 lbs.
The top of the Steadicam has a high-end camera base that is quick to release and you can control knobs with side-to-side and front-to-back movement.
As for functionality, it has a 3-axis mechanical gimbal to ensure the free and stable movements of the camera while you are panning, tilting, or walking/running with it.
You will find the retract height control at the base where the counterweights sit and as I said earlier you will be using the counter plates to get better stabilization based on your camera weight. As for the maximum payload, the Glidecam is capable of withstanding up to 10 lbs ( 4.36kg)
When it comes to steadicams, I don’t doubt that the HD-PRO is one of the best steadicams currently on the market. It provides a lot of controls for a precise recording. If you can keep up with its painful price, don’t hesitate on the Glidecam HD-PRO.
- Spring enabled quick-release
- Great build quality
- It expends up to 25 inches
- Can easily balance DSLRs. that weigh up to 10lbs.
- A price that is hard to swallow for a steadicam
- You might need third-party help to balance it
4. FLYCAM Redking – Best Runner-Up
With the Glidecam running and leading the steadicam market, people largely disgraded Flycam and viewed it as a budget knock-off, until the Redking made its debut and changed the photographer’s/videographers mind.
Flycam redking completely changed the way the community viewed the Flycam as a brand, and it earned titles such as the Best Value steadicam, which brings tons of value to the table at an affordable price.
Despite the low price it is made out of sturdy aluminum and it feels really premium. It is capable of expanding from 21 inches up to 32.2 inches. It comes with 16 counterweight plates while each of them weights an average of 0.2 lbs. And like in most steadicams there’s the ¼ inch mounting bracket for the LED monitors.
Just like the option from the Glidecam, Redking includes a 3-axis gimbal and a splendid 360-degree rotation system. Both of those features reward you with great camera freedom; you can freely move around and make fast movements, and the camera won’t budge even a little bit. Also, it has a maximum capacity of 15.4 lbs, a huge advantage if you want to use it with heavy DSLRs.
This goes without saying, for the price it comes with it is unbeatable. It has features that a lot of high-end flagships contain. And the big extra load capacity makes this steadicam a great contender.
- Huge load capacity of up to 15.4 lbs
- Nicely Priced
- The retracted length is a bit too long
- Counterweight plates in a single size it might bother some people.
3. Roxant Pro – Best Compact
If you are a hobbyist that wants a cheap and compact Steadicam; that is quick to learn and easy to use then the Roxant Pro is your friend.
Roxant Pro’s popularity took off recently after a few popular YouTubers revealed that it is the manual handheld stabilizer and the ultimate one for vlogging.
Unlike the above options, Roxant comes in a compact form factor and its metal construction makes it quite robust. While there are some height adjustments, it won’t go as far as much as traditional steadicam; but that’s the point in the first place with the Roxant. There are 3 counterweight plates in total and they are made to handle lighter camera setups, yet, it is strong enough to support a DSLR.
As far as features go, thanks to the different blueprint approach there is no mechanical gimbal on the Roxant. Although there won’t be much freedom for free movements, it takes the stabilization and the handling of shaking to the next level.
You can place the counterweights directly at the bottom and it is compatible with a camera set up that weighs at least 2.1 lbs.
As I said it doesn’t offer much freedom as the above, but that was the point of this compact camera; so it can film on crowded scenes without you having to worry about people bumping on you or not having enough space to maneuver with your camera.
- Its compact form is ideal for crowded places
- Really nice stabilization
- Well priced.
- No rotation
- Cant support much of heavyweight
With the Flycam and Glidecam being the best options on the list, or I can go as far and say among the best in the industry currently, in the last two spots I will introduce 2 cheaper alternative options from the one above.
2. Glidecam XR-PRO – Best Value
On the second spot we have the best and cheaper alternative to the HD-PRO, sadly it is still not as cheap as we want it to be. However, it has a bunch of the same high-end features we are used to seeing with the Glidecam steadicams, at half the price.
Just like its brother it comes fully made out of aluminum that feels quite nice and premium. The length of the XR-PRO goes from 14 inches to a maximum extension of 25 inches while it is slightly lighter than his sibling; weighing at 2.1 lbs. Surprisingly enough, counterweight plates on this one are separated, there are 14 large ones and 4 small ones also 4 large camera platform weight plates.
It inherited the same features as his sibling so it means it includes a 3-axis gimbal with a 360-degree rotation that works wonderfully when you move, run, tilt. You can adjust the weight by using the control knob that is located at the top of the base. The camera’s maximum capacity is at 10 lbs, which is more than enough for our DSLRs.
Pretty much the same as the HD-PRO with a few compromises, but it comes at a cheaper price to cover for that part, yet; I can’t lie it is still not cheap enough to be a contender in the budget category. Nevertheless, it remains a great steadicam.
Great amount of expandable length
Easy to set up/ mount
Still not so cheap
Base can’t expand.
1. Flycam HD-5000 – Most Affoardable
If you liked the idea behind the Redking but you want something even cheaper, the only choice that is left would be the Flycam HD-5000. It has pretty much the same features we mentioned over and over again but in a lower quality, so is the price “lower”.
It comes fully in an Aluminum construction that gifts the Hd-5000 the Sturdy and Firm status. It won’t extend as long it’s brother, the Redking; but it does decently from 21 inches to 28. Nevertheless, this still is considered pretty tall. It also comes with 16 extra counterweight plates.
It also features a 3-axis mechanical gimbal so movements are delivered well with the 360 degree rotation. It has a nice quick release, DSLR install holes while the head isn’t as cool as the head of its sibling.
Even if you have a heavy DSLR/set up it should not be a problem for the HD-5000 since it is capable of supporting a maximum height of 11 lbs.
I am going to be brutally honest on this one, Redking is the way to go.
No HD-5000 is not bad, for the price it comes with it delivers everything but if you take into account the value the Redking brings and the fact that it is as good as a high-end steadicam from Glidecam, is something you need to give high consideration.
With all that being said HD-5000 still remains a great alternative buy to all the aboves, thanks to its splendid price.
Great Build for the price
The head base is not that good.
Steadicam Buying Guide
The steadicams come available in different versions. You can get for example compact tripods as variants, a standard steadicam for DSLRs, and camcorders. And there are also the professional steadicams that are much heavier and often come worn on the body with a shoulder strap/ vest.
The weight of the Camera:
Prebuying a steadicam always makes sure how heavy the camera should be, most of the time DSLRs are quite heavy and you don’t want a wasted investment that will prove no use.
The Advantages of Steadicam:
Steadycam is ideal if you find yourself recording a lot of tracking or following when you shooting a film or w/e, especially if it is a sports event. By isolating the inertia and the mass of the camera, it becomes firm, smooth, and shake-free; meaning that blurring and jerking belong in the past, from now on – only high-quality content.
The Difference between a Tripod, Gimbal, and Steadicam:
Tripod is a three-legged stand to which a camera can be attached and have a better steadiness and avoid the extra weight of the camera for hours. Basically, a tripod gives you extremely good stabilization but it sticks to one spot, you are not flexible with it.
While with the Steadicam and gimbal you can freely move around and record moving objects and such.
Gimbal and Steadicam are pretty much the same, what separates them or say the major difference; is that the Gimbal has moving parts, requires batteries and a charger. On the other hand, the steadicam requires physical work to maneuver it around, balance it out, and take that perfect content.
F.A.Q, Frequently Asked Questions:
Are Steadicams worth it?
Yes they are, I have said it over and over again, a steadicam will prove huge help in making you and your content more professional and better overall.
Is it hard to use a Steadicam?
Yes, they do require some practice before you start making great content. You will need to learn to put the proper counterweight and the balance of your DSLR.
Are Steadicams better than electronic Gimbals?
Sadly, I can’t sugar-coat steadicams even if I want to. Gimbals are getting lighter, stronger, and more capable every year, while Steadicams are basically the same for years now.
If you’re on the hunt to make your filmmaking game better, or your recordings in general, steadicam will be your companion. Not only your content will look better but also more professional; it will give your recordings the polish they need to stand out from your competitors.
Hopefully, this article added some good insight to you, don’t forget to check our gimbal and tripod articles, like the best gimbal for canon 70d or best tripod for canon 70d.