The 10 Best Jib Cranes
This wiki has been updated 11 times since it was first published in March of 2020. Whether you're filming weddings, music videos, or commercials, adding a jib crane to your arsenal of tools can drastically improve the production value of your shoots. This list has options that cover a variety of price ranges and functions, so you're likely to find what you're looking for here. Just be sure to verify that your tripod and mounting head are compatible before placing your order. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
October 18, 2020:
The key purpose of a jib is to allow you to pan and tilt with smooth, fluid motions, which is why we've made sure every option on this list offers stability and the means to create sweeping shots without jerky or shaky movements. That said, any jib should be coupled with a sturdy, high-quality tripod to help ensure your rig is solid and secure. Just be sure to verify that the tripod and jib crane are compatible before purchasing.
Not all jibs include pan or tilt locks, which prevents the crane arm from moving side-to-side or up and down respectively. The Konova S900 SUNJIB and Ikan Carbon Fiber Mini, for example, both have separate locks for pan and tilt integrated into the designs, whereas the Camgear 4FT and ProAm Orion DVC 210 do not. There are tilt brakes that can be purchased separately and added to select models, and some filmmakers have reported success using clamps as makeshift locks, but if this is a feature you think you'll use often, you should probably consider one of models that has it built-in.
If you're looking for something that will be easy to transport, the carbon fiber options like the iFootage M1 III and the Sevenoak SK-JA20-II are good choices. Not only are they lighter than most other options, they also tend to offer telescopic arms, which means even long cranes can be shortened to a nice, portable length and stored in a compact carrying case.
Most of these jibs have weight capacities hovering around the 10 pound range, which is great for most folks shooting on DSLRs or camcorders, though if you'll be adding motorized pan and tilt heads, wireless lens control systems, heavy lenses, or other high-weight options, you should probably opt for one of the more heavy-duty options like the Proaim Wave-2. Its sturdy body made of aluminum and steel make it capable of handling just about any payload.
VariZoom QuickJib2 The brake compression system provides apt resistance to ensure smooth movements and precise control, but it's also designed not to lock up when hit with heavy force that would cause the jib to snap or topple. It also uses high-quality bearings that keep the arm quiet in motion, and the counterweight bar can extend, allowing you to adjust the balance quickly and easily without. It's a great option for those who have a larger budget and are looking to invest in something high-end. varizoom.com
Edelkrone JibONE This remote-controlled option allows you to pan and tilt without even touching the jib. It uses a smartphone app to activate the separate motors, giving you very precise control over the movement, and guaranteeing all of your shots come out looking smooth and fluid. It can even be mounted to the tripod at an angle, allowing diagonal movement, and it weighs under five pounds and can fold to be nice and compact, making it fairly portable as well. edelkrone.com