15 Zhiyun Crane 2 Accessories To Help Up Your Game!

Gimbals have exploded in popularity over the last five years or so with more and more people choosing to add a gimbal to their collection of camera accessories to help upgrade the image quality that they are able to capture with their cameras. Due to this, we have seen a number of requests from people asking how they are able to take their gimbal performance to the next level so we have decided to publish this post where we will be covering what we feel are some essential Zhiyun Crane 2 accessories.

Now, before we go any further into the article, let us just be clear. We do not think you have to invest in all of these accessories and depending on the niche you work in, some of them will be a total waste of time. This is a generic list of gimbal accessories that we would recommend our readers look over and then see if they could put the recommended accessory to use in their kit or not.

That said though, we have no doubt at all that adding a few of these items to your collection will help up your game and make your life easier when out and about using your gimbal. In this modern world where many people post their video footage online as a part of their portfolio and it is easy for potential clients to check your work against the work your competing videographers offer it is important to use every advantage possible to stand out.

Power Bank

Last update on 2019-10-14 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

First up we have an often-overlooked accessory for gimbals, the power bank (Click here to check for product prices and availability). Now, you may be asking why you would ever want to add a power bank to your collection of gimbal accessories and the answer is simple, it allows you to recharge your gimbal while out and about from a mains power outlet.

If you are working as a wildlife videographer or if you are something like a travel vlogger then there is a good chance that you may end up being away from power outlets for long periods of time. Although most modern gimbals offer a battery life of around 12 hours, this will not last long if you are unable to recharge your gimbal for days at a time.

This is where the power bank comes in as it allows you to carry additional power with you in a small, lightweight, and convenient package. Now, there are some variables that you have to take into account when shopping for your new power bank. Firstly, you have to ensure that your gimbal of choice can either be charged directly via USB or its charger is available with a USB connector to allow you to actually connect the power bank.

Next up you have to look at the actual capabilities of the bank itself. Most of the cheaper power banks are designed to work for smartphones and may struggle to recharge your gimbal or your gimbal batteries in their charging unit. We would always recommend that you choose a power bank design for laptops to ensure the best possible performance.

Solar Charger

Last update on 2019-10-14 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Sticking with the theme of extending the battery life of your gimbal while out and about, next up we have the trusty solar charger (Click here to check for product prices and availability). The main weakness of the power banks that we covered above is that they will end up running out of juice eventually and thats where the solar charger comes in as provided you have access to the sun at some point of the day, you are able to recharge your gear. On the flip side of this, the solar charger is a little larger than a power bank so you have to balance the pros and cons of each.

Again, if you something like a survival or hiking vlogger or a wildlife videographer and will potentially be away from a power outlet for three to four days or more then a solar charger will probably offer you more value than a power bank. As mobile solar chargers are a pretty new technology, they are still finding their feet with the vast majority of them being designed for smartphones but some solar chargers for laptops are now on the market and have earned excellent reputations for themselves.

If possible, we would always recommend that you try to source a decent solar charger designed to support laptops to get the most out of it for your gimbal. Again though, you will have to ensure that your gimbal either directly supports USB charging or it has an external battery charger than can accept a USB cable.

Dual-Handle Grip Holder

Last update on 2019-10-14 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Moving away from the battery life of the gimbal and moving onto improving your handling of the Zhiyun Crane 2, next up, we have a decent quality dual-handle grip (Click here to check for product prices and availability). As the Zhiyun Crane 2 comes in at 5.51 pounds while supporting a maximum load capacity of 7 pounds, you could potentially be working with a weight of 12.51 pounds for extended periods of time while on location using your gimbal and camera rig.

This kind of weight for an extended period of time can be a pain and it is not uncommon for people to end up getting cramps in their hand and arm from holding their gimbal when working. This is where the dual handle grips come in as they allow you to use both of your hands to support the weight of your gimbal during use helping to spread the load and make your life much easier.

In addition to this, the dual handle essentially takes your gimbal from a 3 axis gimbal to a 5 axis gimbal and can improve the image stabilization by up to thirty percent depending on what you are using your gimbal for! There are an absolute ton of different versions of dual handle grips on the market right now but if you are doing any kind of paid, professional-level videography with your gimbal then they are pretty much an essential gimbal accessory in our opinion.

Wireless Thumb Controller

Last update on 2019-10-14 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you do choose to pick up a dual handle rig like the one we recommend above then a common accessory that people pick up to go with it is the Zhiyun wireless thumb controller (Click here to check for product prices and availability). When you are using your Zhiyun Crane 2 in a duel handle rig you are unable to quickly and easily access its control panel on the gimbal handle and that’s where a wireless thumb controller comes in.

It allows you to mount the controller on either of the grips on your duel handle rig to allow you to still quickly and easily tweak the performance of your Crane 2 during use without having to take either of your hands off the duel handle grip. This ensures that you can support the weight of your gimbal rig as well as have better image stabilization while also being able to tweak your gimbal as required.

We are aware that there are a number of third party wireless thumb controllers on the market but they definatley seem to be a case of buy it right the first time or buy it twice. Unlike the other items on this list where there are a fair few valid choices that you can choose from, when it comes to the wireless thumb controller, we would always recommend that you stick to the official Zhiyun one as the third-party units seem to have a number of issues at the time of writing.

The Zhiyun Smartphone App

The Zhiyun smartphone app shown in the image above is free to download and also offers you som remote control capabilities for your gimbal. Although it is generally used in a different way then the thumb remote covered above, it is still a decent bit of kit to download to your phone and have when needed. Thankfully, Zhiyun has put a ton of work into the app over the years and its performance has drastically improved since its initial release.

The app is available for both iOS and Android devices and works flawlessly on all Apple, Samsung, and Google Pixel devices but at the time of writing, it does have some issues with some of the LG devices.

Mini Tripod Stand

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Now, the mini tripod stand (Click here to check for product prices and availability) could either be something that you use every single day or something that you will never use at all. It totally depends on the niche that you work in and what you are actually planning on using your Zhiyun Crane 2 for. Only you know what you will be getting up to and make the decision on if this is work added to your gimbal accessories or not.

A common use for the mini tripod is to position your Crane 2 in one location of a venue while you control it remotely via your smartphone or a wireless remote.  For example, say you are a wedding videographer or photographer and the happy couple has specifically said they don’t want people at the alter while they say their vows. A mini tripod allows you to set the gimbal rig up prior to the ceremony so you can still capture their vowes. That said though,  a traditional, full-sized general purpose tripod (Click here to check for product prices and availability) would probably perform better in this situation.

Field Monitor

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Next up, we have the trusty field monitor (Click here to check for product prices and availability) that has seen a steady increase in popularity in recent years. Not only does a field monitor allow you to have a better idea of what you are actually recording but it also has a number of uses in general videography and photographer outside of your gimbal use too. If you are an entry-level videographer or gimbal user then this is probably on of the accessories that you can safely skip until you are more established no matter what niche you are working in as your camera viewfinder is a decent starting point until you have a larger budget available.

If you are planning to add a field monitor to your gimbal accessories then you will also probably need to pick up an L bracket (Click here to check for product prices and availability) to allow you to mount it to your actual gimbal. The L bracket also has additional functionality in that it allows you to mount multiple accessories to the gimbal when you are not using your field monitor too.

A Training Course

We have lost count of the number of people that we have seen purchase a gimbal and just crack on with their videography. Although this is what most people want to do, spending a little time actually learning how best to implement your gimbal into your videography work can make a world of difference in the image quality that you are able to capture when working.

Although there are a number of videos on YouTube that go over the basics of how you are able to use your gimbal to improve your performance, the videos often have a whole bunch of wasted time in them and the information that you need is often spread over multiple videos on multiple channels.

You are able to enroll on this gimbal course on Skillshare for free via their free, no-commitment trial and learn a number of best practices as well as how to efficiently capture super-smooth video, how to capture the best hyper lapses possible as well as a number of other general gimbal based film making tips and tricks.

Inverted Handle

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Ahh, the good old inverted handle (Click here to check for product prices and availability). Like many other people, we initially thought that it was a total waste of time and money until we actually used one and fell in love with them. In our opinion, they make it easier to hold your gimbal although it will depend on the type of video footage that you are trying to record when out and about.

Additionally, if you have any problems with your wrist a decent inverted handle can be a godsend, especially if you are suffering from something like arthritis. Additionally, if you have problems supporting the weight of your Zhiyun Crane 2 with your camera rig mounted on it, trying an inverted handle could help as it takes the majority of the weight off your bicep and transfers it to your tricep. As your tricep is a larger muscle than your bicep muscle, it has an easier job of supporting any weight you hold.

Gravity Adjustment Plate

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Again, the value that a gravity adjustment plate (Click here to check for product prices and availability) is able to provide you is going to totally depend on your actual camera rig as smaller and lighter rigs have absolutely no use for them. That said though, if you are planning to use a heavier DSLR camera with a heavy lens on your gimbal or if you are planning to use a large camera body with your gimbal then a gravity adjustment plate can make your life much easier.

Additionally, we have noticed that people who prefer to use a battery grip with their cameras often use gravity adjustment plate to compensate for the additional size and weight of the battery grip that could potentially cause problems for the Zhiyun Crane 2 to stabilizer. Although this issue is not due to the additional weight as the gimbal can support a payload of around 7 pounds, the stranger dimensions once a battery grip is mounted to your camera can be an issue on larger camera bodies.

Mini Dual Grip

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The mini dual grip (Click here to check for product prices and availability) is another situational gimbal accessory that is going to depend on what you are actually using your gimbal for and the niches that you work in. We would imagine that the majority of our readers would be better off with a regular full-sized dial grip like the one we covered earlier in the article but there are times where this is not always practical.

The smaller size and much lower weight of a mini dual grip can be helpful if you are planning to travel with your kit a whole bunch. Mini dual grips are popular amongst the travel vlogging community, especially the backpacker community due to space and weight being such a rare commodity for them.

Zhiyun Mini Dual Grip, Transmount Single Handle Grip L Bracket Rig 1/4 Screw Connector for Zhiyun Crane 2 Crane Plus Crane M V2 Series DJI Ronin-S Handheld Gimbal Stabilizer + EACHSHOT Cleaning Cloth
Although you will probably be fine using a single mini dual grip with one hand on the grip and one hand on the actual Crane 2 handle, some people feel this is awkward so they pick up two mini grips as shown in the image above. This is totally down to personal preference though and is far from essential as one grip can provide as much of a benefit as two, some people just feel that using two allows for a more natural grip and gives them a slightly easier time.

Belt Kit

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The trusty belt kit (Click here to check for product prices and availability) is another popular accessory that we initially thought was totally useless and a waste of money but again, this comes down to your circumstances. Many people who have problems supporting the weight of their gimbal and camera rig seem to find it easier to pick up a belt kit and use it to help offset the weight of the gimbal against their waist and hip.

Additionally, if you are having to do any bird’s eye view work with your gimbal or anything involving your camera rig being elevated for long periods of time the belt kit can be an essential bit of kit. That said though, we doubt that most of our readers will need to add one to their Zhiyun Crane 2 accessories.

Extension Pole

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Another accessory that is going to depend on what you use your gimbal for is the extension pole (Click here to check for product prices and availability). There are an absolute ton of these on the market these days and most of them have a decent reputation within the community too. That said though, it is kind of a specialist bit of kit and we would imagine that most of our readers would not need to pick up an extension pole for their gimbal.

If you are planning to pick up a belt kit covered in the section above then an extension pole will make your life easier. Although some belt kits will allow you to natively house the Zhiyun Crane 2 in them, it is a little awkward and an extension pole makes your life much easier. It offers the additional length between your hip and your gimbal to allow you to control the gimbal easier while also making it easier to see what you are actually recording with your camera.

A Set Of Static Free Brushes

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Although the value of a set of decent static free brushes (Click here to check for product prices and availability) is still often underestimated in this day and age when it comes to gimbals, we would always recommend them over using compressed air when cleaning your gimbal. We recently published a dedicated post on how you should clean your gimbal that goes into more detail on this but the short version is that compressed air can create a static build-up that may dissipate into the gimbal circuitry and cause long term damage.

Hang Strap

Last update on 2019-10-13 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Now, we have left the hang strap (Click here to check for product prices and availability) until last for a reason and that is because it is the only gimbal accessory on this list that we initially thought was a total waste of time and money and still hold that point of view on it. The only reason that we are including it in the list is due to a number of people feeling so highly about them and preferring them over the other accessories that we have covered in the article that are able to help you offset the weight of your gimbal during use.

Wrapping It Up

That brings our article on what we feel are the core Zhiyun Crane 2 accessories on the market right now. As we mentioned back at the start of the article, there is absolutely no need to go off and purchase all of these, as we mention for a few of the accessories, there are specific niches where some of the products are key but it would be useless for most people. Anyway, we hope that you have found this article helpful and that it has helped bring some gimbal accessories to your attention that you are able to add to your kit to help improve the image quality that you capture with your Crane 2.