The Petzl GriGri 2 is our dual-Editors' Choice award winner along with it's newer iteration, the GriGri+. The GriGri 2 is still a top performing assisted braking device and the most popular belay device of this kind. It has a smooth assisted locking mechanism and is universally recognizable. The GriGri+ accommodates a wider range of ropes and has additional features such as different belay modes, a more durable construction, and an anti-panic handle. For those who have used the GriGri 2 safely for years, it may still be the best choice, offering excellent performance from catching falls to lowering partners, feeding slack, and multi-pitch belays. Those who are new to climbing or who recognize that even experienced belayers can make mistakes should check out the GriGri+.
The GriGri 2 is $50 less than the GriGri+, but still costs $100. If that seems like a little much to you, or you prefer to belay with something simpler, check out the updated Mammut Smart 2.0. It's like a cross between a GriGri and a tube-style device, offering some lock-off power without a rotating cam, all for only $35.