What's the Best Travel Tripod Out There?

Travel tripods aren’t just for travel: if you want something lighter to carry around all day or hike with, or you’re just using a lightweight or mirrorless system that doesn’t need a big beefy tripod to support it, they might be right for you.

In this video, Chris over at DPReview puts four different travel tripods head to head, in a shoot out: the Peak Design Travel TripodGitzo 1545TManfrotto Befree GT, and Surui N1204SK. The four cover a good cross section of the different styles (and prices!) of carbon fiber tripods available and Chris does a great job at breaking down how they all work in the real world. There are pros and cons to each model —cutting weight from a tripod makes it easier to carry, but also makes it a less stable shooting platform. Like with most things in life, there's a tradeoff. 

Last year, I switched from a heavy aluminum tripod to a carbon fiber travel tripod for pretty much everything, and I haven’t looked back. Even for long exposure work, I haven't had any issues unless I'm jumping up and down next to my tripod. If you’re thinking about buying a lightweight tripod this video is a must watch.

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Jerome Brill's picture

I'd like to see a shootout between more tripods. These are still too expensive for most people. I did a lot of research before I bought mine and I've been pretty happy with the MeFoto Road Trip Classic. The specs are great.
- Weight 3.60lb
- Folded 15.40in
- Max Height 61.60in
- Max Load - 17.60lbs
- Built-in Hook & Level
- Arca Swiss

Hard to beat the price too. Especially used. $60-80 eBay. Still only $149 new and I see discounts sometimes down to $100.

Paul Lindqvist's picture

Most people?

Can't afford or not willing to spend are two very different things. If you really need a tripod, spending some money on it is not a bad idea. 150 for a tripod isn't gonna get you far, apart from a tripod that spec-wise might do for small cameras and ideal conditions, but its performance will mirror the price tag.

Deleted Account's picture

I am fan of MeFoto

Michelle Maani's picture

I like my Manfrotto and am happy with the investment, but it is hard for my arthritic hands to work sometimes.

Surya Chataut's picture

I bought sirui t-1205x and absolutely love it for travel. It's very compact <14 inches, supports 22lbs and weighs only 1.7lbs. Does have some negatives - not very tall, a bit on the expensive side (~300) but works great for me. When I hang my camera bag it feels very sturdy and have done lot of long exposure shots with no problem (even on a windy day)