Are you a photographer or a vlogger? Maybe you’re a beginner or a trained professional? In any case, you need to know “how do tripods work”. It’s an essential vlogging gear for all levels of vloggers and photographers. In this article, we are going to mention all the important and brief information about the tripods. We assure you that after reading this article you will be in a position to make informed and independent decisions about tripods. In fact, this blog is designed in a way to equip you with the best, authentic and unbiased information.
Any committed vlogger or a photographer should have his/her own tripod. Quality tripods provide accurate and much-needed stability that is sometimes mandatory for a lens with longer zoom, panorama photographs, and established shooting points for slow shutter speed. The quality tripod is an outstanding companion for a variety of shootings such as studio, outdoor, wildlife, sports, time-lapse, fireworks and many more. Tripods increase and improve the sharpness of photos with long exposure by naturally reducing the camera movement’s effects.
Top lens manufacturers such as Canon and Nikon are developing technologies for a new lens like Image stabilization and Vibration reduction respectively. These new up gradations are useful whole handheld recordings in fast pace modes. You may need a good tripod here for best alternate for getting sharp and steady photos. You can also place the speed lights on a tripod for perfect light control.
There are a lot of tripods in the market that have many features that may confuse you to choose the right one. We have mentioned some best performing tripods in our article “best tripod for DSLR under 200”. You can select any tripods that seem fit under your budget and needs. We focus on the education of our reader to provide the ultimate information so that they can choose the desired product that will result in saving of the money.
It is also critical to keep in mind about the features and adoption of advanced technologies may cause to increase the price of a tripod. It is not mandatory that you will use all of the new and upgraded features of a tripod. Here you need to be focused on your own professional needs and shooting styles to select the right tripod.
HOW A TRIPOD HELPS YOU?
Working of a tripod depends upon different features. A tripod is a critical gear that is used for photography and vlogging situations to get stable and steady shots. Tripods have three stretchable legs that can open to get it on standing potion and later you can collapse it for packing and moving on. It is balanced and hands-free platform with a head where you can adjust your camera.
A tripod helps you to take photos or shoot videos by holding the camera and enables you to capture shots from different angles, which is very helpful in different situations. A tripod is more stable from its other types like monopods that have usually one leg and its handheld which loses your freedom of both hands. We overall recommend tripods because they can be adjusted in a variety of situations. However, many hikers find monopods or walking stick best fit for them as they have different needs. A tripod may help you in the following ways.
Tripods merely don’t hold cameras physically, they are able to hold camcorders and can be turned into light stands that carry flash units and reflectors. In this way, the best quality tripod works to provide you flexibility by improving the movement of camcorders that will result in smooth videos with more professional looks.
2. NATURAL PHOTOGRAPHY
A tripod is also helpful in capturing excellent natural photography shots or video clips. You may need to wait for hours to capture natural scenes because their appearance might last for a few seconds. You need to be ready for these shots and a tripod is best for you as it can stand for you for hours or even days while you are waiting for the correct time.
3. SUNSET AND LOW-LIGHT SHOTS
The camera will adjust shutter speed and exposure in low light conditions because natural light is reduced in evenings. With a low shutter speed, there is a potential risk of shake in a camera that will bring unwanted blur. A quality tripod is helpful here because it can reduce the movement of the camera which will result in the quality improvement and it will lead you to get great sunsets and low-light shots.
4. WHILE USING TELEPHOTO LENS
A telephoto lens is generally difficult to handle because of their size. Long focal amplify any type of vibration that can be caused by camera mirror and shutter, wind speed or by the photography/video shooting person. Slow shutter speed and a maximum aperture of the telephoto lens can potentially increase this problem. Here you will find a good tripod more helpful because it will keep your camera steady and deliver sharp and crispy photos or videos.
5. CLOSE UP SHOTS
That’s really difficult, especially for small subjects. It needs a lot of skills and very nominal movements to capture the right moments. Using a tripod can result in the desired quality because it eliminated unwanted movements of the camera.
You can also get more creative by using the best quality tripod. It can ultimately help you to capture the right moment by slowing down and getting closer to the right frame. Tripod can help you sometimes to get into the right places where you can’t get normally. There are some tripods that can be adjusted some inches above the ground level to capture the shots.
7. SPOT PHOTOGRAPHY & ACTION SHOTS
Here come another helping features of a tripod. If you want to cover any sports or wildlife event than you may not get closer. For this you need a telephoto lens and carrying them is not easy. You must need a tripod to capture or record the actions shots. By using the right tripod planning become much easier and results in more fluid.
FEATURES OF A TRIPOD
There are many features of a tripod that you may have to consider before purchasing it. These features have a great role in the working of a tripod. A tripod has some parts like head, legs, feet, leg locks, size extension, load capacity, and it’s material. You must be aware of the aspects of its features in order to choose the best tripod for you. The more you become aware of the features and their differences the more you will become an independent and informed buyer.
Head of a tripod is the resting place of your camera or camcorder. There are two types of heads that are commonly available in tripods. One is tilt & pan head and other is ball head. Other head types include pistol grip head, fluid head, gimbal head, camcorder rotators, and videos head but here we are not covering each head type separately.
You will find some tripods that don’t have the head and you have to purchase it separately. This is because you may need a specific head so you can select the head according to your needs. Tilt & Pan heads are most widely being used by the photographers because they provide perfect and accurate control and they are also affordable. For vloggers or video makers, you can go for ball head that moves smoothly up to 360 degrees and provides you desired wide angle. Head can be adjusted upward or downward with the help of locking collar or by using the hand crank.
Feet normally have two types. Rubber or plastic feet that are preferably used for almost in all general conditions especially indoors. The other type is Spike feet, which is used for sturdy placements especially in soil. There is a third type of feet also that is known as custom foot, which is used for very specific conditions.
Leg Locks are being used to fix the leg positions of a tripod. We all know that leg of a tripod are extendable at a minimum and maximum positions. Leg locks are available in a twist or level configurations but many tripod producers have their own custom settings. You can use lever leg lock and twist lock to lock the tripod legs.
Load Capacity is a feature that the maximum capacity of a tripod to hold weight. Professional cameras with telephoto lens have more weight than others. So don’t go for the normal tripod. Select the best tripod that can hold the equipment other normal, flimsy and cheap tripod will result in jeopardizing the stability which will damage the costly apparatus.
Extended Size means the maximum height of a tripod on its a full extension. Many vloggers and photographers choose tall tripods because they have to capture long shots. Human eye level elevation eradicates the need to fold or bend your back while recording.
Collapsed Size illustrates the minimum measurements of a completely folded tripod. Travel vloggers or photographers have a close concern with this because they need this feature along with portability especially if they are traveling by air.
Material is the most important thing for a tripod. We need to know which material is used for the construction of a tripod. The material has a direct effect on the weight, durability, and portability of a tripod. A most common material is plastic, carbon fiber, and aluminum. Other materials may include wooden tripods but others are much heavier and very rare.
Plastic is normally used for a cheap tripod but they are not durable and reliable. Aluminum tripods are usually mid-range tripods that are priced well but they provide good support but tripods that are larger in size with aluminum are tend to get heavier. High-end tripods are being made with carbon fiber which is perfectly flexible, durable and very light in weight. Of course, they are more expensive but a good reward of money.
ADDITIONAL FEATURES OF A TRIPOD
We have discussed the primary features of a tripod that is critical for its working. There are some additional features that can’t be ignored because they have some additional elements that can increase the value of a tripod.
Weight Hook is also being added by some manufacturers. It allows you to hook additional weight for stable and firm positioning of a tripod.
Camouflage pattern is another added feature of a tripod. Mostly wildlife vloggers and photographers use this type of tripod because it gets mixed up with the environment without alerting the subject.
Levels are an additional feature that is built-in but not in all tripods. They are added to tilt the surface than normal or for the creation of panorama shots.
Padding is a helpful and very useful additional feature that is available in some tripods. It protects the tripods from weather and damage effects. It may be your top priority if you are using a high price carbon fiber tripod.
Carrying Cases are generally coming when you purchase a tripod. You can collapse or you’re your tripod and put in the case and move on. Most often a strap is coming with the carry case that makes the portability of the tripod more convenient.
TYPES OF TRIPODS
In order to understand “how do tripods work”, we have to dig further. There are hundreds of thousands of tripods that are available in the market but they can be segregated into different types for better information. The most common types are discussed below.
Portable Tripods are enough functional to raise the DSLR camera from the ground. Besides this, they can be easily collapsed, get fit into the carry case and ready to travel. Portable tripods are known for the perfect mixture balance and portability. If you are travel, sports or natural vlogger then this is the perfect match for you.
Heavy Duty tripods are equipped with all the desired features that a professional may need.They are extendable at an eye level and even higher with the excellent stability that is needed for heavy cameras and long lens. These tripods are best for capturing wildlife moments, sports events from a distance, macro and for studio purposes. As they are armed with the best features but unfortunately they are best for travel purposes.
Pocket Tripods are normally very small in size and only support compact cameras. Using these tripods is really fun as it may be largely up to 6 inches that can fit in your pocket. These are very useful for selfies, self-group shots, and portraits. You can place them on a table or any other horizontal surface. Keep in mind to look for the adjustable head feature, if you are going to buy a pocket tripod because it will give you improved control.
Table-Top Tripods are very much akin to pocket tripods but they are marginally larger. They are coming in the size of almost 12 inches that makes them super portable and best for group shots and recordings. You can also use them for travel and macro purposes but due to its size, maximum load capacity is limited. So it’s best to use with small cameras.
Stationary/Studio Tripods are generally used in professional studios. They have a large size and are very specialized. They are only good to move inside a studio. These tripods are normally used with medium or large cameras to shoot a variety of skillful studio work.
ALTERNATIVES OF TRIPODS
Monopods, also known as unipods. They are much easier to carry but unfortunately less effective. Some sports photographers use them but they can spend more than five minutes to set up each shot. Monopods are simply constructed and typically look like a collapsible stick. You can potentially use a monopod because some places or events don’t allow tripods because of some tripping hazard in restrained space.
Gorilla pod is an exclusive design created by Joby that makes it possible to attach a gorilla pod with a variety of objects. The distinct feature of a gorilla pod is its sturdy octopus-like legs. They have a strong grip and allows you to place your camera on a tree, light pole, branch of tree or fence etc. They are coming in many sized to support different cameras.
Suction Mounts enable you to attach a camera to a smooth and flat surface such as glass. Suction mounts may have a limited holding capacity that depends on angle tilting. They are usually manufactured for the light camera and portable flashlights.
Clamps are also portable and small in size but you have to find some other thing to clamp them too. They may be not a suitable option for many people but still, you have an option.
We have explained almost everything that you may need to know “how do tripods work”. After reading this you will be in a better position to reach on the decision of your desired tripod. Since it’s the third most important gadget for vlogging or photography after the best budget camera and best DSLR lens so you need to be very precise before purchasing. A cheap and flimsy tripod may not hold your camera and results in the loss of your vlogging apparatus. Leave a comment if you need to review any specific tripod or vlogging camera. We will be more than happy to serve you.