If you have landed on this article, then you have most probably realised the value a tripod can bring to your photography, videos or Vlogging. At face value a tripod can seem like a unnecessary piece of equipment. However that couldn’t be further from the truth.
After using a tripod in the field, its really hard to go back to shooting without one.
So what is the best tripod under $100 and can you even find a worth while product? In our opinion, definitely yes.
Table Of Contents
- 1 Top 5 Best Tripods Under $100 Of 2017 – Tried And Tested
So how it it possible to get a worthy tripod for my camera for under $100 in 2017? Simply put it comes down to the abundance of high quality materials and the extremely efficient manufacturing process. When you add these 2 things together, you end up with a tripod that is well designed, durable, light, versatile and wont send you broke.
Top 5 Best Tripods Under $100 Of 2017 – Tried And Tested
|Joby GorillaPod (Editors Pick)||Travel/Street Photography/Vlogging||0.75lbs||$||4.8||Find Out More|
|EACHSHOT ES240 Kit||Studio/Landscape/Wedding Photography||2.5lbs||$$||4.8||Find Out More|
|Manfrotto Compact Action Tripod||Travel/Landscape/Hiking||0.73lbs||$||4.6||Find Out More|
|Magnus VT-300 Video Tripod with Fluid Head||Video/Filming/Student Filmmakers||5.8lbs||$$||4.6||Find Out More|
|Ravelli APGL4 Professional 70″ Tripod||Studio/Landscape/Wedding Photography||8.0lbs||$$$||4.7||Find Out More|
Before i get stuck in. Let me first say that there is no one “holy grail” tripod under $100. In a way this is good because as creators we all do our “thing” differently. For example a tripod that would suit a landscape photographer wouldn’t be as useful for a Vlogger.
Because of this we have compiled a list of the top 5 best tripods under $100 for all types of shooting and skill levels. Whether you shoot weddings, wildlife, portraits, home videos or street photography. There will be a tripod in this list for you.
Here are some things to look out for when considering the best tripod for your needs.
- Durability: As photographers/videographers we can sometimes be a bit rough on equipment. This may be due to many factors such as environment, travelling, prolonged use or just being straight careless. Whatever it is, the chosen product must be able to handle this constant barrage of terror. Poor camera equipment :(.
- Weight: Im sure I’m not the only one who has ever packed their bag to go do a shoot and quickly realised that 1. you cant event pick the bag up and 2. there is no way on hell this is getting on a airplane. So taking into account these factors will save you physical and mental hassle down the track.
- Compactness: This is similar to the above point with the added realisation that not all light tripods are compact. I have made this mistake before after purchasing a extremely lightweight tripod only to realise to didn’t fit in my backpack. Damn!
- Price: Since this is article is about the best tripods under $100, obviously price will play an important role. Depending on your budget you can still pick up a decent tripod under $30. Hard to believe, but yes it is possible for the right shooting environment.
1. Joby GorillaPod (Editors Pick)
Coming in at our first position on this list is the untraditional Joby GorillaPod. If your are familiar with daily Vloggers such as Casey Neistat or Mr Ben Brown. Then you have most likely seen this tripod used in multiple videos.
One of the biggest reasons for Vloggers loving this GorillaPod is that its designed for on the go shooting thanks to its flexible legs and lightweight build. While its a great addition for video shooters, its also a fantastic supporting tripod for photographers.
At first glance you can tell straight away this tripod is completely different from nearly every on the market. In a way this is a good thing as it comes with a lot of advantages. One of these being that this Joby GorillaPod can be attached to almost any surface or protruding object.
This literally adds a whole new dimension to the way in which you can know frame a shot.
Some other great design queues that are adopted from more traditional tripods are the ball head movement and quick release. Having these additions makes using this GorillaPod familiar and easy to adapt to from a more traditional tripod.
While this tripod ticks multiple boxes such as being lightweight, durable, affordable, functional and compatible, its not perfect for every photographer or video maker.
If you are a studio or landscape photographer then you may already see the limitations of this product. However for street photographers, travel photographers, Vloggers, hikers and video makers, this tripod brings a lot of value while being friendly on the wallet. Overall this is a great tripod that can in my opinion enhance ones shooting due to its unique form factor.
2. Dolica AX620B100 Elite 62″ Aluminum Alloy Tripod
Next on our list of the best tripods under $100 is the Dolica AX620B100 Elite 62″ Aluminum Alloy Tripod. Finding a “bullet proof” tripod under the $100 price range is challenging. But after some research and field testing we believe this tripod fits the build.
I’ll come out straight and say this Dolica AX6200 is no $1000 Manfrotto. Just because a tripod has a aluminium build doesn’t necessarily mean its sturdy. There are also plastic components such as locking mechanisms that have to be designed well and strong. Some manufacturers do this well and some fall short.
However for this particular model, Dolica got it right.
Setting up for a landscape shoot was relatively effortless as the legs slid out smoothly and locked into place strongly. I was also quite surprised by the rigidity of the aluminium legs which i would compare to a tripod in the $300-$400 range.
This tripod has a full extension of 62″ which is the expected length of any studio or landscape photography tripod. When packed down it fits easily into a backpack for easy transport. However it is on the heavy side due its it aluminium build coming in at 2.5 pounds. Over short hikes location i didn’t notice the weight too much.
Overall this Dolica AX6200 was a pleasure to use and is highly recommended for landscape and studio photographers.
3. Manfrotto Compact Action Tripod
What if there was a tripod that had all the functionality but was light and easy to travel with? Thats where the Manfrotto Compact Action Tripod comes into frame. Upon planning a trip to New Zealand i purchased this tripod on a whim because of its light weight (0.73 pounds) as i was travelling carry on only. A true lightweight that packs a punch!
I had never traveled with a tripod in my carry on luggage which i was dubious about at first. But to my surprise it fitted quite snuggly in the corner of the suitcase and left plenty of room for other essentials.
Looking back on it, i was extremely thankful i took this tripod with me as it allowed me to capture some stunning photographs.
What really drew me to this tripod was the light weight construction which is a third of the weight of the above mentioned Dolica. Having a light tripod is great, but it also needs to be functional and work with a wide range of cameras. During this trip i was using a Canon EOS 70D which was securely fastened to the quick release plate and threaded on effortlessly.
Overall this tripod was a joy to use and travel with. I have recommended this tripod to multiple enthusiast photographers who want a truly versatile tripod.
4. Magnus VT-300 Video Tripod with Fluid Head
For all you video makers out there, i haven’t forgotten about you. While the above tripods lean towards the photography aspect of shooting. This Magnus VT-300 is made for Video Shooters, Students, YouTubers, Vloggers and Filmmakers.
There definitely are cheeper video tripods on the market. But to be honest they don’t offer the same quality and fluid movement as this Magnus. In saying that, this particular model isn’t that expensive and is currently hoovering around the $80 price range.
Setting up this tripod to shoot video is fairly straight forward and is easy to get the hang of for any beginner film makers of photographers. Extending the legs out in two stages brings the overall maximum height to 64.3″ and locks in securely with the flip-locks.
Now comes the part where this tripod really prospers. Shooting video is unlike still photography where you compose in a static position. Because of this, video tripods need the ability to shoot buttery smooth pans and tilts which this Magnus VT-300 does extremely well for a tripod under $100.
While the pans and tilts on this tripod are incredibly smooth. Adjusting the drag of the movements isn’t a built in feature which is a shame. However you can bypass this by using the locking mechanism which works in a similar way to adjust the tension.
In conclusion this tripod is a great fit someone wanting to get into video while delivering on functionality and being a friend to your wallet.
5. Ravelli APGL4 Professional 70″ Tripod
Last but not least on our list of the best tripods under $100 is the Ravelli APGL4 70″ Tripod. This model comes is a fantastic hybrid that caters extremely well for photographers and videographers.
What really makes this Ravelli stand out from the rest is its unique pistol grip. While this might seem a novelty at first, it really does add another layer of functionality.
As with any high quality tripod, you can expect a fluid ball head with a quick-release plate that made even quicker thanks to the unique grip. While switching between orientations there are 3 bubble levels that allows you to maintain a level base regardless of the angle.
Another great feature of this product is this ability to extend it to a max height of 70″. So for all you NBA players out there, this tripod is easily in reach. Overall this tripod is a great addition to any studio or wedding photographer where the ability to shoot quickly is essential.
If your totally new to tripods, check out these guides on the how to attached a camera to a tripod and some cool tripod hacks. Overall a tripod can add a whole new layer of professionalism and quality to your content when properly used. Hopefully this guide has steered you in the right direction in picking a great tripod. Happy shooting!