High tech

Our selection of the best photo tripods of 2020

Written by Agathe Rosse

The tripod is one of the indispensable photo accessories to have in your backpack. It can be useful in many different situations and types of shooting.

In low light, it is appreciated to use the tripod to make long exposures and get sharper pictures than holding the camera by hand. It will also support you for shots that require precision or long periods of time with the camera in hand. Telephoto lenses are not the lightest, so you will need to put in more physical effort than with a tripod.

The criteria being numerous, we have selected for you the best tripods of 2020.

Which photo tripod to choose in 2020?


If you have the budget, we recommend the Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4. Manfrotto, a brand recognized for the quality of its products for several decades, continues to design quality equipment. This model meets the criteria of robustness, lightness, versatility and ease of use. If you want a stable support in all circumstances, this is the tripod for you.

For a smaller budget, we recommend the K&F Concept tripod. Its maximum height of 2 meters and its 360° swivel joint for a minimum weight of 1.43kg make it an ideal companion.

Our top 3 best tripods of 2020


The best affordable photo tripod
The best mid-range photo tripod
The best premium photo tripod
K&F Concept
Manfrotto MKBFRTA4B-BHM Befree
Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4
Made of aluminium, this tripod combines lightness and strength. Versatile, you can use it as a tripod or monopod. A real plus!
It supports up to 10kg of load, is made of carbon fiber and has a ball-and-socket joint for quick and easy framing of your shots.
Its central column is equipped with a 90° mechanism as well as 4 opening angles to take advantage of a multitude of positions.
Camera Tripod 79"/200cm, K&F Concept DSLR Tripods Aluminum Travel Vlog Tripod Monopod with 360° Panorama Ball Head 1/4" Quick Release Plate Carrying Case Loading Up to 17.6lbs/8kg for Canon Nikon Sony
Manfrotto MKBFRTA4B-BHM Befree Advanced 2N1 Travel Tripod with Monopod, Twist Lock, Tripod bag, Plate and Ball Head included for Canon, Nikon, Sony, DSLR, CSC, Mirrorless, Up to 8 kg, Aluminium
Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4, 055 Carbon Fibre 4 Section Tripod with Horizontal Column, for DSLR, Compact System Camera, Mirrorless, Quick Power Lock, Black
£66.99
£149.00
Price not available
The best affordable photo tripod
K&F Concept
Made of aluminium, this tripod combines lightness and strength. Versatile, you can use it as a tripod or monopod. A real plus!
Camera Tripod 79"/200cm, K&F Concept DSLR Tripods Aluminum Travel Vlog Tripod Monopod with 360° Panorama Ball Head 1/4" Quick Release Plate Carrying Case Loading Up to 17.6lbs/8kg for Canon Nikon Sony
£66.99
The best mid-range photo tripod
Manfrotto MKBFRTA4B-BHM Befree
It supports up to 10kg of load, is made of carbon fiber and has a ball-and-socket joint for quick and easy framing of your shots.
Manfrotto MKBFRTA4B-BHM Befree Advanced 2N1 Travel Tripod with Monopod, Twist Lock, Tripod bag, Plate and Ball Head included for Canon, Nikon, Sony, DSLR, CSC, Mirrorless, Up to 8 kg, Aluminium
£149.00
The best premium photo tripod
Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4
Its central column is equipped with a 90° mechanism as well as 4 opening angles to take advantage of a multitude of positions.
Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4, 055 Carbon Fibre 4 Section Tripod with Horizontal Column, for DSLR, Compact System Camera, Mirrorless, Quick Power Lock, Black
Price not available

 

🏆 The top 3 best tripods of 2020


 

How to choose your photo tripod?


The uses of a tripod are as numerous as the criteria to check before buying one.

The tripod is a rather complex accessory since it must be versatile, light and at the same time support rather heavy loads, stable and quick to set up.

Depending on your needs and budget, we help you choose the tripod you need. But to do this, you need to identify and understand the different selection criteria that will guide you to the ideal tripod.

Why a tripod?

The use of your tripod depends on the situation, the result you want to achieve and the environment you are in.

It is very useful for group photos in particular. You can indeed take several pictures in a row with the same frame and even appear on the picture if you have a remote control to trigger the remote shooting! The latter will also allow you to perform no physical action on the camera at the time of shooting, thus limiting even the slightest movement of the camera.

The tripod also allows you to avoid blur, especially in low light and on “fixed” shots (real estate photography for example). Once your camera is stable on its tripod, you can absorb as much light as possible without the inconvenience of blur, for sharp, bright photos.

Conversely, in the case of long exposure, blurring is desired and artistic. This technique is often used to take moving water (river, waterfall…), vehicle headlights at night or light painting.

The materials

The most affordable tripods in terms of price are usually those made of aluminium. They are both light and strong. Carbon fibre is an even lighter high-end material that absorbs movement better. This improves the stability of your device.

The dimensions

There are different sizes to check before buying your tripod. If you plan to take it with you when hiking or travelling, we recommend a compact tripod that measures about 50cm when folded up.

The maximum dimension is also to be taken into account as you may need in some cases to put your device at a height to keep a good perspective. Some tripods in our selection are up to two meters high.

The minimum height will be of particular interest to macro enthusiasts who will need to be as close to the ground as possible to capture every detail of their subjects (insects, flowers, nature, small objects…).

The weight

As well as the size, weight is a decisive factor if you want to carry your tripod with you for a long period of time. In this case, the choice of a lighter, carbon fibre tripod is wise.

The weight supported

Not to be confused with the weight of the tripod, the weight supported is the weight that the tripod can hold to take your pictures in optimal conditions. Too heavy equipment on an unsuitable tripod will cause unwanted movement due to wind or vibration.

Stability

It is important to make sure that the tripod is stable for the equipment you will be using. Its design, the quality of the locking systems, the materials used and the robustness must then be analysed to define its stability.

The patella

Attached to the top of the tripod, the ball joint (also called the head) is the element on which the camera is positioned. The most common models are the ball joint and the 3D ball joint.

The patella is becoming more and more democratic. It works, as its name suggests, thanks to a ball. With a single lever, the ball joint can be adjusted to suit your needs. The 3D head can be adjusted via three levers: horizontal, vertical and housing position until it switches to portrait mode.

On the practical side, we appreciate tripods that have a fast tray. Screwed to your device, it can then be attached very quickly and easily to the ball joint.

Feet

They may seem futile, but the tripod legs will play an important role. They must be able to adjust independently to suit all types of soil. Some manufacturers also provide spikes for planting the feet in a loose surface such as grass or sand.

Accessories

For ease of use, tripods are sometimes equipped with accessories that are not necessarily essential but can be useful. One example is the transport bag, adapted to the dimensions of the tripod. Or bubble levels to make sure you’re positioned correctly.

Our complete selection of 2020 photo tripods


1. The MKBFRTA4B-BHM Befree of Manfrotto

Manfrotto is one of the market leaders in the field of camera, camera and lighting supports. The brand launched its first tripod in 1974. Since then, it has been able to take advantage of technological developments to offer today quality equipment for amateurs and professionals alike.

Among its products is the MKBFRTA4B-BHM 2-in-1 tripod, the most versatile model in the Befree range. You can use it as a tripod or as a monopod thanks to its detachable stand. Your trip will be lighter if you choose to take only the monopod with you.

The Manfrotto Befree 2 in 1 has been designed to be ergonomic, easy to use and quick to set up so you won’t miss a shot. It features an angle selector suitable for left and right-handed users to finely select perspective and adjust the tripod height without compromising your shooting.

The tripod legs can be easily unfolded to three different angles, giving the tripod great versatility. Its frame ensures good stability whatever the terrain on which you position the tripod, even on slopes.

Finally, its Easy Link connector allows you to add accessories to give you the opportunity to fully express your creativity!

The benefits
  • Can be used as a tripod or monopod
  • Easy to set up
The drawbacks
  • His video patella lacks a little fluidity..

Technical Specifications :

Materials Aluminium
Color Black
Maximum height 150cm
Minimum height Forty centimeters
Load capacity 8kg
Weight 1.56kg

2. The Rollei C6i tripod

The Rollei C6i tripod is made of carbon material to offer lightness and strength. Its compact size makes it easy to take it with you on your travels or trips.

It can accommodate up to 12kg. It should therefore support all your photographic equipment, especially telephoto lenses, which are particularly heavy.

The C6i tripod has non-slip foam handles. Ideal in winter, they bring you precision when shooting and also have an insulating effect in the cold for your comfort. Bubble levels allow you to carefully frame your compositions. It is easy to put in place thanks to its quick clamps to adjust the length of the feet.

Versatile, it can go from tripod to monopod. Macro enthusiasts will appreciate its minimum height of 19cm which offers the possibility to be almost at ground level to capture the smallest details. Its head has a 360° panoramic function with a notch to switch from landscape to portrait mode.

The benefits
  • Its minimum height of 19cm is convenient for macro photography
  • Its handles are comfortable
  • It supports a heavy load of 12kg
The drawbacks
  • Its maximum height could be greater

Technical Specifications :

Materials Carbon
Color Black
Maximum height 157,5cm
Minimum height 19cm
Load capacity Twelve kilos
Weight 1.33kg

3. Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB100

The Alta Pro 263AB100 tripod from the renowned Vanguard brand rests on three legs with easily adjustable angles (25°, 50° and 80°) and rubber feet with retractable spikes to adapt to all types of flooring.

Its central column slides vertically from 0° to 180° and swivels 360°. A variety of framing options are thus within your reach. Its minimum height of 26.5cm allows for easy macro shooting. Made from an aluminium alloy and carbon fibre, it has shock-resistant rings to resist impacts.

The Alta Pro range is equipped with the ISSL (Instant Swivel Stop-n-Lock) system, which repositions the central column in a few seconds with a single movement and in complete safety. In addition, the stability of the tripod is maintained during handling.
Its case also includes a carrying bag and a removable hook for hanging camera accessories.

The benefits
  • Its Instant Swivel Stop-n-lock system
  • Rubbers on the feet for good stability
The drawbacks
  • Slightly high weight

Technical Specifications :

Materials Aluminium
Color Black
Maximum height 173cm
Minimum height 26,5cm
Load capacity 7kg
Weight 2.5kg

4. The K&F Concept tripod

The K&F Concept tripod offers you great versatility thanks to its detachable monopod (85-205cm) that you can use on its own, and even as a walking stick during your walks! It has a swivel head that allows you to frame 360° to capture what’s around you. The ball joint is interchangeable and compatible with those of other brands (3/8″ male screw).

Two locks block the positioning of the head for greater stability and precision, and the central column reverses vertically to take macro photos as close to the ground as possible.

The tripod installation is quick and easy thanks to the anti-twist plastic butterfly clips located on the leg sections. You can express yourself freely thanks to its maximum height of 2 metres, which opens up the field of possibilities.

Lightweight, you can easily take it with you on your travels and hikes. It is sold with a good quality carrying case, which can be worn on the back or over the shoulder.

The benefits
  • Its maximum height of 2 meters
  • Its robustness
The drawbacks
  • A minimum height of less than 50cm would have been appreciable for better macro results

Technical Specifications :

Materials Aluminium
Color Black
Maximum height 200cm
Minimum height 50cm
Load capacity 10kg
Weight 1.43kg

5. The Manfrotto MKBFRTC4GT-BH Befree Advanced GT Tripod

Manfrotto’s MKBFRTC4GT-BH Befree Advanced GT model features carbon fiber feet to ensure light weight and strength. Ideal to take with you when travelling, it supports professional SLR cameras with long lenses such as telephoto lenses while remaining compact and allowing it to be easily stored in a backpack or carry-on bag.

It has an ergonomic foot angle selector made to be used by both right- and left-handed people. It is therefore quick and intuitive to set up.

Its ball joint is easy to use thanks to the independent and ergonomic adjustments. It can carry up to 10kg of material which gives you good flexibility. Its M-Lock locking system allows the height of the feet to be quickly blocked by means of rings at each section.

The benefits
  • Its low weight
  • Its high load capacity
The drawbacks
  • The use of the centre column lock is not very practical

Technical Specifications :

Materials Carbon
Color Black
Maximum height 162cm
Minimum height 43cm
Load capacity 10kg
Weight 1.55kg

6. Manfrotto MT055CXPRO4

Manfrotto’s MT055CXPRO4 version has four sections that can be locked with one hand easily and efficiently thanks to the Quick Power Lock system. Your equipment stays in place and can weigh up to 9kg, which will cover a large part of your needs.

Made of carbon, it offers an excellent level of rigidity for a minimum of weight. Unlike aluminium, carbon has the advantage of absorbing vibrations. This stabilizes your camera in all conditions.
The Easy Link connector allows you to associate an LED torch, a reflector or any other accessory to go even further in your realizations.

Its central column is equipped with a 90° mechanism as well as 4 opening angles allowing you to reach a multitude of positions. You will be able to enjoy yourself in macro thanks to its minimum height of 9cm on the ground.

The benefits
  • Carbon fiber making it strong and light weight
  • Its ideal minimum height for macro
The drawbacks
  • No carrying bag provided

Technical Specifications :

Materials Carbon
Color Black
Maximum height 170cm
Minimum height 9cm
Load capacity 9kg
Weight 2.1kg

About the author

Agathe Rosse

I have been a kindergarten assistant for 4 years now, I enjoy my free time for my passions. I love cooking (gourmet food is my biggest flaw!), adventure and sports. Writing is one of my hobbies, to let the pen express my thoughts. I never leave without my little notebook!