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Ball Head Tripods and Monopods

Camera tripods and monopods are part of every serious photographer's kit, just like interchangeable lenses and flashes. Without a camera stabiliser, it is quite hard to take sharp images, especially in low-light situations, because the camera shakes. Tripods and monopods can hold your camera and keep it absolutely still, something a living human being almost never is. Ball head tripods and monopods are the most common type available and a good option for most photographers.

Ball Head Mount

The ball head tripod head includes a ball and socket joint, which allow a 360-degree range of movement, so you can aim your camera at any angle. If necessary, you can lock the ball head in any position you need, and then move around with the camera stabiliser. This mount type is relatively simple and generally does not include pan and tilt abilities. Ball heads are best for landscape photography.

Tripod and Monopod Height

The type of tripod generally determines its extendable height and the smallest size it can assume. The smallest are the one-section tabletop tripods, which are suitable for children playing around. Two-section tripods can accommodate small, compact cameras, while three-section tripods generally have quite good quality and can hold slightly bigger cameras. Four-section tripods are very compact once you fold them, and they are typically from durable materials like carbon fibre. Telescopic tripods provide you lots of height and also fold into a very small form. Monopods are one-legged tripods, so these two are very similar, and the same rules about height apply.

Tripod and Monopod Capability

One of the most important features to consider before purchasing a tripod or monopod is the weight of your camera and lens assembly. The camera stabiliser needs to be sturdy enough to hold the weight. Compact cameras typically weigh under 1 kg, like mirrorless cameras and digital SLR cameras, while medium format cameras range between 1 to 3 kg.

Materials

The construction material of a monopod or tripod describes the quality of the camera holder. Plastic models are the cheapest and do not support expensive cameras sufficiently. Aluminium tripods are more durable and can extend to a greater height than their plastic counterparts. Carbon fibre makes for lightweight and reliable devices that are also the most expensive.

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