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Tripod vs monopod: advantages and disadvantages of each

Stabilization accessories are among the first products that any novice photographer should include with their equipment. When you start photography, the many options can make your head spin a bit, even if it means doubting the best choice for yourself. And one of those main doubts is the tripod VS monopod opposition . What is the most suitable tool for the photo to be taken? How do you know which one to choose for a particular session? Both provide more stability than when working with the device in hand. But each of these tools have their own characteristics, as well as their advantages and disadvantages . We will go through them in this article so that you forge your own option.

Tripod vs monopod: advantages and disadvantages of each

Advantages of tripods

We start with the tripods. You must have seen loads of them, these are three-legged props that almost every photographer has. They are designed to provide a stable fulcrum for mounting the camera. There are a wide variety of models, in all sizes and with different ball joints or video heads. The ball joints are the top of the tripods, where you mount the camera.

Tripods are very useful when looking for an effect that involves a long shutter time. For example, to produce the silky effect on water , to capture the wakes of car headlights or for astrophotography . Tripods are also suitable for macro photography or studio photography because they allow you to have a camera firmly fixed on a specific point. Another technique that invites the use of a tripod is time-lapse. You will make sure, with a tripod, not to have a jump between two takes.

Disadvantages of using a tripod

One of the main drawbacks of tripods, especially “standard” size tripods, that is, non-mini tripods, is their relatively heavy weight . So if you know that you are going to have to carry one around for hours, you will have to ask yourself if it is worth using it or not. Especially since their installation can take time . It is true that when you use one several times you can set it up faster but the quick movements are going to be somewhat limited.

Advantages of monopods

When stability is not the priority, many photographers prefer to go with a monopod. As you probably know, monopods, as opposed to tripods, only have one leg and the top part has a camera connection. You can also find all sizes and capacities to support more or less weight.

According to DZOFILM, monopods are ideal for situations where you don't want to be burdened with too much weight. If you have to walk for a while to get to where you want to shoot, for example, then a monopod might be a better idea than a tripod . If you are going to do a photoshoot where you will be using your camera in your hand first, especially if you are using a cine zoom lens, your arms may indeed get tired of carrying so much weight. For all these occasions, it is better to take a monopod to mount the camera on and let your arms rest.

Disadvantages of monopods

As you can imagine, the main disadvantage of a monopod is that it doesn't offer the same stability and security as a tripod . So if you are going to get a monopod, you must take this aspect into account. In addition, to take shots with long exposures, a monopod will be of no use to you since you will get blurry photos. You should also take into account that if you are outside on a windy day, a monopod will not help you and worse - it may even endanger your equipment.

Tripod vs monopod: conclusion

Our conclusion is clear: the tripod is no better than the monopod and the reverse is not true either. Everything will depend on the application you want to give it . If you are looking for great stability because the photography discipline you plan to practice requires it, the ideal would be to use a sturdy tripod, with a large load capacity and resistant legs. Conversely, if you want to lighten your equipment for transport and stability is not essential, then do not hesitate, it is a monopod that you will need.

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