The perfect tripod for travel

Soon the rice season will begin again, and many wonder whether he should really take the heavy old tripod on the trip, which has been unused for years in the corner. The perfect tripod is not it, it is difficult, to labor with difficulty and keep it really well does it no more.

But just on trips there are, of course, a lot of motifs, which can hardly be taken in good quality without a tripod. What to do? And even more, how should the perfect tripod be? Travelin’ Camera and the Stativ Lexikon give answers!

The quadrature of the circle | For which camera? | How do I travel? | For which type of photos? | The budget | The perfect tripod for travel

1. Practical Advice | 2. Practical Advice | 3. Practical Advice

Farbenspiel im Hamburger Hafen
Rarely enough is there such a color play in the port of Hamburg. Happy is who has a tripod with it.

The quadrature of the circle:
Light – Low Cost – Small – Stable

Of course, the perfect travel tripod should be small and light, yet as stable as possible and at the same time affordable. And this is clear: the perfect travel tripod does not exist! According to my experience of the past 40 years, I can say that a tripod with three characteristics can be described: weight, price, stability. One of these properties always suffers. Either one has a light and very stable tripod, then it rips a large hole in the wallet. Or you have a cheap and at the same time very stable tripod, then you have what for towing! Unfortunately, the third option is the most common. A light and cheap tripod is offered in every photo shop or discounter for small money, unfortunately it wobbles like a lambs tail.

So what can you do?

Sonnenuntergang an der Schauenburg
The nightly spectacle looks great, but who shoots without a tripod, fights with the little light.

First question: For which camera?

This does not mean, however, that one under 200, – € no useful tripod for the trip could acquire. The most important question is, for what kind of camera you would like to use the tripod mainly. On the tripod, which has a professional full-format reflex camera to wear, of course, other requirements are placed than on a small tripod for the actioncam or the smartphone. The question of what kind of lenses are used in cameras with interchangeable lenses is also crucial. The typical holiday photographer, who uses only the kit lens of his digicam, comes with a less stable tripod than the bird photographed with very long focal lengths.

In the comparison tables, which are listed for the most famous tripod manufacturers in the Stativ Lexikon, the most important dimensions of the tripods are given as well as their maximum exposure by the camera weight. The manufacturer’s information should be a bit careful, I have the impression that it is with these values as with the consumption values of the car manufacturers. They are valid only under optimal conditions.

Großer Marktplatz in Marrakesch am Abend
Even in sunny Marrakech, a tripod is often needed, as the sun is going down earlier than in Europe.


You can increase the stability of each tripod by not pulling out the center column. The tripod then is not quite so high and you may have to bend to look into the viewfinder. This is a comparatively small sacrifice, if you get sharper images, because the recording is not blurred.

Nicht immer ist es erlaubt, in einem Einkaufszentrum wie hier in Venedig mit einem Stativ zu Fotografieren.

Second question: How do I travel?

Another criterion is the type of journeys that are preferred. If you spend your holiday mostly on a sailboat, in the ultralight or on the paragliding screen, you will be looking for a small tripod for fixing the actioncam at the sailmast, helmet or other mounting options. Mountain walkers and mountaineers should take care that the required tripod for taking up the sunrise on the summit is as light as possible and weatherproof and also fits in the backpack.

The means of transport used can also be decisive. If you are traveling by car, it will not be a problem to store a larger and heavier tripod in the trunk. If one chooses the airplane, then it is known every kilogram counts. If you still want to take your luggage on board, it is really difficult: the tripod must fit in the suitcase, which can not be longer than 55 cm / 22″ (with wheels and handles). There is mostly less than 50 cm / 20″ pack size left for the tripod.

The comparison tables also help with the technical data in the Stativ Lexikon. Please pay particular attention to the packing size and the weight including the tripod head.

Calendar title
A bit of planning and a bit of luck are part of the process in order to capture a motive at the right moment.

Third question: For which type of photos?

One aspect that many users ignore when choosing a tripod is the question of what type of photos you prefer to make.

Architecture images can be better done with a 3D tilt, portraits rather with a ball head or pistol grip. If you want to mount your camera anywhere, you can use the popular staplers, the gorilla pods or other clamps. Landscape photographers who want to capture panoramas are best to travel with a panoramic head and the specialists for mushrooms, beetles and other macro themes often need a base tripod or special settings to position the camera particularly close to the ground.

The different types of tripods and tripod heads as well as the materials used for building are explained in the Stativ Lexikon and supplemented by the presentation of the most important manufacturers and their products.

Hafenpromenade Konstanz
In the blue hour, a tripod is indispensable.


With a cable, infrared or radio trigger, you can avoid vibrating the camera by pressing the shutter release button. This reduces the risk of camera shake, resulting in sharper images during longer exposures or focal lengths.

Hochzeit in der Kirche
In the church there is little light to photograph, a tripod is helpful, whether with or without wedding.

… and the last question!

“What does a tripod cost?”, Which can be answered at least Travelin’ Camera. Because, of course, the question arises about the available budget. There are, therefore, many factors which can make the selection of the suitable stand difficult.

… and then someone comes to me in my photo workshop and asks me, “What kind of tripod should I buy?” The question is just as easy to answer as this: “What does a car cost?”

But with the help of the Stativ Lexikons you will definitely find the perfect travel guide!


Tuchhallen in Krakau in blauer Stunde
In the blue hour, at buildings such as the Krakow Cloth Hall you are not alone with your tripod and the camera.


Again and again I see that the cameras mounted on the tripods are only very timidly screwed. The screw that connects the camera to the tripod or the quick release plate should be tightened as much as possible so that the camera does not move or even fall down from the tripod. I have NEVER seen a camera in 40 years, in which the tripod thread had broken out because the user had tightened the screw too much!

The same applies, of course, to all the detents of the tripod itself. Some cameras wiggle on the tripod back and forth, just because the tripod legs or the tripod head has not been correctly locked. However, you have to pay attention to cheap plastic stands – after “solid” comes “off”!

The perfect tripod for travel

Here comes finally my small selection for the perfect Reisestativ of GitzoJobyK&F ConceptManfrottoNovoflex and Sirui. They are all very well suited to travel, as they are small and light tripods with good load bearing capacity and stability.

The TC2534 from K&F ConceptManfrottos Befree and the Sirui T-005X offer three very similar tripods at a similar low price, with the tripod of K&F Concept standing out as the only carbon tripod with an attractive price. The GT1542 Mountaineer from Gitzo and the Novoflex TRIOC2840 are priced in a different league, but offer a top quality under the travel destinations.


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[:de]Mit 34 cm Packmaßlänge und 1 kg Gewicht inkl. Kugelkopf ist das T-005X von Sirui eines der kleinsten und leichtesten Reisestative für kleine und mittlere Kameras zu einem super Preis, Bei diesem leichten Stativ ist es nützlich, die Mittelsäule nicht auszuziehen, so wird es auch mit schwereren Kameras stabiler.[:en]The T-005X by Sirui is one of the smallest and lightest travel tripods for small and medium-sized cameras at a super price. With this lightweight tripod, it is useful not to extend the center column, so it will be more stable even with heavier cameras .[:][amazon fields="B00AZTCHES" value="price"]
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[:de]Das K&F Concept Karbon Stativ TC2534 ist eines der preiswertesten Carbon-Stative überhaupt. Dazu ist es mit doppelter Funktion ausgestattet: es bietet ein Dreibein und Einbein in Einem, ist sehr leicht und gut verarbeitet. Wenn die Kamera nicht zu schwer ist oder mit einem 600 mm Objektiv bestückt ist, kann es auf Reisen sehr nützlich sein.[:en]The K & F Concept carbon tripod TC2534 is one of the cheapest carbon tripods ever. It is equipped with a double function: it offers a tripod and monopod in a one, is very light and well manufactured. If the camera is not too heavy or is equipped with a 600mm lens, it can be very useful when traveling.[:][amazon fields="B015CGRS88" value="price"]
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[:de]Das Gitzo Carbonstativ GT1542 ist mit 1,3 kg ohne Kopf bei einer Tragkraft von 10,0 kg und 62 cm Transportlänge ein Leichtgewicht gemessen an der Qualität, Schwingungsarmut und Leistung. Verarbeitung und Finish unterstreichen die absolute Spitzenklasse des Gitzo, die sich allerdings auch im Preis niederschlägt. Wer für seine schwere Kamera auf ein leichtes Stativ wert legt, ist hier bestens versorgt.[:en]The Gitzo Carbonstativ GT1542 is a lightweight with a weight of 1.3 kg without a head with a load capacity of 10.0 kg and a transport length of 62 cm, measured in terms of quality, vibration and performance. Workmanship and finish underline the absolute top class of the Gitzo, which is also reflected in the price. If you are looking for a lightweight tripod for your heavy camera, this is the best solution.[:][amazon fields="B00ICFIY4O" value="price"]
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[:de]Das Manfrotto MKBFRA4-BH Befree Reisestativ zeigt schon im Namen, wofür es gedacht ist. Mit 40 cm Transportlänge und 1,4 kg in der Aluminiumvariante und 1,1 kg Gewicht in der Carbonversion ist dieses Stativ definitiv für's Reisen gemacht. Dabei trägt es 4,0 kg lt. Herstellerangaben.[:en]The Manfrotto MKBFRA4-BH Befree travel tripod already shows in the name, what it is thought for. With 40 cm transport length and 1.4 kg in the aluminum version and 1.1 kg weight in the carbon version, this tripod is definitely made for traveling. It carries 4.0 kg according to manufacturer's specifications.[:][amazon fields="B00COLBNTK" value="price"]
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[:de]Eine präzise Fertigung und hochwertige Materialien zeichnen Novoflex-Stative wie das TRIOC2840 aus, Besonderheit bei dieser Stativserie sind die einzeln abnehmbaren Beine, um mit den enthaltenen Minibeinen in Bodennähe, für Makroaufnahmen oder an schwer zugänglichen Positionen zu arbeiten. Mit 1,5 kg Gewicht ohne Stativkopf bei einer Arbeitshöhe von max. 148 cm ist das TRIOC2840 ein leichter und sehr stabiler Reisebegleiter.[:en]Novoflex tripods such as the TRIOC2840 are distinguished by precise manufacture and high-quality materials. The stand is a special feature of the tripod series. The legs can be individually removed to work with the mini legs included in the floor, for macro recordings or in difficult-to-reach positions. With a weight of 1.5 kg without a tripod head at a working height of max. 148 cm, the TRIOC2840 is a light and very stable travel companion.[:][amazon fields="B00NMO90O8" value="price"]
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[:de]Das GorillaPod Focus ist das stärkste Klemmstativ von Joby und trägt selbst Systemkameras, DSLR's und Pro-DSLR's mit einem nicht zu großen Objektiv. Die GorillaPods gibt es in unterschiedlichen Größen für unterschiedlich schwere Kameras vom Smartphone bis zur DSLR[:en]The GorillaPod Focus is the strongest GorillaPod from Joby and carries even system cameras, DSLR's and Pro-DSLR's with a not too big lens. The GorillaPods are available in different sizes for cameras of different weights from smartphone to DSLR.[:][amazon fields="B001GCU0MY" value="price"]
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