Add stability to your photographic life without spending a small fortune. We look for the best tripod under £150, testing 6 top models currently available.
Every photographer needs a tripod at some point. All the tripod kits in this group have a load rating of at least 3kg, and some can shoulder more than twice that.
A Nikon D800 and 70-200mm f/2.8 – a chunky, costly pairing – weighs in at about 2.5kg, so these budget options are all capable of holding that.
All the same, a good starting point when you’re choosing the best tripod for you is to check its maximum load capacity.
You can make sizeable savings by buying a kit that comprises both legs and head rather than buying the components separately.
Most budget tripod kits feature a conventional three-way head, although ball-and-socket heads are also available, while legs usually are usually variable-angle, ideal for low-level shooting or for use on tricky terrain. Three-section legs are most popular.
A larger number of sections enables the tripod to fold down smaller but the thinnest, bottom sections are likely to be smaller in diameter, and therefore more prone to flexing.
Best tripod under £150: 01 Benro A500F-N1
Price: £105, $140
Buy it: www.kenro.co.uk
With maximum load ratings of 5kg for its legs and 8kg for the head, the Benro is reassuringly sturdy and rigid, even with the centre column fully extended, where it reaches a fairly modest maximum height of 156cm.
Leg extension is nice and smooth, there are three lockable leg angles, and the tripod collar features both a bubble level and compass.
Uniquely in the group, the kit features a ball-and-socket head, complete with adjustable friction damper. The head has its own bubble level to help level the camera, plus a panning scale marked in 15-degree increments.
This latter feature would be more useful if the head featured a pan-only lock. Even so, the build quality is very good throughout.
Pros… Beautifully built, sturdy and fairly compact
Cons… Maximum height is a little below average
WE say… A good lightweight kit, plus strong padded bag
PAGE 1 – Best tripod under £150: 01 Benro A500F-N1
PAGE 2 – Best tripod under £150: 02 Giottos MTL9361B + MH5001
PAGE 3 – Best tripod under £150: 03 Manfrotto 294A3 + D3RC2
PAGE 4 – Best tripod under £150: 04 Slik Pro 500DX
PAGE 5 – Best tripod under £150: 05 Vanguard Espod Plus 234AP
PAGE 6 – Best tripod under £150: 06 Velbon Sherpa 200R
PAGE 7 – Five things to look for in a tripod under £150
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