The duck-billed platypus is an Australian egg-laying mammal with a bill and webbed feet, and is only slightly more strange than the Platypod eXtreme. This is a unique camera platform designed for low-level shooting on uneven terrain and as an alternative to conventional travel tripods and table-top tripods.
The Platypod eXtreme is essentially a 5mm thick aircraft-grade aluminium plate with independently adjustable legs at each corner. These fold flat for easy stowage when the Platypod is not in use.
What the Platypod lacks in height it makes up for in stability, adaptability and payload. The design offers a much more stable platform than a mini-tripod and has multiple attachment points for accessories like lights, extension posts and mobile accessories. It can also support a weight of up to 10kg, or 22lb.
The low shooting height at ground level could prove ideal for nature, landscapes across still water or dynamic video clips. The Platypod could also prove ideal for table-top photography and still lifes, offering a lower and more stable platform than mini-tripods.
It’s actually not the first Platypod. The first Platypod was launched at Photoshop World and PhotoPlus Expo in 2015, and the Platypod website explains all the versions, accessories and uses that have emerged since.
What’s different about the eXtreme is that you don’t have to unscrew the legs to pack it away, as they now swivel up to lie flat alongside the Platypod plate. More changes (compared to the existing Platypod Max) include a lower weight, larger carabiner cutout, more mounting holds and a neoprene storage wallet with interior pocket, carabiner and 1/4” cross nut adapter.
The Platypod eXtreme has been launched as a Kickstarter campaign with an ‘pledge’ price of $119 (about £91/AU$159) against a final retail price of $149 (about £114/AU$199) when it goes on general sale, though that will not be until August 2022. Even at the time of writing, pledges for the Platypod eXtreme are five times more than the original funding goal.
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