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Mirrorless cameras are light, compact, and great for shooting video. However, it always helps to have a quality tripod to keep the camera steady.
Tripods also make it easier to position the camera at the best angle, switch lenses, and perform other tasks without the risk of dropping a delicate camera.
This article shows five tripods, from lightweight and travel-friendly options to bigger tripods that will hold bigger camera builds.
Table of Contents
1. Manfrotto Befree Advanced Tripod
The Manfrotto Befree Advanced Tripod is a durable and convenient option for increased portability. When folded, the tripod takes up minimal space and stores quickly in the provided carrying bag. It also weighs just 4.1 pounds.
The tripod has twist-locking legs. To adjust the height, you loosen or tighten the legs. Whether you prefer twist locks or click locks is a matter of taste.
However, you can be sure that the locks are secure, as Manfrotto is known for thoroughly testing every product that hits the market.
The maximum weight capacity is 17.64 pounds. You have enough support for a camera with lighting and a microphone.
A potential drawback is the included ball-head design for video. With a ball head, you do not have arms or levers for adjusting the camera angle.
You need to loosen the ball head and manually adjust the camera. If you want to film tracking shots, you will need a different tripod.
However, the ball-head design is still convenient for fixed shots, and it helps keep the cost down compared to a fluid head with a lever for panning and tilting.
- Weighs just 4.1 pounds and stores in a carrying bag
- Provides stability on almost any surface
- The aluminum legs are durable and stable
- Awkward to adjust after setting up
- The ball-head design makes tracking difficult
2. Vanguard VEO 2 235AP Aluminum Travel Tripod
If you want more tracking, the Vanguard VEO 2 comes highly recommended. Instead of a ball head, this tripod is equipped with a fluid head.
The arm of the head allows for two-way panning on the horizontal plane, while the vertical and tilt are controlled with independent knobs.
The tripod is adjustable up to 56.75 inches and folds to a compact 15.75 inches. It is easy to store, transport, and set up.
However, it is not the tallest tripod available, with a maximum height of just five feet.
The legs use a twist-lock system, which is not always easy after setting up the tripod. But again, it’s a matter of taste.
The weight capacity is relatively light. With a weight limit of 7.7 pounds, you may need to avoid using heavy lighting or mics with your mirrorless camera.
Despite a few drawbacks, the VEO 2 is stable and suitable for use in almost any environment. It has adjustable leg angles for adapting to uneven terrain. You can angle the legs to 20, 45, or 80 degrees.
- Lightweight and compact for easy storage
- Includes a panning head that easily locks
- The adjustable legs work well on uneven surfaces
- The weight limit is just 7.7 pounds
- The twist-lock system is not always easy to adjust
3. ANDOER Video Tripod with Quick Release Plate
The ANDOER Video Tripod is for those who want a fluid head instead of a ball head and a sturdy pair of legs to hold a bigger lens and accessories.
It also has a quick-release plate, allowing you to easily remove the camera when switching out lenses or replacing the memory card.
The legs are made with durable aluminum alloy and are adjustable up to 71 inches. This is one of the taller tripods that still provides the stability needed for a mirrorless camera.
Unlike the previous options, this tripod uses twist knobs for securing the telescoping legs.
Compared to twisting legs or flip locks, the twist knobs are less likely to wear with repeated use. They are also easier to adjust. You need to twist the knob a quarter turn in either direction to loosen or tighten the locks.
The tripod is also useful for filming outdoors, thanks to its large nonslip feet. It also has a weight limit of 17.6 pounds, which should be enough to support your camera.
- The fluid head makes it easier to pan the camera
- Height adjustable up to 71 inches (just under 6 feet)
- Uses twist knobs for easier height adjustment
- Weighs 13 pounds, making it one of the heavier options
4. AOKA 15.7-Inch Lightweight Tripod
If you need to shoot from a lower angle or a desktop, consider using the AOKA 15.7-Inch Compact Tripod.
It is a travel tripod that folds to just 9.65 inches. It also weighs just under one pound, making it one of the lightest and most compact tripods for mirrorless cameras.
The AOKA tripod has thicker legs and a larger base plate and ball head than other desktop tripods. The ball head and plate are scaled closer to a standard tripod but placed on shorter legs for desktop usage. This gives you the most stable solution for filming from a desk, table, or low angle.
Most components are also made from carbon fiber, which is more durable than the aluminum alloy found in most budget tripods.
- One of the most stable desktop tripods available
- Weighs just under one pound
- Should hold up to repeated use
- The maximum height of 15.7 inches may not suit everyone
- Panning when filming is difficult using a ball head
5. Ravelli APGL3 Professional 66-Inch Three-Axis Tripod
The Ravelli APGL3 offers the greatest flexibility for positioning your camera, panning, and tilting. Instead of a ball or panning head, this tripod is equipped with a three-axis head.
A three-axis head includes three separate arms. One arm adjusts the camera vertically, and another adjusts the horizontal position. The third arm allows you to tilt the camera’s angle.
You can lock in the angle and vertical position settings with three separate arms and effortlessly track subjects. You gain greater stability compared to the fluidity of panning and ball heads.
The legs are also height adjustable up to 66 inches, making this one of the taller tripods for mirrorless cameras. Instead of twist locks, this tripod uses flip locks, which are a little more convenient to adjust after setting up the tripod.
The total weight is about 10 pounds. It is a little heavy if you must carry it far, but it is also one of the most stable tripods for a mirrorless camera.
- A stable design with convenient flip locks
- Includes a three-axis head for smoother panning
- Height adjustable up to 66 inches
- Relatively heavy compared to other tripods
How To Pick A Tripod for Mirrorless Cameras
Choosing the right tripod for a mirrorless camera involves considering several factors to ensure stability, versatility, and ease of use. Here’s a guide to help you pick the perfect tripod for your mirrorless camera:
1. Weight Capacity:
– Ensure the tripod can support the weight of your camera plus the heaviest lens and accessories you plan to use. It’s wise to choose a tripod with a weight capacity that exceeds your current needs if you upgrade your equipment.
– Tripods are commonly made from aluminum or carbon fiber. Carbon fiber tripods are lighter and more resistant to corrosion and temperature changes but are generally more expensive. Aluminum tripods are heavier but more cost-effective.
– Consider the maximum and minimum height of the tripod. The maximum height should allow you to shoot comfortably without bending over, while the minimum height is important for low-angle shots or macro photography.
4. Leg Sections and Locks:
– Tripods with more leg sections are typically more compact when folded but may take longer to set up. Twist locks are quieter and often more weather-resistant, while flip locks can be faster to open and close but might catch on things.
5. Head Type:
– The choice of head is critical. Ball heads are versatile and quick to adjust, making them popular for general use. Pan-and-tilt heads offer separate controls for horizontal and vertical movement, which can be advantageous for video or precise framing. Gimbal heads are great for heavy telephoto lenses, often used in wildlife photography.
– Check for sturdy leg construction and stability when fully extended. A good tripod shouldn’t wobble, even with the camera mounted. Some tripods have a hook under the center column to hang a weight for added stability.
7. Folded Size:
– If you travel often, the folded size of the tripod is an important consideration. Compact tripods are easier to carry and pack but may compromise height and stability.
8. Center Column:
– Some tripods feature a center column that can be extended for additional height or inverted for macro photography. However, using the center column can reduce stability, so it may be best to rely on the legs for height adjustments.
– Tripods typically come with rubber or plastic feet for general use, but some have interchangeable feet that can be swapped for spikes for outdoor use or larger pads for indoor use. If you use a tripod dolly, check that the tripod and dolly are compatible.
10. Ease of Use:
– Check how quickly and easily you can set up and adjust the tripod. This includes extending the legs, adjusting the head, and mounting the camera. Quick-release plates are very convenient for attaching and removing your camera swiftly.
11. Accessories and Features:
– Some tripods include additional features like an integrated monopod, bubble levels for alignment, or accessory mounts. Consider which features will be beneficial for your type of photography.
12. Brand and Price:
– Choose a reputable brand that is known for quality and durability. While you don’t have to buy the most expensive model, investing in a good-quality tripod can be a wise decision in the long run.
You can learn more about tripods in Six Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Tripod for Video, a general guide to tripods.
Budget-friendly tripods for mirrorless cameras provide stability and versatility for photo and video enthusiasts.
With various options available, you can find a lightweight option that suits your camera without breaking the bank.
The best thing is that none of these cost a fortune but still provide a lot of bang for the buck in terms of quality and versatility.
If you’re looking for more specific video tripod options for DSLR, mirrorless cameras, and small camcorders, look at the 10 Best Video Tripods for beginners, travel, and pros.