A mono­pod is a mobile design that makes shoot­ing long events more com­fort­able. The main dif­fer­ences from the tri­pod: one main “leg”, less weight (up to 2.5 kg on aver­age), com­pact­ness. We col­lect­ed tips on using a mono­pod (tri­pod) for a cam­era and a rat­ing of mod­els that deserve atten­tion.

The cam­era mono­pod is a use­ful design for the pho­tog­ra­ph­er and cam­era­man. Pho­to: 100india.in

Mono­pod Fea­tures
Ben­e­fits of using a mono­pod (tri­pod)
How to use a mono­pod for the cam­era — 6 ways
Inex­pen­sive mono­pod mod­els
Sirui P‑306
Man­frot­to MPCOMPACT-BK
Monopods (tripods) for shoot­ing up to 30,000 rubles
Sirui P‑204SR
Sirui P‑326SR
Man­frot­to MVMXPRO500

Monopod Features

There are struc­tures made of alu­minum and car­bon fiber. The fun­da­men­tal dif­fer­ence is that car­bon monopods are slight­ly lighter.

Tele­scop­ic struc­tures. This means that they can be moved apart by increas­ing the length. Mod­els dif­fer in the type of clamps (mech­a­nisms that allow you to push the struc­ture to a larg­er size). These can be rub­ber-coat­ed twist rings or locks (the clas­sic ver­sion).

The mono­pod con­sists of three parts: head, base and leg. “Head” — the upper remov­able part of the struc­ture, a cam­era is attached to it. And with its help you can tilt, rotate the cam­era.

The basis is the slid­ing bar itself, 30–60 cm when fold­ed. “Leg” — a part that is attached to the bot­tom of the base. This is a mini tri­pod that allows the mono­pod to stand more sta­ble on the sur­face.

The kit may include all three com­po­nents or only the bar itself (base). You can add a “head” and “leg” to almost any bar­bell.

The light­est and small­est mod­els are tripods / monopods for action cam­eras, phones. These struc­tures do not pro­vide for the pres­ence of “legs” and “heads”. There is only a slid­ing base and a mount for a small cam­era, smart­phone. They are very light (up to 1 kg) and can with­stand a small weight (up to 1 kg).

Cam­eras and oth­er equip­ment (light, sound, mon­i­tor) are installed through a spe­cial thread­ed mount. The stan­dard thread on cam­eras is ¼. But there are mod­els with a ⅜ thread. It is less com­mon. When choos­ing a mono­pod, you need to make sure that the threads on its mount­ing screw match the threads on the cam­era.

Monopods are often used in sports com­pe­ti­tions. Pho­to: fotokto.ru

Benefits of using a monopod (tripod)

Light. At a film fes­ti­val or a sports com­pe­ti­tion, you have to work for sev­er­al hours. Because of this, the arms and back are very tired. Espe­cial­ly if you also make the cam­era heav­ier with a tri­pod (and it can weigh up to 6 kg). A mono­pod is a good alter­na­tive since its weight is usu­al­ly 0.5–2.5 kg.

Maneu­ver­abil­i­ty and mobil­i­ty. Light­weight thin design can be quick­ly assem­bled to a min­i­mum size (30–60 cm) and relo­cat­ed. For exam­ple, when shoot­ing a reportage of a wed­ding, video film­ing of races.

Suit­able not only for pho­tog­ra­phy, but also for video shoot­ing. With it, you can make dynam­ic videos with beau­ti­ful effects. We will talk about them in more detail below.

How to use a monopod for the camera — 7 ways

Shoot­ing a panora­ma. Due to the legs, the mono­pod is sta­ble. A “head” with a han­dle allows you to smooth­ly move the cam­era. You can make a beau­ti­ful ver­ti­cal or hor­i­zon­tal panora­ma and not be afraid that your hands will trem­ble. In this case, the base of the mono­pod is rigid­ly fixed, only the “head” with the cam­era moves.

Imi­ta­tion of a slid­er (slid­ing). Left to right, for­ward and back­ward. For greater sta­bil­i­ty, you can step on one of the legs. After that, the mono­pod bar itself must be moved back and forth or left and right. It’s good if the mono­pod has a stiff­ness adjust­ment. You can choose the most con­ve­nient and beau­ti­ful slid­ing option.

An exam­ple of how you can move the mono­pod around its axis. Illus­tra­tion: YouTube chan­nel Vyach­eslav Alter­na­tive

As a mini tri­pod. The “leg” can be unscrewed and used sep­a­rate­ly for shoot­ing. For exam­ple, for the angle from below, from the ground. Or just to put the cam­era on the table.

What does a mini tri­pod from a mono­pod look like. Illus­tra­tion: YouTube chan­nel Vyach­eslav Alter­na­tive

To record sound. You can make a micro­phone boom out of a light­weight car­bon fiber mono­pod. Pro­fes­sion­al “fish­ing rod” is more expen­sive. And if a micro­phone on a long stick is need­ed here and now, a mono­pod can eas­i­ly replace it.

A tri­pod-less design is used with cam­eras and tele­pho­to lens­es. In this case, instead of the “leg”, a met­al or rub­ber tip is attached. The first is for work­ing on the ground (has the shape of a cone, it is bet­ter in the ground). The sec­ond is for work­ing on asphalt, tiles.

Drone effect. It is nec­es­sary to install a cam­era with a sta­bi­liz­er and extend the bar to its full length. It remains to raise this struc­ture up. The qual­i­ty of shoot­ing will be much bet­ter than from a quad­copter, but you are lim­it­ed by the height of the boom. This is a cool life hack for reportage shoot­ing when you need to show a large num­ber of par­tic­i­pants. For exam­ple, dur­ing a parade, sports com­pe­ti­tion.

If there is no drone, but there is a mono­pod, you can make a cool video. Illus­tra­tion: YouTube chan­nel Vyach­eslav Alter­na­tive

For mount­ing a mon­i­tor or recorder. Such devices allow you to get a bet­ter overview and a detailed pic­ture while work­ing. We talked about the best on-cam­era mon­i­tors and recorders in our blog.

Inexpensive monopod models

Sirui P‑306

Light­weight (only 500 g), bud­get six-sec­tion mono­pod. Designed to work with tele­pho­to lens­es. The body is made of alu­minum alloy. Thanks to this, it is not only light­weight, but also durable. Min­i­mum work­ing height — 38 cm, max­i­mum — 154 cm. Max­i­mum load — 8 kg.

Light­weight and com­pact mono­pod Sirui P‑306. Pho­to: carousell.sg


Bud­get mono­pod for an action cam­era (for exam­ple, GoPro). Alu­minum con­struc­tion — light (330 g), durable. With­stands loads up to 1 kg. This is a mono­pod (sta­bi­liz­er) for an action cam­era with­out a “leg” in the kit. As planned by the devel­op­ers, the pho­tog­ra­ph­er should hold the struc­ture in his hands. The min­i­mum work­ing height is 41 cm. The max­i­mum is 131.

Mono­pod for action cam­era Man­frot­to MPCOMPACT-BK. Pho­to: new-box.net


This is the last bud­get mod­el of our rat­ing. This tri­pod is suit­able for cam­eras and cam­corders. It can with­stand a max­i­mum load of 10 kg. The min­i­mum work­ing height is 51 cm, the max­i­mum is 169. This mod­el, unlike the pre­vi­ous ones, has a lev­el. With it, you can deter­mine how lev­el the cam­era is. Includes 1⁄4 screw — can be screwed on almost any cam­era. At the bot­tom, you can install a “leg” for greater sta­bil­i­ty.

We col­lect­ed the key fea­tures of bud­get monopods, brought them togeth­er in one table.

Features/Model Sirui P‑306 Man­frot­to MPCOMPACT-BK Ando­er
Max­i­mum load, kg eight one ten
Min­i­mum work­ing height, cm 38 41 51
Max. work­ing height with cen­tral bar, cm 154 131 169
Weight, kg 0.5 0.33 one

Monopods (tripods) for shooting up to 30,000 rubles

Sirui P‑204SR

Large, sta­ble “legs” are a hall­mark of Sirui monopods and their sig­nif­i­cant advan­tage. Thanks to them, the struc­ture stands steadi­ly on the sur­face. The “legs” of this mod­el have 2 posi­tions: low and high.

A mono­pod can be turned into a mini tri­pod (for exam­ple, if you need to shoot some­thing almost from ground lev­el). To do this, just unscrew the main part. The design can with­stand a max­i­mum load of 8 kg. The min­i­mum work­ing height is 69 cm, the max­i­mum is 160 cm.

A cool fea­ture of Sirui monopods is pan block­ing. If you tight­en the blue top clamp, hor­i­zon­tal and ver­ti­cal rota­tion will be blocked. If you weak­en it, then it will be unlocked.

The set includes: car­ry­ing bag, shoul­der strap, set of hexa­gons, rub­ber knob and met­al spike. The lat­ter are need­ed to work with a mono­pod on a flat sur­face and ground. There is also an addi­tion­al plat­form with a dou­ble screw (1⁄4 thread on one side, 3⁄8 thread on the oth­er). This extra plat­form will be need­ed if you want to turn the mono­pod into a mini tri­pod. In this case, the dou­ble screw can be screwed either one or the oth­er side up. Depend­ing on what kind of thread you need.

Rugged, mobile mono­pod for shoot­ing. Illus­tra­tion: Trac­er Adven­ture YouTube chan­nel

Sirui P‑326SR

The design is light (1.5 kg), durable (made of car­bon fiber) and sta­ble (thanks to the large “legs”). You can lock the Sirui mono­pod in the desired posi­tion or, con­verse­ly, unlock it by twist­ing / unscrew­ing the blue clip near the “leg” itself. You can also con­trol the degree of stiff­ness of the stroke. This can be done using a spe­cial clamp at the bot­tom of the struc­ture. If it is com­plete­ly weak­ened, the course will be very free. And if you tight­en it, it will become very rigid.

The Sirui P‑326SR mono­pod dif­fers from the pre­vi­ous mod­el of the same com­pa­ny in its work­ing height. Here it is from 61 to 150 cm. Sirui P‑204SR has 65–160 cm. The mod­el can with­stand a max­i­mum load of 8 kg. Designed to work with reportage cam­eras with pow­er­ful aper­ture teleop­tics.

The com­plete set is iden­ti­cal to P‑204SR.

Sta­ble and com­pact Sirui P‑326SR. Pho­to: ugra.ru

Manfrotto MVMXPRO500

The tallest mod­el from the selec­tion of expen­sive monopods. In the fold­ed state — 78 cm, in the max­i­mum unfold­ed state — 200 cm.

A few words about the “head” to which the cam­era is attached. It has a 3⁄8 thread on the side. Includes a 1⁄4 to 3⁄8 adapter. Thanks to this, you can install any­thing on it (light, sound, mon­i­tor). The han­dle is longer than the analogs from this col­lec­tion. It can be installed on either the left or right side. There is a dou­ble-sided stop­per — the cam­era will not sud­den­ly fall out to one side.

You can lock the mono­pod in the desired posi­tion at the very base. There is a spe­cial ring for this.

Made from alu­minum — light­weight and durable. In the upper part, like oth­er monopods, there is an insert made of soft mate­r­i­al (rub­ber). Thanks to this, it does not slip in the hands.

In addi­tion to the adapter, the kit includes a lock for the tri­pod plat­form and a tool for tight­en­ing the screws on the mono­pod. There is no cov­er.

Styl­ish, light­weight and com­pact Man­frot­to mono­pod for cam­corder and cam­era. Pho­to: viztarinternational.com

We col­lect­ed the key fea­tures of the described monopods, brought them togeth­er in one table.

Features/Model Sirui P‑204SR Sirui P‑326SR Man­frot­to MVMXPRO500
Max­i­mum load, kg eight eight 5
Min­i­mum work­ing height, cm 69 61 78
Max. work­ing height with cen­tral bar, cm 160 150 200
Weight, kg 1.3 1.5 2