How do I choose a monopod

Monopods comparison 2021

  • With a monopod you are much more flexible on the go than with a classic tripod. Their weight is significantly lighter and they can be set up in no time at all. Ideal for photo tours.
  • The tripods will be of great help if you want to avoid blurred pictures with the camera. A monopod is the perfect accessory, especially for photos with a longer exposure time.
  • The tripods, which are also known as monopods, are compatible with the common threads of cameras. You can therefore be as good as certain that you will find the right tripod for your camera.

In our monopod comparison 2021, we compared products from different brands and manufacturers. Not only for professional photographers, but also for laypeople who are passionate about photography, a secure stand is often good for the camera. The tripod holds and stabilizes the camera while you can focus on the right settings for the perfect photo.

1. How can you discover the advantages of the camera tripod for your passion?

Before we go into detail on the equipment details of the monopods such as material, leg segments or weight in g, we want to highlight the general advantages of the monopods in comparison. Monopod is derived from the Greek terms “mono” for “single” and “pous” for “foot”. This term really hits the mark, because the tripods only stand on one leg.

At this point we are already at the most important difference to conventional tripods with three legs. These variants can be set up on the floor and left there alone. Monopods, on the other hand, always have to be supported by the photographer with one hand, after all, they are not tripods.

In the course of your research you will also come across terms such as travel tripods, because the one-legged tripods are wonderful companions on the go. The photo accessories can be packed in bags to save space, while the low weight also makes transport easier.

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If you like to go on a photo safari in the urban jungle or in nature, monopods are the ideal companions thanks to their lightness and handiness. Lie in wait while the tripod minimizes any wobbling.

Two different materials for monopods

Since there are no different types of single-leg tripods, we want to compare the two dominant materials in terms of their properties:

propertyMonopod carbon
Monopod aluminum
Weight in g450 to 600360 to 699
maximum working height cm165177
Packed length cm38 to 4438 to 57
Load capacity kg7 to 163 to 5

As you can see, there is a wide range of high quality products that you can choose to meet your needs. What is striking is the significantly higher load capacity of models made of carbon.

Tip: Carbon is a plastic that is interwoven with carbon fibers. It is therefore more stable and lighter than aluminum, but it is usually also significantly more expensive.

2. What are the features of monopods?

Now that we have a good basic knowledge of the different models, we want to devote ourselves to further details of the equipment. After all, you should find your individual monopod test winner as quickly and easily as possible. Which variant this will be depends entirely on your needs. If you don't go on long tours, you don't have to take the weight into account, while the maximum working height should be selected depending on your height.

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2.1. Compass and metal thorn for the wilderness

On tours through the wilderness, many photographers enjoy models that are equipped with a compass that makes orientation easier. Other variants have practical snap hooks to which you can attach additional equipment practically and safely. The models in monopod tests are all equipped with rubber feet that ensure a secure hold on various surfaces.

Some monopods are very flexible

For those who are often on the move with different cameras, single-leg tripods are suitable, which are already supplied with an adapter, so that you can change flexibly at any time.

Brands like Hama and Sirui also equip their tripods with one Metal mandrel. This can be pushed firmly into the ground on soft surfaces such as earth or lawn. There is another benefit on photo tours: With the mandrel, the monopod can be used as a walking stick.

2.2. Little choice of colors and different tripod thread sizes

The choice of colors is not very large, black and silver tones dominate. You can choose between three, four and six times the number of leg segments. The leg segments are tubes with different diameters so that they can slide into one another.

If you want to buy a monopod, you should attach great importance to both the tripod head and the indication “tripod thread inches”. Because a monopod makes sense if it also fits your camera. The most convenient way to use the camera tripod is to simply screw on the camera. The tripod thread is either 1/4 or 3/8 inch. If the camera or your tripod head has the other format, you can solve this with an additional adapter.

2.3. Quick release plates, spirit level and stand spider

Anyone who works with large cameras is familiar with the difficulty of screwing the heavy equipment onto the thread of the tripod when switching. Monopods create here mit quick release plates remedy. They are screwed onto the tripod thread once and stay there permanently. They have a simple lock into which the camera can be easily clamped.

With a stand spider, you can also put your monopod on the floor.

Some photographers also find it a great help if a small spirit level is integrated into the monopod. This can be a real relief for tricky shots with tricky perspectives.

If you want to react very flexibly to spontaneous phenomena such as an eagle in the sky or a mouse on the ground, you should choose a monopod with a spherical head. For an even better stand, you can also treat yourself to a monopod with a stand spider, which not only stands on one point, but also has several small feet. Devices with a hand strap that you can use like a camera strap are also very practical.

3. What are the areas of application and function of monopods?

Regardless of which type of monopod you choose, it is very easy to use. Extend the leg elements to the desired height and position the lower end firmly on the floor. Now attach the reflex camera or another model to the monopod and position yourself as usual. Support the tripod with one hand while you can adjust the lens or press the shutter release with the other hand.

The following sentence applies among photographers: "A tripod always makes sense when it comes to image sharpness." This work is made easier wherever you otherwise place the camera on a wall, a ledge or anywhere else in order to produce a sharp and wobble-free image with the monopod. The following areas of application are very popular:

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  • Group photos
  • Sports photos
  • Indoor events
  • Macro photography (insects, plants, birds, etc.)
  • Dives with action cams
  • Selfie shots

If you want to shoot videos with your camera on the monopod, you should definitely choose a category with a swivel head for greater flexibility. With a monopod and Gopro, you can make wonderfully lively films, as shown by monopod tests.

4. What alternatives are there to the monopod?

For the sake of order, we would also like to introduce you to other aids that carry a camera and thus facilitate shake-free photography. You could use the following alternatives:

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A monopod is light and handy.

Tripod: The classic that stands firmly on three legs and is self-sufficient. It is much heavier and more unwieldy than the monopod, but is perfect for long exposures. Variants of the tripod are more manageable travel tripods, while real video cameras should be placed on so-called video tripods, which can carry a higher weight. Table or mini tripods look like their big model, but have much shorter legs.

Shoulder stand: This shoulder mount is intended for cameramen. So that you don't have to carry the heavy video camera on your shoulder for hours, the weight is distributed over the upper body by the holder. The construction can be balanced with two handles.

Gorilla pods:With flexible gripping arms, these tripods can be attached to unusual places like the hands of a gorilla. They can be attached to railings or hung from trees.

As you can see, these are mainly special solutions. In general, monopods have the following advantages and disadvantages compared to variants with three legs:

  • Can make up for a restless hand
  • Low weight
  • Easy to transport and set up
  • Longer exposure times possible
  • Stability lower than with the tripod

5. Which manufacturers and brands were able to convince in the tests?

As part of our purchase advice, we cannot clearly tell you which is the best monopod, because there is at least one model for different photographers that meets all your requirements.

In various monopod tests, brands such as Manfrotto, Sirui, Benro, Rollei, Induro, Gitzo, Berlebach, Mantona, Vanguard, Velbon, Walimex, Jusino, Bilora, Dörr and Cullmann were able to show that their tripods achieved good results.

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With a ball head you are prepared for spontaneous shots, as you can easily change the camera angle with it.

If you are looking for a particularly inexpensive monopod, you are well advised to choose a model from Walimex, which is available from 30 euros. Those who value a bit more extensive equipment will like the Sirui monopod, which is supplied with a snap hook, compass, hand strap and tripod bag. The Manfrotto monopod scored points with its practical quick-release screw connection and cold protection handles.

The Stiftung Warentest has unfortunately not carried out a special monopod test so far, but provides interesting information on the subject of selfie sticks in a message. As described, a monopod can be an exciting alternative.

6. The most important questions and answers about the monopod comparison

6.1. What is the use of a monopod?

The camera tripod makes it easier for you to take shake-free pictures. However, the lighting conditions also play a major role, which the tripod naturally has no influence on. At twilight, for example, it can be a great relief to take pictures with a longer exposure time without blurring. Those who want to shoot videos also ensure quieter recordings, which allow high-quality recordings in all directions with a swivel head.

6.2. Can monopods be used underwater?

Carbon tripods have no problems whatsoever when they come into contact with water. All models are quite insensitive to rain, although thorough drying after a rain shower pays off in the long run. You should make sure that your camera is completely waterproof when you take photos in rivers or lakes.

Mantona Pro One 165C
Customer favorite: the best-rated product in comparison on Amazon
Currently available for € 112.37
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stable and high quality
Max. Working height1.44 m | 1.65 m
Does the Mantona Pro ONE 165C monopod also include a suitable carrying case?If you purchase this tripod, you will receive a comfortable carrying bag with it.
Manfrotto MMXPROC4
Currently available for € 172.97
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stable and high quality
Max. Working height164 cm
How is the optimal stability of the Manfrotto MPMXPROC4 photo monopod guaranteed?This photo tripod has sturdy tubes with a D-profile. This makes the tripod particularly safe and secure.
Sirui P-326
Currently available from € 95.00
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stable and high quality
Max. Working height1.55 m
What is the weight of the Sirui P-326 monopod and what material is it made of?This tripod is made of carbon and weighs around 0.5 kg.
Sirui P-306
Currently available for € 53.72
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robust and light
Max. Working height1.55 m
What is the maximum extendable height of the tripod?The Sirui P-306 monopod with 6 adjustable leg segments can be extended to a maximum height of 1.55 m.

Which are the best monopods from our monopod test or comparison 2021?

Choose your personal monopod test winner from the following list:

  • 1st place - very good (comparison winner): Sirui P-326 - from 95.00 euros
  • 2nd place - very good: Mantona Pro One 165C - from 112.37 euros
  • 3rd place - very good: Manfrotto MMXPROC4 - from 172.97 euros
  • 4th place - good: Sirui P-306 - from 53.72 euros
  • 5th place - good: AmazonBasics monopod - from 15.99 euros
  • 6th place - good: Walimex FT-1502 - from 27.92 euros
  • 7th place - good: Hama Star 78 Mono - from 33.10 euros

In the monopod comparison, the products score with particularly high quality, because 3 "very good" monopods and 4 "good" monopods were identified among the 7 monopod models. None of the products in the product table for the monopod comparison was rated worse than "good".

2 of the 7 products from the monopod comparison come from one manufacturer - Sirui can thus stand out from the competition due to the increased number of different "good" and "very good" monopods.

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How many manufacturers are compared in the monopod comparison?

In the monopod comparison, the editors compare 6 different manufacturers for you in order to offer you the best possible purchase advice. More precisely, the experts compared and rated models from Sirui, Mantona, Manfrotto, AmazonBasic, Walimex or Hama. More information "

In what price range are the models from the monopod comparison or test?

The most expensive monopod from our monopod comparison currently costs 172.97 euros, for the cheapest monopod you only have to calculate 15.99 euros. More information under monopod test. More information "

Which monopod has the most customer reviews?

With 5606 reviews, the AmazonBasics monopod received the most customer reviews on Amazon. However, the Mantona Pro One 165C received the best average reviews. More information "

How many of the 6 different manufacturers were rated "VERY GOOD"?

The "VERY GOOD" -rated models include:

  • Sirui P-326
  • Mantona Pro One 165C
  • Manfrotto MMXPROC4
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Which monopod models were compared or tested?

All in all, 7 different monopod models were made, including:

  • Hama Star 78 Mono
  • Walimex FT-1502
  • AmazonBasics monopod
  • Sirui P-306
  • Manfrotto MMXPROC4
  • Mantona Pro One 165C
  • Sirui P-326
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What are customers looking for monopods looking for?

The most popular alternative term for monopod is monopod, followed by synonyms such as Monopod and Manfrotto monopod. More information "