The Best Tripods for Video Creators

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Derek Malcolm
March 21, 2024
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We know, we know: the best video tripods, yawn. But before you go getting all guerilla on us, consider that adding a solid tripod or two or three to your video creation arsenal is a must. 

Whether you’re a YouTube filmmaker or vlogger, a TikTokker making content on the go, you’re making cooking or unboxing videos at home or in a studio, the best video tripods will make your static shots rock-steady, your pans and tilts smooth as silk, and bring overall better dynamics and interest to your content.

For this post, we’re going to share some of our favorite video tripods that can be used for creators using cameras ranging from smartphones to compact cameras to full-on DSLRs, all while keeping key considerations such as size, portability, build quality, ease of use, and, of course, budget in mind. 

If you’re just starting your video creation career or have more than a few followers under your belt, we hope our list of the best video tripods offers some help in choosing the best one for your needs. 

Manfrotto Befree Live Aluminium Tripod


The best overall video tripod for creators


  • ✅ Renowned Manfrotto brand
  • ✅ Smooth video mounting head
  • ✅ Max. height of 59.5 inches (almost 5 feet) 
  • ✅ Compact and lightweight for travel
  • ✅ Can hold nearly 9 pounds


  • 🚫No smartphone mount included
  • 🚫Pricey if not on sale

If you’ve seen a videographer or photographer in the wild, chances are you’ve seen them with a Manfrotto tripod strapped to their gear bag. We’re partial to the Manfroto Befree Live for its reasonable price point, stability, and its excellent “Live Fluid Head” lever system (more on that in a sec). The Befree Live is an ideal choice for vloggers, videographers, and video creators using DSLRs and/or compact camera systems.

If you get yourself a smartphone mount with a standard ¼-inch tripod thread, this tripod (or any other for that matter) can be used with your smartphone.   

The Manfrotto Befree Live weighs 3.8 pounds — relatively light — and is made of strong aluminum. There’s also a carbon fiber version that weighs the same and comes in at the same price point. Whichever you choose, the Manfroto Befree Live is ideal for vloggers and creators on the go. With a minimum height of 15.75 inches and a max. of 59.4 inches (just shy of 5 feet), this tripod can easily sit on a table or desk or wherever you need it on the ground. 

Speaking of the ground, the Befree features Manfrotto’s QPL Travel system with a locking, tripod spider for excellent stability on even the most uneven of terrain. The extendable legs are locked with a clamping system and the whole tripod can be set up and torn down quickly. Height and position are adjustable to your precise needs to lock in the shot you’re going for.       
The Befree Live Fluid Head is the star of the show, though, ensuring that of all your pans and tilts are smooth and, well, fluid. Additionally, the Befree Live has the handy Easy Link system that can be found on some if its pro series tripods. This allows for connecting accessories like the Photo variable friction arm, clamps, and other Manfrotto accessories for mounting things like light reflectors, microphones, lights, and more.  

Joby GorillaPod Mobile Rig


Best mini tripod for smartphone or action cam videos


  • ✅Lightweight and super portable
  • ✅Great for on-the-go video creators
  • ✅Landscape and portrait smartphone mounting
  • ✅Can accommodate lights, mics, and a GoPro
  • ✅Stands up or wraps around almost anything
  • ✅Affordable


  • 🚫You have to get the balance just right
  • 🚫Legs can be finicky
  • 🚫No height extension
Joby GorillaPod Mobile Rig

Joby perhaps does the bendable, portable tripod thing better than anyone, and the GorillaPod Mobile Rig is a testament to that. Whether you’re creating TikToks or live streaming on the go, or using your phone to record from your desk at home, Joby’s small, spider-legged tripods can fit in your bag, can be wrapped around and mounted to just about anything. They also feature a secure clamp system for your smartphone.

But where the GorillaPod Mobile Rig ups the ante is that it can be transformed into the ultimate creator rig. With additional arms and mounts, it can accommodate up to three additional devices, such as lights, microphones, and even an action cam like a GoPro. The kit includes two bendable GorillaPod arms with ¼-20 standard tripod mount threads, one cold shoe mount for lights, and a GoPro mount.

The main smartphone mount can be swiveled and locked in landscape or portrait mode and swiveled to whatever angle you need. The legs are rubberized and grippy, which is great for securing it to a post, tree, or other unstable surfaces. But they can be a bit finicky. If you don’t get the balance right, your whole rig can fall over… which could be expensive.

Joby has a ton of accessories for its GorillaPod lineup. This includes quick release mounts with spirit levels, a Pro video mount with a panning arm, and different ball heads should you want to mount a bigger camera like a DSLR. It’s a versatile ecosystem that will prove useful as your channel — and your gear bag — grows.

Vanguard VEO 3 Go


Best budget tripod for smartphones and cameras


  • ✅Excellent price-to-features value
  • ✅Lightweight and travel ready
  • ✅Can mount cameras and smartphones
  • ✅Fully adjustable ball-head mount
  • ✅Included Bluetooth remote control


  • 🚫 No pan or tilt arm

The Vanguard VEO 3 Go Travel Tripod is the least expensive all-rounder on our list. While we could have included a sub-$100 tripod, we felt that for the price, this tripod is in a sweet spot of value and features. It will satisfy a broad range of video creators without breaking the bank.

Vanguard VEO 3 Go best budget tripod

Travel is in its title, and aptly so as it’s just 2.1 pounds and folds down to just 13.6 inches. Yet, it can extend to a usable 51.6 inches (4.6 feet) and can handle cameras up to 6.6 pounds. Yep, that means DSLRs, compacts, camcorders, you name it. But, as we mentioned in the subheader, the Vanguard VEO Go can also accommodate smartphones. The included mount can handle devices up to 3.4 inches wide. 

The VEO Go’s Arca-Swiss has a quick release mounting system means that you secure the camera or smartphone holder to its mount plate that can be locked in and easily removed when you want to go handheld or put it on another tripod, for example. The ball-head connector allows you to swivel your camera 360 degrees as well as on any angle to get your best angle. 

The three legs of the VEO Go are easily extendable and are secured with a twist locking system, and the center column can be flipped and connected downwards to get your camera extra low to the ground. 

Additionally, one of the tripod’s legs can be converted to a monopod that can also be used as a selfie stick or vlogging stick if you’re shooting on your own. And if solo shooting is your thing, there’s also a Bluetooth shutter button that can control compatible cameras and smartphones.

Manfrotto Befree GT XPRO Aluminum


Best tripod for overhead video shots


  • ✅One of the most versatile tripods out there
  • ✅Precision ball-head mount
  • ✅Easy 90-degree positioning
  • ✅Lightweight and compact for field use
  • ✅Friction dial to dial-in precise drag
  • ✅Twist locking system on the legs


  • 🚫Expensive
  • 🚫Does not include a smartphone mount

It’s no surprise that there’s a second Manfrotto on our list, as the Manfroto Befree GT XPRO is about as versatile as they come. And while it’s great for general use, we’re most interested in its overhead shooting chops. Video creators, such as food vloggers, unboxers, and tutorial makers, looking for a tripod to get those top-down shots: this is for you.

The Befree GT XPRO’s clever mechanism allows its center column to easily pull up and pivot a full 90 degrees to a horizontal position (and store away when not in use). This makes it easy to mount your camera for an overhead shooting position. There’s also a hook on the tripod body for hanging a counterweight.

The overhead shooting capability at the same price point as our top pick, the Manfrotto Befree Live Aluminium Tripod, comes with a trade-off. Instead of a fluid head, you’re getting Manfrotto’s 496 ball head system.

This system offers tons of flexibility for framing up just the right angle. A well implemented friction adjustment knob lets you either lock things firmly in place or loosen things to your liking for slow, smooth pans and tilts… just not quite as smooth as the fluid head would offer.   

The tripod’s RC2 mounting plate works with Manfrotto and Arca-Swiss tripods. So, you can easily move your camera to another tripod with ease without fiddling around. 

As we mentioned, the Befree GT XPRO is super versatile. Its twist-lock legs deliver a height range from just 3.5 to 64.5 inches tall (nearly 6 feet). When folded up, it’s just 16.9 inches long. And at 4.4 pounds, it’s perfectly portable for field shoots or traveling. 

Lastly, the Manfrotto GT XPRO tripod can handle a maximum weight payload of up to 26.5 pounds. It can easily support DLSRs with big lenses. And it also features Manfrotto’s Easy LInk system for mounting accessories.

Videographer using a tripod at sunset

The Importance of a Great Tripod for Creators

Tripods may not be the sexiest gear, but a good tripod is foundational and should not be overlooked. After all, a shot from the best camera is only as stable as the tripod it sits on. 

Tripods have several similar features. Such as how they’re mounted and the systems they use for adjusting angles and movement. Or ball heads and smooth-moving vertical and horizontal pan and tilt. 

Depending on what you’re looking for, it’s never a bad idea to experiment with different tripods. Or even have a few different options in your kit. 

A good tripod can make all the difference, not only in the quality of your video output, but in making your workflow and shooting days efficient and much more enjoyable.

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