Manfrotto Monopods and Tripods

Manfrotto LogoOk, everyone has their favorite tripods and monopods. This post isn’t meant to change anyone over to a new system, however for those first timers, this may be a good post on finding good quality and function for a reasonable price.

680B Alunimum MonopodThe first monopod is a beefy one. I bought the 680B Compact Aluminum 4-section Monopod with my Canon 70-200mm USM IS in mind. Lugging that lens around your neck or shoulder does get tiring over time (small confession, this might make you impress your friends).

I was connecting my Canon 70-200mm USM IS to a bullhead plate and then connected the ball head to the monopod. I was shown that you can just connect your Canon 70-200mm USM IS directly to most monopods. If you look closely the screw on top has two sizes it can fit 3/8″ to a 1/4″ threads. Nice! Less weight, quicker setup, easier to use. This monpod is compact but heavy and after a few trips with it, I realized I needed a light one, so, I use this one in the studio.

Description from Manfrotto’s website: Four section Monopod featuring sure rubber grip, wrist carrying strap, quick action lever leg lock system with 45° run, large 60mm camera/head platform with plastic cover and dual 1/4” – 3/8” camera fixing screw.


So, not wanting to take out my 680B any more due to weight, I started looking at carbon fiber monopods, wow, you can go broke quick when buying carbon fiber. I totally get that you can buy cheaper ones, but I feel that one good hit and your will be buying another one. My shooting partner Dan suggested Gitzo, but that was a little out of my range. I went to the local store and found the 694CX 4 section Carbon Fiber Monopod with Magnesium Castings. I chose it because it is the cousin to my tripod the Manfrotto 055CXPRO3 Carbon Fiber Tripod. It’s lightweight and strong. One small problem is that the rubber foot comes off pretty easily, I ended up buying an adjustable rubber foot the mounts on, love it. I’ve had this one in the snow, sand, saltwater, mud, and with regular cleaning it’s as good as new.

Description from Manfrotto’s website: Four section, lightweight carbon fiber and magnesium locking collars monopod. The best solution for sporting events, it allows photographers to shoot over the heads of everyone. The monopod has a rapid action extension locks, a wrist strap and a camera platform wit dual 1/4? and 3/8? camera fixing screw. Section diameters in mm: 29.2, 24.8, 20.4, 16.

The tripod that I chose is the 055CXPRO3 Carbon Fiber Tripod. It is strong and very stable. I like that it has a system to allow the camera to shoot straight down, this is great for product shots.

Manfrotto 550 Carbon Fiber tripodDescription from Manfrotto’s website: This 3-section tripod combines professional performances with essential design. The 100% carbon fiber tubes provide the best rigidity and an extreme light weight.

Dieter Spears is a Nashville Photographer, He shoots Stock images for and Getty Images. He is an iStockphoto Inspector.


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