Whether you are a seasoned or a professional photographer, an aficionado or just a fledgling one, proper equipment to accompany your camera is a must. A good quality tripod stand is indispensable investment to pursue a career or a hobby in photography. There are a wide variety of tripods with varied prices available in the market.
Here we will discuss about the best tripods under $200. What makes a tripod attractive is its ease of use, durability and its quality. A good tripod is a one, which does its job properly and does not upset the budget of a photographer.
Awesome tripods under $200 would be a good deal for anyone looking for some serious camera accessories.
Why A Tripod Is So Important?
Tripod is an essential accessory to a camera; its proper use can make a good photographer a great photographer. A tripod can be the difference between an amateur and a professional photography results. Tripods are required to be sturdy so that they can handle the weight of the camera easily and allow 360-degree move of the camera when fixed atop the tripod. Apart from balancing the weight of the camera, a tripod should also be steady so as to provide a smooth shooting experience.
Sturdy and Affordable Tripods under $200
Sometimes the surrounding conditions provide a challenging task to taking good pictures, under these circumstances a good tripod is like a good friend that assists in taking better pictures.
What follows is an expert comparison of tripods ranging from easily affordable to moderately affordable, keeping the best of the tripods under $200.
The multiple use tripods are placed here on basis of their prices ranging from highest to lowest:
from 10th to 1st:
#10. Vanguard Alta Pro263AB With BallHead
Amazon.com – $199
Vanguard tripod is well regarded and heavily used best tripods for less than 200 among photography enthusiasts. There are many who vouch by its quality, comfort and extremely good results. One of the best features of the tripod is its excellent quality ballhead, which swivels with ease, holds the camera steady and has excellent quality.
It locks down with ease and holds its position steady. The operational ease is further enhanced with the availability of big good quality knobs.
These knobs are really helpful in making easy adjustments to the camera equipment. The ballhead is quite compact and this tripod is not really recommended for bulky sports and wildlife cameras, but it does well to support and maneuver other cameras.
To keep the camera at level, the tripod is equipped with bubble-levels on top, the spikes are retractable and the tripod legs are made of good quality aluminum. The middle column usually restricts the tripods from getting close to the earth and taking wide perspective or landscape shots can be a problem. It allows the middle column to be flipped up so you can splay the legs of the tripod for wide range shots.
It offers a maximum height of 68 inches on its adjustable legs providing a fairly good height even for tall persons to operate the camera comfortably. The tripod is moderately heavy which means it is easy to carry and setup but is not really suitable for operation under windy conditions.
#9. Mefoto A1350Q1T Aluminum Roadtrip Travel Tripod
Amazon.com – $199
One of the multiple use Tripods under $200, this seems to have a special bond with photography enthusiasts and is one of the most widely used tripods. It is certainly a great choice where lightweight setup is required. It is not particularly suitable under breezy conditions; there is a risk of the equipment toppling over. The tripod makes a great companion for traveling photography because of its weight and compactness.
If you are planning on some serious landscape photography then perhaps it is not a highly recommended product. For all general purpose shoots the tripod makes a good choice. It does package some nice features; you can unscrew one of its legs and use it as a monopod. It comes with 360-degree panning. The middle column has a recessed hook on which you can hang extra weight for extra stability.
It comes with separate head and pan lock for better adjustment. It also has a dual action heavy-duty ballhead and an integral level bubble level for evenness and smooth head movement. The legs on the tripod are compact and can be folded 180 degrees thus making it quite compact to carry.
It has a minimum height of just less than 16 inches and a maximum height of about 62 inches. Although it weighs just about 3.6 lbs, it is sturdy enough to support weights up to 17.6 lbs. It is a long lasting product and comes with a 5-year warranty. It has 4 leg locks and takes a little longer to set it up.
#8. Manfrotto Befree Compact Aluminum Tripod
Amazon.com – $179.99
As the name suggests the Manfrotto Befree tripod is a lightweight and a compact tripod and ideally suited for photography during hiking and trekking where the weight and the size of the equipment matters. The tripod is quite sturdy and can handle most of the DSLRs and mirror less cameras with small to medium lenses. Being one of the tripods, it has a nice and reliable ball head with a strong aluminum frame.
The locks on the legs are really high-quality and keep the instrument steady during the shoots. One of the major drawbacks of Manfrotto Befree is its lack of height. The legs on the tripod are quite short and offer a maximum height of only about 57 inches. Given the maximum height that it offers, the tripod seems more of a use to people with short height rather than anyone of average height. But if you are an adventure aficionado with interest in photography and want pack light and small then this tripod makes an ideal companion.
One has to kneel down or bend over to take pictures, not an ideal case for a daily professional photographer but it’ not a big deal for a traveler or a hiker on a trail to get down on the ground to click the naturals around. The tripod has a minimum height of around 14 inches and comes with 3 leg locks.
At $180 the tripod does make a strong appeal to the adventurous ones. It’s a high-quality tripod that easily fits into a backpack or carry-on luggage. Photographers on the go cannot ask for better photography equipment.
Its uniquely designed legs fold around the head making it really compact to carry and travel. Manfrotto Befree has a maximum payload of around 9 lbs; its sturdiness does not compromise on the picture quality.
#7. Vanguard VEO 265AB Travel Tripod with Ball Head
Amazon.com – $179.99
VEO 265AB travel tripod is again a traveling companion and mostly used for travel shoots. The tripod comes with a ball head and at 3.7 lb it is quite lightweight and fulfills travel photography needs perfectly. The ball head is made of high-grade aluminum making it quite durable and sturdy. The retractable legs can be extended to a maximum height of 59 inches and the legs can be folded to give it a minimum height of 15.38 inches.
It has a new and revolutionary leg lock design, which adds to its increased stability and can be quickly adjusted while shooting. The legs on the tripod are quite versatile and can be adjusted to three different angles. It comes in a stylish and sleek design that makes it a very attractive companion to photography equipment.
Another great feature for this tripod is its rapid column rotation that allows for a quick setup. The aluminum alloy makes the legs extra strong and allows the tripod to handle heavy weight cameras quite gracefully. The tripod has soft rubber handles and they provide a relaxed and firm grip in any kind of weather.
#6.Dolica LX650B502D/S 65” Aluminum Alloy Tripod
Amazon.com – $168.94
Dolica tripod enjoys the reputation of being a very durable product in the market. At its tallest the tripod stands a good 65 inches providing relative ease of use even for the tall persons. The middle column of the tripod comes with a counter weight hook for hanging extra weights to increase the stability of the setup while using heavier equipment. It has a minimum operating height of 21 inches, which is good enough for panoramic shooting.
The tripod legs come in two options for its feet; depending on your need you can choose between the rubber feet or spikes. It is meant for heavy duty balancing and can support and balance a maximum weight of 25 lbs. It comes with a reversible column, which allows the flexibility of shooting at low angle. It comes in strong and robust aluminum frame and is quite easy to use and the awesome tripod’s in less than 200 dollars only!
#5. Davis and Sanford PROVISTA18 Tripod
Amazon.com – $163
The tripod comes with a FM18 head and is an ideal partner for large setup photography. The product is very much suited for camcorders, compact cameras as well large professional HD cameras. Provista18 is especially meant for people who are into videography and have to carry out most of their tasks outdoors. These tripods are meant for heavy-duty equipment and are ideally suited for outdoor shooting jobs as well as for studios.
The central post has gears with a self-locking no-drift feature that ensures that the results of the shooting remain smooth even while tilting and panning the camera. The tripod can easily support a weight of 18 lbs and can take on most of the heavy-duty cameras. It is also equipped with quick release plates, which is very helpful in quickly mounting and dismounting the cameras.
This is one of the most durable, reliable and economical pieces of camera equipment in its category. It has a maximum height of 78 inches and a minimum height of 31 inches. It folds at 34 inches and comes with a padded bag which provides the tripod extra protection while traveling.
#4. Ravelli AVTP
Amazon.com – $159.69
Ravelli is a well-known tripod in the market and makes for a good accessory to any camera. Ravelli tripods are known for their economical pricing and high quality and thus listed for tripods under $200. Unlike most tripods, which have a center ballast column, Ravelli tripod comes with three-way interlocking system for the tripod legs.
This 3 segment interlocking system provides the tripod with extra stability and allows it to handle weights up to 27 lbs. The lock adjustments are quite easy to operate and the setup is quick and reliable. The tripod legs have rubber that gives the instrument extra stability. It has a dual adjustment panhandle that provides the tripod with a 360-pan angle and 180-tilt angle, and makes camera operation and movement quick slick and smooth.
The camera is reliably secured to the tripod head using a quick release video plate, which comes with a separate safety latch that prevents the camera from sliding off the tripod. The indicated price includes a bag that can easily accommodate the tripod along with the head and the spreader.
#3.SIRUI T2005X TX Tripod
Amazon.com – $147.95
This tripod is a relatively unknown player in the market but it is a great product and really value for money. A Chinese company that’s known for making really high quality equipment makes it. Although the company is still seeking brand recognition, the tripod has met the expectations of the buyers and has suitably aided the photography enthusiasts in providing desirable results. Although, it is quite attractive in its features when it comes to its weight, its build and its ease of use, but it does seem to have one major flaw; its standing legs are a bit too narrow and under windy conditions it can easily blow over.
Due to its narrow standing legs, its center of gravity is not very well distributed and it has the tendency to topple over when placed on slightly uneven surface or when a heavy camera is placed atop the tripod. It is not a bad buy but it may lose against other models like Vanguard. It has a maximum height of 61 inches, which is quite reasonable although there are matching models in the market with greater height. It has uniquely designed legs, which allow it to move almost 180 degrees.
It’s a full size tripod that folds down really small and compact. It is easy to carry and makes good traveling companion. Setup time is reasonable but models like Vanguard and Manfrotto do better in equipment setup than this particular tripod.
#2. Oben AC-1441 4-Section Aluminum Tripod
Amazon.com – $139.95
AC-1441 is a lightweight tripod is one of the best tripods in a budget, weighing up to 3.3 lbs. Though it is lightweight, it packs a heavy punch and can easily support up to 11 lbs of equipment. It has an aluminum frame, which is quite sturdy, it has 4 legs because of which it is able to support heavier weights and handle the weights with precision and steadiness. The legs can be extended which gives it a maximum height of 61.6 inches. When the legs are collapsed the minimum height is 21.3 inches.
The tripod has all the general features like bubble level and a hook on the mid-column called the ballast hook where one can hang extra weights for increased stability. One of the great features of the tripod is that its mid-column can be split or flipped allowing it to shoot as low as 8.3 inches. BA – 111 is a simple head that comes with one locking lever, which is used for controlling ball movements and panning of the instrument.
This single action knob allows it full 360-degree rotation. The head has 4 bubble levels, which provide enhanced accuracy while taking panoramic pictures.
#1.Manfrotto Compact Advanced Aluminum Tripod
Amazon.com – $99.88
This is a fairly lightweight tripod stand and an ideal companion for novice photographers. Professional photographers can also use this tripod but its light frame is certainly not meant for heavy-duty cameras. If you have a compact DSLR or cameras with light weight lenses then this is certainly an ideal tripod for you. Its lightweight frame can still hold up to 7 lbs of weight that is not too bad for a tripod available for under $100.
The tripod has a minimum height of 17.3 inches and a maximum height of 65 inches. The compact size makes it easy to carry and still at its maximum height of 65 inches makes it a good tripod for a tall person to operate. All in all, this tripod is a great steal and its sturdy aluminum frame is extremely durable making it a long lasting product. The tripod comes in both black and white colors and is one of the tripods under $200.
The choice of a tripod depends upon the need of the photographer. There are no easy winners, but if we know what we want out of our tripod, how often we want to use it, how bulky the camera should be to support and what price we are willing to pay. Based on that, you can draw some comparisons and find something that will suit one’s needs.
If you are a novice, just starting out and maybe just want to experiment with a tripod then perhaps Manfrotto Compact Advanced Aluminum Tripod is the best choice. It comes for less than $100 and is quite easy to carry. At 65” it is easily usable by an average person. So surely a deal not worth missing!
Looking for a good videography experience? Then Davus and Sanford Provista18 is a good choice. It’s a great value for money.
And if you are looking for a professional, reliable, long lasting, quick setup and a great value for money then look no further than Vanguard Alta Pro263AB With BallHead. It is an excellent deal for multiple use tripods.
For an outdoor person who loves to hike and trek, portability and compactness is more so the Manfrotto Befree Compact Aluminum Tripod is a sensible option here. At $180 it is a great deal for a good and valuable tripod. No doubt it is an awesome tripod for less than 200 dollars!
On the whole, for the prices these tripods are a steal. And if you think we missed out on a good bargain here, do let us know!