More so than ever before, photography plays an integral role in the real estate market. When it comes to housing, a picture really is worth a thousand words! For those looking to get into real estate, one of the single most important tools a photographer can have on hand is a tripod.
Here is our list of the best tripods for real estate photography!
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What to Look for in a Tripod
To the less experienced, it may seem as though there isn’t much of a difference between tripod brands and models. However, there are a few qualities that aspiring image-makers should look out for when choosing between tripods for real estate photography:
Stability: The ability to keep things secure and still may seem like a no-brainer when it comes to purchasing a tripod. Photographers invest in tripods to create crisper images, and a wobbly tripod can’t guarantee those results. Some models have more safeguards in place to ensure stability, making it easier to create long exposures and brackets for HDR composites.
Height: For the most part, keeping the camera at natural eye-level is going to yield the best results. Therefore, it’s important to find a tripod with adjustable legs and, ideally, an extendable center column.
Precise adjustments: While stability is a key component of a good tripod, you don’t want to invest in a model that’s entirely stationary. The ability to adjust the angle of the camera will open up creative avenues and ensure that you’re capturing the best view possible.
Durability: When investing money into any sort of gear, overall durability should be a factor taken into careful consideration. Because of the transient nature of real estate work, photographers in the field should seek something capable of withstanding the elements as well as the occasional bump or scratch.
Portability: Naturally, real estate photography involves a great deal of moving around. Aside from bouncing from property to property, it’s crucial to capture as much detail as possible by experimenting with your camera’s positioning in each room being photographed. Ideally, tripods for real estate should be lightweight and easy to assemble (or disassemble) to expedite the picture-making process.
With these key features in mind, we’ve rounded up some of the best tripod options for real estate photographers out there. These models go above and beyond their competition without breaking budgets.
1. Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB
Any angle you can dream of, this tripod can achieve it.
Looking for something with a little bit of flexibility? The Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB has you covered. What makes the Alta Pro stand out among the competition is its ability to capture shots at just about any angle. The legs of the tripod adjust between 25°, 50°, and 80° angles, allowing for extremely low-angle photography.
Furthermore, the central column is capable of moving from 0° to 180° with ease. The ability to get hard-to-reach angles can make a huge difference in getting photographs that stand out against the competition and guarantee that you can get images that best portray a property’s features.
Aside from the tripod’s flexibility, the Vanguard brags an impressive build. Extending to a maximum of 68″, it reaches a considerable height. It’s also able to hold more than 15 lbs at a time (with the carbon fiber model having the capability to withstand even larger loads. Best of all, anti-slip spiked rubber feet and quick-flip leg locks ensure that the tripod will stay in place as you work.
2. VILTROX VX-18M
With a brand name that rolls off the tongue, this model can get quite tall and is built with durability in mind.
The VILTROX VX-18M is a particularly versatile choice for real estate photographers in the market for a new tripod. The fluid drag head is capable of panning a full 360°, making it an excellent option for those looking to take panorama images. In addition, there’s a tilt range between -75° – 90°., making it easy to get unusual and hard to attain angles. To top it all off, the Viltrox tripod has one of the greatest height ranges of the pack, 33″-74″.
Thanks to an aluminum alloy body, the VX-18M offers incredibly high strength. In addition, the tripod has a number of features to ensure stability while in use. The metal mid-spreader keeps the legs from moving. Rubber horseshoes added to the feet prevent skidding even on the slipperiest surfaces.
3. Orion 5378
Do not fear, Orion is here! This nifty tripod is relatively inexpensive for the amazing features available.
Don’t be fooled by the Orion 5378's relatively inexpensive price tag. The Orion 5378 is a heavy-duty tripod capable of faring well in the field. Reinforced with a tribrace center and rubber-spiked feet, it’s sturdy and stable. Yet, even with safeguards in place, lever locks and graduated marks make setup quick and easy.
Of course, there are plenty of durable tripod options available. Never fear – the Orion has a few additional features that make it an appealing choice. A fluid pan head has adjustment knobs that allow for smooth, controlled movements along two separate axes. Furthermore, the Orion can reach an impressive extended height of 72″ – meaning that cameras can rest at eye level for almost all photographers.
4. Induro CLT204
Once you start adding lighting, telephoto lenses, and other heavy gear – weight adds up. This tripod will keep it all steady for you!
With a load capacity of 35 lbs., it’s hard to believe that the Induro CLT204 weighs only 3.5 lbs! With 4 leg sections, you can expand this tripod up to 5+ feet and then collapse it back down to 12.6″ for storage!
The Induro has a few goodies to offer its consumers. Included with purchase is a tool kit for making quick adjustments and a shoulder carrying bag to increase the device’s portability. In addition, the tripod has both rubber feet and stainless steel spikes that can be changed accordingly to accommodate whatever situation you may find yourself in. Last but not least, the tripod is available with a PHQ1 panhead.
5. SLIK Pro-700
A well known brand in the tripod world, this option is no exception to the quality SLIK is known for.
Since 1948, Japanese-based SLIK tripods have been used by professional photographers. As you might expect, there’s a good reason as to why business has survived for the past 70 years. The SLIK Pro-700, like the rest of the models featured in SLIK’s PRO series, offers a great user experience at an affordable price.
To reduce the weight of the tripod while maintaining strength and integrity, the legs are made with a combination of aluminum, magnesium, and titanium alloy. Of all the tripods we’ve included on this list, the Pro-700 has the highest reach at 75″. To top it off, the 3-way pan-head includes a quick release that makes the transfer from tripod to handheld easy-peasy.
6. Manfrotto MT055XPRO3
Manfrotto is a name most everyone in the photography community knows – and this tripod is another magnificent specimen.
Manfrotto is among one of the most prolific tripod manufacturers out there! It should come as no surprise that they have some solid options available for professionals in a number of disciplines. Sweet and to the point, the Manfrotto MT055XPRO3 is one of the best tripods for real estate photographers who find themselves on the go.
Weighing in at just over 6 lbs total, it’s a decent transport size. The tripod also folds to a small enough size that it can easily fit inside of a backpack or piece of luggage. However, the increase in portability by no means sacrifices the quality of the product. This tripod is equipped with a locking ball head. This makes it easy to adjust camera positions while maintaining a secure hold on your gear.
7. Neewer Tripod
Moderate in price with nice features, this is a good option for the everyday real estate photographer.
Neewer is a great entry-level brand with good quality products! The Neewer Tripod may not command as much attention on the surface as some of the industry-standard products out there, but does a fantastic job for the everyday real estate photographer.
With a satisfyingly smooth ball head, you can twist and turn this tripod to any angle you desire, allowing you to capture the most beautiful images of homes. The legs are easy to adjust, making all of your architectural shoots a breeze. What equally makes this tripod stand out amongst the rest is its incredible ability to transform into a monopod. The monopod option grants an even higher vantage point and is great for tight spaces.
8. Benro Mach3 TMA28A
Popping up frequently on tripid lists, this model can carry a lot of weight while remaining a comfortable size.
With a load capacity of a whopping 30lbs, the Benro Mach3 TMA28A is one of the best weight-bearing tripods on our list. Touted frequently as one of the best real estate and architectural tripods in the country, Benro has outdone itself with the Mach3. This tripod is actually a four-leg system, which not only helps balance and steady your gear but also contributes to the impressive weight hold.
An incredibly modular piece of equipment, parts can be moved, removed, or replaced to help build the perfect tool for your kit. A weight of a little over 3lbs seldom changes with any adjustment made to the tripod’s frame, which is surprisingly light for such a mighty strength! Add in the triple-action ball head and anything is possible.
9. ZOOMEi Z669C
With a multitude of levels built in and a fully moveable and adjustable system, you can always get the right vantage point.
You won’t have any more crooked horizons with the ZOOMEi Z669C and its multitude of bubble levels! Pair this nifty tool with five column legs that are all independently adjustable with quick-release locks and you have yourself a camera companion that makes catching any angle you want pretty easy.
The lightweight carbon construction makes the ZOOMEi Z669C both easy to maneuver and durable, making moving the tripod from room to room fairly simple. A quick-release plate with a rubber mat makes camera placement just as simple, a great tripod with minimal to no learning curve.
Which of the Best Tripods for Real Estate Photography Is Right for You?
So, out of our list, what should you buy? Well, it really depends on what it is you prioritize when it concerns your tripod of choice. Is it the load capacity, because you use heavy lenses and add-on flashes? Is it the portability, because the spaces you capture are small? Or maybe it’s something in-between!
Generally speaking, we love the Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB thanks to its wonderful way of falling right in the middle ground between durability, portability, and useability. The Benro Mach3 TMA28A is also great, with a stronger load capacity. But, if load really matters to you, the Induro CLT204 is the strongest on our list, able to hold 35 lbs! For those that are both budget-conscious and need something with a small footprint, the TYCKA Rangers checks both of these boxes with ease.
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