Did you ever want to get a picture on your phone but didn’t have a way to do it? Maybe you were on your own, and nobody was beside you. Maybe you needed a picture from a taller angle. Phones aren’t cameras. They won’t be for long. But phones are handier than cameras. And because of that, sometimes they are better to have. Well, until you can’t take a certain picture or a video because you don’t have a tripod. So today we are checking if the MonoShot is the best portable tripod/monopod for mobile devices. If you want to take your phone with you, chances are you want to be extremely portable. You aren’t looking for something that will hold a proper camera. And well, MonoShot is designed for mobile devices and action cams. It’s designed to be small but to be big at the same time.
I love crowdfunded products. The idea of this one seems great. But is Monoshot the best portable tripod/monopod for mobile devices? Or is it yet another crowdfunded flop? Welcome to this MonoShot review.
Let’s start with the major issue first.
It’s Not for Every Device
If you tell me that something is for “any surface, situation, or device” and that it is the “best tripod for iPhone, Android, or GoPro” if it isn’t exactly, I will without a doubt be a bit angry.
Whether this is the best portable tripod/monopod for mobile devices won’t matter if your phone doesn’t work with it. DO NOT TELL ME THIS IS THE BEST TRIPOD FOR ANDROID IF IT DOESN’T FIT THE MAJORITY OF ANDROID PHONES.
“Large enough for the iPhone 6+ with a case on.” That came out in 2014. It’s 2018. TECH INDUSTRY MOVES FAST.
This isn’t a big problem as you can buy a smartphone mount on eBay or such for very cheap but it is annoying on how there is a promise made but yet they don’t deliver on it.
You should be able to fit an Android phone of a bigger size, but it will require enormous effort to fit it in. And even a bigger effort to take it off. And I do have issues with even doing that as how do I know that the mount won’t just rip apart?
From my perspective, MonoShot is designed more for iPhones.
This is the most important thing when it comes to a tripod. In a world where phones cost as much as a good few mirrorless cameras, I do not want my phone to break because of a poorly made tripod. Out of the box, I mean, the plastic packing was not too promising, I won’t lie. The case? Just a typical tripod case. But the actual quality? Very solid.
It’s not as heavy as a tripod for cameras, but it’s heavy enough to hold a small mirrorless camera outside without too much wind if you don’t have a different tripod. Although, if you are to do that, that’s at your own risk.
If you are looking for the best tripod/monopod for mobile devices, the quality is an enormous factor to consider, and MonoShot delivers on that. Whether it’s the action cam mount, the screws, or the tripod itself, this is a quality product.
Except for the damn Bluetooth remote. DAMN. The remote that feels like it costs about 30 cents. I would have preferred if it wasn’t there at all, to be honest, It lowers the overall quality of the product and makes you think if the actual tripod can be trusted. Luckily it can. It still makes you think though.
And while the quality of the overall tripod is great, it is hard to extend. You need to use your strength. Especially to unscrew the part that holds the spike that you can put into the grass. More on that in a second.
The Functionality & Portability
If you are going to be using your phone or an action cam, you are looking for portability. You want something that will fit anywhere. MonoShot? It does. You can break it down into two parts. That allows you to put the Monoshot even into a briefcase. And that’s a major thing as I never had a tripod that extends so much and that can also fit into a briefcase.
But while its portable, it’s also extremely functional. And that’s perhaps what makes it the best portable tripod/monopod for mobile devices and such. It’s a tripod and a monopod of course, but it’s also a selfie stick that extends up to 6 feet or 182 cm. To put things into perspective, it can be taller than me.
Personally, I don’t ever see myself needing to use a selfie stick of this length for selfies, but if you are in a big group or want to take some shots from a unique angle, this is perfect. It’s not about what I need but how many things it can do. That’s what matters when you are looking for the best tripod.
They said that it’s the best for “any surface, situation, or device” and while they didn’t get the device part right, they got the surface and device situation part right for sure. Monopod? Yep. Tall tripod? Yep. Short tripod? Yep. Selfie stick? Yep. A tripod and monopod for grass? Yep. For snow? Yep.
See, MonoShot comes with a spike although I do not have any pictures I have not been able to unscrew it ever since I screwed back in after using it the first time. It works. That’s for sure. I tested it on the grass in windy conditions. But the whole “hard to extend” problem is a big problem. Maybe that’s just my unit. Maybe it’s not. Either way, be prepared to battle with this product. But perhaps that’s why it’s great too. You know that it won’t just start extending or collapsing by itself.
The actual legs of the MonoShot adjust in four different ways which is what exactly what you want when it comes to a tripod. The more you can adjust it to your needs, the better.
Oh, and you can extend them too in a very clever way by twisting in one way if you want them to extend and twisting in another way if you want them to stay in place.
Of course, the actual tripod head is also fully rotatable in just about every direction. Something that you would expect from every tripod, but surprise, surprise, it isn’t exactly present in every one. This one, don’t expect it to give you smooth video shots if you want to be moving it, that’s not what it’s designed for, but if you want to use it in one direction, it will do the job perfectly, without moving positions.
To be frank, this is the most feature-packed portable tripod I ever used for mobile devices, but it could be better.
See, you can take MonoShot apart into two or even three pieces.
One serves as a selfie stick. The other? It essentially becomes useless when not with the other part. And that limits this product in terms of what it can do. That bottom part would allow for pictures and videos at a lower position. That lower part would work as a vlogging stick.
But no, there’s no screw present on the lower part of the MonoShot meaning that you can’t screw it to any devices via a mount. I’m sure there is a way around it if you are into some DIY.
Is This the Best Portable and Monopod Tripod for Mobile Devices?
It’s the most portable and compact for its size that I’ve ever used. The best? For a mobile? Certainly. It goes for $59 A fairly affordable price based on the value you get as don’t forget, this isn’t just a tripod. It’s also a monopod that works on grass and snow too. Most tripods would fall if there were on the grass with wind present. This product doesn’t. OH, and it’s a selfie stick too. If you were to pay for all of these separately, you would pay much more, especially for the quality this comes with and for how much it actually extends. And don’t forget, you also get the mount for your phone along with an action cam mount, and these tend to be costly too, especially when it comes to that kind of build. Perhaps the mount for phones could be bigger, but apart from that, it is extremely solid. And that’s what I must call MonoShot, extremely solid. Solid enough to hold a light mirrorless camera.
You might want to buy the cheapest tripod you see. It’s a bad idea. They are made of poor materials, don’t offer any features other than the fact that they can hold your phone, and do not come with mounts and certainly do not have a spike that you stab into the ground. In fact, cheap tripods at around $30 make this product feel like it’s around $200 for the value it offers for just $30 more.
If you are going to shoot mobile, get it. It will be useful, and you will never go back to not being without a tripod. But if you are looking for something better than just a phone for pictures, perhaps check out the Olympus Pen-F review published recently.