The company behind the GorillaPod may have just created another tiny tripod that’s just as versatile. On Thursday, September 20, Joby launched the TelePod line, a set of four-in-one tripods that are about as compact as a table tripod but telescope out for a greater height range. The line includes the Joby TelePod Mobile, TelePod 325, and TelePod PRO Kit along with the previously introduced GripTight Pro TelePod.
All the tripods in the series have four different modes. Closed, the tripod doubles as a hand grip; extend the tripod while still closed and you’re now holding an extended grip (which is just a fancier way of saying selfie stick). The tripods can also be used as a tabletop tripod, or can telescope to an elevated tripod.
While the small tripods don’t reach the height of many full-size tripods, the telescoping design makes them taller than a tabletop tripod. The TelePod PRO Kit, for example, reaches up to 27.5 inches. That’s not tall enough for a standing tripod but it is tall enough to sit or kneel rather than laying on the ground with a tabletop option.
The series includes variations to accommodate different gear, including smartphones, action cameras, 360 cameras, compact cameras, lightweight mirrorless cameras, and flashes or video lights. While there are variations within the series, all of the tripods are built with anodized aluminum, stainless steel, glass-filled composite, and ABS plastic materials.
The TelePod Mobile is designed to accommodate smartphones using Joby’s GripTight One spring mount and uses a ball head to allow users to shoot from different angles. The GripTight Pro TelePod, which launched earlier this year, is also designed for smartphones as well as compact cameras, and includes a cold shoe mount and pin joint mount that allows for more set-ups compared to the TelePod Mobile.
The TelePod Pro Kit is designed for photographers with lightweight gear, with a 360-degree ball head with a 90-degree tilt range. The compact tripod can accommodate gear up to 2.2 pounds — that’s not going to tote around a DSLR or a full frame mirrorless with a high-end lens, but it’s enough to handle a smaller mirrorless with a lightweight lens, along with compact cameras, action cameras, and 360 cameras. The TelePod 325 is similar to the Pro Kit, but is a more compact, entry-level option that can only accommodate about 11 ounces of gear.
All of the tripods keep the legs at the base and use a long telescoping center column. Longer center columns tend to create less stable tripods, but for small gear, the design creates a tripod that’s much easier to carry around. That design will likely work well for minimizing the visible gear underneath a 360 camera.
The smaller design may not work for heavy gear or shooting from a standing height, but the compact size and versatility may prove helpful for travel photography, vlogging, and smartphone photography. The complete line will be available in October, with pricing between $40 and $100.