gorillapod SLR Review

Author: Gabriel Vega
Editor: Howard Ha
Publish Date: Saturday, October 31st, 2009
Originally Published on Neoseeker (http://www.neoseeker.com)
Article Link: http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Hardware/Reviews/gorillapod/
Copyright Neo Era Media, Inc. - please do not redistribute or use for commercial purposes.


Photography is a field that has expanded rapidly with digital cameras all over the place. Owners can take family shots and capture moments on the fly; the question of course is what happens when there’s a great photo moment on the road or the trail and a dedicated tripod would be excessive. Joby has tackled that problem with the gorillapod, a unique flexible tripod that can allow users to suspend and position cameras in some of the most difficult locations. We take a look at the gorillapod SLR this time around and see how it stacks up in multiple scenarios.

Joby took up a challenge with the gorillapod, bringing stable positioning to many locations for various consumers. The pod uses adjustable legs to pivot and spread, giving it multiple uses location-wise as long as the photographer can balance and level the head. For testing we used three cameras: a Sony DSC-S85, a Canon 10S and a Canon 20D; lenses included a Canon 35-80mm, Quantaray 75-300mm and a Canon 70-200mm L series. The selections should help show if the pod can hold up to various kit choices and standard consumer use.

Our first run was with the Sony DSC-S85; the camera has various manual features and can support some long exposure times. Unfortunately for night shots, the slightest wiggle can throw off a quality picture. The gorillapod captured various eight-second exposure landscape shots to show how the adjustable legs let the camera show tough angles without the ghosting from an unstable hand. With a consumer level camera the pod held up in some tough areas and should be able to suit most pocket cameras and larger models such as the Kodak Z1012 IS with little trouble outside balance and leveling.

Stepping up to 35mm I used a Canon 10S with a 35-80mm Canon lens and Quantaray 75-300mm lens; the positions in this case were a bit more extreme to see how well the gorillapod could hold. The first test was the tree test; using a remote switch and thanks to the resistance on the legs, it’s possible to position the pod and camera between or around branches for snapshots that wouldn’t be possible. Only when the heavier 300mm lens came in did the stability start to shift a little; fortunately the lock on the mounting head helped stop that.

Sadly we reached the limit taking the gorillapod to the professional level; our Canon 20D held up fine on it with the more forgiving lenses, but when we strapped a Canon 200mm L series lens to the pod the legs literally buckled in anything short of a curled position. I didn’t try to hang the pod from a branch simply because it felt like it had reached the limit with the weight and might have trouble gripping on.

For the consumer or semi-professional the gorillapod provides many opportunities to get great stable shots in any time of the day; the legs flex and grip well and the weight is minimal. For any trip the gorillapod is a must just to get those moments captured the first time without losing them. I found it to be a handy piece of equipment in common shooting moments as I don’t lug a 200mm L series with me everywhere I go.


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