Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

As knowledgeable journey photographer, I’ve used loads of journey tripods over time, together with fashions from Manfrotto and Vanguard.

At this time, I’m going to be reviewing Peak Design’s travel tripod, which I’ve been utilizing within the subject for the previous a number of months to see the way it compares to different journey tripods.

I’ve really been a fan of Peak Design’s merchandise for a very long time. They make a spread of images equipment, and I significantly like their carry strap system which I’ve been utilizing for years on my cameras. In addition they have a spread of in style luggage.

My expertise thus far with their merchandise has been very constructive, they’re effectively made and backed by a superb guarantee and assist program. Let’s see if that high quality has prolonged to their journey tripod. I’ll share my ideas on utilizing one in every of their journey tripods for the primary time.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Peak Design Journey Tripod Assessment

Peak Design launched their journey tripod (through Kickstarter) in 2019, with normal availability coming in 2020. This was their first and is at present solely tripod.

It’s now been available on the market for a while, and I assumed it was about time I gave it take a look at and overview. Let’s begin with the specs.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review


Peak Design Journey Tripod Specs

There are two variants of the Peak Design journey tripod available on the market in the meanwhile, an aluminum mannequin and a carbon fiber mannequin.

The one distinction between the 2 is the fabric in use, which impacts the burden (and worth!). All the opposite specs are the identical. Right here’s a fast overview of the principle specs.

  • Load capability – 20lbs (9.1kg)
  • Max peak middle column raised – 60″ (152.2cm)
  • Max peak middle column down – 51.25″ (130.2cm)
  • Weight aluminum mannequin 3.44lbs (1.56kg)
  • Weight carbon fiber mannequin 2.81lbs (1.29kg)
  • Packed peak: 15.4″ (39.1cm)
  • Packed diameter 3.125″ (39.1cm)

The retail worth of the aluminum mannequin is $379.95, and the carbon fiber mannequin is $599.95. You evaluate the newest costs and purchase it direct from Peak Design here, on Amazon here, and from B&H Photo here.

This tripod actually suits what we look for in a travel tripod, which is a mix of portability and load capability.

In addition to the uncooked numbers, there are a number of further options of the Peak Design journey tripod I wished to spotlight.

First, the tripod is designed from the bottom as much as be tremendous moveable. The principle approach that is achieved is with the pinnacle design, which may be very compact. The ball head principally suits flush into the tripod when packed away and takes up barely any house.

Peak Design tripod and case

The flip locks, triangular leg design, and small middle column additionally all contribute to permitting this tripod to fold down actually small.

I’ve used loads of journey tripods over time, and this one is certainly top-of-the-line designs I’ve used by way of the way it packs away to take up a minimal quantity of house.

The ball head can be fairly good. There’s an built-in bubble stage to make sure your digicam is flat, and the flip lock design makes attaching and eradicating your digicam very straightforward. You may as well lock your digicam into place with the flip of a toggle, which provides nice peace of thoughts.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Bubble
Bubble stage on tripod head


Peak Design Travel Tripod Lock
Lockable catch for mounting plate

One other neat characteristic is the combination of a telephone head mount. This lives inside the middle column, and has a quick-release mechanism for straightforward set up.

It then attaches on to the tripod mounting plate and lets you use your tripod together with your smartphone. This could work with just about any smartphone available on the market at this time.

It’s a pleasant worth add and can be effectively designed and durable.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

One very last thing I wished to spotlight is the carrying case. That is typically an afterthought with tripods, in case you even get one in any respect.

Properly, Peak Design is understood for his or her luggage and their tripod case is beautiful. It appears to be like nice, the tripod suits inside securely, and it’s each padded and weatherproof. It’s lacking a strap, however there are add-ons to make it suitable with the Peak Design carry system.

Okay, so these are the principle options. What is that this tripod like to really use in the actual world? Let’s discover out.


Peak Design Journey Tripod – Ideas on Actual World Use

I want to do a overview primarily based on actual world expertise, so I traveled with the Peak Design journey tripod as my predominant tripod for a number of months to see the way it carried out within the subject.

As this can be a journey tripod, I count on it to be one thing I can carry with me when mountain climbing, so I took it with me on a lot of hikes up numerous Welsh mountains in addition to different barely much less strenuous strolls. It has additionally been on extra leisurely journeys within the UK, France, and the USA.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Once I’m testing a journey tripod, there are some things I’m concerned about. First, it must be light-weight, as a result of nobody needs to hold greater than they should.

This tripod undoubtedly meets that requirement, even the aluminum model is mild sufficient that I don’t must assume twice about including it to my gear for a visit.

The subsequent factor I search for is how straightforward the tripod is to arrange and put away. Once I’m mountain climbing, I don’t wish to have to spend so much of time placing a tripod up and down every time I see a possibility for a shot.

The Peak Design journey tripod undoubtedly works in that regard as effectively. I’m usually not a giant fan of flip-lock legs as they’ll catch on my digicam bag when establishing and placing away.

Nevertheless, on this case they’re effectively designed in order that doesn’t occur, they usually make arrange and put down a breeze.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

The way in which the digicam attaches to the pinnacle additionally works effectively. That is one thing that different tripods don’t all the time do as effectively at, particularly when utilizing the Peak Design carry system which has the carry strap connected to the tripod plate.

The Peak Design carry strap hooks on the digicam base plate can generally get in the best way of straightforward attachment to the tripod head. Clearly, this being a Peak Design tripod, that problem has been thought by way of, and the digicam simply attaches to the tripod head even with the strap nonetheless connected.

There’s additionally a helpful locking mechanism on the tripod head that makes it straightforward to make sure the digicam is correctly connected to the tripod head.

In fact, any tripod is just price its salt if it really gives a steady platform for taking pictures from.

I’ve used it with a full-frame mirrorless camera paired with a heavy 100-400mm lens, and it carried out very effectively. I additionally used it with my extra regular panorama wide-angle lens, and even with the smartphone adaptor.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Throughout, this tripod carried out very effectively and let me get the photographs I wished, even the long exposure shots the place the tiniest motion can wreck every part.

The ultimate factor I would like in a journey tripod, or any tripod for that matter, is ease of operation.

Now this one was a little bit of a studying curve for me. The design of the Peak Design tripod head is that it slots down into the legs. Nevertheless, you must partially prolong the central column (round an inch), to get full motion.

Peak Design Tripod head

Earlier than I received used to the tripod, I’d attempt to transfer the pinnacle to the place I wished, however not be capable to as a result of the pinnacle solely has full freedom of motion as soon as the central column has been partially prolonged.

Extending the central column isn’t exhausting, however it’s a further step to recollect to do.

As soon as the pinnacle is prolonged, adjusting the pinnacle is straightforward. It’s a ball-style design, and to regulate the angle of the pinnacle you loosen the management ring, transfer the tripod head to the angle you need, after which tighten the management ring.

That is all very straightforward and intuitive when you get used to it. That is actually essential, particularly in case you plan on doing any astrophotography or Northern Lights photography, as you would possibly must function the tripod in very darkish circumstances the place you’re working by really feel.

So that’s loads of constructive issues. Are there are points I encountered? Properly, sure.

The principle draw back I found, which is the principle unfavorable of this tripod, is an absence of separate pan and tilt controls.

If you loosen the management ring to regulate the pinnacle, you possibly can transfer the digicam up, down, left, and proper. Nevertheless, you possibly can’t pan or tilt individually.

So, for instance, when you have your shot framed nearly completely, however wish to shift the view a number of levels to the left, you must watch out to not tilt the digicam up or down on the identical time.

This additionally makes duties like taking pictures panoramas much more difficult. Many tripod heads, together with many ball heads, supply separate pan and tilt controls, so you possibly can pan independently of the lean management.

Now, truthfully, whether or not or not this can be a huge deal will rely so much on the photographs you prefer to take. If you happen to take loads of panoramas, then this may probably be a much bigger problem.

The excellent news is that the management ring additionally controls the friction, which means you possibly can loosen it solely a bit of after which simply watch out as you progress the digicam, with friction in your aspect to stop undesirable actions on the improper axis.

Nevertheless, with a heavy digicam setup it may be difficult to solely transfer in a single course.

The opposite factor to remember is that over time the flip locks on the tripod leg sections can change into unfastened, which means that the legs don’t keep prolonged. That is simply an general problem with all flip lock legs on tripods I’ve used.

This will occur with any tripod, however Peak Design have thought forward and included each a device to regulate the leg flip lock tightness, in addition to a helpful clip which lets you connect the adjustment device to a tripod leg.

You simply wish to bear in mind to deliver this with you once you journey, in case a leg wants tightening up once you’re within the subject.

Lastly, while the addition of the bubble stage is appreciated, the sunshine coloration and approach it’s positioned signifies that my digicam covers most of it up, making it tough to see and never very helpful as soon as my digicam is ready up.

Truthfully, most cameras and smartphones lately have a built-in stage characteristic anyway, so I not often use the bubble stage on a tripod, however I wished to say it in case it was essential to you.

Total, I undoubtedly loved utilizing this tripod within the subject, and it has earned a spot in my images bag for certain.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review


Peak Design Journey Tripod Professionals and Cons

Having lined my expertise utilizing the Peak Design journey tripod within the subject I wished to share a fast rundown of what I felt to be the principle professionals and cons of this tripod from a journey images perspective.


  • Light-weight, even the aluminum model
  • Folds down very small
  • Works effectively with the Peak Design clip system
  • Very nice tripod bag
  • Can convert to tabletop tripod
  • Constructed-in smartphone holder
  • Lifetime guarantee



  • Costly, particularly for carbon fiber mannequin
  • No straightforward panning management
  • Some constraint on portrait orientation shot

Total,l I undoubtedly assume it’s journey tripod. The principle draw back is the price is fairly excessive, particularly if you’re contemplating the carbon fiber mannequin, which prices much more however solely provides a modest lower in weight.

I believe most individuals could be pleased with the aluminum mannequin because the options are the identical.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review


Peak Design Journey Tripod Options

If you begin researching tripods, you’ll shortly be taught that there are an awesome many tripods available on the market, and truthfully, it may be exhausting to inform them aside.

The principle selections will come all the way down to how a lot you wish to spend and the way essential specs like most load capability, most peak, minimal peak, folded peak and many others. are to you.

Most tripods mess around with these specs, so you need to be capable to discover the right tripod for you. I wished to spotlight a number of choices to think about, and you’ll see extra choices in our information to the best travel tripods.

Gitzo Traveler Sequence

Any comparability of tripods, particularly high-end tripods, goes to incorporate point out of Gitzo. These are typically thought to be among the finest tripods available on the market, though they have a tendency to return with a reasonably eye-watering price ticket.

Nonetheless, the Peak Design carbon fiber tripod isn’t precisely a finances mannequin, so I really feel it’s honest to match it towards a tripod of this caliber.

There are fairly a number of tripods within the Gitzo Traveler collection. I’d say probably the most comparable mannequin could be the Gitzo Traveler, series 1, 5 section tripod.

This carbon fiber tripod has a most peak of 58.46″, a folded dimension of 13.98″, a weight of three.13lbs and a max load capability of 22lbs. It has a retail worth of $719.99.

So in comparison with the Peak Design carbon fiber mannequin, the Gitzo has a barely smaller folded peak, weighs barely extra, and has a barely decrease most peak.


Vanguard VEO 3 GO 235CB or 265HCB

A fast notice, I’m a Vanguard Ambassador and have been since 2014, and I’ve used loads of their gear over time, a lot of which I’ve also reviewed.

I believe their merchandise supply so much, and I’ve been very pleased with their gear in use around the globe.

The 2 predominant tripods I believe they at present produce which you would possibly think about as a substitute of the Peak Design Journey Tripod could be from the Vanguard VEO 3 Go vary, and particularly the 235CB or 265HCB models.

These are each carbon fiber tripods, however with a retail worth round half that of the carbon fiber Peak Design Journey Tripod mannequin.

The 235CB is the smaller tripod, with a most dimension of 53.5″, a folded dimension of 13″, a weight of two.3lbs, and a max load capability of 8.8lbs. It has a retail worth of $269.99.

The carbon fiber variant of the Peak Design tripod has a a lot greater load ranking and the next most peak, but in addition weighs extra and doesn’t fold up as small. It’s additionally greater than twice as costly. One to think about when you have a smaller setup that gained’t problem the utmost load ranking.

The 265HCB is the taller tripod, with a most dimension of 65.5″, a folded dimension of 16.1″, a weight of three.1lbs and a max load capability of 22lbs. It has a retail worth of $339.99.

The carbon fiber variant of the Peak Design tripod has an analogous load ranking and a decrease most peak, however weighs much less and folds up a bit smaller. It’s practically twice as costly.

Each Vanguard tripods additionally convert to monopods and include a smartphone adaptor and Bluetooth distant shutter set off. They’re additionally obtainable in aluminum, at a cheaper price level and the next weight.

The aluminum VEO 3 Go 235AB retails for $219.99, and the aluminum VEO 3 Go 265HAB retails for $269.99. Typically the simplest approach to economize on a journey tripod is to decide on an aluminum mannequin over a carbon fiber one.

If you happen to’re on this product, or any of the opposite Vanguard merchandise, it can save you cash utilizing our unique Vanguard low cost code. This provides you with 20% off every part within the Vanguard store.

Simply use the code FindingTheUniverse in your low cost! This Vanguard low cost code works within the Vanguard USA, UK, Australia, Spain, and Germany shops.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review


Do you have to Purchase the Peak Design Journey Tripod?

Truthfully, solely you possibly can reply this query! Nevertheless, having used it for a lot of months I can undoubtedly say that it’s a well-made tripod. It really works very effectively and has sufficient intelligent design options to make it stand out in a really crowded market.

If you add up all of the little additional issues like the great bag, smartphone holder, and compatibility with different Peak Design merchandise, it finally ends up as a very well-rounded product.

In fact, there are a lot of different tripods available on the market at different worth factors, however I don’t assume you can be disenchanted in case you determine to go for it.

You should purchase it direct from Peak Design here, on Amazon here, and from B&H Photo here.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review


Additional Studying

That’s it for my overview of the Peak Design journey tripod – I hope you discovered it useful. Earlier than you go, I wished to share a few of our different content material which we predict one can find helpful.


Seeking to Enhance Your Images?

If you happen to discovered this put up useful, and also you wish to enhance your images general, you would possibly wish to try my online travel photography course.

Since launching the course in 2016, I’ve already helped over 2,000 college students learn to take higher photographs. The course covers just about every part it is advisable to know, from the fundamentals of how a digicam works, by way of to composition, mild, and picture modifying.

It additionally covers extra superior matters, together with astrophotography, lengthy publicity images, flash images, and HDR images.

You get suggestions from me as you progress, entry to webinars, interviews and movies, in addition to unique membership of a Fb group the place you may get suggestions in your work and participate in common challenges.

It’s obtainable for a tremendous one-off worth for lifetime entry, and I believe you need to test it out. Which you are able to do by clicking here.

Peak Design Travel Tripod Review

Word: We had been despatched this product totally free to see how we favored it. I selected to jot down this overview primarily based by myself private opinion of the tripod after utilizing it for some time. All opinions are our personal.

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