Not Your Everyday Banana

by Bart Arondson

submit your photo


Hall of Fame
View past winners from this year

Please participate in Meta
and help us grow.

Take the 2-minute tour ×
Photography Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional, enthusiast and amateur photographers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I see that most monopod are not very tall when fully extended.

How important is it to choose a monopod that is high enough??

I am six foot two (189cm) and my eye level is roughly around 175cm.

Many monopods only gets to 150cm or 160cm. Adding the height of my camera, it is still usually a few cm lower than my eye level (when I am standing straight, with shoes on)

I would like to seek some advice from experienced monopod user. Do you think it is important to get a monopod that, when everything is mounted, at least meets your eye level at a comfortable standing position?

I tried a monopod in a store today and it is about 5 cm short. Meaning that when I mount my camera on it, standing perfectly straight, the viewfinder will be at the level of my nose, not my eye.

Would that bother you?

share|improve this question
    
Six foot two isn't extremely tall, but it is tall. You might be a little hard pressed to find a monopod that is exactly tall enough to meet eye level like @DannyEdminds stated. Given that, you might try bringing along a couple small pieces of 2x4 wood liquid-nailed together as a small stand to get a monopod up to height. If your not afraid of DIY, you might try to find a better solution, such as finding a way to extend the monopod's inner tube...the feet usually pop out...you might be able to find a cheap piece of similar aluminum tubing to extend it by the right length. –  jrista Nov 20 '11 at 1:22
    
I'm the same height as you, and have a tripod that, with the center column fully extended, also puts the viewfinder about 2 inches below my eye level. Like Danny Edmunds I also find that my neck cramps up almost right away, so I almost never use the tripod fully extended. If you get a monopod that's 5cm too short you'll rarely use it fully extended. I suggest that you find a taller one; or DIY it like jrista suggested; or bring along a chair (like a collapsible camp chair) to sit in so your viewfinder can be at eye level. –  drewbenn Nov 21 '11 at 7:12
add comment

1 Answer 1

up vote 7 down vote accepted

I've found that I like my monopod tall enough so that the viewfinder is pretty much exactly at eye level. If it's much lower than that then I find that after only a short period of use, my neck starts to cramp. It should also be noted that if I'm shooting something above me (birds in flight for instance) then I'll tend to have the viewfinder above eye level, so I can look up through the camera without having to crouch, so in my case I like the monopod to be capable of extending about 5-10 cm above eye level.

share|improve this answer
    
I wonder if there is some sort of aluminum tube that has 1/4 20" screw joints on both ends so that I can attach it to add height to a monopod that is short? Ideally a solid piece of aluminum would give the best strength, but I am unable to find anything similar. –  Gapton Nov 21 '11 at 8:09
    
Definitely not a fan of neck pain. I took your advice and exchanged the monopod that I purchased with a cheaper but taller one. (Manfrotto 695CX to 694CX, 5 sections to 4 sections, max height is about 8 cm difference) Now when fully extended with a monopod head, the VF is easily above my eyebrow (bare foot). It just feels that much better, and I know I always have 1 inch extra, gives me a peace of mind. Lastly it is cheaper, and 4 sections is stronger. –  Gapton Nov 21 '11 at 14:25
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.