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I noticed almost every iPhone tripod which sells on Amazon is about 50".

I need to shoot photos or videos of myself when I'm standing. I imagine the position of the camera should be about 62" for my height, and shooting it from only about 50" would look like I'm shooting from too low. Am I wrong?

Are there any easy rule of thumb to figure what tripod size I should need?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I don't think there's any such thing as a "iPhone tripod". There are only tripods, with phone mounts (easily bought separately). Don't limit your window-shopping to only those tripods that claim to be iPhone tripods. \$\endgroup\$
    – osullic
    Sep 26, 2021 at 10:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ I have a dedicated cell phone tripod/selfie stick. It actually has feet that extends out to be used in that capacity. So, they exist. :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Joanne C
    Sep 27, 2021 at 17:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ A factor in this is shooting distance as the angles change. You might want to include how far away the iPhone setup would be from you when shooting. \$\endgroup\$
    – Joanne C
    Sep 27, 2021 at 17:58

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Ideally the center of the lens would be in the middle of the scene. If you are 72" tall, you might be figuring that you want the top 20" of you in the frame, which would lead to the center being the 62" you say. The center of the lens is often somewhat above the tripod mount, which reduces the height you want by a few inches. You probably want some room above the top of your head, which would lead to a higher camera location. Many tripods I have seen are about 50" high with the legs fully extended but have a central column that can be extended as well, leading to a lens position even higher than 62". Mine, which is intended for things much heavier than an iPhone, puts the platform at 54" with just the legs extended and 70" with the center column as high as it will go. You can also put the tripod on a platform to raise it. You can buy plastic tables that are about 30" high easily. You probably need two to give a large enough surface for the tripod legs.

Because the iPhone focal length is so short, you tend to have the phone very close to the action. This makes the angle more extreme than if you had a longer lens. You can get lenses that lengthen the focal length of the phone, which will reduce the effect if you have the space to set the phone back. I don't do video, but for stills Photoshop has a tool to correct perspective. If you can find one that will do a whole video at once that may help as well.

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To elevate a shorter tripod, place the tripod on a table or other flat surface.

Alternatively, a smartphone is light enough that a light stand can provide adequate support. This will also require a clamp to hold the smartphone and a small ball head or similar means of finer grained positioning.

Finally, a selfie stick is the standard tool for holding a smartphone while making self portraits.

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I am also tall and I feel your pain; it's not easy being over 6 feet in a world made for 5'8" people.

By the time you get a decent tripod that's tall enough, you're going to be spending money....Putting a shorter tripod on a table is a much better idea. you can use a light stand but if you don't want it to sway you'll need a Manfrotto or other quality brand. OTOH, you'll have a nice light stand and that's never a waste of money because they can hold reflectors and lights which will also make your self-portraits infinitely better. I recommend the Manfrotto 5001 Nano, if you can find one used that's even better.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ The difference in tripod height between a subject height of 6 feet and 5'8" is only two inches. That is not the problem. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 1, 2022 at 3:46

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