Whether you're capturing a timelapse of city life, producing video content, photographing star trails or taking a long exposure of the night sky, a smartphone tripod is one of the simplest yet effective ways of taking your smartphone photography to the next level.

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A tripod will keep your smartphone firm and steady, allowing you to produce videos free of shakes and wobbles, and capture crisp, blur-free images.

For advice on photographing the night sky, read our guides on astrophotography and image processing.

Silhouette of a man adjusting a smartphone on a tripod at dusk
Credit: Donny Setyawan / EyeEm

And if you're really interested in smartphone astrophotography, a tripod enables you to capture multiple frames of the same image for stacking, to make use of astrophotography apps that feature a star trails function, or to produce long exposure images that tease out detail from the night sky.

One additional feature to consider when choosing a smartphone tripod is a wireless remote shutter, such as one that operates via Bluetooth.

These handheld devices link up with your phone and enable you to press 'capture' without actually touching the handset itself, meaning there's less risk of accidentally nudging your setup out of place.

Here are some of the best smartphone tripods available to buy online.

7 of the best smartphone tripods

1

ZETONG Phone Tripod

Zetong smartphone tripod

The ZETONG Phone Tripod is good value for smartphone photography beginners. The tripod is lightweight and easy to set up, while the smartphone clamp offers ease of movement, enabling the camera to be adjusted from side-to-side and up and down.

We were impressed with the Bluetooth handheld shutter control, which was easy to connect to our iPhone and enables images to be captured from a distance. This avoids the need to physically touch the handset itself and risk nudging it out of place.

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The tripod is height-adjustable, meaning it’s suitable for both desk-top and outdoor use, although some users may find it too lightweight for their purposes. If you’re interested in getting into smartphone astrophotography, the ZETONG and an astrophotography app like NightCap would be a good place to start.

2

Joby GripTight ONE GP Stand

Joby GripTight ONE GP Stand

The Joby smartphone tripods are among the coolest and most popular smartphone gadgets, and make for great desktop options. The Joby GripTight ONE GP Stand is a funky, flexible tripod offering an adjustable grip that should accommodate most smartphones, while its rubber feet provide extra grip and sturdiness.

While you'll most likely be putting the Joby on a flat surface, its legs can wrap around a handrail or other vertical structure to provide you with more height without the need to take a large, extendable tripod with you wherever you go.

3

Manfrotto PIXI with Universal Smartphone Clamp

Manfrotto PIXI with Universal Smartphone Clamp

The Manfrotto PIXI may require a hard surface to rest on, but this mini tripod makes for a neatly small and portable all-in-one device. The PIXI Mini is very solid and its compactness means it will fit nicely into hand luggage and travelling gear if you happen to be shooting in far-flung corners or making your way to a dark-sky site for astrophotography.

It comes with a well-made ball head that means you can attach compact or DSLR cameras, which are fixed into place with a push-button locking mechanism. This version also comes with a smartphone clamp, making it one of the better low-budget smartphone tripods.

4

Benro 3XS Lite smartphone gimbal

Benro 3XS Lite smartphone gimbal

As we break the £100 budget barrier, we're really looking for value for money. After all, it is a lot to spend on a tripod alone, and serious or even professional smartphone photographers and vloggers will be wanting their hard-earned money to go on a device that's well-made and reliable.

If you want something really upmarket to clamp your smartphone into, the Benro 3XS Lite gimbal is certainly worth consideration. It's a three-axis gimbal designed for amateur filmmakers. The Benro 3XS Lite allows the user to zoom using a button on its column and take manual photos via its app. Plus, the whole device features a 1/4 inch tripod thread that enables it to be mounted on a full-size tripod.

5

VEO 3GO 235AB 23mm Aluminium Travel Tripod

VEO 3GO 235AB

The VEO 3GO 235AB 23mm tripod features rubber but also spiked feet so that it can be used on softer, more uneven terrain. But the device can also be adapted into a monopod, enabling it to be used as a selfie stick or for vlogging in the field.

It weighs 1,240g, extends to 136cm, folds to 33cm and, according to the manufacturer, offers a max load capacity of 4kg.

The VEO 3GO 235AB can be used with a DSLR camera, but the included smartphone adaptor makes this a tripod for those who are really serious about smartphone photography. It also includes a Bluetooth remote shutter for capturing shots without shaking your setup while doing so.

6

JOBY Compact Light Tripod Kit

JOBY Compact Light Tripod Kit

This tripod kit from JOBY comes with all the features you would expect at this price point: 360° panoramic rotation, pan and tilt, quick release and a spirit level. It features a 1/4” thread with a ball head for cameras, as well as a phone cradle for smartphones, so if you’re both a DSLR and a smartphone photographer, it’s a good option.

There are two additional 1/4" threads on the cradle, which the manufacturer suggests could be used for attaching a mic. The tripod extends to taller than 1 metre and also comes with a handy soft carry bag.

7

HAMA Traveller Ramble Duo Carbon Tripod

HAMA Traveller Ramble Duo Carbon Tripod

The HAMA Traveller Ramble is at the more expensive end of smartphone tripods, but that’s because it can hold 8kg of weight and will fit both camcorders, cameras and smartphones, making it a good choice for photographers who like to avail of a range of devices.

The smartphone holder has a foam grip to prevent the device from scratching your screen, and the package comes with a carrying bag too.

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Into smartphone astronomy? Read our guide to the best smartphone astronomy apps.

Authors

Iain Todd, BBC Sky at Night Magazine
Iain ToddScience journalist

Iain Todd is BBC Sky at Night Magazine's Content Editor. He fell in love with the night sky when he caught his first glimpse of Orion, aged 10.