The best tripods that every astrophotographer and landscape photographer should have been to keep their cameras and lenses steady while taking pictures of the stars.
If you’re looking for information about the best tripods on the market, you’ve come to the right place. Tripods are an important part of any photographer’s gear, especially for long-exposure photography like astrophotography.
If you use one of these tripods with one of the best cameras for astrophotography, you won’t be able to stop. Get the shot you want, keep the camera perfectly still, and you’ll get the fantastic pictures you’ve always wanted.
Table of Contents
Our Recommendation Best Tripod For Astrophotography in 2023
|Benro Mach3 TMA37C – Best Overall||Intuitive, no fiddling.
Leg locks that are strong making it easy to use.
|Peak Design Travel Tripod – Best Quality:||Slim design
Covert smartphone mount
Supports full-frame gear with ease
|Vanguard Tripod Alta Pro 263 AB100 – Best Budget||Several positions, including ones that are low to the ground
Stable and strong
Simple to set up and take down at night
|3 Legged Thing Punks Brian tripod with AirHed – Best Value||Excellent construction
Bubble grip knobs you can feel
Easy to move around
|Manfrotto 190 Go!||M-lock mechanism that works quickly
For horizontal positioning, a 90° column is used
|Benro Slim Travel Tripod||Easy to carry and small
Worth the price
Top 5 Best Tripod For Astrophotography in 2023:
1) Benro Mach3 TMA37C – Best Overall:
The Benro Mach3 9X CF TMA37C is surprisingly light for how big it looks and feels. It was made to last, be reliable, and work well in all kinds of weather. Even though this isn’t a travel tripod, it was made with the portability and flexibility needs of serious landscape photographers in mind. This also makes it a great choice for serious astrophotographers.
The tripods in the Mach3 series can be set up in different ways and come in both carbon fiber and aluminum. At this size, the difference in weight between carbon fiber and aluminum is pretty big, but the carbon fiber model is also a lot more expensive.
You’ll have to buy the head separately, which will add to the already high price, but then you can make the tripod fit your own needs and preferences. You do get a few extras for your money, though. You get a set of spiked feet and a shorter center column, which come in handy when you need to get down low.
With a price tag of $384.95, there’s no way to hide the fact that this tripod is an investment, but you do get good value for your money. It’s built to last because of how well it’s made and how much care was put into every part. You’ll be able to use it for years and years.
2) Peak Design Travel Tripod – Best Quality:
The Peak Design Travel Tripod is one of the smallest travel tripods you’ll find, and it’s perfect for anyone who wants to take landscape photos or do wide-field astrophotography.
It has been cleverly made so that it fits into a small, neat package with no extra space. Its three legs and ball-shaped head fold up so that there is no space between them. This makes it perfect for putting in your daypack or luggage.
Even though it’s clearly made for travel, it’s not the lightest travel tripod you can buy. The building can be made of either aluminum or carbon fiber, but the carbon fiber version is more expensive because it is lighter but costs more. We think the aluminum model, which weighs 3.4 pounds, is better value for money because the carbon fiber model, which weighs 2.8 pounds, is only a little bit lighter and not really worth the extra money.
As we talked about in the section of our Peak Design Travel Tripod review about how it works, this tripod’s height might be a bit of a problem for taller people because, even though it has five leg sections, it’s about ten inches shorter than similar models on the market.
The Arca-Swiss quick-release tripod plate is very stable and can hold up to 20 pounds of weight, but you need a hex key to attach the camera to it, which isn’t easy to do in the dark. The model also has a nice travel feature: a swivel lever to turn the ball head. This means that nothing sticks out and gets in the way.
The Peak Design Travel Tripod will be a big hit with astrophotographers, especially those who want something light and easy to move. When it’s packed up, it’s small, and it works well outdoors.
3) Vanguard Tripod Alta Pro 263 AB100 – Best Budget:
The best thing about the Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB is how flexible it is and how many different positions you can put it in. In addition to the standard tripod setup, the legs can be spread out from upright at 25o to almost 90o to the center column. Also, the center column can be pulled out and turned 90 degrees from the legs, which means the camera can be as low as 10 inches off the ground. This makes it much more stable when taking very long exposures of star trails.
With only three sections on each leg, there are only two clips to connect when setting up the tripod. We found that it was strong enough to keep the camera still during long exposures even when there was a light to moderate breeze.
Even in the dark, it was easy to set up and take down. The same can’t be said for the connector plate, which needs a hex key. However, since the tripod comes with two plates, you might just leave it on your camera all the time instead of taking it off at the end of a shoot.
As we said in our review of the Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB tripod, this is a great all-around tripod. If you like taking pictures in different ways, this could be a good choice for you.
But it might not be the best for astrophotography because it is so big and heavy that you might not want to carry it around at night. Even so, for the price, it’s a great tripod that can be used in many different ways.
4) 3 Legged Thing Punks Brian tripod with AirHed – Best Value:
The 3 Legged Thing Brian tripod is a travel tripod that is easy to carry and has some pretty solid engineering design. In our review of the 3-Legged Thing PUNKS Brian Tripod, we said that when it’s fully set up, it’s one of the tallest tripods, but when it’s folded up, it’s one of the smallest.
Even though it weighs 3.1 pounds, it’s not the heaviest travel tripod on the market. It’s also not too heavy to carry around all day or night. It has a high-end look and feel, but it also costs more than its closest competitors. Overall, though, we think it’s worth it.
Thanks to the bubble grips on the knobs and leg extenders, this tripod is easy to set up and take down in low light. But the camera connects with a hex key instead of a D-ring, which can be a little annoying. However, a tool is included for this, and a carabiner is used to connect it to the tripod’s body.
The Brian tripod by 3 Legged Thing can hold up to 30 pounds. We found that the camera “fell into place” once it was set up in its compositions with a very long lens, but we think this has more to do with how the weight is distributed than with the weight itself. It seemed to handle the weight of a DSLR with a shorter zoom lens just fine. But this is the only small thing I don’t like about a piece kit that meets the other needs of an enthusiastic astrophotographer.
5) Manfrotto 190 Go!
The Manfrotto 190 Go! The tripod series came out almost five years ago, but it is still a favorite among amateur and professional photographers who need a light, stable base for their cameras. Since our review of the Manfrotto 190 Go!, the price has only gone down a little bit, which shows that it is still a product that people want.
There are several models in the range. You can choose between carbon fiber or magnesium construction, different heads and leg sections, and so on. However, every 190 Go! a tripod is defined by how quickly it can be set up and used. The most expensive model is probably too expensive for amateur or casual photographers, but the aluminum version is less expensive.
An “M-lock” mechanism makes it easy to put together. This is a super-fast twist lock that lets you unlock the leg and set the right height in just a few seconds. Other important features include a central column that can be turned 90 degrees and swung out into a horizontal position and a Link attachment for adding more accessories. The legs can be held at 25, 46, 66, or 88 degrees.
The whole set weighs 4.1 pounds and can hold up to 14.3 pounds.
These unobtrusive M-locks make it easy to set up the tripod quickly, and there are no protruding parts on the legs that could get caught on a bag when you want to put the tripod away. Even in the dark, the rubber grips on the locks make them easy to grab.
6) Benro Slim Travel Tripod:
You can’t beat the Benro Slim travel tripod on nights when you have to walk a long way to get to a good spot or on days when you might need a tripod but aren’t sure what will happen.
This well-made, lightweight tripod was made with travel and movement in mind. It has everything a beginning landscape or astronomy photographer needs to start taking long-exposure photos.
Even though the Benro Slim was made for mirrorless systems, which are becoming more and more popular, it can also handle the weight of a DSLR and zoom lens very well.
Not only that, but it’s made by a trusted brand and has great build quality, but it won’t break the bank. It’s stable, reliable, small, and, most importantly, light enough that you can just keep it in your camera bag at all times.
It comes in both carbon fiber and aluminum versions, which are only different in terms of weight and price. The aluminum version is a little heavier but a little less expensive.
It’s easy to set up and take down, and the anodized aluminum leg twists lock in place with just a half-turn. It uses a standard Arca-Swiss connector plate that slides in easily and is secure enough for a variety of mirrorless and DSLR lenses.
Buying Guide: What to Consider When Buying the Best Tripod For Astrophotography?
1) Large Payload:
The payload is one of the most important parts of an astrophotography tripod. It needs to be able to hold the weight of your camera gear and big accessories, like a star tracker or telescope with a camera adapter. Most astrophotographers don’t need more than a tripod that can hold 20 to 25 pounds.
Like most camera gear, an astrophotography tripod needs to be easy to carry. Depending on how much you need to carry, look for features that make the bag as portable as possible. Invest in a tripod that is easy to move and carry, whether it has a small, compact design or is made of light materials.
3. A Strong Construction and Reliable:
The fact that it is portable leads us to the next feature, which is a strong, reliable build. Aluminum and carbon fiber are two types of tripod materials that can do this while still being light and able to hold a lot of weight.
Both are strong and light, and they don’t rust or get damaged by the weather. Carbon fiber is the better choice between the two because it is lighter, stronger, and more durable, but it also costs more. Aluminum tripods are a better deal for people with less money.
If you want to do astrophotography, you need a sturdy tripod. You need something that can hold your camera and lens, but also something that won’t move when the weather is bad. In this article, we list the 6 best heavy-duty tripods for astrophotography. Our top pick is always Benro Mach3 9X CF TMA37C and if you’re on a tight budget you should go for Vanguard Alta Pro 263AB.
We have something for you whether you’re looking for something cheap or something more expensive. So, why don’t you just do it? Start looking for your new astronomy tripod right now.
Do You Need a Tripod for Astrophotography?
Yes, you need a tripod to do astrophotography. It will keep your camera and lens steady, but it will also let you take long exposure photos without blur.
What is the Best Tripod for Astrophotography?
There is no “best” tripod for taking pictures of the night sky. Instead, there are a number of tripods that work well for this kind of photography. Some things to think about are your budget, your weight, and your height.
What Kind of Material is the Strongest and Lightest for a Tripod?
There is no “best” kind of material for a tripod. But carbon fiber is often used for astrophotography because it is strong and light at the same time.