Joby Gorillapod Focus

LIGHTWEIGHT, FLEXIBLE SOLUTION TO A HEAVY PROBLEM

Joby Gorillapod FocusI love tripods. I love the rock-steady, razor-sharp images I can create using a tripod. What I don’t like about tripods is carrying them. They don’t fit in the overhead compartment, and if I use a tripod in Rome or on the Acropolis I have to pay a “professional” fee. So when I first encountered the Joby Gorillapod SLR-ZOOM a few years ago, I was intrigued. Looking like a combination back massager and child’s toy, the SLR-ZOOM could wrap its prehensile legs around almost anything stable, and I quickly discovered it kept my camera as steady as any of my behemoth tripods. When I was doing a night shot at the Roman Coliseum, I wrapped the strange Gorillapod legs around an old steel railing and got some great night shots. Most importantly, the local authorities didn’t think it looked like a tripod and so, no fee.

My one complaint was that my large camera and its huge lens were almost more weight than the SLR-ZOOM could handle. Along comes the Gorillapod Focus. Hooray! Whereas the SLR-ZOOM has a 6.5-lb limit, the new Focus (which only weighs 1.1 lbs) can handle a whopping 11 lbs. I immediately took it for a spin and was impressed. The Gorillapod uses a standard ¼” screw mount (or 3/8″ with an adapter), which takes time to attach or detach. So I added a quick mount adapter, and now it’s perfect. If you want to use a tripod on your trips, buy one of these jewels now! They come in five different sizes; so find the size that matches you camera and lens. The Gorillapod Focus sells for $109.95 and is worth every penny.—Dave Huss

Company: Joby, Inc.
Price: $109.95
Web: www.joby.com
Rating: 5

Hot: Lightweight; handles large cameras
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  1. Martin Tolley (Reply) on Thursday May 21, 2009

    Gorilla pods change your life. I got the SLR for Christmas a few years back. It fits INSIDE a small camera bag, and you can distort it to fit around other things; it’s no weight. And if you attach a strobe and shoot in wireless mode you have a flexible and portable lighting rig you can wrap safely around poles, rails, tree branches or whatever. I often shoot English church interiors and many of the authorities who are often snooty about tripods usually seem very happy with the pod, and don’t have difficulties with my light being attached to the ends of pews, altar rails and the like, or being perched in odd niches in old buildings.

  2. Philip Shaw (Reply) on Thursday May 21, 2009

    Anyone who thinks these Gorilla pods will replace tripods should think again. I have the SLR-Zoom model and quickly discovered why it was simply incapable of acting like a true tripod, regardless of the weight of the camera and lens. The legs are FLEXIBLE! What a shock – considering that they are advertised as bendable. What that means is that the camera, as the shutter releases, causes the whole assembly to shake – resulting in blurred pictures, particularly if you are using a long lens. I found this to be true even with a camera + lens within the weight limit. The Gorilla pod might work if you wrap the legs around, e.g. a pole or a rail, but other than that you might as well put your camera on a bean bag on the ground. Don’t waste your money.

  3. Dave Huss (Reply) on Thursday May 21, 2009

    I also found the SLR Zoom model could work with my Nikon D-300 and a long lens – sorta, but the new focus was steady for all applications. Granted, it’s not as steady as my huge Bogen Manfrotto, but it also weighs 12 pounds less. In fact, I found one of the best uses was when I was shooting weddings under low-light conditions at a slow shutter speeds. Using the Gorillapod as a chest brace in combination with a camera strap around my neck I discovered I mad a pretty steady platform.

  4. Don (Reply) on Thursday May 21, 2009

    Where can I get the quick release mechanism you show here? I haven’t used mine much because I have to unscrew it from the camera each time.

  5. Shar (Reply) on Thursday May 21, 2009

    Philip – get a remote control. Costs almost nothing and it wont shake your camera when you release the shutter…

    Don – joby.com

  6. [...] to be forgotten, the GorillaPod Focus got a great write-up by Layers Magazine. Filed under Friday Find, Gorillamobile, Gorillatorch, Photography, Press, time-lapse photography [...]



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