Lesbemums: Travelling with GorillaPod by Joby (Review)
As T get’s older, a lot of our memories of him are now captured whilst in motion. Whether T is on his scooter, climbing up ladders and across wooden structures, or simply dancing or making faces, it’s rare that we can get him to stand still these days. Don’t get me wrong, I love how active he is, but once in a while it’d be nice to capture a decent family photo, like this one from Brighton Pride last weekend:
Thankfully, our son is very photogenic, meaning that even in motion his beautiful eyes and his stunning, albeit cheeky, smile can still be captured. But you have no idea how many times my phone has almost fallen out of my hand or our GoPro has been left precariously on the handlebars of one of our scooters.
To tackle this, Joby; makers of the GorillaPod, invited us to test out a few of their products. This was perfect timing as we were about to head off to Camp Bestival and that was certainly somewhere we would be taking a lot of photos and capturing snippets on our GoPro.
Flexible Portable Tripods
GorillaPod tripods are compact tripods that come in a range of sizes depending on the hardware you’re using. From DSLR cameras to mobile phones. What makes them unique is that they’re completely versatile and will adapt to any terrain thanks to their ball and socket design with rubber feet.
Included within the kit we were sent was:
A GorillaPod 325
The Action Clamp with GorillaPod Arm
The GripTight ONE with GP Magnetic Impulse.
The GripTight POV Kit
In addition, we were also sent a camera bag by LowePro (The Flipside 200 AW II) to store all our kit, but we will be providing a separate review of this soon!
Starting with what Sharon probably used the most at Camp Bestival, the GripTight POV Kit, this was perfect for all round phone photography, especially selfies and photos that were taken at a height where you’d like that extra security that you’re not going to drop your phone! The POV Kit also comes with a Bluetooth remote.
- Universal smartphone compatibility: fits any model, with or without a case (56mm-91mm).
I doubted this feature at first, as my Pixel2’s Google assistant is activated when the sides are squeezed, however my phone worked fine in the mount and we didn’t have any frustrations with Google assistant being activated!
- Locking lever clamps phone securely within the TPE grip-pads.
- GoPro® style universal pin joint allows mounting of phone onto any GoPro accessory.
- Ergonomic handgrip pivots 180 degrees for optimal capture angles.
- Robust build with durable ABS plastic with TPE grip pads and stainless steel hardware.
- Cold shoe adapter allows you to attach accessories such as mic or LED light to top or bottom of grip.
Sharon really enjoyed using this and would often have her phone set up on a table or chair using the handgrip as a stand, she would then simply press the remote at intervals capturing various moments during lunch or a show.
Similar to the GripTight, the next GorillaPod on our list is the GripTight ONE with Magnetic Impulse. This tripod was perfect for longer distance photos such as panoramic shots that I wanted to capture on more stable ground or larger group shots for when my t-rex arms couldn’t cope.
Like the POV Kit, this also comes with a Bluetooth remote, but it has the added benefit of Magnetic feet, which was great for leaving attached to fencing and flag poles when capturing shows in action when you needed that extra distance but wrapping the legs around didn’t work.
I could also change the attachments with this particular tripod, meaning I could attach the GoPro. The magnetic feet then gave me extra security when we attached it to the wagon.
- Universal smartphone compatibility, with or without a case.
- Quick, in-and-out access to phone via spring loaded grip.
- Flexible legs wrap around objects for unlimited angles and precise composition control.
- Bend legs to create a handle for front camera photos, vlogging or hand-held on-the-go video.
- Rare, super-strong neodymium magnetic feet securely attach to most metal surfaces.
- Compact and lightweight for easy transport.
- Kit includes Impulse Remote shutter with certified Bluetooth technology good up to 90 feet away (no app required).
Multi Use Technology
When we weren’t taking photos on our phone we were capturing video on our GoPro, which is where the GorillaPod 325 came in very handy! This is what I probably used the most as it seemed to stabilise my video and I was able to get some better angles thanks to the rotating ball on the neck. It was also useful for spur of the moment selfies.
To connect your camera or GoPro, you will need the standard tripod screw mount. Not all GoPro’s come with this accessory so check you have one of these first.
- Evolved: New stainless steel reinforced ball head with 90° tilt is perfect for shooting in portrait or landscape mode for FaceTime, livestreaming and selfies.
- Flexible: Wrappable legs wrap around objects for unlimited angles and precise composition control.
- Versatile: Mount point-and-shoot cameras, lighting, microphone, Pico projector, speaker, any device weighing up to 325 grams with a ¼”-20 tripod mount or smartphone using JOBY GripTight mount.
- Portable: Compact & lightweight (weighs in at less than 2 oz) for easy transport in pocket, handbag or backpack.
- Strong: Holds devices weighing up to 325 grams.
- Stable: Rubberized ring and foot grips provide enhanced stability in difficult terrain.
I probably used this daily and was not disappointed. I often set this up in the tent on a table (even when the table wasn’t particularly straight or still!) or wrapped it around our wagon when T was being pulled along. The ball and socket design is absolutely brilliant – no angle was too difficult and no terrain was too tough! I was happy to put my trust into it. If the wind hadn’t grown too quickly at Camp Bestival I probably would have attached it to the ferris wheel.
In comparison to the magnetic GripTight ONE tripod, it’s slightly lighter. This meant I could pop it in my pocket comfortably when it wasn’t attached to anything.
Sadly our festival was cut short due to the weather, so we didn’t get to test out the Action Clamp & GorillaPod Arm. This was being reserved for the wooded Dingly Dell, where we were going to attach it to trees, or somewhere within Caravanserai to capture the acrobatics of Cirque Bijou! Nevertheless, I have every intention of putting it to good use soon so watch this space.
If you’re not sure whether the Action Clamp is good for you, here are some of the features:
- Movable arm for quick camera angle adjustments: The reliable GorillaPod ball & socket arm allows you to quickly change the action camera position.
- Fast & easy clamp setup: The sliding clamp arm moves quickly to accommodate a surface up to 2in / 50.8mm wide.
This accessory is perfect for action cam filming (as opposed to stand-alone photography and phone work) and would be perfect in situations such as recording sports or activities. It’s also one of the less expensive GorillaPods but still offers the same amount of versatility.
We are incredibly grateful to Joby for allowing us to use these amazing items. The really added an extra something to what we were capturing over the Camp Besitval weekend and gave us filming opportunities we never had before. There is a reason the design is often copied! It’s unique and certainly stands up to tough terrain and heavy use.
The GorillaPod was in and out of the bag all weekend and we tested it out on a variety of surfaces. So far, nothing has failed it’s grip and stability. What I love most about the tripods is that all the attachments are interchangeable, so the shooting possibilities are endless.
Over the next few weeks we’re going to be capturing some more video with the assistance of our GorillaPods, we’d love for you to follow what we get up to.
We were sent A GorillaPod 325, an Action Clamp with GorillaPod Arm, a GripTight ONE with GP Magnetic Impulse, and a GripTight POV Kit (all by Joby) in exchange for an honest review, however all thoughts, opinions, and imagery are our own.