Can a Gimbal Replace a Tripod?

Wondering how that famous Instagram influencer made the driving video without the camera is shaky and all? I wondered too.

I have seen a lot of videos that required rigorous actions taken without shaky movements in the video. The videos were stable yet close shots were taken. I wondered how possible it was that the shots were taken using tripods. Then I made some research and found out about gimbals.

Tripods have been in existence long before gimbals. They have served the purpose and stood by photographers and videographers for years. Gimbals might be new but they are taking over. Creating faster video shoot progress than tripods and allowing easy production of videos too. But now the question is, are gimbals really replacing tripods?  I have thought about that a couple of times and have found that it is possible. 

What is a Gimbal?

A gimbal is a device that uses a motor and smart sensors to stabilize a camera. Smart sensors here refer to Artificial intelligence. It provides the support needed to hold a camera throughout a video shoot. It allows you to make a stable, very clear and smooth video even when doing the most unstable activity. The ability of a gimbal to stabilise video cameras is what makes it possible to capture events so well more than a tripod would. 

Despite the moving motors a gimbal is made of, your videos remain noiseless without unexpected jerky movements. Of course, nobody likes to hear machine sounds in their videos. That is why the motor’s built-in gimbals are made to work without noise. 

Gimbals come in different sizes and shapes. From small to medium to large. It also ranges in quantities. The higher the quality, the higher the price. However, most gimbals beat this law of demand by providing quality gimbals at low prices. 

What is a Tripod?

A tripod is a three-legged tool that holds cameras. A tripod holds a camera completely still preventing the possibility of jerky or shaky movements bare hands could cause during a shoot. A tripod is used by photographers in most cases when they want to take a picture using a slow shutter speed or take a particular picture more than once.

Fun fact, the name was gotten from the Greek word tripods which means three-legged stool; where Tri is three and podos is the foot. Tripods have served a lot of purposes for many photographers even astrophotographers. Most wildlife photographers can testify how much of a help tripods have been for them. 

Can a Gimbal Replace a Tripod? – Ultimate Guide

The truth is yes, it can. This is because gimbals are designed with some tripod features in them and hence can act like it. Both the tripod and gimbal are designed with specific features. That when combined would create a perfect end product.

The gimbal is most suitable for steady motion shots but can also take still pictures. Although it is built with motors which cause movements, it can still be put to stand still. This feature allows it to stay put and still be used to take still pictures. This however is most suitable for a tripod. 

There are specific shots that are best taken by a tripod. So instead of using a gimbal, a tripod should be used. Especially when you are sure you want no shaking. Gimbals are versatile. Gimbals with great quality can be gotten at a low cost. 

Tripods are sometimes used with gimbals. How do you ask? A gimbal is placed on a tripod to stay steady while being rotated. 

So you see, a gimbal can easily replace a tripod, however, using both tools would make a perfect combo. Despite the fact that a gimbal can do both, it is best to purchase the tools according to your need. 

What is the Difference Between a Gimbal and a Tripod?

Gimbals and tripods primarily perform the same task but there are features that differentiate them from each other. These differences are clear and are what makes a person purchase one instead of the other. 

  • The main difference between both tools is stability. While a tripod is made to hold a camera in one place, a gimbal allows the movement of the camera. The tripod holds the camera providing no or very few options for movement. A gimbal allows the movement of the camera without causing shaky movements in the video. 
  • Gimbals in most cases contain electrical components while tripods in most cases do not contain or require electrical components. 
  • Gimbals use motors and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to create the perfect grip for your camera. A tripod is a three-legged device its highest form of motion is a fold of the three legs. Unlike the gimbal, it is designed to stand at a point while performing a task. 
  • Gimbals can be used to take shots even from an awkward angle while tripods can mostly allow you to take a perfect shot from an accurate and stable angle. 
  • Gimbal provide the perfect equipment for shooting documentaries. This is because, with it, you can move easily and quickly. While with the tripod, you can only capture still objects. Also, a tripod requires extra lighting and space. When used for an activity that requires movement, it might produce a blurry output. 

Should I get a Gimbal or a Tripod?

Before getting any of both tools, it is necessary that you learn about them. Knowing the purposes and differences between them saves you the confusion that comes with picking between both. 

Anywho, for a photographer who is only into still photography and not any activity that involves movement, a tripod is a good option. But for a videographer, a gimbal is best. Like I said earlier, pick according to your need. But In case you are into both and have to pick between them, a gimbal is a good idea. 

Conclusion:

Whether a tripod or a gimbal, be sure to compare your activities to the purposes and features of the device.

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Author

I am Saqib, an enthusiastic blogger who writes at Capture Gears and other passive blogging sites. I have a Nikon D7500 camera and a Zomei Tripod q666 Tripod. And some other gadgets like monopods, gimbals, and lenses. And BTW I love Photography :)

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