Travel Tripod, Another One…

If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you’ll know I have an unhealthy obsession with tripods. I’ve been searching for a travel tripod that meets my needs for a while. I have liked the look of the Peak Design travel tripod since it was launched, but I think it’s massively over priced. So when I saw a new product announcement from Benro, it immediately got my attention.

The product Benro announced was the CyanBird travel tripod. The image below will show why it immediately got my attention.

Vertical image of the Benro Cyanbird travel tripod folded up

If you’re familiar with the Peak Design travel tripod, you’ll immediately see the similarities between it and the Benro CyanBird tripod. You will also notice some subtle, and not so subtle, differences.

Comparing it to the Peak Design Travel Tripod

Let’s start with similarities. Both tripods have leg design that enables the legs to closely encircle the centre column. The Peak Design tripod has a flat leg design, but the CyanBird leg profile is concave allowing for a tighter fit to the centre column. This means the diameter of the tripod when closed is much smaller. The closed diameter of the CyanBird is even smaller than the Peak Design tripod.

Both tripods have five section legs, and both have lever locks. Unlike the Peak Design tripod which has all five leg sections fabricated from carbon fibre, only the top leg section of the CyanBird is carbon fibre and the bottom four sections are aluminium. This has a negligible impact on the overall weight, but a significant impact on the overall stability of the tripod. Benro do offer a full carbon fibre version, but at the time of writing this wasn’t available in the UK.

Things I don’t like

There are a couple of things I don’t like about the CyanBird. Firstly, the head that comes with the UK hybrid version is pretty much useless. There is no friction control, and even when tightened to the max, it struggles with heavier camera and lens combinations.

I have plenty of other ball heads, in a variety of sizes and weight. What I noticed about the CyanBird was the diameter of the tripod mounting plate is very small at 32mm. Even the smallest ball head I own, the 3Legged Thing Airhead Neo, has a base diameter of 38mm. This does mean it overlaps the top plate slightly. This is not an issue for me, but something to bear in mind.

The only other thing I have concerns over are the feet. The CyanBird is fitted with rubber feet, there appears no way to be able to replace these with spikes or claws. I’m not sure how this will affect stability on uneven surfaces.


This tripod feels very well made, and when packed down, it’s extremely compact. I am yet to fully test this tripod in the field but from the small amount of testing I’ve done at home, this tripod is quick and easy to work with and feels very sturdy.

The load rating, which for the most part is meaningless, is 4Kg. The heaviest camera and lens combination I use (the Nikon Z8 and 180-600mm f5.6-6.3) weighs in at just over 2.5kg. It’s unlikely I’ll be using this tripod for that particular combination, but the CyanBird should be able to handle this comfortably.

I’m more likely to use this tripod when I’m travelling light, and when I do that I’m most likely carrying my Fuji X-T5. That coupled with any lens I own for the X-mount will weigh no more than 1.5Kg. This is well below the 4Kg capacity rating.

When I’ve given the CyanBird a full tryout in the field, I’ll write another post detailing my thoughts about it’s performance. For now, I’m happy with my purchase. For a tripod that’s more compact , lighter, and is more than 50% cheaper than the Peak Design Travel Tripod, I think it’s a bargain.

Thanks for stopping by, I hope you found this post useful.

Andy Signature