TGWK’s Review – Joby GorillaPod Hybrid Tripod

This is part 2 of what Joby sent to me a couple of weeks ago in addition to the GorillaPod Micro 800 that I posted up a few days ago. The GorillaPod Hybrid is based on the original Gorillapod design that Joby is famous for, but with a couple new features. Many years ago, I purchased the original GorillaPod when they first appeared on the market and was quite impressed with the whole idea of being able to use it like a regular tripod while also being able to wrap it around objects that you couldn’t normally mount a camera to. The only downside of the original GorillaPod was that it didn’t quite support larger, heavier  cameras very well. That changed later when Joby introduced much larger GorillaPods that were able to support even the weight of a full sized DSLR. One of the newer breed of GorillaPods is their GorillaPod Hybrid which I’ll be discussing here today.

Features

The GorillaPod Hybrid is quite large when compared to my original GorillaPod. The ball joints are much bigger and able to accommodate much more weight. They still feature the same rubber ringed design however to grip to surfaces when wrapped around objects. The mounting head on this one differs greatly from my original GorillaPod however in that this one features an integrate aluminum ball head as well as a built in 360° pan and 90° tilt knob. This allows you to easily pan the camera without moving the legs as well as tilt. Just turn the knob to loosen it and turn it again to tighten it. This makes it easy to adjust the position of the camera without having to readjust the entire GorillaPod. The Hybrid system also includes an integrated bubble level to keep your camera shots straight.

  • Designed for: hybrid cameras, including compact system cameras (CSC), EVIL (Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens), MILC (Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Cameras) and Micro 4/3 cameras
  • Integrated aluminum ball head with ±90° tilt and 360° pan
  • Dual action adjustment knob easily locks the ballhead in place. Separate locking mechanisms for horizontal and vertical movement allow for smooth panning without tilt
  • Flexible, wrappable legs with rubberized ring and foot grips stabilize on any surface
  • Quick-release clip and bubble level for instant setup and perfectly level images
  • Durable design crafted with best-in-class materials, including Japanese medical-grade ABS plastic and German TPE
  • Holds up to 1kg (2.2lb)

Usage

The GorillaPod Hybrid is meant to work prosumer cameras and new mirrorless system cameras such as the Olympus PEN and Sony NEX series cameras. Because of this, I decided to test the GorillaPod Hybrid with my Olympus PEN E-PL3 due to the fact that it is a slightly heavier camera than my Sony NEX-5N and I’d really be able to test the capabilities of the GorillaPod Hybrid with it. Attaching the GorillaPod to the PEN E-PL3 is a cinch. All you have to do is press the quick release button to eject the tripod mount. The piece that comes out screws to the bottom of your camera and then you can click that part back on to your GorillaPod. This makes it easy to detach the GorillaPod when you don’t need to use it and you can keep the quick release portion installed on your camera with minimal bulk.

Again, the GorillaPod Hybrid is much bigger than the original GorillaPod and able to hold much more weight. Joby not only made it bigger, but they also beefed up leg joints quite a bit. They are also a bit bigger than the original ones and they feel much tighter now too. I tested out the legs to see if they would sag after time by placing my PEN E-PL3 on it and left it there for 24 hours. After coming back to it, I was amazed to see that it stayed in the very same position I had left it with zero change in height. Very impressive. Next I tested out it’s ability to be used on uneven surfaces and objects which obviously is the main reason most people buy GorillaPods. Like the original, the GorillaPod Hybrid also quite adept at this as long as the surface or object it is being used on is stable enough. I had no problems mounting it to chair arms, baby cribs, steps, and even around poles.

Final Thoughts

Video From Joby

If you’re a casual photographer who really doesn’t need to pick up all the pro level photography gear, give the GorillaPod Hybrid some serious consideration or any of the GorillaPods in Joby’s lineup. It’s small, portable, and highly functional with lots of really useful features such as the pan and tilt head and the bubble level. The GorillaPod Hybrid is larger than the original one, but still small enough to fit in your travel pack unlike full sized tripods that usually need to be strapped on the outside. If you own a small compact camera, you could get away with buying a smaller GorillaPod although getting the Hybrid wouldn’t be a bad idea in case you ever decide to upgrade to a much larger camera.

The GorillaPod Hybrid retails for $39.95 which is not a bad price for something this versatile. Sure you can find regular tripods for cheaper, but how many of them can you wrap around a tree branch?

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This review is made possible with my affiliation with G Style Magazine. It is also featured at the G Style Magazine website which is a tech blog that focuses on the fashion aspect of tech. Please visit their site for the complete review and more images.

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