So you own a Nikon D3500, but feel like something is missing?
I bet it is a tripod, right?
No, I am not a mind reader, but I tend to know how impactful a tripod is on a DSLR Camera.
As for the Nikon D3500, even though it should be like 4 years by now, it still remains one of the best DSLR around that is aimed at beginners and young families. A camera that is really affordable and is built around a solid core of great image quality, lightweight/compact for a DSLR, and superb battery.
Definitely a camera that is hard to beat at the price point.
But yeah, no matter how good a DSLR is, the main thing that helps it take better shots is a tripod that is as good as the camera. Whether you taking a panorama photo, the sky in the nighttime, or even wedding photography, the tripod will be there to take them perfectly.
If you have no clue where to start your research on tripods, this article might be the best start for you. I have rounded up what I think are the best tripods for Nikon D3500, also after I am done listing, in the end, you will be greeted by some key points you should look into before buying a tripod.
|Nikon Compact Outdoor Tripod 16749|
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|Neewer Carbon Fiber Camera Tripod|
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|Amazon Basics Lightweight Tripod|
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|Manfrotto Befree Advanced Tripod|
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|Peak Design Travel Tripod|
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The Top 5 Best Tripods For Nikon D3500
5. Nikon Compact Outdoor Tripod 16749 – Best Overall
Let’s hit it off with the Nikon 16749, after all a good tripod for the Nikon D3500 would be from Nikon itself, No?
As the name implies it is a great compact tripod, with nice ergonomics and at the same time it is packable.
Besides helping you with amazing outdoor photos, it proves to be a great indoor companion too. It measures 17.9 x 3.5 x 3.4 inches and weighs only 2.3 pounds.
Despite its lightweight, this tough boy can handle up to 5.5 lbs weight. It is made out of aluminum alloy, while the four-section tripod is extendable from 15.75 inches to 49.61 inches.
The ABS locks hold tight the legs at your desired position. The feet are also non-skid, assuring stability even on slippery surfaces.
Its ball head is fully adjustable to 360 degrees along with a quick-release plate that makes pinning and tilting motions smooth and nice, besides that, it also has a nice comfortable grip handle.
4. NEEWER Carbon Fiber Camera Tripod – Most Affoardable
Next, we have an interesting option from Neewer. Neewer is a well-known company in the photographic equipment aspect. They promise to bring us anything in fine detail and in quality, while maintaining an affordable price for most photographers.
As the name implies, this tripod is made out of carbon fiber with very solid and durable construction. The height of the tripod is adjustable from 24.2-78.7 inches (61.5-200 Cm), while the folded height is 18.5inch (47 Cm). It weighs only 3.3 pounds (1.5 kilograms) for easy carrying around.
Its Twist-lock system makes it quite easy and swift to adjust the height, meaning you can extend or retract the tripod within seconds.
The 3-position leg angle adjustment gives you a nice range of photo flexibility, for different shooting scenarios. The inverted shooting allows you to shoot static landscapes from low angles, perfect for macro shooting. The non-slip rubber feet promise us to remain as stable as possible on the surface.
The 36mm metal ball that is included in the package, rotates in 360 degrees, rewarding with great panoramic photography.
Something that I found interesting and want to share, with the hook on the bottom you can hang something heavy like a sandbag, so it has an even better stability.
It has a standard 1/4 inch screw mount for easy and fast camera connection, it is a DSLR tripod so yes it is compatible with almost any DSLR.
3. Amazon Basics Lightweight Tripod – Best Compact
If you are on a really tight budget and you are looking for a lightweight tripod that has a lot of versatility and great features, then your search is over.
The Tripod from Amazon Basics is made out of durable materials, so you know it is designed to last, even though it comes at a cheap price. The low-priced tripods struggle on leg adjustment, this fella from Amazon Basics pulls out smoothly and stays in place perfectly. The small ball joints on the feet provide a very stable sit, regardless of the type of surface.
It is quite lightweight and compact, measuring 24.21 x 4.4 x 4.1 inches and weighing 2.72 pounds, resulting in a great travel companion. But don’t let the light frame design deceive you, it can handle a weight up to 6.6 lbs (3kg).
The legs of the tripod can be extended from 20 inches up to 48 inches. Using its leg lock mechanism you will realize that is quite fast and smooth. The Center post can be cranked up to 60 inches in height, making it perfect for taller people.
It features a basic crank-up height adjustment, making it quite easy for everyone to reach the perfect height. The handle gives you the freedom to move it, tilt, and swing the scope vertically. The large knob on the other hand allows you to easily pan the area.
Above the legs, you will find the built-in bubble levels that allow you to determine when the base of the tripod is on the right level. Something that comes handy, if you use the tripod for a still or a digital camera.
2. Manfrotto Befree Advanced Tripod – Best Value
The success of the original BeFree from Manfrotto is unquestioned, it popularised the format of being a small, compact, and easy to carry a tripod.
As the name implies Advanced, it is aiming to follow the same footsteps but even better in an upgraded way.
The Advanced version is available with several options to choose from; twist or lever lock aluminum and carbon.
The aluminum option measures 4.65 x 4.65 x 17.52 inches and weighs 3.51 pounds. The reason I decided to review the aluminum one is that it is ideal for hobbyists photographers, who want performance and stability/portability at all times. Its ergonomic design makes the operation fun and easy, so your focus can stay more on the shooting.
The Befree advanced contains two different and unique locking mechanism, the M-Lock that drive fast and secure operations, meaning the best lock for portability. And the QLP Lever lock, which is the on-off mechanism that makes the adjustment easier and secure, is best for steadiness.
The maximum height would be 59.45 inches (151 cm) and the minimum 15.75 (40 cm). While both aluminum and carbon fiber versions are capable of supporting weight up to 8 Kg (17 pounds).
On the top you will find the 360 degrees panoramic 494 aluminum center ball head, it allows you to position the camera quite precisely through the 3 independent controls for clamping, friction, and pan.
As for the compatibility, it has no problem holding both DSLRs and Mirrorless cameras.
1. Peak Design Travel Tripod – Best High-End
Peak Design is a well-known company that provides top-notch tripods, people even refer to them as the closest tripods to perfection.
There are two versions of the peak design travel tripod, one comes with aluminum alloy legs and the other one with carbon fiber legs.
What sets the Peak Design Tripods apart from the competition is that the legs collapse together in compact mode, making it really slim and portable.
The aluminum version measures 16.45 x 3.54 x 3.5 inches and weighs 3.43 pounds. The legs have five sections with a lever lock on each. It has a maximum height of 60 inches (152 cm) with the center column raised, indeed this is a really tall height when you think how small it becomes when in fold mode. In minimum height with the collapsed legs, it is 5.5 inches (14 cm).
While the lightweight tripods suffer from stableness, that’s not the case with the Peak Design travel tripod. It is firm and steadfast, even in windy weather.
The unique Omni-directional ball head is another killing feature- It is ARCA SWISS compatible and has a standard camera plate, adjustment ring, locking ring, a quick release, and the tiny bubble level built right in.
Yes, all those great features come with a hard price to swallow, but if your travel tripod ever breaks, Peak Design promises to send a new one, that’s how confident they are on their product by offering a lifetime guarantee.
Things To Consider The Most While Buying The Tripod
When you want to bring out the full potential of the D3500 with the help of a tripod, there are some important factors you should take into consideration.
What makes the height of the tripod crucial, is that if you are able to look directly in the viewfinder without bending, and I think that it is really nice and comfortable, at the same time you avoid some extra bills on backpain.
It’s almost impossible to get a tripod close to your height, but you can find one that is closer to your eye level.
Weight and Portability
The lower the weight is the more portable it is. This will be your main treat if you’re traveling a lot. I mean you are doing photo shooting and not weight lifting, you don’t want to carry a heavy tripod around all the time, for sure.
But I must admit, the huge benefit of a heavy tripod is that it offers more stability.
Make sure to pay attention to its built construction and materials, I don’t expect the tripod to live with you, but it is a once in a lifetime investment and that’s why checking on durability is important.
Every camera has a different weight, so you need a tripod that is capable of bearing the weight of your camera without falling and ruining it.
DSLRs are known for their heavy weight, so if you own one, make sure you take that into consideration.
But since we’re talking about the D3500 here, It is one of the lightest DSLRs on the market, almost all tripods can be a home to it.
If you have extra cash, please don’t be greedy, ending up buying a cheap tripod. It is a well-known fact, that cheap things cost more in a long run.
Picking the right tripod, even if it comes with a price that is hard to swallow, you will never need to buy another one.
But, I am not forcing you to spend tons either, I mean it’s just a tripod. With some luck and knowledge, you might get your hands on a great one.
Most people mistake the tripod for a luxury equipment but it’s quite the opposite. It is a necessary gadget, that rewards you with steady and sharp images.
Famous names like the Peak Design and Manfrotto come in an expesinve price, but they make sure that it lives up to that by offering the best possible features that you can find on a tripod. So yes, as I said earlier, if you are taking landscape photography seriously and have money to spend, don’t hesitate.
If you have the best lens for Nikon d3500, the best lightning, the best tripod and the best settings, you will be able to shoot professional grade shots.
But in the end of the day, if you feel more comfortable with a budget pick like the Amazon Basics one, no one is stopping you from buying it and enjoy what it has to offer.
Before we end, i’d also recommend you read about Nikon D3500 zoom lenses if you already own a D3500 camera.
Thanks for reading!