Almost one year ago, my bright blue MeFoto GlobeTrotter carbon fiber tripod replaced my faithful Gitzo tripod which followed me during my travels all over the world and photo shoots for at least 5 years. I have been searching for a worthy replacement for a while.
At the end, among all those available travel tripods, my choice fell on MeFoto GlobeTrotter's. First, because the many positive reviews about material quality and strength I read from other photographers on internet. Second, for being also very competitively priced.
MeFOTO GlobeTrotter is a compact travel tripod that folds up inversely and turns also into a full size monopod without the use of any tools.
If this tripod at first sight reminds you of a Benro tripod, then you're absolutely right. MeFoto is a sub-brand of Benro and this is one more guarantee of reliability.
Despite having thick legs compared to my previous Gitzo tripod, the MeFoto GlobeTrotter travel tripod is really compact and suitable for travel. The tripod legs can be inverted and folded back 180° making it just 41 cm once closed. It fits perfectly to the straps of my camera backpack. The tripod comes with a useful and quality made travel semi padded case included in the price.
The tripod looked well designed and stable since the very first time I used. MeFoto says it supports till 12 kg of gear on it and I haven't had any problem with mounting on my Nikon D850 along with a Nikon 70-200mm f/4 lens attached.
Folded size 41cm
Maximum height 163 cm
Maximum height with column retracted 140 cm
Weight: 1,7 kg
Maximum load: 12 kg
Angle degrees: 24/65º
Warranty: 5 years
The MeFoto GlobeTrotter carbon tripod comes with a 33 mm diameter Q2 ball head with a 60 mm long Arca-Swiss style quick release plate. The head is equipped with a bubble level that, in case of need, you have to align it before sliding your camera on as the camera itself hides the level when placed on the tripod head unfortunately. There are then three locking mechanisms. One is for lateral rotation while the other two for locking the ball though I found of the latest two unnecessary. This because when locking knob is used to apply friction to the ball, the other knob spins without much function honestly.
At the bottom there is a graduated panning scale for accurate image alignment which turn useful for shooting panoramic photos.
Thanks to its legs extending in five sections, it reaches a maximum height of 163 cm, one of the tallest among all travel tripods I examined. The single components are robust, with thick aluminum leg pivots and locks, and a multi-part central hub that looks well made and solid. The tripod legs can be independently locked into place at 2 different angles to allow taking photos on irregular surfaces or at ground level. An insulated foam grip that comes in really handy in case of shooting in freezing weather. As in most of tripods, we have a spring loaded recessed hook in the bottom of the center column to hang additional weight in case of needed more stability for the tripod. The single leg tubes are locked with twist lock legs with anti-rotation system. MeFoto says they are dust and water resistant though I haven't seen any protection seal. Tripod's feet are removable by unscrewing them and exchange with the provided spiked feet. Spiked feet come in handy for stabilizing the tripod on uneven surfaces or for digging into the ground in case of extra stability.
Differently from my previous Gitzo tripod, the removable leg and the center column combine to convert the MeFoto GlobeTrotter carbon fiber tripod into a full size monopod easily. Honestly, I never missed this function in the other tripod I got but I think it's nice MeFoto thought about offering this option. Anyway, keep in mind you don't get an ordinary compact travel monopod as result since the lower length you'll have will be still over 60 cm, considering also the foam grip in the leg. Transform the tripod into a monopod is quick and easy. First, you have to unscrew the leg with the foam grip from the main hinges. Then, unscrew the weight hook from the bottom of center column and this one will slide out. To get a monoped you just screw the leg with the foam grip into the center column.
I have used this tripod for almost one year already and my review about it is very positive so far. It's a solid and well designed tripod and I can feel it every time I hold it in my hand. You can even convert it into a monoped in case of need (something I never tried so far but this is an option more you have if you need). The tripod looked stable, reliable and affordable so far. My only cons are the limited leg angle locks (maximum is only 64º) of the tripod and its weight compared to many other carbon fiber tripods available. But in the latest case, I guess this is also due to its greater gear capacity (12 kg) and taller extended height (163 cm).
From my experience, I appreciated the great customer service offered by MeFoto. Recently, going home after a photo shoot, I realized I lost the retractable weight hook located at the bottom of the central column. I sent an email to their replacement parts support asking for a new one and to know how much it would have cost to me. They replied me after a few hours they were going to send a new hook for free, postage included. I got the missing part three days later.
Their prompt customer service, along with the really affordable sale price, an offered 5-year warranty and a lovely blue color complete my positive review about this MeFoto's professional product which I highly recommend.
- competitive price
- maximum extended height
- can be converted into a monopod
- great customer service
- 5-year warranty
- heavier than other carbon fiber tripods
- limited leg angle locks