I have seen people use a stand that looks a lot like the Nano Black Stand by Manfrotto.

I need a stand to use with my Sony D100 in the wild. So, it will have to stand firm on bumpy environments. Do you guys know any good options? I think ordinary mic stands might be to clumsy to carry around, and they seems built for flat ground.

The Manfrotto seems like a good option for me, but will it attach to the D100? I was thinking i get one of those Rycote vibration dampers to attach on the top of the stand also.

Any help is much appreciated


Based on your later remarks:

A standard light stand holds a much larger weight than you need, but still doesn't like irregular ground or wind: it can sway far enough to fall over. Weights (sandbags) keep it from falling over. So you need a very light mast and legs that accept weights and apply enough torque to keep it upright. Design it for that mode, rather than using that as a work-around. You see that the meaning of legs is different than how a tripod is used.

In fact, the "leg" does not have to be used in compression, but can be used in tension. You might recognise this as a guy-wire for a tower or pole.

If you had a weight on a string you could drop it anywhere, regardless of terrain level or precise positioning of a suitable spot, and tie the other end to an eyelet some diatance up the mast, for each of 3 supports. If weight can be found at the scene or obtained from other items you have, the weight and bulk is impressively small. Kevlar line is sold for R/C models' control actuators and is very non-stretchable. Maybe paracord is good enough. The mast can be a segmented fiberglass rod like used in camping tents.

The problem is that the stability and ridgedness is intolerant of the planted weights shifting on the ground. (If you had pegs to stick in the ground, that's fine, and the more typical use of such a concept.) So enter another refinement:

Each "leg", attached near the bottom of the mast, is a light rod that is not meant to hold the mast against tipping, but simply to keep the anchor point at a constant distance. Picture this, for lack of a drawing: strap the mast to a toolbox or cooler or something to hold it upright albeit not very steadily— it's a huge lever that can roll the cooler with a small force at the opposite end.

Deploy three legs, about a foot off the ground. Lower each one 'till it touches the ground, which may be different levels for each. If it doesn't lay well, rotate around the mast a short way, or shift the attachment point up or down to change the radial diatance. Weights are placed on these low-lying legs, preferably near the far ends. Now you have good anchor positions, but not enough leverage. Finally, attach a line from the tip of the leg to a point a ways up the mast; as high as you can easily reach, or the very top since you don't have to reach it if you attach that end first.

Now you have a triangle with two sides in compression and one in tension. The tension is kept due to the other leg-combos, and the locking in place from opposing guys applies not only to the vertical side of the triangle but to the bottom lower-leg as well!

You can make a remarkably tall mast with nothing more than tinkertoys and shoelaces. Or to look more professional, segmented fiberglass rods and paracord. Or if you like Gilligan's Island, bamboo and coconut husk fibers.

I think most productions just use a crew member and a boom.

A 40-inch hellium balloon would hold that recorder and keepmit there for 4 days. You could advertise your production on the balloon too, or dress it as a flying saucer and use it as a prop, so it comes out of a different department's budget.


I own two of the Manfrotto's, great flexible, light and small stands. It will attach to the D100 via the camera screw (it has an adapter). I would get the rycote adapters because of the wind vibrations.

One point to mention, you can't get low to the ground with these stands, it's at least 40 cm. And remember that the lighter the stand, the more easily it tips over. Think about a way to secure the feet firmly (bring a bag, fil it with sand). Would be a shame if your D100 falls headfirst into a stream...

  • I can imagine they need some extra weight to hold them down. I´ll have your tip in mind while going out on the field, securing the feets with something heavy like my bag. I was wondering if it had any adapter, great thing it has. Ill get the Rycote that matches the D100 too, and the handle for handheld operation. :-) Thank you – Johan Sveide Mar 9 '15 at 15:47

gorillapod type stands also work quite well, thou don't cheap out on these, there are quite bad quality ones out there.

  • Ill look for good quality ones, don´t want them to lay down to rest while recording ;-). Thank you – Johan Sveide Mar 9 '15 at 15:42

A GorillaPod comes to mind. Imagine a mic holder instead of the compact camera in their product shot. Is that bumpy enough for what you had in mind? :)


You ought to have a couple of different sizes in your kit for whatever comes to mind, anyway. You can attach a flash or recorder or whatnot anywhere such as on a fence rail or a vertical post. Getting a mic in the right spot is probably the same issue as a photo flash, so the same tool should work.

For vibration dampener, I like The Frugal Filmmaker's use of rubber bands.

  • That seems like a good option. But i mainly need a higher one for a start since i will be recording ambiances. I will probably get a Gorilla stand to :-). Thank you for this suggestion. – Johan Sveide Mar 9 '15 at 15:41

For bumpy and non-level terrain I would recommend a basic camera tripod. They're inherently stable and the legs can be adjusted to match uneven terrain; because the D100 isn't that heavy and doesn't need complete rigidity, fairly inexpensive ones should do. Most big-box stores should have suitable ones in stock that will be almost as tall as the Manfrotto Nano stand. Moving to more expensive models adds durability and/or reduces weight and bulk, but there's no need for anything fancy.

I use the Sony D50 on top of a Manfrotto Master stand (12 feet tall) with the Rycote portable recorder suspension with good results, but only on hard surfaces. I will also use the Gorillapod Hybrid tabletop tripod shown in jdlugosz's answer, and it holds securely on fences, poles, and street signs in addition to uneven ground. But for difficult conditions away from ad-hoc supports I use my camera tripods.

  • I have been looking at some alternatives, and it seems I can find a camera tripod the size of a nano stand. Like you say, I will consider a camera stand for ruff terrain and also bring the gorilla one for places where it's useful. Thank you for your answer. – Johan Sveide Mar 15 '15 at 10:28
  • Is this the recorder suspension you use btw? rycote.com/products/shock-mounts-suspension/… – Johan Sveide Mar 17 '15 at 21:38
  • The lyre suspension springs on mine are black, not grey, but otherwise it appears identical. Do note that the Gorillapod Hybrid isn't strong enough to hold the D50/D100 when it's mounted to the shock mount; for this combination I use the Gorillapod Focus instead. – mpr Mar 20 '15 at 21:17
  • Thank you for your reply. I asked Rycote's support, and they told me that the gray HD suspension is the one I should choose. Because it's made for devices that weight >300g. I think they have updated their homepage and added the D100 and D50 to the compatibility list for the gray HD suspension. Thou I think the black suspension had the D100 on its compatibility list before. So I guess both work but that the gray HD version is a new alternative more suited for heavier devices like the H6 and D100. – Johan Sveide Mar 20 '15 at 21:38

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.