A lot of photographers can’t imagine a world without tripods and monopods. Well, they can, but they probably wouldn’t want to live in such world! In this article, we will discuss good monopods for DSLR and Video, specifically Sirui monopods (their PS series).
We’ll talk a bit about the SIRUI PS Series, and then move on to particular monopods that are part of that PS Series (such as Sirui P-424S and Sirui P-224S). Those who seek stabilization tool for their cameras or binoculars should read this article, for it also explains the benefits of using a monopod (as opposed to a tripod).
Introduction to Sirui
Sirui was founded back in 2001, with one goal in mind: designing and manufacturing of high-quality camera accessories. The company is notable for making and offering tools and accessories for photographers and videographers (mainly), though their devices can be used for purposes that transcend mentioned fields.
Most notably, Sirui earned the ISO9001/ISO14001 certificates, signaling that the company makes products that are good for both their customers and the environment. They offer tripods, monopods, backpacks, smartphone accessories, and many other products that benefit amateurs and professionals.
On SIRUI PS Series Monopods
Two groups of people benefit most from the SIRUI monopods: videographers and long-lens photographers. Why? Well, SIRUI PS monopods excel in three things:
Compactness: these monopods are foldable and lightweight, allowing smooth operation, and convenient transportation.
Capacity: these monopods are very sturdy and can help you share the burden of the massive camera (so to speak); they are also robust and stable.
Spider: just as a spider balances itself via its legs, SIRUI PS features fold-out spider-like legs that help you stabilize the monopod, as well as your camera shots/videos.
P-204S is aluminum made, and other monopods of this series use 10X Carbon tubes, making them both lightweight and sturdy. Each monopod of the PS Series tilts up to 20°, thus offering considerable maneuvering space.
The spider isn’t only foldable, but also removable. If you think it “disrupts your mojo”, remove it; now you have a regular monopod with the rubber foot. Or, if you wish to ground in, you can use the provided spiked foot. It is needless to say that each monopod rotates to 360°, perfect for panning and panorama.
And though there is a lot more to be said about these monopods, we should move on to specific monopods (through which we’ll explain those other features).
Sirui P-204SR P
Sirui P-204SR P is aluminum made, 27.56 x 2.36 x 2.36 inches big monopod. It weighs 3 pounds (roughly) and can carry up to 17.5 pounds (8 kg). Sirui P-204SR P can be used as a standard monopod, or, you can install the given Spider or aluminum spike, which stabilize the monopod.
You can pan it by 360° and tilt by 20°. Most importantly, the monopod won’t move out of its set position, allowing you to take clean and stable shots. And if you start going wild, feel free to step on the fit for further stabilization; they won’t break.
It is important to say that, during planning, only the top part of the monopod moves, not the whole body (the shaft). Also, P-204SR P allows you to follow moving objects (to record or photograph) even if your camera/ video head doesn’t have built-in panning base.
The monopod is padded (foam padding), allowing firm and ergonomic grip in any environment conditions (cold or wet, it doesn’t matter). If you record or photograph non-moving objects and events, you can tighten the collar and lock it down.
And, since it is lightweight and sturdy, you can maneuver with it quite freely if you want to record from an unusual perspective. Also, climbing is a lot easier with P-204SR P: it folds and is very easy to carry around. Upon purchase, you also receive wrist strap, shoulder strap, protective carrying case, rubber foot (removable) and the aluminum spike (also removable).
Unlike the Sirui P-204SR P, Sirui P-224S is made of carbon, and weighs only 2.87 lbs, but can still carry as much weight as the Sirui P-204SR P (which is 8 kg or 17.5 pounds. Much like all other Sirui P series monopods, it features removable Spider legs.
When it comes to design and performance, the two products (Sirui P-204SR P, Sirui P-224S) are virtually the same: same panning ability, same size (27.56 x 2.36 x 2.36 inches), 20-degree tilting, and so forth.
The most significant difference between the two is the material. The 10X helps with a couple of things. For starters, Sirui P-224S feels less vibration and is even more stable. It is also lighter, granting eve more convenient transportation and carrying.
Much like the previous monopod, the Sirui P-224S’s max tube diameter is 28 mm, minimum of 19 mm. Its max height is 1.6 m (5.2 ft), and the minimum is 0.7 m (2.3 ft). Sirui P-224S is a bit more expensive than the 204, due to its improved stability, lightweight features, and improved durability.
With Sirui P-324s we are approaching the heavyweight category. Sirui P-324s weighs 3.2 pounds and is 29.53 x 3.94 x 3.94 inches big. Its max height is 5.7 ft, and minimum 2.4. Its weight carrying capacity is 10 kg or 22 pounds. Its tubes are a bit wider, ranging from 32 to 22 mm.
Sirui P-324s is also made of carbon and is a much better option for those that carry more massive videos/cameras or prefer/need a higher monopod (that can kind of morph into a tripod!).
And though it is more massive, and can carry 20% more weight than the previous two Sirui monopods, it is still very light. Furthermore, the stabilizing spider-like feet are also more expensive, providing more stabilization. In short, it won’t be knocked over that easily by windy conditions or people that accidentally bump into it.
It is a lot more expensive than the Sirui P-204SR P, slightly more than the Sirui P-224S. And when it comes to design and performance, it offers same maneuverability and functions as other Sirui PS Series monopods.
Sirui P-424S is the biggest and heaviest Siruie PS monopod but is also the most stable one. It is 31.5 x 3.94 x 3.94 inches big and weighs 3.5 pounds, its tubes ranging between 36 and 25 mm. Max height is 6.26 ft, and min is 2.57 ft. Most importantly, Sirui P-424S weight carrying capacity is 12 mm.
It is heavier than any other Sirue PS Series monopod, but you do have to sacrifice a little bit of convenience for a lot more stability. It is the most expensive monopod, but also the one that can withstand 12 kg of weight, and extends even up to 75 inches.
It functions as any other Sirui PS monopod (refer to “On SIRUI PS Series Monopods” subheading). If you seek the most massive but also the most stable monopod, then this is the one you should get.
Which Should I Go For?
Admittedly, these are very similar products, especially the 224, 324, and 424, for they are all made of carbon. Here are a couple of things you should pay attention to before you make your final decision:
Dimensions, Weight, And Capacity
These two factors should be your primary concern and should be determined depending on your needs. And when we say needs, by that we mean your recording/photographing style, the type of equipment you use, the kind of job you do, and so forth.
If your job requires that you are always on your feet, always prepared to take a shot of a fast moving player or car, you should probably go with the lightweight monopod, for it will give you more freedom. Then again, if your job requires a lot of patience and stability, perhaps you should go with the monopod that can give you that stability.
Perhaps you are an amateur, and you enjoy climbing crazy places and taking crazy shots from weird angles. In this case, the lightest monopod is the best option ( which is the 324). You should also think about the weight/size concerning transportation.
Unmistakably, the more compact the monopod is, the easier it is to transport it. It is worth mentioning, however, that all Sirui PS Series fold. Then again, it is one thing to carry it (folded) to the location, and it is another thing to move it around once you are in the dedicated area.
In short, you should preferably pick the one that will help you do your job (or hobby) efficiently and more passionately; it should make it more difficult.
If you can afford it, should you go with the most expensive one? No. For starters, if you don’t need the Sirui P-424S (for its carrying capacity, height, and stability), why would you buy it? In fact, it can make your job more difficult.
First, think about the needs, and then select the monopod. If you are debating whether should you get Sirui P-204SR P or Sirui P-224S, you should go with the Sirui P-224S (if you can afford it). They are the same (regarding dimensions, height, and capacity), but the Sirui P-224S is lighter and more stable.
Are SIRUI PS Series monopods worth it? Yes, without a doubt. These items are well designed, stable and durable. They offer ergonomic, foam-padded grip, foldable/removable Spider stand, aluminum spike, and so many other accessories.
Make sure you think about the things we discussed if you decide to buy one. That way, you will not only purchase high-quality monopod, but also the one that suits you and your needs in the best possible way.