Small tripods aren’t hard to come by, but if you need more than that, the CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control and Tripod is the way to go. This tripod with extendable legs can be used for a variety of shooting angles and even as a handheld grip. Even though the manufacturer advertises it as a vlogging kit, this tripod is suitable for both professional and amateur photographers, Instagrammers, GoPro enthusiasts, and vloggers.
We put this small but versatile tripod to the test to see how easy it was to use the advertised shooting grips and angles, as well as the responsiveness of the remote and overall sturdiness.
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Design: Simple but solid
With heavy-duty plastics and a solid metal ball-head, the CamKix tripod is simple but effective. The tripod’s compact stature provides stability and holding power, despite its small size of 3.4 x 0.4 x 3 inches (HWD). The tripod has traction and substance thanks to its short and stout legs with rubberized grips on the bottom. The legs are simple to extend and fold, and the tripod can be used as a handgrip or selfie stick when folded for even more shooting options.
The smartphone mount and ball head rotation mechanism are the only areas where the design falls short. The spring-loaded design of the smartphone mount allows you to simply pull it wide enough to fit your smartphone inside. With a maximum stretch of almost 4 inches, CamKix is mostly universally compatible with smartphones. We were able to fit an iPhone 6S comfortably, but the iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone X—both of which are slightly under and slightly over 3 inches wide—were more difficult. We had to keep an eye on our fingers to avoid being pinched by the clamp.
The tripod has traction and substance thanks to its short and stout legs with rubberized grips on the bottom.
The lever that allows you to control and stabilize the angle of the ball head is another flaw we discovered. It also has a spring-action feature, but moving the lever and adjusting the ball head at the same time is difficult. It isn’t impossible, but it does necessitate a certain amount of grip strength and timing.
Setup Process: Easy and breezy
Setting up the CamKix tripod consists of only two steps. The first step involves simply twisting the smartphone mount onto the tripod. The second step is to get the Bluetooth camera shutter remote ready. We followed the simple user manual instructions for turning on the Bluetooth remote and then searching for the shutter through the Bluetooth settings on our iPhone. When we hit connect, our phone immediately found the device and paired with it. We were then free to use the remote as we pleased.
The Bluetooth remote paired instantly and we never noticed any issues with the connection dropping.
Performance: Flexible and dependable
The Bluetooth remote paired with our phone instantly, and we never had any problems with the connection dropping. The only time we experienced a slow response time was when we used the camera’s flash. The remote shutter prompts were only slightly delayed.
Aside from that, we were free to take as many pictures as we wanted in a row. We also tried the monopod grip and selfie-stick angles, both of which were simple to achieve with just a simple leg movement. We can see how this tripod might fall short if you want a wider angle shot from a selfie angle, but there is an extender you can buy for that purpose. However, this appears to be more of a complement to the device’s primary function, which is to stabilize your phone for video or photography.
We never experienced any instability or tilting of the stand, even with the heavier iPhone 7 Plus and iPhone X phones. We were able to easily rotate the ball head without having to adjust the clamp. While moving the lever to adjust the ball head gave you more flexibility with the angle, locking the lever did not completely lock the ball head. It simply secures it so that it moves less. This isn’t a deal breaker, but we found the ball head lever and performance to be the most noticeable flaws in what is otherwise a very simple and comfortable device to use.
Price: Great deal for a solid product
The CamKix tripod with Bluetooth shutter remote costs $15 (). The CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control is $8 on its own, making this combo a steal when you consider how versatile the tripod is and how sturdy it is. You might be able to find a sturdier, taller, and easier-to-maneuver ball head than the one included with this tripod, but that will come at a higher price.
The CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control and Tripod is a multifunctional, low-cost solution for capturing content with your smartphone.
CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control and Tripod vs. Manfrotto PIXI Mini Tripod Kit
The Manfrotto PIXI Mini Tripod Kit (MSRP $37, view on Amazon) appears to be very similar to the CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control and Tripod at first glance. The difference, however, is in the finer points, such as the materials, which include stainless steel and Adapto, a unique polymer that is similar to aluminum but half the weight. The PIXI tripod also extends to nearly 10 inches, compared to the CamKix’s 5.5-inch extension. A universal smartphone clamp is included with the PIXI tripod, which fits most phones as well as compact system cameras and smaller DSLRs. Of course, the Manfrotto tripod costs twice as much as the CamKix and lacks a Bluetooth remote., but you do get a 2-year warranty plus a 3-year extension for well under $50.
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The Final Word
The CamKix Bluetooth Camera Shutter Remote Control and Tripod is a multifunctional, low-cost solution for capturing content with your smartphone. While it isn’t the best option and has a few design flaws, it is dependable, simple to use, and inexpensive.