Portrait Photography / Blog / Monster Pod X as an off-camera stick anywhere lightstand - Part 1                 Bookmark: Del.icio.us Digg FURL FaceBook Stumble Upon Reddit Google Bookmarks

Monster Pod X as an off-camera stick anywhere lightstand - Part 1

I just discover this product on a website and thought it would work great with my SB-600 whenever I would need a lightstand but don't want to travel with one... If it can hold a compact camera it should be able to hold a small Nikon Speedlight SB-600... Leave it in a bag and if I encountered a situation where I need to set the flash somewhere I can just use that Monster Pod X and stick my flashgun virtually anywhere.

This could be really cool indead. But being sometimes spontaneous, I haven't done my research properly and did not see that article on Strobist.com which mentionned that Monster Pod X won't hold a SB-800...

But well, lets hope it will hold smaller flashes...

So what exactly are those Monster Pods? Here is what you can read on their manufacturer's website:

"MonsterPod™ is the most amazing, most universal, revolutionary camera tripod on planet earth! The MonsterPod™ will mold, grip, stick and firmly adhere to nearly any surface as it holds your camera motionless, temporarily, until you peel it off.
MonsterPod™ sticks to a 1,000 objects and counting! It molds, grips and sticks to metal, wood, plastic, veneer, marble, cement, steel, brick, glass, tile, enamel, sheet rock, rocks and trees! If the object is irregular in shape you simply mold the base with your fingers until it conforms to the shape.
The MonsterPod™ has no telescoping legs, clamps, beans, straps, glue, or suction cups, not even magic. Instead, the MonsterPod™ sticks to surfaces via a patent pending “viscoelastic morphing polymer.”!!!"

Viscoelastic Morphing Polymer? Hmmm, OK, well all I need to know is that it sticks on nearly anything.

Let's see what it looks like:

See that last picture? That the secret of the Monster Pod X, the Viscoelastic Morphing Polymer. Looks like a modeling clay, it leaves some kind of thin layer of something a bit greasy on your fingers, but that is easy gone and no smell.

Is it working? Lets try.

At first view it looks like it is! Yeah! You just need to stick that pod on a wall, press strongly all over its surface to make sure it sticks well. I've screwed my SB-600 foot on it, now lets mount the flashguns on those monsters! Not trusting those things so much, I kept staring at them waiting for the SB-600 to fall and catch it, but nothing happened, it stayed for long enough to take a portrait of my favorite guinea pig model, Winnie the pooh:

But after about 5 minutes, I noticed that the light wasn't lighting Winnie's head, that the pods are starting to unstick from the wall. Does not look cool, does it ?

Update: I was thinking that maybe if you stick the Monster Pod on the ceiling instead of a wall then it should be better as the weight would be evenly spread over the Monsted Pod instead of on one side. Will give it a try.

It was too good to be true...

But I will give them another try on a real life situation at my next outdoors shoot with some high precaution to avoid it falling, so I will need to check them regularly. They won't be great for a commercial assignment, but they may turn helpful if I happen to have to shoot some unpredicted portraits for some friends and did not bring my lightstands with me.

Conclusion: it's a very nice invention but some kind of risky for using it on expensive flashguns.


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