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Categorized | Gear, Mark & Leslie Degner

Gear — Joby Suction Cup and GorillaPod Arm (full review)

Review and photography by Mark and Leslie Degner

Although primarily designed for use with a GoPro or other similar types of action cameras, the Joby Suction Cup and GorillaPod Arm caught our attention as another way that we can attach lighter-weight mirrorless cameras, not just GoPro types, and flashes to a variety of smooth surfaces like glass, metal or plastic. We feel that the more options we have for controlling where we place our cameras and flashes, the more creative we can be in capturing our subjects.

Joby Suction Cup and GorillaPod Arm holding up an Olympus OM-D mirrorless camera

Joby Suction Cup and GorillaPod Arm holding up an Olympus OM-D mirrorless camera

The Joby Suction Cup and GorillaPod Arm is a compact and lightweight two-piece system consisting, as its name suggests, of a suction cup base and a short, GorillaPod-style arm. We really like that it has this two-piece construction as that makes it easy to carry in our camera bags, and since it’s made primarily from durable plastic material it’s very light (104 g altogether). The base of the suction cup is 8 cm in diameter and stands about 4 cm high. The GorillaPod arm is about 11 cm long and has six articulating sections similar to what you find on a traditional GorillaPod. This allows you to position your camera or flash at just about any angle that you want. The arm has a universal ¼”-20 screw at each end. One end screws into the suction cup base and the other end screws into either the included standard GoPro tripod mount that connects to a GoPro camera, or a standard tripod socket on most cameras. A universal cold flash shoe, threaded flash cord or remote flash trigger like a Pocket Wizard can be attached to the end of the arm to hold your flash. If you have a ¼”-20 screw with threads on both ends (not included) you can screw one end into the suction base and then a small ballhead onto the other end, creating a suction-cupped ballhead, which could be really handy as an alternative way of mounting a camera.

Once you’ve placed the suction cup on the surface that you want it attached to you simply turn the red ring on it clockwise about a quarter turn to adhere to the surface. We found that the smoother the surface, the better the adhesion, but like all suction cups there are some “smooth” surfaces that it didn’t attach very well to. For example, it adhered extremely well to our arborite kitchen countertops, but not to our oak dining room tabletop, since it wasn’t perfectly smooth. As a result we strongly recommend that you always test the suction carefully before attaching your camera or flash to it. Also make sure that the suction cup and what you are attaching it to are both really clean as that will ensure a strong attachment. Any debris between the two can weaken or cause the bond to fail. When attaching the suction cup to a vertical surface it’s always a good idea to tether your camera or flash to a solid attachment point so that if the suction cup gives way your gear won’t go crashing to the ground.

The Suction Cup and Gorilla Pod Arm (with a standard GoPro tripod mount included) is a versatile, compact, lightweight and reasonably priced ($29.95) accessory that allows a photographer/videographer to attach their lightweight mirrorless camera or flash to a wide range of smooth surfaces, maximizing their control and shooting options in a wide range of situations.

For more information visit joby.com/action-series/suction-cup-gorillapod-arm.

For more great reviews and articles please pick up the Summer/Fall 2015 issue of OPC today, or subscribe to never miss an issue!

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