What Size Is a Tripod Screw?-[Confusion Clarified!] 

Tripod stabilizes the camera and provides crisp perfect shots with zero disturbance in the image. But it can be frustrating when you are stuck just because of a screw size compatibility. 

So are you wondering what size is a tripod screw?

Tripod screw basically comes in two standard sizes. The size will either be ¼-20 UNC or ⅜-16 UNC. And if your camera thread/screw is bigger than the tripod thread/screw or the other way around. Then to ease your way, most tripods come along with a converter nut.  

So If you keep reading, I will also tip you off about different thread/screw sizes of different cameras. 

Let’s dive right into the details.

Is there any standard tripod screw size?

Yes, there is a proper standard set for tripod screw size by unified thread standard. There are two standard screw sizes for tripod mount, the first is 1/4–20 UNC and the second one is 3/8–16 UNC.  

⅜ -16 is the standard tripod screw size for the head mount. This goes with 1/4-20 UNC camera thread.Remember, that the standard is the same for the thread sizes of the camera and tripod head. 

Source: www.photographyaxis.com

It simply means that the tripod screw and camera screw have the same standard. Both will either use ¼-20 UNC or ⅜-16 UNC. For further clarity, check the table below.

Tripod Screw Size InchesTripod screw size mmThreads Per Inch

This same UTS standard also goes for tripod screw size in metric

1/4-20 UNC Screw Size

You will see this quarter-inch wide screw size on top of the tripod head to attach to the bottom of the camera. Here, ¼ refers to the diameter of the screw in inches. 

Nowadays, most modern cameras come with this thread size located at their bottoms.    

3/8-16 UNC Screw Size

On top of the tripod legs, there will most commonly be a female 3/8–16 UNC socket on the underside of the head. This will go into the bottom of the tripod head pointing outside.

You will see most tripod heads come with this ⅜-16 UNC thread size. 

Let us know about different Tripod parts with their standard screw sizes.

Tripod Parts and their Screw Sizes

To attach a camera to your tripod, you need to check several things. It can be the material the photography sandbag is filled with. Again, it can be the screws/threads of its different parts. Let us see.

Tripod Legs

Source: www.photographyaxis.com

There will be a screw pointing outside on the top of the tripod legs. It will either be ⅜-16 or ¼-20. And you will have to use a compatible size tripod head with it. 

Tripod Head

On the top of the tripod legs you will place the tripod head. The head will have thread at the bottom which fits onto the top of tripod legs. The standard size for tripod head screw/thread is ¼-20 or ⅜-16. 

And remember that there are different tripod heads used for different purposes. So if you want to have pleasure in use along with the great results. Then carefully decide which tripod head to choose and why.   

Source: www.photographyaxis.com

Tripod Mount Screw Size

There is a detachable part which goes on top of the tripod head. If you have tripod mount of ⅜ “ thread size, then obviously you can’t mount ¼” tripod head on it. 

You have to either use ⅜” or will have to use tripod screw adapter of ¼-20”.

Source: www.photographyaxis.com

Screw/Thread Size For Camera Tripod

I am sure you got the idea by now. Normally every modern digital camera comes with a tripod thread at its bottom. And the standard is ¼”20 UNC. 

Let us check the camera that comes with this thread size.

Camera Brand Camera ModelCamera Thread SizeTripod Screw Size
Sonya60001/4″-20 threaded screw3/8″-16 threaded mounting hole
SonyA7, A7ii1/4″-20 threaded screw3/8″-16 threaded mounting hole
Nikon Digital SLR Camerad32001/4 in. (ISO 1222)3/8″-16 threaded mounting hole
Canon EOS C500Comes with threads for both sizes¼-20” as well as ⅜-16”

Tripod Screw Size Adapter

A fancy camera owner is always concerned with everything related to the camera. Whether it’s the latest camera processor or just tripod screw size, they always care.

Even when there is a standard for tripod screw/thread size. Still, you can encounter screw compatibility issues. So, if your camera and tripod size are mismatched, You need to use screw converters. 

Let us check out the list of tripod screw size adapter options we have. 

  • ¼-20” to ⅜-16” Adapter (Male to Male & Female to Male & Female to Female & Male to Female )
  • ⅜-16” to ¼-20” Adapter (Male to Male & Female to Male & Female to Female & Male to Female)

I hope now you will not be confused about tripod thread/screw sizes. 


How do you know if the screw is UNC or UNF?

Main difference between UNC and UNF is their amount of threads per inch. UNF stands for unified fine pitch threads and UNC stands for unified coarse pitch threads. ¼-20  is a typical example of UNC Screw. 

Can I replace the head on my tripod?

Yes, you can replace the tripod head. But only If you have a tripod model with a removable head feature. Which allows you to mix and match between different heads. Some ultra cheap tripods don’t have threaded head features. So you need to check out the model of your tripod.  

What is the size of screw thread on camera?

Standard is ¼-20 UNC for 99% of cameras. But some larger cameras with heavy mounting may come with 3/8-16 UNC thread size. However, those larger ones come with a removable ¼-20 UNC adapter So now you can use every camera with any normal tripod screw size. 

Conclusion: Summing it up

When you ask what size is a tripod screw. You will see screws sizes of different parts of the tripod. 

But all of them follow the same size standard of ¼’’, except for some high end cameras. And now you know that you can always use adapters. 

Good luck.

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