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aparmley
06-01-2005, 02:14 PM
I would like to start a conversational topic on Tripods. Which manufacturers consistantly make the best tripods? What features are important? Where to go to find reviews of good tripods? Are you extremely happy with your tripod, what kind is it, where did you purchase it? Are you extremely dissappointed in your tripod, what kind is it? Any other useful tips or tricks regarding Tripods would be most appreciative.

TYIA

TheObiJuan
06-01-2005, 03:20 PM
I have a Dyntatran AT-12T with a Manfrotto 488RC4. It holds about 15 pounds without a problem. The tripod is a lil' heavy, but solid as hell. It is more solid than the Bogen 3031 and others like it.

Gitzo tripods are good, but expensive. Feisol carbon fiber (CF) tripods are cheap and pretty solid. Best of all they are light. A friend has a 3 section one and its pretty damn good. I will get one and keep my AT-12T for studio use.

Once again I can not say enough about the Feisol CF 3 section tripod. For $180 it is a steal. Did I mention they are super light.

Warin
06-01-2005, 03:40 PM
I use a set of legs that Slik sells as an Able 300DX, with a cheap pan-tilt head. I replaced it with their pistol grip ball head. While it is not as "solid" as a real ballhead, I find the ease of use outweighs the very slight difference in stability.

I like the Slik stuff because it is fairly solid and inexpensive.

I am with Juan on kudos for the quality of Manfrotto. My lext set of legs will be from these guys, but they are a little more expensive. It will be worth it, because my current legs are a little wobbly when I throw my large format camera on it.

Charles C. Weston
06-05-2005, 12:57 PM
I have a Manfrotto 3001 Pro and it is rock solid. It is a little heavy though. I also have a Manfrottto 322RC2 ballhead which I have found to be much easier to adjust than a pan head. I have also found that when I have my D70 with a Sigma 80-400mm OS mounted on it, if it is windy, I get some movement. However, I do not think that is enough to blur the shot.
I have not yet learned to bring along a weight to hang from the center of the tripod.

Warin
06-05-2005, 04:15 PM
I have a Manfrotto 3001 Pro and it is rock solid. It is a little heavy though. I also have a Manfrottto 322RC2 ballhead which I have found to be much easier to adjust than a pan head. I have also found that when I have my D70 with a Sigma 80-400mm OS mounted on it, if it is windy, I get some movement. However, I do not think that is enough to blur the shot.
I have not yet learned to bring along a weight to hang from the center of the tripod.

If the lens has a collar mount that is mated to the tripod, you can also use a beanbag of some sort, layed over the lens at the tripod mount, to damp motion. I have heard stories of this working very well, but I havent tried it yet. Also, using as little elevator as possible keeps the whole arrangement steady. However, with a lot of tripods, this means leaning over a lot!

Rhys
06-05-2005, 06:33 PM
Some tripods have a handy hook underneath. If you hang your gadget bag under the tripod, assuming that it reaches the ground then that should reduce vibration by adding weight to your tripod. Try attaching to the hook via a bungee strap. Going for more sturdy heads such as the ball and socket variety tends to reduce head instability too.

Charles C. Weston
06-06-2005, 09:14 AM
Thank you Warin and Rys. I will try your ideas next time it is windy.

aparmley
06-10-2005, 01:52 PM
Yes indeed very good tips everyone! Thanks for taking the time to post them!

SamPhilly
06-24-2005, 11:28 AM
Thanks TheObiJuan, I'm going to check out that Feisol. Lightweight is exactly what I need.

St. Chris
06-24-2005, 12:48 PM
Okay, how about the other end of the spectrum: If I'm looking to get my first tripod but not spend a ton, is there anything I should try to avoid? I mean, I don't even know where to start. I could just pick up whatever's on sale at Target, for all I know.

vjack
06-25-2005, 04:47 AM
I have a similar question in that I'm about to buy my first tripod to support a 20D 18-125 combo. I'd like something study enough to support a larger telephoto lens, and travel weight it not an important consideration.

NeoteriX
06-25-2005, 07:50 PM
Okay, how about the other end of the spectrum: If I'm looking to get my first tripod but not spend a ton, is there anything I should try to avoid? I mean, I don't even know where to start. I could just pick up whatever's on sale at Target, for all I know.

I have the Velbon Maxi 343E -- it's a pretty affordable (~$60-70) tripod that seem to fit my entry level needs. It's very well engineered and designed to be a very versatile travelling tripod. It's under 2 lbs in weight, folds up to be very small, but has a very tall maximum height. Each leg is independant, can be switched from rubber feet to metal spikes for outside shooting, and it features a ball head. The lightweight aspect will prevent it from being usefull if you have very heavy equipment (supports up to 8 lbs, my Rebel XT + biggest lens 70-300 still only weighs 2.5 lbs) or if you're shooting in windy conditions, but it's a pretty sweet all around tripod.

nitr0uzv
06-25-2005, 09:53 PM
I use a video tripod with carrying bag

the way I see it if im gona go take pictures and do noting else i might as well have a tripod strapped to my back

gary_hendricks
06-27-2005, 07:45 AM
Hi there,

You may be interested in this article (http://www.basic-digital-photography.com/how-to-choose-a-tripod-for-your-camera.html) which I've written on choosing tripods. :)

aparmley
07-13-2005, 02:51 PM
Thanks Guys, thanks Gary for sharing that article... I think I may have a tripod that I am considering...
Slik Pro 700DX Tripod with 3-Way Pan/Tilt Head (Quick Release) - Supports 15.00 lb (6.80 kg) $129.00
One huge reason I like this is because it extends to 74.8 inches... being that I stand 76 inches tall, its the closest I have found to my height...

Warin
07-13-2005, 03:50 PM
Thanks Guys, thanks Gary for sharing that article... I think I may have a tripod that I am considering...
Slik Pro 700DX Tripod with 3-Way Pan/Tilt Head (Quick Release) - Supports 15.00 lb (6.80 kg) $129.00
One huge reason I like this is because it extends to 74.8 inches... being that I stand 76 inches tall, its the closest I have found to my height...

I use a lower end pair of Slik legs, and I find they are very sturdy. I use their "pistol grip" ball head, so I cant comment on the head with the 700DX, but the one that came with the 300DX originally wasnt too bad.

aparmley
07-13-2005, 05:32 PM
I use a lower end pair of Slik legs, and I find they are very sturdy. I use their "pistol grip" ball head, so I cant comment on the head with the 700DX, but the one that came with the 300DX originally wasnt too bad.

Yea.. I feel that I may need to look into heads a little more... as the one on my current cheapo tripod is a pain to manuveur, it simple doesn't want to go where I want it to go ... it either tightens up high or low, never where I want it to be...

oooo Slik THE PROFESSIONAL Tripod with PRO HEAD 3-Way Panhead - Supports 22.00 lb (9.980 kg) $399.99 (Boo!) LOL I like this guy to... he even goes a little higher than my height :D . but he sure is expensive.

TheObiJuan
07-13-2005, 05:57 PM
Seriously, Slik legs are overrated. The Feisol pods are great and provide a great value. Many professional photogs use feisol pods now.

aparmley
07-13-2005, 08:43 PM
Well Obi I don't know a single distributer that sells them, and if the pros are using it, then I don't need it! =) I'm no pro! LOL - I just need something that is sturdy, can hold my camera easily and can extend to my height ... It seems that every other tripod out there is for someone who is 5 feet tall ... ??? small people LOL ...

TheObiJuan
07-13-2005, 08:54 PM
Well Obi I don't know a single distributer that sells them, and if the pros are using it, then I don't need it! =) I'm no pro! LOL - I just need something that is sturdy, can hold my camera easily and can extend to my height ... It seems that every other tripod out there is for someone who is 5 feet tall ... ??? small people LOL ...

It is available on ebay, or at feisol.com
They tripods are light, sturdy, and very well built.
A friend has their 3 section tripod, and with her markins head, it still weighs LESS than just my tripod alone.

They cost around 175 or so, I believe.

aparmley
07-14-2005, 01:44 PM
OBI- I just checked out Feisol.com ... Those look like very nice tripods... They are all short though... The tallest one is still a foot shooter than I stand. I realize that its hard to find a tripod that I won't have to bend over to look through my camera and that usually the higher the tripod extends, the less stable it is, but its a pain in the arse to bend over constantly.. But, like I said those look like vey nice tripods.

TheObiJuan
07-14-2005, 08:27 PM
you do know about center columns, right? ;)
It is intigrated into the design.

aparmley
07-15-2005, 01:59 PM
Yes, I am aware of center columns. Why would you assume I might not be?? I could see you wondering that if maximum height was taken without the center column fully extended, but I understand maximum height is taken with the center column fully extended, because if it wasn't, it would cease to be the maximum height now wouldn't it, it would just be a trival measurement. Might as well list the weight of one of bolts in the head ... it would be just as usefull. :D That bothers me that you ask that ... What am I not aware of ?? Do they seriously only list the maximum height with out the center column fully extended? Why would they do that? Can't be. thats like listing the weight of a tripod with only two legs attached... doesn't make sense... :cool:

TheObiJuan
07-15-2005, 05:56 PM
I don't know what your getting mad at man?
I didn't mean to offend you. Keep your insecurities to yourself... ;)

The max height of their CF tripod extended is 64.7"
With a camera attached and ballhead, add another 6-8 inches, this makes it 70.2-72.2", atleast.
So, is your eye level at 6'?

Good luck finding a tripod, let alone a CF one for a good price that extends with a ballhead+camera to 72.2".

I think walmart has some $40 tripods that might extend that hight, though.. :p

aparmley
07-15-2005, 09:06 PM
I don't know what your getting mad at man?
I didn't mean to offend you. Keep your insecurities to yourself... ;)

The max height of their CF tripod extended is 64.7"
With a camera attached and ballhead, add another 6-8 inches, this makes it 70.2-72.2", atleast.
So, is your eye level at 6'?

Good luck finding a tripod, let alone a CF one for a good price that extends with a ballhead+camera to 72.2".

I think walmart has some $40 tripods that might extend that hight, though.. :p

I had a feeling OBI you were going to assume I was pissed and I was lashing out. I wasn't doing that. Sorry if it came off that way. Waving the white flag :(

TheObiJuan
07-15-2005, 11:15 PM
I apologize for not giving you more credit than you deserve.
It's hard to tell what people know, the briefly written words on fora don't allow people to really show what they now.

Isn't it called the 'French flag'?
:p

I want a smaller/lighter ballhead than my 488rc4 that can still carry atleast as much. The feisol head is much cheaper than the markins, and should be as strong. If RRS's new little ballhead will hold 12-15lbs, I will get it. I'm certain it will be priced around what feisol is asking for their head.
It would be good looking to have a cf legs & head though.

SamPhilly
07-16-2005, 11:27 AM
Okay, I read that for nature/outdoor shots a monopod will do the trick? I'm debating on a tripod vs a monopod. A monopod is appealing to me since it will be a snap to setup, I do have a handicap and my hand coorination isn't the best. Any thoughts?

aparmley
07-17-2005, 11:46 PM
Isn't it called the 'French flag'?
:p


:D Good stuff -


I apologize for not giving you more credit than you deserve.
It's hard to tell what people know, the briefly written words on fora don't allow people to really show what they now.


Apology accepted. Thank you for that. Its true, its hard to know what others know, yet, even harder to pick up on tone -joke/serious.. Its easy to see after the fact, but, hard to remember.