Hello, My university photo professor told me that I need a tripod for some of the shots I am trying to accomplish. Historically, I have never used any tripod I have owned because of the weight issue and I do a lot of hiking. I have been looking at getting a new tripod but am OVERWHELMED by the options. I know that I want to stick with Gitzo for the legs but I have no idea which model Gitzo to get as they seem to have thousands. Also, I want some sort of a ball head with one or two knobs only for any sort of adjustments. Should I stick with Gitzo for this or some other brand? I have seen these priced from $50 to $500, what is the difference? My heaviest camera/lens combo is a Nikon D700 with a Nikkor 70-200VR. Please let me know your recommendations. I would like either a basalt or carbon fiber preferably (not sure of the difference between the two). Money is not really a problem as I plan on keeping this tripod for A LONG time but would like to spend under $1000 for the whole setup if possible. The cheaper the better but I do not want to sacrifice weight or quality. Thanks for your help.