Tripod... What are you looking for

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by karissa, Mar 13, 2004.

  1. karissa

    karissa The Untitled

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    Ok, I did a few searches and found lots of stuff on which tripod to buy but I guess what I want to know is what makes a good tripod good? What are you looking for when you go out and look at tripods? Simply put... said like a kid... Why?
     
  2. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

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    You want both light and stable. Unfortunately it's usually a compromise. A good steady and large tripod isn't going to be nice to lug around. My main one is a Bogen 3001 with a Manfrotto 3265 head. It's heavy enough that the wind won't be moving it around too much, it's tall enough, and yet I can still carry it up the stairs. I wouldn't want to go on a long hike with it, though.

    If you can afford it, getting two can be a good solution. A light one if you are going to be moving about, and a heavier one for the studio or if you won't be doing much walking. I've found that I rarely travel more than a hundred hards from the car to shoot my landscapes. If the same applies to you, get a bigger 'pod.

    Defintely go with name-brand. Bogen/Manfrotto make great stuff, if a little pricey. I found the 3001 at a garage sale, so I lucked out with that.
     
  3. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I second Markc.

    I have that exact setup. Many places will sell sets ( legs and head ) for a good price.
     
  4. karissa

    karissa The Untitled

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    Thanks for the info.... How about this... I LOVE to backpack. I don't mind taking the weight of my camera it's not that heavy for what it means to me. I have never thought about wanting a tripod just because I would rather pack clothing, food, and my sleeping bag than swap something out for a bulky tripod. Any thoughts?
     
  5. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    My tripod is a heavy duty Bogen; the model number escapes me, but it'll hold my 4x5 cameras no problem. I love it. Sturdy build and rock solid even in the Kansas wind. But it's pretty heavy. I haul it on day hikes, but I couldn't imagine taking it on a serious hiking-camping excursion if I had to haul much other gear. I need to get a burro.

    Bogen also makes smaller, lighter, more compact tripods. A Bogen tripod is pretty much for life because they are repairable (within reason).

    Then there's the cheaper tripods. Pot aluminum and lots of plastic and very light. For 35mm or digital and hiking I think this is probably a good choice. Just accept that it's sort of disposable, and eventually (years) it will break or wear out.

    Edit: the legs are 3221W, and the head is a 3030
     
  6. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The manfrotto/bogen 3001N legs is very light for a full height tripod. It weights in at 3.9lbs. Forget about the equivalent carbon fibre legs from Manfrotto. They will only save you about 0.4 lbs at more than twice the cost. Manfrotto also makes even lighter weight digi pods but they have a max load of less than 10lbs ( not good for your typical slr with long zoom ).

    Another option albeit an expensive one, is the gitzo series carbon fibre tripods. The mountaineer series is what you want to look for if light weight is very important and you have a deep wallet. Under 2 lbs carbon fibre series gitzo will run upwards of $400+ bucks ( just for the legs ).

    You can also go with the cheaper and lighter pressed aluminum pods but I have not found any that are stable enough or as durable.



    3001N specs:
    http://www.bogenimaging.us/product/templates/templates.php3?sectionid=2&itemid=770

    Mountaineer gitzo series:
    http://www.bogenimaging.us/product/itemlist.php3?manufid=2&sectionid=274

    from bogenphoto.com ( manfrotto, gitzo and bogen specs site )
     
  7. karissa

    karissa The Untitled

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    http://www.bogenimaging.us/product/templates/templates.php3?sectionid=274&itemid=2174

    :cokespit: :shock: *chokes on price* :!: *faints* GOOD NIGHT!

    This is my first endeavor into tripod land and well... I thought the $130 was a little much for 3 legs and a platform but... I looked around a bit and decided that $130 wasn't bad after all. I am eating up the information here. Thanks for the links. They where a huge help after I picked myself up off the floor. Looks like I will be waiting a bit before I get a good tripod I can hike with. I really hope to do a lot more backpacking once I move up to College but then again.. I'll just about broke then also... only time will tell. Maybe I'll just build a makeshift one as my "camp gadget" out of some sticks. If I do... you sure will see a picture here. :lol:
     
  8. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

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    If it makes you feel any better, my first tripod was an inexpensive metal/plastic thing. It wasn't great, but it was still better than nothing, and got me used to using a tripod. It's now been relegated to a stand for my home-made reflector, which it's perfect for.
     
  9. voodoocat

    voodoocat ))<>(( Supporting Member

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    As soon as I can sell my enlarger, I'm going to get the 3001. My tripod is almost useless when it comes to my Yashicamat. It's pretty useless with my 35mm. It's one of those plasticy aluminum tripods.
     
  10. karissa

    karissa The Untitled

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    Hmm... I have a fairly light digital cam... so uh... what are you going to do with that "plasticy aluminum" thing?
     
  11. voodoocat

    voodoocat ))<>(( Supporting Member

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    Well I would give it to you. And if you batted those gorgeous blue eyes I probably would cave in and do it anyway... but... I usually bring multiple cameras with me on photo trips. Having a spare tripod would still come in handy for me.
     
  12. karissa

    karissa The Untitled

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    Hmm.. good point... how about a spare photographer? :wink:
     

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