Help me understand certain tripod features

wyogirl

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OK-- I need a new tripod and I'm in the under $200 price range. I'm flipping between three at the moment but each has a down side and dangit... I've been looking so long I'm cross-eyed so someone please help.

1) Vanguard Alta Pro 264AB 100 Aluminum Tripod Kit

2) Manfrotto MK190GOA4B-BHUS 190 GO! 4 Section Aluminum Tripod with Ball Head

3) MeFOTO A1350Q1T Aluminium Roadtrip Travel Tripod/Monopod Kit

ok so the first 2 have a center column that does a 180, the last does not.
The first 2 are heavy the last is light.
They all have similar load capacity.
The MeFoto and the Vanguard require tools for the QR plate, the Manfrotto does not (I think).
The Manfrotto is about $80-100 more than I want to spend.... but its nice.

SO-- Does the 180 feature really come in handy or is that more for macro work? Is there any other benefit to that?

Are there any other brands/models that you would recommend? I mostly use it while hiking and for landscapes and long exposures. I feel like there has to be a perfect trifecta of weight, stability and price somewhere.



 

SCraig

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My PERSONAL opinion is that I don't like center columns that rotate. I had a carbon fiber Manfrotto 055 with the rotating center column and I never felt like it was as stable as my aluminum 190. I never once used the rotating center column so when I broke the 055 I replaced it with a carbon fiber 190 and immediately noticed that it seemed more stable with the same head, camera, and lens. Just like having 3 leg sections instead of 4, the fewer mechanical joints the more stable things are going to be.
 

tirediron

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I have a number of Manfrotto tripods, including at least two (at last count) sets of 190 legs. IMO, they are worth the extra money. The reversing centre column is primarily for macro work, but it is handy.
 
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wyogirl

wyogirl

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I have a number of Manfrotto tripods, including at least two (at last count) sets of 190 legs. IMO, they are worth the extra money. The reversing centre column is primarily for macro work, but it is handy.
Its not exactly a reversing column. It flips to the side. I have a reversible column and that seems better than the flipping/rotating one.
 

Designer

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Forgive me if I don't remember your primary use for this, but since you are looking at travel tripods, I will assume that you need it to fold up to a compact size. If you really need four section legs, then o.k., but SCraig has reminded you that usually three legs (all other things being equal) makes a more sturdy set than four section legs.

The tilt-out center column can be handy at times, but again, it adds complexity and a bit of "wigglyness".

Now back to your OP; I've never heard of a "quick release" plate that requires tools, and in fact, the one shown in your last post shows a screw tightening mechanism, instead of a quick-release lever type.

If none of that bothers you, then sure, go for the last example.
 

SCraig

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...
Now back to your OP; I've never heard of a "quick release" plate that requires tools, and in fact, the one shown in your last post shows a screw tightening mechanism, instead of a quick-release lever type.
I think she means the tripod screw. Some of them are slotted for a screwdriver, but most of them have slots wide enough for a coin.
 

Designer

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Oh, o.k.

My Velbon heads have a removable key held on by a little springy ring that stores flat under the plate.
 
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wyogirl

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I hike with my tripod so weight is the main factor and obviously I need it to be stable.... Enough for night shots.
 

Peeb

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I hike with my tripod so weight is the main factor and obviously I need it to be stable.... Enough for night shots.
I just bought an inexpensive 2 lb tripod that probably won't last for 10 years, but I expect to get good use out of it while hiking. 18 months from now when/if it gives up the ghost, maybe I'll wish I'd spent more- we will see....
 

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