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tripod options


TPF Noob!
Mar 25, 2006
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Sydney, Australia
hi everyone, i need some more experienced opinions on tripod choice. i think im going to go with the brand optex because i have $100 voucher for a store who sell optex and manfrotto but the latter is over my budget. heres a site with the models on it...


all those are in my price range, so should i just go the most expencive (OPTEX Photo Video Tripod - T565 ) in this case?

is table top for use on a table? ie it doesnt extend very tall...

if it helps, the tripod will be supporting a D50 with a 300 zoom lens.

thanks in advance for any help you can give.
is table top for use on a table? ie it doesnt extend very tall...

Yep... For use on a table, or for shooting low down to the ground... Its basically a mini tripod, maybe about 6 inches high... only really suitable for use with compact cameras, as it won't support a lot of weight, and certainly not a 300mm lens.
Look for the following in a tripod:

1. Heavy! Mass absorbs vibration. A heavier tripod is steadier. Pick the very heaviest you're willing to lug around.

2. Good controls with solid locks for rotation and tilt control.

2. Elevator center post that's reversible with a good locking mechanism. This allows you to use the tripod as a copy stand or to position the camera at a low level.

3. Height, with elevator fully extended, that allows you to use the tripod without undue bending or squatting. A tripod which is high enough for a twin lens reflex [belly button viewpoint] is much too low for a through-the-lens or viewfinder/rangefinder camera.

4. Second hand [ebay, etc.] is OK. You don't have to tell anyone how much you paid for your tripod.

I use an old Davidson Star D. It's as heavy as a politician's sins. It works every time. It isn't pretty. It certainly isn't the latest fad. It just does the job.
Back in the day,

all tripods were heavy and stable but with fewer controls. I use retro stuff, so of course I went looking for one. It weights as much as my.... never mind ... it is heavy and it is stable. I think i paid about twenty bucks for it. Most of the new ones in the lower to moderate price range have some plastic in the contols and they are untrustworthy I think. Give me an old hunk of metal anyday.

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