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Thread started 26 May 2013 (Sunday) 16:18
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Tripods Again

 
newfotomd
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May 26, 2013 16:18 |  #1

I have been looking into different tripods right now and through the threads here, but I still do not know what I should really be looking for. With my current heaviest possible setup (7D, 70-200 2.8 IS, 600ex-rt), what tripod out there for around $100-$150 would any of you suggest? I've been told to gear more towards Manfrotto, but a lot of the carbon fiber that I saw was well above my price range. Any suggestions at all would be of great help. My main realm of shooting right now for a tripod is outdoors with portraits and wildlife. For sports I don't bother with a monopod, and hand shoot. Thank you to anyone in advance!


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cbowlsby
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May 26, 2013 16:26 |  #2

Does your budget include a tripod head? Or is that separate?


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newfotomd
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May 26, 2013 16:29 as a reply to  @ cbowlsby's post |  #3

I've been told to look into a ball head, but again, with so many different variations, it's easy to be led astray.


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luciddreamer
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May 26, 2013 16:30 |  #4

You aren't going to find a new quality cf tripod for $150. You probably won't find a used one either. I'd set my budget higher or settle for an alloy model. The manfrotto model that always gets recommended here (forget the model no.) runs around $150.


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cbowlsby
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May 26, 2013 16:35 |  #5

Couple of options for you:

Manfrotto makes a good set of legs around $150 - http://www.amazon.com …/B000N7VPRW/ref​=pd_cp_p_3 (external link). I have an older set of aluminum Manfrotto legs that I've had for 7 years. Best return on money I've ever spent on photography.

Induro is also another great tripod manufacturer, I am very happy with the monopod I have from them. They make a similar set of legs to Manfrotto that are available on Amazon, I'd suggest looking at the AT213 or the AT214 model depending on how tall you are: http://www.indurogear.​com …ies-8m-tripods-at213.aspx (external link)

A ball head for these legs would probably run another $100 or so. You really can't do a good support system for under $250.


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rgs
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May 26, 2013 21:25 |  #6

The Manfrotto you need is the 055PROB. You can find the legs for about $150. This tripod is very solid and will last forever if you are happy with aluminum legs. There is a CF version that is about twice as much.

Avoid the 190 series. They are too light and tend to wobble. Others will disagree but that's my experience.

A good ball head will be about $150 - $200. I would not settle for less but you can spend MUCH more. Don't buy a Manfrotto head, they will not lock solidly.

Most on this list will recommend a head with an Arca Swiss compatible quick release system.


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Domino1999
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May 27, 2013 02:19 |  #7

rgs wrote in post #15970578 (external link)
A good ball head will be about $150 - $200. I would not settle for less but you can spend MUCH more. Don't buy a Manfrotto head, they will not lock solidly.

Most on this list will recommend a head with an Arca Swiss compatible quick release system.

I've seen this remark about Manfrotto ball heads before, people saying they don't lock solidly and droop a bit after lock and plenty of people saying to buy an Arca Swiss compatible head. However, they never recommend any specific alternative models, within the same price range as the Manfrotto heads. What do you recommend?


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freddyronny
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May 27, 2013 06:02 |  #8

Domino1999 wrote in post #15971147 (external link)
I've seen this remark about Manfrotto ball heads before, people saying they don't lock solidly and droop a bit after lock and plenty of people saying to buy an Arca Swiss compatible head. However, they never recommend any specific alternative models, within the same price range as the Manfrotto heads. What do you recommend?

I personally recommend the Sirui ballheads from the Kx series. I own the Sirui K30x and it's excellent. No problem at all to keep my Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 OS with 1.4TC locked at any angle without droop or creep.


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rgs
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May 27, 2013 09:10 |  #9

Domino1999 wrote in post #15971147 (external link)
I've seen this remark about Manfrotto ball heads before, people saying they don't lock solidly and droop a bit after lock and plenty of people saying to buy an Arca Swiss compatible head. However, they never recommend any specific alternative models, within the same price range as the Manfrotto heads. What do you recommend?

I guess I recommend research. My head is 30 year old Bogan (168) which is no longer made. It is very basic and rock solid. I think I paid less than $100 for it. My experience with the newer Manfrotto heads is just trying them in a store. Every one was easily twisted out of shape even when locked down. Added leverage of a dSlR and a heavy lens would be even worse. The one with the biggest ball had a plastic (nylon?) insert for the ball to turn in that would surely wear out quickly.


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WesternGuy
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May 27, 2013 09:40 |  #10

newfotomd wrote in post #15969707 (external link)
I have been looking into different tripods right now and through the threads here, but I still do not know what I should really be looking for. With my current heaviest possible setup (7D, 70-200 2.8 IS, 600ex-rt), what tripod out there for around $100-$150 would any of you suggest? I've been told to gear more towards Manfrotto, but a lot of the carbon fiber that I saw was well above my price range. Any suggestions at all would be of great help. My main realm of shooting right now for a tripod is outdoors with portraits and wildlife. For sports I don't bother with a monopod, and hand shoot. Thank you to anyone in advance!

It never ceases to amaze me why folks are willing to spend about $1500 on a camera and $2500 dollars on a lens and yet they want to try and hang all this off a $100-$150 tripod. I would think that you should be willing to spend at least 10 to 20% of this ($4000) on a decent tripod and head. After all, a tripod and head will last a lot a lot longer than your camera. You will probably replace the 7D in the next 5 years or so. I would suggest that you want to increase your budget to at least $500, if not more. I have had 3 digital cameras in the past 7 or 8 years and yet I still have the same Manfrotto tripod and head - 190CXPRO3 tripod and the 468MGRC0 head. If you do this, increase your budget, then a whole new world opens up to you. I am not trying to be a smart A$$ or anything, it is just that I have seen too many stories of folks buying an el cheapo tripod and head, only to replace it in a few years because it just "doesn't do what I want I to do" - head slips under load, tripod is unstable at certain times, etc., etc.

You could look at the Sirui equipment that has been suggested. I would also suggest that you look at Feisol equipment. As well, there is also the used market, although the good stuff will still cost you. Increasing your budget also opens up more of the Manfrotto line, as well as that of other manufacturers such as Induro, Benro, Vanguard and Slik to name a few. A tripod is an investment in support of your equipment (literally) and your hobby. :mrgreen:

WesternGuy




  
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craig_k
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May 27, 2013 10:17 |  #11

newfotomd:.....to quote western guy: "If you do this, increase your budget, then a whole new world opens up to you. I am not trying to be a smart A$$ or anything, it is just that I have seen too many stories of folks buying an el cheapo tripod and head, only to replace it in a few years because it just "doesn't do what I want I to do" - head slips under load, tripod is unstable at certain times, etc., etc.".......
if you'd like to completely eliminate... i mean take it entirely out of the equation.... one of the most frustrating,costly events associated with the photograpy experience that 95% of everyone who picks the hobby up encounters........is to follow the above advice........if you like this hobby and get to the point "i want some support "....a huge % of everyone that got there experimented with "less than\inferior" designs whether being dictated by current finances or "i am not about to spend that kind of $ for somehing like that type of mindset"........either way you'll end up buying it multi-times over to finally get to your acceptable level of satisfaction with the equiptment...the largest % of us anyway, who tried to back-door this .....we all experienced just that.......personally, after trying the otherside options of quick releases associated with your support mechanism......i strongly reccommend the arca-swiss type of clamp for your consideration in which to build upon your support package...good luck, take the time to research and hopefully be fortunate enough to just do it correctly the first time and it'll end up allowing you to only do it a couple of times in your life...otherwise, you'll be like the largest % of us... "who experienced more willfully imposed derelection upon ones self than imaginable"


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ed ­ rader
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May 27, 2013 12:08 |  #12

Domino1999 wrote in post #15971147 (external link)
I've seen this remark about Manfrotto ball heads before, people saying they don't lock solidly and droop a bit after lock and plenty of people saying to buy an Arca Swiss compatible head. However, they never recommend any specific alternative models, within the same price range as the Manfrotto heads. What do you recommend?

there's the rub. for a beginner with a tight budget i'd stick with manfrotto. their $100 (or so) ballheads are pretty good for the money. once you go arca swiss and get into the better stuff you'll be bleeding money from every orifice :D.


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ed ­ rader
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May 27, 2013 12:11 |  #13

WesternGuy wrote in post #15971810 (external link)
It never ceases to amaze me why folks are willing to spend about $1500 on a camera and $2500 dollars on a lens and yet they want to try and hang all this off a $100-$150 tripod. I would think that you should be willing to spend at least 10 to 20% of this ($4000) on a decent tripod and head. After all, a tripod and head will last a lot a lot longer than your camera. You will probably replace the 7D in the next 5 years or so. I would suggest that you want to increase your budget to at least $500, if not more. I have had 3 digital cameras in the past 7 or 8 years and yet I still have the same Manfrotto tripod and head - 190CXPRO3 tripod and the 468MGRC0 head. If you do this, increase your budget, then a whole new world opens up to you. I am not trying to be a smart A$$ or anything, it is just that I have seen too many stories of folks buying an el cheapo tripod and head, only to replace it in a few years because it just "doesn't do what I want I to do" - head slips under load, tripod is unstable at certain times, etc., etc.

You could look at the Sirui equipment that has been suggested. I would also suggest that you look at Feisol equipment. As well, there is also the used market, although the good stuff will still cost you. Increasing your budget also opens up more of the Manfrotto line, as well as that of other manufacturers such as Induro, Benro, Vanguard and Slik to name a few. A tripod is an investment in support of your equipment (literally) and your hobby. :mrgreen:

WesternGuy

and yet I did something similar too. I think in the beginning the worth of a good tripod isn't realized and many may never use a tripod enough to justify spending more than a grand on legs, ballheads and plates.

I think you can get a good tripod and ballhead for $250 or so, and that may be all that most need.


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May 27, 2013 12:48 |  #14

Domino1999 wrote in post #15971147 (external link)
I've seen this remark about Manfrotto ball heads before, people saying they don't lock solidly and droop a bit after lock and plenty of people saying to buy an Arca Swiss compatible head. However, they never recommend any specific alternative models, within the same price range as the Manfrotto heads. What do you recommend?

This certainly seems to be true, maybe it's the case that there really aren't any good alternatives at that price range. The Manfrotto heads seem passable but I admit when I jumped in to ballhead land years ago I went straight up to a Markins M10 and don't regret it one bit. That said that head alone costs more than many manfrotto leg/head sets do!

I would love to know if there are better options in the Manfrotto price range because I find I am often asked by friends what to get and while I can give them various suggestions or tell them what to look out for, I'm never terribly confident about how good those suggestions are.

I agree with ed radar though, it looks like there are pretty good options once you're willing to spend up to around $200-250 on a set and for many people that may satisfy them. That price range gets you a lot more nowadays compared to when I got my previous tripod 13 or so years ago.


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rgs
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May 27, 2013 14:08 |  #15

When I last looked at the Manfrotto heads the store also stocked what I think was a store brand (Pro Photo) that was a little small but appeared to out perform all of the Manfrotto heads. It was about $100 I think. That was at a Bedford Camera (external link) store. I'm sure one could be ordered from them or it might be found at other dealers under a different name.

I agree that affordable heads are hard to find but if it won't hold it's position, it's really not worth whatever it cost. Although they're old fashioned in many ways, a solid pan/tilt head would better than a cheap ball that can't be locked down.


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