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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Tripod
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Showing posts 1 - 14 of 14, (reverse)
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06/06/2013 01:01:44 PM · #1
I'm looking for a better tripod... any advice? I'd like to keep it under $100, if possible. I'm looking for some gear to spend 300,000 AMEX points on...
06/06/2013 01:22:08 PM · #2
$100 is a little low for a really good tripod.

I would look into carbon fiber legs....if you want to keep the weight down.
06/06/2013 01:49:02 PM · #3
At our local photo shops (gear) they will have a sale a couple times a year where you can bring in any tri-pod for a trade-I got $100 for our old video tri-pod and $50 for a not so good head. It was worth it...

Don't go cheap on the tri-pods they just aren't worth it (IMO), mind you I didn't go expensive either...middle of the road is good. But you don't want to replace it because it just isn't strong enough or it's WAY to heavy!! Lug one around for awhile and you'll know what I mean.
06/06/2013 02:07:37 PM · #4
If you're just talking legs here, $100 might be doable for decent legs, but I agree with the other posters, it's on the low side and well worth spending a little more. As far as choice of specific models, so much depends on what you want to do. Here are a few questions:
- Is weight very important (will you be carrying it on long walks/hikes)?
- How tall are you? Some taller folks need a larger set of legs so that they can get the camera to a comfortable height without extending the center column too much
- Will you be getting it into water? Sea water? If so, some are better than others.
- How important to you is the collapsed length?
The answers to the above can help folks to guide you to models that may be appropriate. IMO, unless you want/need something very light weight, you should be able to get good legs for under $150. You need to budget about $100 for a decent head as well.

06/06/2013 02:15:08 PM · #5
Thanks for the info - I am tall - 6'-4", the cheap tripod I have is 72" and that seems to be appropriate. Weight isn't critical, and collapsed length isn't critical. Water... I haven't put much thought into that, but there are a ton of lakes around here, so that could be a creative possibility. I guess what I'm looking for are 'legs' and a 'head', is that right? Any suggestions on Amazon? I can use my AMEX points there. And, is there a brand name that I should start with?
06/06/2013 02:24:56 PM · #6
Originally posted by vicdevore:

Thanks for the info - I am tall - 6'-4", the cheap tripod I have is 72" and that seems to be appropriate. Weight isn't critical, and collapsed length isn't critical. Water... I haven't put much thought into that, but there are a ton of lakes around here, so that could be a creative possibility. I guess what I'm looking for are 'legs' and a 'head', is that right? Any suggestions on Amazon? I can use my AMEX points there. And, is there a brand name that I should start with?


I'm 6'-2 and i have a manfrotto, 055XPROB. perfect for me. somewhat heavy but solid as a rock and will raise to my eye WITHOUT extending the center column.

the legs will runs you about $150, you just need to get head that suits you.
06/06/2013 04:09:20 PM · #7
The Slik 700DX is a very solid tripod for under $100. (Legs only, although they do sell a set with a head.) Works especially well for tall people too. I got mine for $80 on sale.
You can find it HERE.
06/06/2013 10:56:28 PM · #8
If you are a Costco member and need to stick to the sub $100 budget, you might want to look at the Dolica Proline 60" Carbon Fiber Tripod with Ball Head Bundle for $89.99
06/06/2013 11:11:31 PM · #9
Nice to see the issue of weight being discussed sensibly. I'm amazed at how often discussions about tripods seem to revolve around how much they weigh. 'This is lighter than that, so it's better'. I'll always argue the exact opposite - within reason, purchase the heaviest tripod you can tolerate. Why? Quite simply because heavy = stable.
06/07/2013 04:02:24 AM · #10
Originally posted by Qiki:

purchase the heaviest tripod you can tolerate. Why? Quite simply because heavy = stable.


One other tip, mount a hook in the bottom of the riser that you can hang your bag on. As long as the wind isn't blowing you have a clean bag and a heavier tripod.
06/07/2013 05:40:53 AM · #11
Originally posted by Qiki:

Quite simply because heavy = stable.


Ha... it is now official. I am stable. :O)

Ray
06/07/2013 06:18:32 AM · #12
Originally posted by Qiki:

Nice to see the issue of weight being discussed sensibly. I'm amazed at how often discussions about tripods seem to revolve around how much they weigh. 'This is lighter than that, so it's better'. I'll always argue the exact opposite - within reason, purchase the heaviest tripod you can tolerate. Why? Quite simply because heavy = stable.


This is sound advice, don't choose a carbon fiber model and assume it will be stable enough because its made of carbon fiber. Carbon fiber has the benefit of having a very high strength to weight ratio which is why it is used in all sorts of structural components where weight is an issue. Combined with its vibration damping abilities and resistance to corrosion make it a solid choice for traveling photographers. When choosing one you should still choose the heaviest model for most stability. If you are outdoors and the wind starts blowing you will be glad you have the extra weight. you need to figure whats most important, weight, stability or cost and then find a compromise. generally you will only be able to choose two of the three, light, stable, inexpensive.

another thing to consider and i made mentioned in my post, is that you want to get a tripod the will extend to you eye level without raising the center column. the higher you raise that column you introduce instability which can allow all sorts of movement into the system. the most stable position of the tripod will be when the column isn't fully extended.

the legs will usually hold whatever you put on it, but put some thought into the head, as that will add additional weight and you want to make sure you have a attachment plate that is secure, you will find your camera turned in odd positions and if you are like me you will fold up the legs and leave the camera attached and move to a new location, you dont want your camera falling off a cheap attachment.

lastly dont discount a tripods ability to get your camera into different positions. do you need to get it low to the ground? does the center column need to allow for horizontal movement or even angular movement? how easy does the tripod allow you the frame up your shot, this is especially important in macro and still life work.
06/07/2013 10:49:02 AM · #13
I always like the idea: Cost, Stability and Weight... Pick 2 because you CANNOT have all 3.

I think it sums up a tripod nicely..... I went for heavy and stable (055PRO as well), although I went pricey on the head. The exotic materials will get you lighter and still stable.... but your wallet better be ready.
06/13/2013 07:01:35 PM · #14
I would suggest you check out for Fotopro Tripod C4i which gives you the best bang for the buck. You will probably below the $100, but not by much.
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