Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Tripod suggestions

  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    6

    Tripod suggestions

    Hi,
    I am looking for a tripod and my budget is 100-120$. Lesser the better as always.
    I drive around and hike all the time, so weight constraint is important.
    I have a t2i with 70-200 f4 L and other less heavier ones. I will upgrade to 5D Mark II soon.
    This is my list of choices and my thoughts:
    1. SLIK 700 DX - 160 bucks, a little beyond my budget. Amazing quality, with ball head it will cost 180 bucks. A bit heavy from what I see. Concerned if I can carry everywhere especially for long hikes.

    2. SLIK sprint pro - Amateurish and ball head seems to have a lot of complaints. But lightweight, might be enough to handle my current kit and yes doesn't bite my wallet.

    3. Manfrotto 7301 - I liked their head but not sure about their quality.

    I am sure I have missed many other good ones. Any recommendations?
    What do you guys use?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Grafton, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    2,352
    Real Name
    Allan Short

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    As you plan on going cheap, starting saving for tripods two to four, as it will likely be the fourth one that you will finally end up with, after the others pack it up. As each one up, gets more expensive by the time you have bought your 4th you would have spent up to nine hundred dollars. I would suggest hold on the 5D for a year and get a good tripod with head in the range of $600.00 or so. If not you can join the rest of us who went that route. Also suggest that you type in the advance search "suggest tripods" and read the huge amount of posts.

    Cheers:

    Allan

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    South Island, New Zealand
    Posts
    543
    Real Name
    Ken

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    If you are looking at Manfrotto, then the tripod and head chooser may be of help

    http://www.manfrotto.com/Service/Tri...hooser/3670788

  4. #4
    Glenn NK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Victoria BC
    Posts
    1,510

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by Polar01 View Post
    As you plan on going cheap, starting saving for tripods two to four, as it will likely be the fourth one that you will finally end up with, after the others pack it up. As each one up, gets more expensive by the time you have bought your 4th you would have spent up to nine hundred dollars. I would suggest hold on the 5D for a year and get a good tripod with head in the range of $600.00 or so. If not you can join the rest of us who went that route. Also suggest that you type in the advance search "suggest tripods" and read the huge amount of posts.

    Cheers:

    Allan
    Truer words have seldom been spoken.

    I'm afraid that the OP will be just like the rest of us who've gone through the same process - the fourth one is usually about the right one. And I'm no exception.

    The sad truth is, there isn't a good ballhead available for that kind of money.

    Glenn

  5. #5
    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Cornwall
    Posts
    1,861
    Real Name
    Mark

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    No such thing as light, strong and cheap.... you can have 2 out of the 3 and as meatloaf said
    "but 2 out of 3 aint bad " thanks meatloaf, 2 out of 3 aint bad as long as its cheap thats missing!

    keep a lookout for something second hand while your saving, you might find a bargain.
    Last edited by Mark von Kanel; 24th October 2012 at 05:46 AM.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Devon, UK
    Posts
    11,708

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    For a lightweight easy carry tripod I use the Velbon Luxi L. Reasonably priced and fairly sturdy. I can use it with a 7D and the Sigma 150-500 lens.

    The advantage with this model is that it folds up small enough to fit inside my camera backpack (16 ins length) but extends to normal size. The centre column is in two screw together sections so with just one section you can get really close to the ground.

    But for normal use I work with the substantial Manfrotto 055 although I now have the carbon fibre model to reduce carrying weight. Still a chunky piece of kit though, and with a fold up length of 30 ins it isn't exactly easily portable. Expensive as well.

  7. #7
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    12,863
    Real Name
    Manfred Mueller

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    If you are looking for light, then carbon fibre is the only way to go, but cheap goes out the window. The price point you are looking at is what a reasonable lower to mid-range ball head will run you, and you still need to add some legs

    The Manfrotto tripods are okay and the only manufacturer in your list that I might consider. I don't know of Slik has gotten any better, but the one I had was terrible and I didn't shed a tear when it broke.

    I have a couple of Benro carbon fibre ones, and they are still not inexpensive, but come in a fair bit less than the Gitzo ones and are really fairly decent Gitzo knock-offs. Their heads use Arca-Swiss plates, which is good. Induro is the same company as Benro, if you see them.

  8. #8
    rpcrowe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Southern California, USA
    Posts
    13,171
    Real Name
    Richard

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Tripods do not have as good resale value as do top line lenses. You can often find the tripod you are interested in on eBay, Craigslist.com or one of the other used equipment related forums.

    I agree that a ball head with an Arca-Compatible clamp is an excellent choice.

    I think that it might be difficult to find a good tripod + head that is within your price range but, you might be able to locate a used model that will do the job...

    I totally agree that the combination of light, cheap and sturdy is not ralistic.

    HOWEVER... You can sometimes come up with a tripod that is fairly light, fairly cheap (on the used market) and fairly light in weight IF you can accept a tripod that is fairly short. It goes without saying that a shorter tripod that is built the same as a taller tripod will be lighter in weight.

    Additionally, you can get by using a lighter weight tripod and head IF you use an Arca Compatible Clamp and a RRS or Kirk L bracket for camera/lens combinations which do not include a tripod ring. If you place that camera/lens (using anything other than an L bracket) in the vertical position, the camera must be cantilevered over to the side. This is an unbalanced set up. The L bracket allows the cemera's center of gravity to be right over the apex of the tripod.

    OTOH, this setup is not inexpensive. L brackets cost close well over a hundred U.S. Dollars new. I bought my 7D RRS L-bracket used for about $90 USD...
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 23rd October 2012 at 09:53 PM.

  9. #9
    Glenn NK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Victoria BC
    Posts
    1,510

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark von Kanel View Post
    No such thing as light, strong and cheap.... you can have 2 out of the and as meatloaf said
    "but 2 out of 3 aint bad " thanks meatloaf, 2 out of 3 aint bad as long as its cheap thats missing!

    keep a lookout for something second hand while your saving, you might find a bargain.
    Yes - I recently sold three tripods on consignment at the camera shop where I deal.

    One was light, reasonably cheap, and usually strong enough (actually strong is the wrong word - tripods don't collapse, they vibrate - the attribute that is more useful is stiff).

    One was stiff, expensive and too heavy,

    One was less stiff, less expensive and lighter, but poorly built.

    In retrospect, I paid too much for the three of them - could have had the one I now have for less.

    Sometimes all you get is one attribute.

    Hope the people that bought them at less than half price (and no taxes) are happy.

    Glenn

  10. #10
    New Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Quanzhou, Fujian, China
    Posts
    1
    Real Name
    Michael Mason

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    After reading these posts I'm reminded of the old adage, "look before you leap." I've recently become interested in photography as a hobby so I've started to expand my equipment - a tripod being my first purchase. I read that it was not wise to buy a cheap tripod and to look at buying something over $100, so I went out and bought one for $120. It is fine as long as I'm not planning on traveling and carrying it as part of my baggage. Too big and heavy. At least I can learn how to use my camera using a tripod. But, I understand that when traveling you must have something that is durable and lightweight, heavy doesn't cut it.

  11. #11

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    A big question that needs to be answered with tripod selection is 'how stable does it need to be". If it's only needed for modest shutterspeeds in calm conditions then one can get away with one that's a heck of a lot lighter and flimsier than one that needed to keep professional-grade equipment rock steady for 3/4 of an hour in a hurricane.

    From the "good old days" ...

    Tripod suggestions

    Tripod suggestions

  12. #12
    dje's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Brisbane Australia
    Posts
    4,211
    Real Name
    Dave Ellis

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    If you want to stick to your budget, you might consider the Vanguard Alta+ 233P Tripod and 3 way head (not ball joint). I got mine for $120 and have been happy with it. I use it with a T3i and a 17-70 Sigma or a 70-300 Tamron. It weights 1.6Kg and has a load capacity of 3Kg (although I'm not sure exactly what that means). It only has three leg sections which makes it a little longer than some when it is folded up. On the other hand, having less leg joints should give better stability and quicker set up time.

    Others may well be right about later upgrades but sometimes it doesn't hurt to feel your way along for a while to see what suits you. I've had mine for about 18 months now and have no plans to upgrade.

    Dave
    Last edited by dje; 21st March 2013 at 06:18 AM.

  13. #13

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by dje View Post
    If you want to stick to your budget, you might consider the Vanguard Alta+ 233P Tripod and 3 way head (not ball joint).
    Keep in mind that this thread is 5 months old - the OP has long since gone.

  14. #14
    dje's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Brisbane Australia
    Posts
    4,211
    Real Name
    Dave Ellis

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Keep in mind that this thread is 5 months old - the OP has long since gone.
    Oh dear, didn't notice that. Makes you feel like you're talking to the wall - but then some say that happens quite often with me !

  15. #15

    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    South Devon, UK
    Posts
    11,708

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Although I normally use a Manfrotto tripod for serious work I also have a Velbon Luxi L which is lightweight and folds up small enough to fit inside my camera backpack.

    Although lightweight, this tripod can be extremely useful for general work and is sufficiently stable under average conditions. However, sometimes . . .

    Tripod suggestions

    They were taking an enthusiastic interest in my photography; but when one picked up my tripod in its mouth I had to intervene!

  16. #16

    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    3,631
    Real Name
    Greg

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    I bought a Manfrotto MT293A3 ($200) just after christmas and I am not happy. It weighs aout 1.3kg but with my 600D on it the Nor'Easter has no trouble rocking it. In fact, I take better shots just holding it.

  17. #17

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: Tripod suggestions

    Quote Originally Posted by FootLoose View Post
    I bought a Manfrotto MT293A3 ($200) just after christmas and I am not happy. It weighs aout 1.3kg but with my 600D on it the Nor'Easter has no trouble rocking it. In fact, I take better shots just holding it.
    I paid about $2500 for my Gitzo 1548 and RRS 58mm ballhead -- and it's still going strong after many years. It ain't light though

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •