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Thread: Cheap tripod?

  1. #21
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Romain View Post
    OK so if the ratings aren't normalised, how do I test a tripod? I put the camera with lens on it at it's tele end and then what do I do to know it it's stable enough? If it takes a good (long exposure) picture even with the ballhead tilted, is that considered stable, or do I need to do something more?
    The proper way to test a tripod is the two finger tap test. Extend the tripod as you would use it, at full height without centre column extended. Put one hand on the quick release clamp, giving it some weight similar to your setup, then with the other hand use 2 fingers and give one of the legs a good tap in the middle of the thickest section. You should be able to feel some vibration of the tap on the other hand on the quick release clamp. The vibration should not be too strong, and should fade out very fast. Bad tripods you will feel ripples of vibrations even after the first tap.

    2nd test is to grab 2 legs at the thickest section with each hand. Then apply some force like a steering wheel. See how much the legs bend or give way... a good tripod should be rigid.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 6th May 2014 at 09:58 AM.

  2. #22
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Thank you both, I shall try all that.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    I went to the shops and indeed there's a clear difference between the T-005 and some higher end ones (regardless of brand) with the "two finger tap". The problem with the higher end ones is that they get even bigger (folded) and heavier. I liked the T1205... but 300$.
    So down the end I went for the T005X which I already find quite heavy for a travel tripod. As it goes higher than I expected I can remove the centre section when I need more stability.
    It seems to be much better than what I had before anyway (and which was fine for me), so that should be enough.

    Thanks all for your help,
    Romain

  4. #24
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    don't buy junk,
    it has no value, eventually you will spend even more when you decide to get a more decent tripod,
    unless you don't mind to treat the junk tripod as disposable tripod or a signage stand.
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  5. #25
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    don't buy junk, it has no value
    It does. People sell the T-005 here for 80$, so I'm pretty sure the T-005X has at least that value.

  6. #26
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Romain View Post
    It does. People sell the T-005 here for 80$, so I'm pretty sure the T-005X has at least that value.
    I'm not referring to the Sirui tripod, FYI, I have two Sirui tripods.
    Last edited by catchlights; 10th May 2014 at 04:11 PM.
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  7. #27

    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    there's someone selling used Manfrottos with ballhead in Buy Sell. I decided (ok, gravity decided for me) to get a nice decent steady tripod to prevent tip overs (and painful lens dents). Previously I was using a generic tripod which was gifted to me by a kind uncle (those really really cheap with lousy legs which give way suddenly type)
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  8. #28
    Senior Member edutilos-'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Romain View Post
    I went to the shops and indeed there's a clear difference between the T-005 and some higher end ones (regardless of brand) with the "two finger tap". The problem with the higher end ones is that they get even bigger (folded) and heavier. I liked the T1205... but 300$.
    So down the end I went for the T005X which I already find quite heavy for a travel tripod. As it goes higher than I expected I can remove the centre section when I need more stability.
    It seems to be much better than what I had before anyway (and which was fine for me), so that should be enough.

    Thanks all for your help,
    Romain
    I personally think it will be ok. As daredevil has mentioned everyone has different tolerances. After you use a good tripod you tend not to look back. That said, if your budget doesn't allow for it, having a less stable tripod is still better than whatever you were using for sure. That said, if you do have the budget, do try to get something more stable. The weight difference really isn't that much and for most guys I would think the magical turning point will be about 1.5/2 kg where you find it rather tiresome to carry. So something like a T-2004/2005 will probably be a good balanced option.

    Something to note: please do not leave your tripod to its own devices. I have used very stable tripods (e.g. a heavyass 2-section Berlebach) and I never ever left it unattended. Most people have accidents not because of the legs collapsing, actually, but because they went dancing or something while leaving the tripod alone. Waves can soften the sand beneath the legs if you are at the beach, wind can make the top-heavy combination of camera/tripod topple easily. I've even heard of cases where the camera took a dive into the Singapore River because of complacency. Cheers!
    Last edited by edutilos-; 22nd May 2014 at 02:55 PM.

  9. #29
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    if you are going to buy a cheaper tripod and then change in the future, just get one with resale value

    btw i have a really sturdy 20 year old manfrotto 055 that is still going strong
    so if you divide cost by years of use it is really cheap

  10. #30
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by ortega View Post
    if you are going to buy a cheaper tripod and then change in the future, just get one with resale value

    btw i have a really sturdy 20 year old manfrotto 055 that is still going strong
    so if you divide cost by years of use it is really cheap
    Agree with Mod Ortega.

    twenty years ago the 055 should be just price around $200, and still able fetch around $100 if sell it as used tripod, so just cost only $5 a year of usage, super value for money.

    if buy cheap cheap a tripod and won't last more than a year or two, isn't it cost more than Manfrotto or Gitzo in the end??
    Shoot to Live, Live to Shoot
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  11. #31

    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    Agree with Mod Ortega.

    twenty years ago the 055 should be just price around $200, and still able fetch around $100 if sell it as used tripod, so just cost only $5 a year of usage, super value for money.

    if buy cheap cheap a tripod and won't last more than a year or two, isn't it cost more than Manfrotto or Gitzo in the end??
    Definitely manfrotto, got mine for less than 100 from 'the marketplace' sub-forum, second hand but looks like new.

  12. #32

    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    sad to say my tripod is super duper heavy and even reminds me of those machine gun tripod type. I am carrying it in my tripod bag discreetly and pretending it's a yoga mat
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  13. #33
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shizuma View Post
    sad to say my tripod is super duper heavy and even reminds me of those machine gun tripod type. I am carrying it in my tripod bag discreetly and pretending it's a yoga mat
    Big heavy tripod is good.

  14. #34

    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    Big heavy tripod is good.
    I'm just a little cat.
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  15. #35
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shizuma View Post
    I'm just a little cat.
    Some things cannot be solved technically. Get a tomcat to carry the tripod for you
    EOS

  16. #36

    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    When I carry it I imagine I'm in Saving Private Ryan running up the beach
    宁愿遇见丢失幼崽的母熊,也不愿碰上做蠢事的愚人

  17. #37
    Member macaroni's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheap tripod?

    TS don't overlook the ballhead. It's just as important.

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