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Thread: Tripod Newbie: Need recommendation and price range

  1. #1
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    Default Tripod Newbie: Need recommendation and price range

    Hi,

    After my recent zoo trip + macro practice (in SBG), I found my current Velbon CX-560 tripod inadequate for my needs. I have read a bit regarding tripod but still needed advice and help from experts here.

    Here's my requirements/shooting style:

    1) I am into nature photography and my setup is easily 4 - 5kg with my telephoto lens +flash + body. My current tripod does not offer ease of moving the camera in all directions. It is also not steady too. I can clamp my tripod very hard but whenever I rest my fingers on the shutter, the camera would still move under its own weight. Dun get me wrong, the clamp works but the tripod body bends at the rotating head (it's part of the tripod and not a separate head like the Manfrotto setup) element.

    2) With macro works, I notice some photographers at the SBG with tripod that had a separate attachment to put the flash just next the lens and not mount on the camera hot shoe. I would need a tripod that can offer me that feature.

    What I needed is some recommendation on the model/brand/price. My budget is $500 - $1K and the following considerations:

    1) A tripod between 2 - 4 kg is ok for me. As I am into Nature and Macro work, this tripod is not meant for travelling anyway. However, any recommendation on how to make it comfortable to carry (such as slinging, attaching to leg etc) is much appreciated.

    2) Height of the tripod must be from as low as 20 cm (for ground photography work) to 2m. I am asking from a newbie point of view here as I am not aware of any tripod capable of such ranges?

    3) Would carbon fibre or aluminium body be of any difference in terms of build, strength and weight?

    Once again, appreciate any advice here. I would drop by Cathay photo one of these days to check out the wide selection there as well...

  2. #2
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    First of all, sell the velbon.

    1) I am into nature photography and my setup is easily 4 - 5kg with my telephoto lens +flash + body. My current tripod does not offer ease of moving the camera in all directions. It is also not steady too. I can clamp my tripod very hard but whenever I rest my fingers on the shutter, the camera would still move under its own weight. Dun get me wrong, the clamp works but the tripod body bends at the rotating head (it's part of the tripod and not a separate head like the Manfrotto setup) element.

    You will need a new head as well.
    Try markins for good value although I have never tried it. Seem to recieve lots of praise.



    2) With macro works, I notice some photographers at the SBG with tripod that had a separate attachment to put the flash just next the lens and not mount on the camera hot shoe. I would need a tripod that can offer me that feature.

    Those are attachment from player like wimberly. They are expensive. They dun belong to the tripod and can be bought separately.

    What I needed is some recommendation on the model/brand/price. My budget is $500 - $1K and the following considerations:

    1) A tripod between 2 - 4 kg is ok for me. As I am into Nature and Macro work, this tripod is not meant for travelling anyway. However, any recommendation on how to make it comfortable to carry (such as slinging, attaching to leg etc) is much appreciated.

    2) Height of the tripod must be from as low as 20 cm (for ground photography work) to 2m. I am asking from a newbie point of view here as I am not aware of any tripod capable of such ranges?

    3) Would carbon fibre or aluminium body be of any difference in terms of build, strength and weight?

    If eight is not a problem, get a manfrotto 055 or benbo. Gitzo explorer series will be good as it go to very low.

    Carbon fibre will be more expensive than aluminium ones. CF ones will be lighter and more rigid.

    Going to CP tripod section is definately a good start.

  3. #3

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by binbeto
    It is also not steady too. I can clamp my tripod very hard but whenever I rest my fingers on the shutter, the camera would still move under its own weight.
    you should consider using a cable release or something.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Kit's Avatar
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    With your budget and requirements, take a look at the Gitzo Explorer 2228.

  6. #6
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    For versatibility and flexibility and getting into 'impossible' positions, I think the Gitzo Explorer series wins over most conventional tripods. I own a G2220 with a Markins M10 ballhead, and I've yet to find a position that my tripod cannot reach.

    Since your budget is quite big, a carbon fibre Explorer is within your reach, but note that the weight saving of a carbon fibre Explorer compared to a aluminium Explorer is very little. Both are equally strong but the carbon fibre is a bit lighter.

    It would NOT reach 2 metres (very few tripods does) however though it can go right down to ground level.

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