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Thread: Tripods - which one should I take?

  1. #1
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    Tripods - which one should I take?

    Tomorrow we start our next trip with the caravan and I'm trying to work out which tripod to take. We're going out to the Corner Country, Birdsville, Simpson Desert, and then various places in SW Queensland so landscapes and wildlife will be the main subjects. We'll be gone for eight to ten weeks.

    As you can see in my signature I've got a Manfrotto tripod and head. The Manfrotto is as solid as a rock but unfortunately just as heavy. On previous trips I've found that I will only use it when it's not a long walk.

    I've also got a Slik SDV 10 from my days before DSLR. This is not rated to carry the weight of my camera and lens but it will do the job. Obviously it's not as solid as the Manfrotto and unless I use a remote or minimum 2 sec delay it's not worth using.

    So my question is, given that I can't afford to buy another tripod at the moment, should I take the Manfrotto and use it a few times, or do I take the Slik and take it whenever I want to. There is only so much room to carry things in the caravan, and the weight of things we take is always an issue.

    I'm tempted to take the Slik - working on the theory that I'll be more inclined to take it with me on walks and any tripod is better than none.

    Any comments and suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    John
    Canon 40D : Canon 10-22 f3.5-4.5 : Canon 100 f2.8L Macro : Canon 24-70 f2.8L : Canon 24-105 f4.0L : Canon 100-400 f4.5-5.6L : Speedlite 580EXII : Manfrotto 055XPROB : Manfrotto 808RC4 : Manfrotto 680B : Lowepro Flipside 400AW

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    Ausphotography Regular jjphoto's Avatar
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    The Manfroto head that you have is a bit on the heavy side. It probably doesn't help you know but maybe you should just use a lighter head on the Manfrotto 055, like one of the smaller Manfrotto ball heads.

    Maybe you can swap the head from the Slik to the Manfrotto as it's common for heads to have a female 3/8th thread, so I would suggest the Slik has the same.

    I don't like that new style of 055 tripods because you can't use the tripod without the centre column. The older 055's let you remove the centre column altogether which made the whole thing lighter.

    JJ

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    I have a rather cheap tripod, nearly every time I use it i just put on a 2 second delay, and does the job.

    only thing I would be worried about is if your gear already exceeds the weight limit, than I'd be very hesitant for using it for prolonged exposure shots when it's windy.

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    Member KeeFy's Avatar
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    You have quite heavy gear i see. It's really hard to give suggestions other than buying a new tripod/ballhead. I'd rather not use a tripod than risk my gear falling and breaking. So cheap tripods are not for me.

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    As smooth as hessian undies
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    I'm pretty new to it all, and last week rushed out to buy the Manfrotto 190something I think (see sig) because I couldn't wait for the delivery time on the much lighter and semingly more flexible one I'd found online. I've just spent the whole day at floriade lugging the damned Manfrotto around, and I'm also seriously unimpressed with how heavy it is.
    Have you the ability to alter the way you carry your tripod so the heavier one is more transportable? I hung mine by one of the legs, on the strap of my camera bag, and whilst that worked, it was far from ideal. I'm thinking of some kind of shoulder strap for it that I can carry it across my back a little like Dundee carried his knife. It will still be heavy, but at least it will put the weight up where I can manage it. I'd definitely prefer that to carrying a tripod that is underrated for the weight of my gear. The places you'll be a going to be hard places to find replacement parts, or make repairs to the tripod, let alone to your camera gear. That would have been my 2 cents worth, but without currency smaller than 5 cents now, you'll just have to make it my 5 cents worth and keep the change.

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    Member KeeFy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezookiel View Post
    I'm pretty new to it all, and last week rushed out to buy the Manfrotto 190something I think (see sig) because I couldn't wait for the delivery time on the much lighter and semingly more flexible one I'd found online. I've just spent the whole day at floriade lugging the damned Manfrotto around, and I'm also seriously unimpressed with how heavy it is.
    Have you the ability to alter the way you carry your tripod so the heavier one is more transportable? I hung mine by one of the legs, on the strap of my camera bag, and whilst that worked, it was far from ideal. I'm thinking of some kind of shoulder strap for it that I can carry it across my back a little like Dundee carried his knife. It will still be heavy, but at least it will put the weight up where I can manage it. I'd definitely prefer that to carrying a tripod that is underrated for the weight of my gear. The places you'll be a going to be hard places to find replacement parts, or make repairs to the tripod, let alone to your camera gear. That would have been my 2 cents worth, but without currency smaller than 5 cents now, you'll just have to make it my 5 cents worth and keep the change.
    There are tripod straps where it holds the tripod closed and makes life easy to deploy quickly. Many different brands around. Optech is one of my favorite brands.

    http://tinyurl.com/3eqwk7l

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