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Travel Tripod CF - Feisol/Gitzo

Ned_L

Philadelphia, US
8049 posts

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"RE: Travel Tripod CF - Feisol/Gitzo"

Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography Charter Member
Sat 13-Oct-12 02:41 AM

Hi Jeff,

Let's start a little earlier in looking at this. To start you're looking for the tripod/head to work with a 200mm lens. To me that means you're looking at a Gitzo series 2 or equivalent. You could possibly get away with a series 1, but I personally wouldn't go that route. 200mm is in the sweet spot of the series 2. That basically means we're looking at a 28mm CF tube size.

For your height, your approximate tripod height is 68" less 5" or 63", including the head and camera to the viewfinder. If we take the camera, the head, and clamp, we can take away about 8" from that, so the ideal tripod height would be about 55". From there you have to decide how much you're willing to bend over, but you also have to remember that when you have uneven terrain, you'll likely have times you'll have to bend even when the tripod has an ideal height.

You've also said you want a carbon fiber tripod, close less than 19" and a weight capacity which will work for your load.


  • Feisol 3442 will work for your camera/lens.
  • Gitzo 1542T is a series 1, and I therefore wouldn't recommend it.
  • Gitzo 2542T is a series 2, but doesn't appear to be available in the US just yet. I have emailed Gitzo about its availability, but haven't heard from them yet. Moreover it appears that once it's available, it will cost $944.43, which isn't in the budget range you've set for yourself.

In your list the Feisol 3442 is the one I like, but if the height isn't a problem, you might look at the smaller Feisol 3441s. It's 4" shorter than the 3442, but it's also shorter folded, and it's lighter.

As Michael said, "Any Travel Tripod is going to be a compromise." When I went out looking for a travel tripod for me a couple of years ago, did I ever find that out. Eventually, I went out of your budget range. I went with the Gitzo traveler series 2 "kit," Gitzo GK2580TQR. It's a kit because it comes with a head. It currently runs $734.95. I took off the head and replaced it with a Really Right Stuff BH40LR. I'm happy with the combination. I'm a couple of inches shorter than you and find it meets my needs without extending the center column. The head does stick out a bit over the edge of the tripod, but it works great. When I'm in transit, I pack the head separately and remove the bolt holding the head to the legs. I like the fact it folds down to under 17" and because of the traveler design, has a minimal diameter as a tripod, so it's easy to pack, even inside a carry-on.

As to heads, I always recommend RRS or Markins. While other heads work, in my opinion, you can never go wrong using either of these companies' heads. I use RRS myself for all my tripods.

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

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This is a hot, active topic! Travel Tripod CF - Feisol/Gitzo [View all] , Landis Silver Member , Thu 11-Oct-12 01:38 PM
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