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Tripod and Ball-head advice sought

AreBee

Inverness, UK
531 posts

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AreBee Registered since 27th Apr 2008
Sun 04-May-08 12:03 PM

Dear all,

I'm looking to purchase a tripod and ball-head, principally to be used when trekking in the Scottish Highlands and to a lesser extent when taking slow shutter speed pictures of subjects like waterfalls. I've read the FAQs in this forum and, to fulfill my criteria of top quality, reasonably compact size and lightness am leaning towards a carbon fibre Gitzo tripod with Markins ball-head. The question is; which model for each do I go for?

At present I have a D300 body with Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 lens, but will in time purchase a zoom providing a focal length at least up to 200mm, and possibly 300mm. Given that this article states that "The recommendation for professional ball heads is to have at least three times the load capacity for your heaviest camera-lens combination in order to have smooth operation at the "sweet spot", I figure that Markin's Q3 should be fine. Any thoughts on this choice over, say, the M10?

As for the tripod itself, well, I really like the size and weight of the 5-leg (not ideal) Series-1 GT1550T Traveller tripod but am wary that it's limit is a 200mm lens. I also feel it may be too small for me (I'm 5'10" in height). As such, I'm also considering the 3-leg GT2530 or 4-leg GT2540 Series-2 Mountaineer tripod, both of which stand taller than the GT1550T and, at a push, support up to a 300mm lens. Any thoughts on these three tripods or alternative suggestions?

Robbie

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