Need advice on appropriate tripod system
Had a bad experience (camera fell) with my Induro AK-B2 tripod which I have decided to sell.
I an amateur- somewhere between intermediate and advanced. Am 6'4" that puts a requirement on tripod height. My camera gear right now with longest lens and battery grip is under 5 pounds- don't envisage going over 6 pounds.. I like to shoot landscape. I would like a ball head function for general use but also would like to pan with the camera only moving horizontally. Also,
I don't want the camera to droop after locking the head- the Induro did that. Need a rock solid quick release system. I looked at RRS which was great but too expensive. I would like to keep budget under $700, preferably under $500. All advice appreciated. Thank you.
#1. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 0Gene Duprey Registered since 08th Feb 2013Mon 03-Jun-13 02:04 PM
Sorry to hear about your trouble with the induro. I would still look at the Induro, model CT414, it is Carbon Fiber, so light weight, but has a load capacity of 40 lbs. Which is way over your needs, but is a very good tripod and has the height you need, and meets your price constraints. It will hold a 500/4 lens with ease. Also try looking at some of the Manfrotto tripods, as they are also quite reliable and better price points depending on the tripod. As for Ball heads, look for one which has drag control and separate lock levers, and a load capacity at least 2 to 3 times your current max load requirements. Also you will want to use the Arca Swiss QR plate, which if not already on the head, can be added. these are easy to use and are pretty much the defacto standard.
#2. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 1jamesvoortman Nikonian since 06th Sep 2004Mon 03-Jun-13 02:46 PM
Supporting what Gene says.
I used the Manfrotto RC2 quick release plate system for landscape and macro for years but it does "droop" a bit. I eventually learned to compensate.
I recently bought a 500VR that had an Arca Swiss compatible foot on it. It is so much more secure and stable. Thinking of converting my camera bodies and old tripod heads away from the RC2 to the Arca Swiss system now.
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#3. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 0
Thanks for you advice. What I realized was that I don't have a problem with the tripod legs,-it's really the head I don't like. I am considering keeping the legs and getting an Induro BHL2 Ballhead which is compatible with Arca Swiss QR plates. Supposedly this head allows independent panning. Does this make sense?
#5. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 0
The top quality ballheads are expensive but worth the money. A good ballhead is pleasant to use - and very secure.
Consider models from RRS, Markins, and Arca Swiss.
I've used the RRS BH-55 for years and have never had second thoughts. It's a little on the heavy side, but ergonomically very well designed. My wife uses the RRS BH-40 - a slightly smaller model that also has plenty of holding power.
The Markins Q20 and Q10 are both excellent. They are a little less expensive than the RRS models. There is a slightly different shape of the control knobs emphasizing use of the drag. I prefer the RRS design and sold my Markins head to get the BH40, but Markins is a good choice.
The capacity limits are a bit of a marketing game and there are no standards for measurement. I've seen a RRS head rated for 50 pounds hold a person. At the low end, the problem is torque not weight. Having a camera attached and a heavy lens hanging off the front puts a lot more stress on a ballhead than a larger lens balanced with a lens foot. Some of the consumer lenses are relatively heavy and only supported by the camera body.
I'd look to the BH-40 or Markins Q10 given the lighter weight of your gear. Don't forget to buy camera and lens plates if you choose one of these designs. I'm not sure whether the Induro plates are compatible, but the release on the Induro head is definitely at the low end.
Be sure to read the article on tripods by Thom Hogan before you buy.
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#6. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 0
You might want to talk in more detail about exactly what happened. There are a lot of people, like you, looking for something less expensive than the top flight tripods and heads. There is little understanding of the differences between the top end and the low end $200 range tripods/heads.
I use and recommend Markins heads and Gitzo tripods. I find it difficult to recommend lower end solutions myself, considering lack of personal experience and a general knowledge of the potential problems.
Heads are particularly difficult because the most important performance aspects are not disclosed, in any way, by the standard specifications. This is particularly true of ball heads.
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#7. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 6Fri 07-Jun-13 12:41 PM
First of all, I am not necessarily blaming Induro because the problem may have been user error. Basically what happened was that I had the camera in vertical orientation and the camera fell off the tripod. I don't believe I touched the quick release lever accidentally. Subsequently I discovered that the quick release plate could seem to be secure when it wasn't. By experimenting I found that when the quick release is put on a particular orientation it seemed to be more secure. I scratched an arrow on the underside and the camera didn't fall after that. However I decided that I didn't trust the ballhead/quick release any more. I purchased an Induro BHL2 ballhead yesterday which uses an Arca Swiss quick release that seems infinitely more secure. This seems like a really good head at a reasonable price ($267)
#8. "RE: Need advice on appropriate tripod system" | In response to Reply # 7nrothschild Registered since 25th Jul 2004Fri 07-Jun-13 01:36 PM
>> I am not necessarily blaming Induro because the problem may have been user error... By experimenting I found that when the quick release is put on a particular orientation it seemed to be more secure.
It is difficult to visualize exactly what happened, but I would call that equipment error, not user error. You should not have to scratch marks in the head to avoid orientations that will drop the camera.
I would class that as "heroic measures taken to overcome fundamental equipment design or manufacturing errors"
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