Even though we ARE Nikon lovers,we are NOT affiliated with Nikon Corp. in any way.

English German French

Sign up Login
Home Forums Articles Galleries Recent Photos Contest Help Search News Workshops Shop Upgrade Membership Recommended
All members Wiki Contests Vouchers Apps Newsletter THE NIKONIAN™ Magazines Podcasts Fundraising

FoCal for D800 & tripod stability testing


Inverness, US
830 posts

Click to send email to this author Click to send private message to this author
ljordan316 Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Feb 2010
Wed 19-Sep-12 11:46 PM

Today I discovered a new application of the FoCal AF fine tuning software from Reikan Technology. While at a Western NC Foto Fest two weeks ago, I was introduced to Feisol tripods. I was so impressed with the build quality that I bought a Tournament 3442 with a center column.

I am planning a trip with NANPA to Acadia NP in two weeks, and I was trying to decide whether to take my Gitzo GT3530LS or the new Feisol. After some thought, I decided to use FoCal to help make the decision.

I setup FoCal on my laptop in my garage next to my Gitzo and Feisol. I had my Wimberley WH-200 on the Gitzo and a Kirk BH-3 ball head on the Feisol.

First, I tried my Nikon 200-400mm mounted on one of my D800E bodies. I ran the AF Consistency Test using the Gitzo. I then moved the camera/lens to the Feisol, and ran the same test. The AF consistency was about 93 on the Gitzo and 66 on the Feisol.

Second, I tried my Nikon 70-200mm using the same tripod/head combos. This time the AF consistency was actually higher with the Feisol than the Gitzo.

Since I do not plan to take the 200-400mm on the Acadia trip, I am now planning to take the Feisol/Kirk combo...with confidence that I will have a stable shooting platform.

Of course, the one element I could not duplicate is the effects of wind on the combo. Wind would definitely have more impact with the Feisol because the legs are not as large and stable as the Gitzo. I will just have to stay out of the wind or hang my camera bag on the hook under the tripod.

Just thought you guys would be interested.

Larry Jordan

D800E, D500, 14-24, 16-35, 24-70, 70-180 Micro, 80-400mm AF-S, 500mm AF-S II


Visit my Nikonians gallery.