Buying a tripod

Started 2 months ago | Questions thread
Craig Gillette Forum Pro • Posts: 11,751
Re: Buying a tripod

Not sure how $100 US compares to £100 but generally agree that's likely a tipping point (if you pardon the expression) on tripods.   There are some, like the Slik Pro 700 dx, a $100 tripod in the US - not sure if Slik is under the same name universally, sometimes importers/makers are identified differently in different areas.  It's fine.  The low priced Slik heads are OK.  Not fancy and not Arca Swiss compatible but adequate.  I'd expect there  other similar tripods.

It's hard to find them.  Even name brands/decent importers have had some extremely low end consumer products and the market is now flooded with internet based offerings which are suspect at best or just another garage operation buying from a couple of the big makers with some limited effort to reduce quality for a price point or just superficially apply a different sort of look or "finish."

A tripod that might work for the one family picture a year might work but likely won't stand up to more repeated uses, rougher handling, etc.

The typical 100-300 type lens isn't collared so the unbalanced load aggravates any of the poor quality results of tying to save too much or just believing the puffery which jumps out to some but ropes in others.

There's essentially no regulation or industry standards so things like "capacity" might be greatly exaggerated, usable working height mis-described, etc.

If you can, actually trying your camera/lens combo out at a store should help.  Test on a solid flooring, not carpeted.  That carpet that keeps things quieter, saves some drops, won't hold a tripod steady.  Even a good one.

Check to see how easily the head adjusts, is there sag when set and released, legs extend smoothly.  Check the height before extending a center column is a comfortable height (and then some - you may work on uneven ground or want to shoot upwards at times.  while I wouldn't suggest actually dropping one or abusing the legs by allowing them to drop freely, the floor samples shouldn't be broken just in use at the store, either.

Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow