Nilesh J. Bhange
I am currently using following equipments:
I need a lightweight, compact & quality tripod with a facility to shoot by bending center column horizontally.
What are the options with reasonable price?
I have the Bogen/Manfrotto 3021 tripod and it runs a little over $100 and is a durable & sturdy tripod. The center column does come out but not easily but I bet the newer ones have made changes for this.
The 3021 is a bit heavy and also has 3 sectioned legs which doesn't collapse down as much as a 4 sectioned ones do. Since I do a lot of hiking and I prefer to carry my tripod with me everywhere, I recently bought the Bogen/Manfrotto 190CXPRO4 Carbon Fiber Tripod w/Manfrotto 468MGRC2 Magnesium Hydrostatic Ballhead. The 190CX carbon fiber is very light and this one runs about $325. It has 4 section legs and it collapses down and fits nicely on 2 of my Lowepro backpacks. It also has an easy means to position the center column. I highly recommend this tripod and I would only consider a Gitzo carbon fiber tripod over it.
The Gitzo carbon fiber tripods are very nice but most of them are $600 and up. Really Right Stuff also makes great ballheads but they are pricey as well. You can get a good Bogen/Manfrotto ballhead for little over $100 . I have the Manfrotto 322RC2 Pistol grip head which works well for my small lenses but for my 70-200 & 100-400mm lens, it droops. Its about $125
The 468MGRC2 Magnesium Hydrostatic Ballhead is very sturdy and easy to manuever and does well with my long lenses and after a recent price drop is about $250. Wimberly also makes incredible heads for long lenses but these are also $600+
My Ideal setup would be the Gitzo 3541GT and its about $800 with a BH-55 Really Right Stuff ballhead for about $500 - http://reallyrightstuff.com/ballheads/03.html
My 190CXPRO4 carbon fiber tripod & 468MGRC ballhead - total = $575
& the 3021 w/322RC2 pistol grip head - total = $250
Tripods are great, they allow you so many more options for shooting and are essential for landscape, macro & night photography. I believe that one thing that seperates a pro from an amatuer, is that the pro will carry their tripod with them everywhere. - my .02 :)
Hope this helps,
Nilesh J. Bhange
Thanks a lot Carlton for such detailed information & yes I agree about pros with tripod:)
These prices are a little high for me. Can you comment on MANFROTTO 190XPROB TRIPOD WITH 486RC2 COMPACT BALL HEAD ?
Tareq M. Alhamrani
Manfrotto 055XProB + 486RC2
Manfrotto 190XProB + same above head
Manfrotto 190CX or any carbon fiber tripod.
I have 190XProB + 804RC2, but last 2 years [since 2007] I bought Gitzo tripods [I have 4 different series of Gitzo now] and I never look back to Manfrotto, I use it with RRS BH-55 and I have also Markins Q3T.
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