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jm2e
04-29-2010, 01:49 PM
I've been shooting with a 15 year old Velbon that didn't seem so cheap when I bought it in high school. Honestly, it's working just fine for me right now. I'm not taking that many tripod shots and especially not in hurricanes or earthquakes! And I'm not shooting with a heavy body or long zoom.
Been thinking about a mini upgrade and would like some help focusing so I can troll ebay and FM for options.
I'm looking to get something that's under $100. That doesn't mean $100 new, it means that every once in a while you see one for a steal and you swoop in, or they discontinued a perfectly good model and hence demand has fallen.
I know, I know, I know. Most of you guys shoot with $400 heads on top of $300 legs. That's not advice I need right now, so when you ask me for advice on your next Toyota Corolla, I won't tell you to get an Audi A8!

jacobsen1
04-29-2010, 01:54 PM
I think I'm the only one here with an expensive rig, and that's only because work bought it for me. ;)

I'd suggest some of the nicer bogen setups. The 550 pro something or other is the one I'd get if I found one cheap. It's $150 new w/o a head though. The $50 chinese ballhead knockoffs adorama sells also work pretty well, as do the $50 bogen ballheads.

Markitos
04-29-2010, 01:55 PM
My setup is Manfrotto 190xprob or something legs, definitely not $300--Brand new the legs are $129, and are pretty good (I just bent a leg, but that was my fault). I have the cheapish manfrotto ballhead, too, can't remember what it's called (you can check in the master gear list thread)... the whole combo was < $200. I'd sell you mine, but the leg's ****ed up.

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 02:06 PM
I've got the 055XPROB legs and the 488rc2 head ($275 BH). It's heavy and I need to get a strap for it, but It's solid. The downside is that fully setup, its too tall for me, I have to tiptoe to look through the viewfinder.

jacobsen1
04-29-2010, 02:09 PM
I've got the 055XPROB legs and the 488rc2 head ($275 BH). It's heavy and I need to get a strap for it, but It's solid. The downside is that fully setup, its too tall for me, I have to tiptoe to look through the viewfinder.

that's the metal legs I'd get if I were shopping right now. They also have a CF set that are similar I've been eying. My gitzo legs are SICK, but there are times when I could use more height... Dave, do you ever just not use all the leg sections so it's not too tall?

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 02:12 PM
.. Dave, do you ever just not use all the leg sections so it's not too tall?

Yea, I usually drop the lowers all they way down then use the uppers to adjust for height and level.

jacobsen1
04-29-2010, 02:24 PM
I wish they'd make those in CF honestly...

here's the 190s mark has:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/479927-REG/Manfrotto_190XPROB_190XPROB_Pro_Aluminum_Tripod.ht ml#specifications
his may or may not be the pro version, pro means the center column can come all the way up THEN go horizontally which is a very neat trick... It cost ~$30 more I think though...

here are dave's 055s:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/504845-REG/Manfrotto_055XPROB_055XPROB_Aluminum_Tripod_Legs.h tml#specifications

Bogen's CF legs generally weight a bit more than a point less, for me I'd pay the $100 more for that savings (and so it's not cold metal in winter) if only they had it in the 055 pro...

Markitos
04-29-2010, 02:46 PM
Mine are not the pros.

Honestly, if you don't use a tripod a whole lot, I'm with you on not spending tons of money--there's just not good value in it. I'll probably replace my legs with the same set because they're cheap and reasonably tough. I do need a heavier-duty ballhead, though.

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 02:47 PM
Mine has 2 insulated legs so the cold isn't a huge deal. Just don't grab that 3rd leg:lol:

It is heavy, but not near as heavy as the Sliks at the local shop. I've carried it for miles in my hand with my camera in the backpack without too much headache.

Here's a dilemma, it's big to travel with and of course heavy. I've considered getting something smaller for travel but I figure if I'm traveling, I want my best gear so why go smaller?

The other advantage of mine is that should I need it, it's a good club for bear protection. :huh:

Mark - You should be able to buy a replacement leg for yours.

Markitos
04-29-2010, 02:51 PM
Mark - You should be able to buy a replacement leg for yours.

It's honestly so low on my list of priorities that I haven't even looked beyond a cursory exploration of B&H--where I can buy replacement feet and clamps, but not legs. I'm sure all I have to do is call/go to Bogen's website, but....

jm2e
04-29-2010, 02:53 PM
Sounds like the 055XPROB replaced the 3021pro?
055XProB = Dave's setup = $180 (holds 15.4lbs)
055XB = Dave's without the center post swivel = $165
055XDB = Wing Nuts = $140 = pita
190XB = Mark's setup (?) = $130
190XDB = Old school wingnuts on legs! = $99 = pita
190XProB = Mark's setup with the center post swivel = $150
The seed was planted for this when I saw this as BestBuy:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Manfrotto+-+55.5%22+Tripod/9358116.p?id=1218090587683&skuId=9358116
I thought, maybe I could find one not-so-skinny-legged used for similar or better price.
Then I saw a 3021 nearby on craigslist for like $50! By the time I e-mailed the guy he pulled it. Now you see where this idea comes from.

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 03:05 PM
All I can say is that I had a $40 POS tripod and it sucked. I was practically on my knees to look through the viewfinder, it wasn't sturdy and I got fed up. When I bought mine I wanted solid and versatile. It was a tossup between the 190 and the 055. I went with the 055 because it's a little tougher. I will say that I don't come close to using it to it's potential with all the "positions" it can get into.

jacobsen1
04-29-2010, 03:31 PM
Here's a dilemma, it's big to travel with and of course heavy. I've considered getting something smaller for travel but I figure if I'm traveling, I want my best gear so why go smaller?


check this out:
http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=820567

but yeah, I could use a few different tripods. Or at least 2. My day to day landscaping rig, I appreciate CF for the weight, vibration absorbtion, and cold metal aspects, plus it's sexy. But I want something taller. I have to hunch for my current rig:
http://benjacobsenphoto.com/blog/wp-content/gallery/images/cme1000.jpg

when I bought that tripod, I didn't want a center column for weight reasons and because they look clunky. But it's a bit short now having used it for ~2 years. I'm looking at other options that will let me get to my 6'4" eye height (so ~10" lower with a column up) but they all get really big/heavy. I also HATE legs with 4 sections as that's 50% more leg locks to mess with.

the other tripod would be something much smaller for travel, in it's folder size, and I'd suck up the lack of height and maybe even go with a 4 section setup like in that potn link.


The other advantage of mine is that should I need it, it's a good club for bear protection. :huh:

:lol:

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 03:45 PM
Sounds like the 055XPROB replaced the 3021pro?
055XProB = Dave's setup = $180 (holds 15.4lbs)
055XB = Dave's without the center post swivel = $165
055XDB = Wing Nuts = $140 = pita
190XB = Mark's setup (?) = $130
190XDB = Old school wingnuts on legs! = $99 = pita
190XProB = Mark's setup with the center post swivel = $150
The seed was planted for this when I saw this as BestBuy:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Manfrotto+-+55.5%22+Tripod/9358116.p?id=1218090587683&skuId=9358116
I thought, maybe I could find one not-so-skinny-legged used for similar or better price.
Then I saw a 3021 nearby on craigslist for like $50! By the time I e-mailed the guy he pulled it. Now you see where this idea comes from.

I don't think you are including the Head those prices are just for the legs.

1

check this out:
http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=820567



That's sweet - I'll add it to my someday list.

thomps6s
04-29-2010, 03:49 PM
Look for a set of bogen 3001 legs (they were repalced by the 190xprob series). They are solid and can be had for around $50. Spend the rest on a nice ballhead.

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 04:06 PM
Consider this? http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=865191 I would if I didn't have other priorities right now.

jacobsen1
04-29-2010, 04:37 PM
is that the same setup I linked earlier Dave? :lol:

dmitchell
04-29-2010, 04:49 PM
Yea or very close and $250 isn't a bad deal.

Bark
05-09-2010, 11:23 PM
I have a Velbon DF 50.
All stock and cheap as dog mess, 70 bucks from a shop I think.
Three way head.
It works for me.
But I have a KATA bag that was a c-note. I can't imagine life without it.

Bone
05-09-2010, 11:41 PM
this is one that I've been wanting to order for a while now.


Ravelli AVT Video Camera Tripod with Fluid Drag Head (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00139XOCI?ie=UTF8&tag=floridacom06-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B00139XOCI)
http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=floridacom06-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B00139XOCI

It was going for around 76 or something like that. has a lot of strong reviews on it.

This is a cheap one that I was also looking at as well just for a second one if something where to go wrong with a better one or one to tie me over for a while until funds improve.

Sunpak Ultra Tripod 3 Way Fluid Effect Head (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000B4VJYQ?ie=UTF8&tag=floridacom06-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B000B4VJYQ) - going for 38-39 right now.
http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=floridacom06-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B000B4VJYQ

granted the stuff I'm looking at isn't nearly as pricey as what these other guys have going on, lol. but hey i'll worry about the pricey stuff later on.

Bone
12-07-2010, 07:33 PM
i'm curious as to what you guys think of the AKB2 Induro. I don't do anything crazy with my gear and was thinking that a C/CT is a little more than I should probably pay, plus I'm not hugely concerned about weight either. Yeah I do events but it's not like I'm going miles on miles with it...

I was also looking at the AT series as well but idk... I think they are twist locks and while yeah that might be good I also do like the fact that the AK series has quick locks due to the fact that I find myself constantly changing heights for various angles the quick locks can be beneficial.

For the AKs they come with heads already but the ATs don't. What do you guys think of the AK heads? I know they would be a definite upgrade from my current POS walmart special... lol but should I be looking at something else? I do use my 70-300 regularly and the AKB2 says it'll hold 18.x LBs but idk if that's enough for the T2i and the 70-300 with the lever factor of extension on the lens...

Bone
12-07-2010, 11:47 PM
Those legs look pretty nice. I gather the AT series are twist locks and a little better built than the AK series? The last time I had a twist lock tripod it was my grandfathers and was built in like 1960 and was pretty much a pain in the ass. I've had click locks ever since, but figure the twisties have improved. Still, like you Bone, I feel like clicking would be easier if i'm dicking around a lot.
I wonder about the ball head that comes with the AK. Think it's any good? I'm guessing that's your weak point and probably your biggest PITA point. Are there ball heads that let you shoot portrait/vertical?

well it is just a basic ball head, no major features about it, just a single release. but I would think that it should do aright it's not like i'm holding an 70-200L usm mark II on the thing, lol. I mean all I have right now is my 70-300 is usm, it might have some weight but I don't think it's all that major. I should put it on a scale and see what I get with the body and battery grip all together...

I know it's going to be a while and I would hope that this head would last long enough until I need to upgrade.

Bone
12-07-2010, 11:48 PM
how the hell? what's up with the posting?

jm2e
12-08-2010, 12:06 AM
Those legs look pretty nice. I gather the AT series are twist locks and a little better built than the AK series? The last time I had a twist lock tripod it was my grandfathers and was built in like 1960 and was pretty much a pain in the ass. I've had click locks ever since, but figure the twisties have improved. Still, like you Bone, I feel like clicking would be easier if i'm dicking around a lot.
I wonder about the ball head that comes with the AK. Think it's any good? I'm guessing that's your weak point and probably your biggest PITA point. Are there ball heads that let you shoot portrait/vertical?

jm2e
12-08-2010, 12:06 AM
:ph34r:
Wish there was a way to delete double posts!!
:ph34r:

jacobsen1
12-08-2010, 11:18 AM
AT's are just Alloy where CTs are Carbon...

I'd get something with a T in it because that means it's their newer leg locks. The twist locks are 1/4 turn from open to locked. So while flip locks SEEM much faster, they're similar and flips have more issues with breaking over time if you get sand or salt in them. I didn't love twist locks at first, now it's what I use when I have a choice. :)

Head wise, if their head does what you need and saves you money, go for it. But I'd go with a cheap nice ballhead knock off myself, so you can start down the acra plate path slowly. There are a few different $50 heads out there that come with your basic acra plate as well and will work with L-brackets if you ever want one. I've got one on my trunk pod and it's great.

Bone
12-08-2010, 10:08 PM
^^ by L brackets you are referring to the one that keeps the camera lens centered for when you are switching between portrait and landscape right?

I do like the idea of one of those plates and having a head that works directly with such would be kind of cool...

as for the AT line, I didn't know that they were 1/4 turn, idk man... I'm going to have to think on this one, I'd like to think that it would work but idk it would take some getting used to i guess.

jm2e
12-08-2010, 11:09 PM
What the **** is going on with these thread posts? I'm totally freaking out here!

Ben, what's an acra plate, what's an L bracket, and what's a trunk pod?

Bone
12-08-2010, 11:10 PM
What the **** is going on with these thread posts? I'm totally freaking out here!

Ben, what's an acra plate, what's an L bracket, and what's a trunk pod?
pod you keep in the trunk.....

jacobsen1
12-09-2010, 02:57 PM
Ben, what's an acra plate, what's an L bracket, and what's a trunk pod?

acra or arca plate is just a plate with "dove tails" that works in an arca style clamp...

here you can see a variety of plates:
http://www.dentonimages.com/img/d300plates.jpg

this is a clamp:
http://images.buzzillions.com/images_products/08/93/kirk-qrc-2-quick-release-clamp-arca-type-plates-base_3050640_raw.jpg

they're originally coined arca style plates I believe, acra is a company that makes a set of plates and heads though, so be careful with the spelling... As for the L bracket, it's the top right in the plate shot. It gives you a plate to use under the camera as well as on the side. This makes switching from horizontal to vertical compositions very easy/fast, but it also keeps the tripod centered/balanced because you don't have to tip the camera in the head. I LOVE mine.

trunk pod is my old tripod with my not as nice head with an old non-L bracket that lives in my trunk. It's there in case I or anyone else forgets their tripod for a shoot. ;)

jm2e
12-09-2010, 09:00 PM
I guess I'm smarter now.