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01-28-2013, 08:05 AM   #1
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Decent tripod for under 100

Hi Guys,

Last year I bought one of these tripods off Amazon - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Heavy-Professional-Aluminium-Camera-Tripod/dp/B000M3...385197&sr=1-17. Prior to this I had an ordinary Slik tripod and desperately wanted to upgrade to a sturdier ball head version. With all the positive reviews I expected it to be a decent tripod, sadly it's turned out to be rubbish. It worked great for a good few months but recently pieces of metal fell out and the locking mechanism for the hot shoe has broken. I've contacted netgadgets and they have agreed to refund me my money.

I'm now on the lookout for a replacement and whilst I would like to get something like a Manfrotto or Giottos my budget simply doesn't stretch to that right now.

I've found these contenders on Amazon -

Hahnel Triad 40 Lite Professional Light Weight: Amazon.co.uk: Camera & Photo

Slik Pro 340 BH Tripod with SBH-200DQ Ball and Socket: Amazon.co.uk: Camera & Photo

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mantona-Pro-Makro-Tripod-Ballhead/dp/B002BFR1QS/ref=...=I57RT2GIJE0F7

And finally the cheapest Manfrotto I could find - Manfrotto 190XPROB - Tripod - with Manfrotto 496RC2: Amazon.co.uk: Electronics

Do any of you own one of the above tripods? I need it to be extremely sturdy and have a decent locking mechanism, especially because the Pentax K-R doesnt support HDR/Bracketing using the timer or remote - very annoying as I need to hold the button down or press it 3 times.

Thanks in advance,

Alex

01-28-2013, 08:44 AM   #2
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Ok I've just found these guys - Red Snapper. I've never heard of Redsnapper before but after reading some reviews they seem to make the best budget tripods.

Think I'm sold!
01-28-2013, 01:22 PM   #3
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Cheap tripods and cheap ball heads are a total waste of money. Do yourself a favor and get a good set of legs from reputable company. How much does your camera kit cost? Do you really want to trust it something 'cheap'?

There used to be an auto service store down the road that always advertised "cheapest price on brakes anywhere, we will never be undersold". Think about it. Want to trust your children's lives to the "cheapest price anywhere"?

In my opinion there is no decent tripod at that price point, just things that look like tripods and will fail, hopefully without dumping your kit in the river when it goes.
01-28-2013, 01:44 PM   #4
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Quite a few reviews in this article. Best tripods and camera supports: 15 tested | News | TechRadar

01-28-2013, 02:02 PM - 1 Like   #5
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Remember consider 2nd hand, you may well get a lot more tripod for your money.
01-28-2013, 02:11 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
Remember consider 2nd hand, you may well get a lot more tripod for your money.
+1 Often the best way to go.
01-28-2013, 02:23 PM   #7
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Thom Hogan has a nice article on this: Tripods and Ball Heads by Thom Hogan

Doesn't mean you need to spend $1000 on support, but it might set you on a course.
01-28-2013, 04:15 PM   #8
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I have a $50 Davis & Sanford that I have had for a few years. It has been all the tripod I have ever needed. Maybe I lucked out and, as always, YMMV.

01-28-2013, 04:24 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by bullitt_60 Quote
I have a $50 Davis & Sanford that I have had for a few years. It has been all the tripod I have ever needed. Maybe I lucked out and, as always, YMMV.
Despite my post above I actually have an aluminum tripod that I paid $22usd for at a garage sale. It weighs about 25 pounds and will hold anything you want to put on it. But I rarely use it except in the studio because it is too heavy. I think it was originally for survey equipment.
01-28-2013, 04:50 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by sharepointalex Quote
I need it to be extremely sturdy
That right there unfortunately blows your budget right out of the water, as far as photographic tripods go. Maybe consider a wooden surveyors tripod, they are very steady and not too expensive.

Edit: I use these legs Manfrotto 475B Digital Pro Tripod - Black: Amazon.co.uk: Electronics
And this head http://www.amazon.co.uk/Manfrotto-229-3D-Pro-Head/dp/B000JLM508/ref=pd_sim_ce_2
They are very stable but I would not call the combination extremely sturdy.

Last edited by Ex Finn.; 01-28-2013 at 05:04 PM.
01-28-2013, 04:58 PM   #11
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I am still shopping for one but even though it does not meet your price this is one I think you should consider: Amazon.co.uk: manfrotto 055xprob: Electronics & Photo . Unless the dollar has gained a lot of strength in the last 8 months that is a better price than Amazon USA has it listed for.

I think bhpPhoto has it for a little less but then you have deal with duty and VAT.
01-28-2013, 05:04 PM   #12
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You have already answered your own question. You tried going cheap and found out it doesn't work out well. A good tripod is a life time investment. I still have (and use) the Bogen I bought 30+ years ago, and it's as trustworthy as ever. The only reason I bought a Feisol a couple years ago is for the reduced weight factor when traveling.

Someone recommended looking at used units, which is an excellent idea - provided they are in good shape and haven't been abused. Check out camera shops and/or pawn shops, so you can try before you buy.
01-28-2013, 05:42 PM   #13
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This is not going to help the OP, but...Then there are the "extremely sturdy" tripod legs... by quick-set.Tripod, Load Capacity 400 lbs/181 kg, Max Height 41 in/104 cm, 4 in/10 cm Foot Plate, PN 4-60450-0, at Antenna Systems They have models that go higher.
Just add the head of your choice..
01-28-2013, 05:51 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
Despite my post above I actually have an aluminum tripod that I paid $22usd for at a garage sale. It weighs about 25 pounds and will hold anything you want to put on it. But I rarely use it except in the studio because it is too heavy. I think it was originally for survey equipment.
Yeah, let me add too that I do plan on upgrading at some point, but luckily haven't felt the need to yet. I might just put a new ball head on it first. I know there is better out there.
01-28-2013, 06:04 PM   #15
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Check out the B&H used section. I just bought an used (both rated 9/10 so pretty much like new) Manfrotto and ball head for less than $170 shipped. For sure it's not top of the line but the combo would cost around $260 had I bought it in Montreal Canada and looking at reviews from Amazon, it looks like a great combo for the price. Can't wait to actually try it..

922140 1 MANFROTTO 190XPROB 3-SEC PRO TRIPOD
922240 1 MANFROTTO 496RC2 COMPACT BALL HEAD QR
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