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12-09-2014, 07:55 AM   #16
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that it is.

12-09-2014, 08:04 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
I've had it since about 1983. It's a Leitz Tiltall and I originally got it, to use with heavy medium format cameras such as Pentax 6 X 7 and Mamiya's.
Those old Tiltall tripods are a bargain these days for those who work relatively close to their car. They're not back-packing tripods, but they're a good buy for the money.

---------- Post added 12-09-2014 at 11:15 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by mikeodial Quote
I have been searching over the holiday to see if there are any deals on a good CF tripod and professional ball head. RRS, Feisol, Gitzo, Acractech etc.
As Adam said, those things don't tend to be discounted much. I think it's because pros will buy them and write the expense off on their taxes. Deciding how much to spend on a tripod is a very personal thing. Some people think spending any amount on a tripod is a waste because of the flexibility in ISOs that we have with digital cameras. Others think that a tripod is a necessary item because they want the maximum quality their camera can give, so they only shoot in RAW at ISO 100. I'm in the latter group. I tend to shoot relatively stationary subjects, so there's no good reason not to use a tripod. I happen to be a Gitzo fan, but I've also worked around Bogen/Manfrotto products and I think they're just as durable, but only a bit less convenient. I bit the bullet back in 1988 and bought a metal Gitzo tripod that can go from ground-level to eye-level for any camera combination I choose to put on it. For me and the way I shoot, it has been as solid of an investment as any lens or camera I've purchased along the way. If you need a tripod for the way you shoot...buy a good one and think of it in terms of buying a really good lens. It can be something that transcends film, digital, APS-C, FF, medium format, telephoto, macro...whatever.

Edited to add: My experience with Gitzo isn't unique. I've worked in video for over 35 years and Gitzo has been the overwhelming choice of independent and corporate videographers during that time. Right now, we're using some carbon-fiber Gitzo legs that we've had for 13 years in industrial use...and they're going strong. We probably need to replace the video head, but there's nothing wrong with the legs. Having said that...Gitzo is NOT the only brand selling decent carbon-fiber legs these days. Legs are the smaller factor in this equation. The head is a much bigger factor, IMO.

Last edited by TaoMaas; 12-09-2014 at 08:21 AM.
12-09-2014, 03:27 PM   #18
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I'm not a professional, and I don't have a Gitzo. However, I think you'll find that some of the other brands that are cheaper than the Gitzo are essentially trying to be Gitzo knock-offs... The result: they are essentially already discounted and often they are excellent tripods. They are not Gitzo's, but they're close.

I have a Feisol tripod that I just love, and I coupled it with one of the Photo-Clam ballheads referred to earlier. The legs and head are knock offs but it total it cost me the same as just the legs of the similar Gitzo that the Feisol legs were trying to copy. If I was a professional, I probably would have gone with the Gitzo because I imagine the knock-offs are going to show their "cheapness" by not lasting as long, but they'll last long enough.

As a side note, I had previously tried to use a leg and head combo that were less than $200 total. The combo was not good and did not let me take any quality shots over 1-second. It was good for daytime use and composition purposes, but not for evening and night photography. That led me to the Feisol Combo, which has been superb for night photography and images I've taken out to 90 seconds. I only mention that to emphasize that getting a good tripod and be costly if your purpose of having one is for longer exposures.
12-09-2014, 06:38 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Neo_ Quote
Markins ballheads are probably the professional ones with the best price
QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
Because they are ARCA knock offs...
Too bad Arca-Swiss can't seem to make a head as smooth/strong/light as Markins can...

QuoteOriginally posted by emalvick Quote
I have a Feisol tripod that I just love, and I coupled it with one of the Photo-Clam ballheads referred to earlier. The legs and head are knock offs but it total it cost me the same as just the legs of the similar Gitzo that the Feisol legs were trying to copy. If I was a professional, I probably would have gone with the Gitzo because I imagine the knock-offs are going to show their "cheapness" by not lasting as long, but they'll last long enough.
My Feisol 3401 held up to 10 years of constant use until I sold it in the Marketplace. Here's hoping my Gitzo will last as long...

12-10-2014, 01:49 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by panoguy Quote
My Feisol 3401 held up to 10 years of constant use until I sold it in the Marketplace. Here's hoping my Gitzo will last as long...
I'm glad to hear that. I'm hoping I never have to replace the legs.
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