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09-11-2015, 10:01 AM   #1
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Tall Girl Looking for Monopod

Hello.

I am interested in finding a monopod to support my K-30 with the DA 55-300 or F70-210 attached. I am 5'8" and need to know how tall the monopod must extend (with camera attached) so that I am not stooping over. The Giottos MML 3270B says it extends to 67". Anyone have experience with that model? I see there is also a 3290B as well.

The budget is at a low point, so I need to know if I there is anything available that is inexpensive, yet sturdy enough.
I am also looking at Manfrotto's 234 RC tilt head to attach to the top. Do I need to know about two different screw size threads when shopping for the above items?

Thanks for any and all tips.

09-11-2015, 10:35 AM   #2
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The one you located should work. I am 5' 10" and I use one that is around 65" tall without any head on it sometimes. Adding even a short head will give it additional height making it that much easier to use. As far as the socket size goes you need a 1/4 thread to go in the camera but the head you select may need 3/8th inch. On my monopod they supplied an overlay screw that drops in over the 1/4 inch one there and makes it a 3/8ths.

I'm not sure about your budget (weight and $) but I will say my Manfrotto 3218 is very sturdy - maybe too sturdy! The current model is the 681B and retails for close to $80 USD. If you want to support this site, follow one of the links from here: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/24-photographic-equipment-sale/97599-free...opaz-labs.html and shop for the 681B - it's not the lightest but it is very strong and plenty tall.
09-11-2015, 11:04 AM   #3
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i have a related question for long time. --- timmijo: i am not trying to hijack your thread, I do believe it is related:

I used monopods quite a lot, more than tripods. But I never figure out how to judge a monopod. I feel a monopod that is tall enough and does not bend or collapse with camera+lens+ a little weight/force from hand is a good enough one. I bought very low priced monopods, one very small and compact, one much stronger and taller. I take the stronger one only when I need to use it as a walk stick also. Otherwise, the small thumb-size monopod seems fine.

Do I miss anything useful that a sturdy monopod can provide, just because I have never used a good/expensive one? They are out there and people pay more $ for them must for good reasons.
09-11-2015, 11:09 AM   #4
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I would think any monopod would work that is at least 5'1" (your height minus four inches from the top of your head to your eyes, then minus three inches from the viewfinder to the bottom of the camera). If you add a tilt/ball head, that will give you another couple inches. I'm 6'3", and I think my cheapo pod is 72" and too tall when fully extended. I would have been all right with a 68".

09-11-2015, 11:32 AM   #5
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I am 6'3" and found a dynex dx-sw040 that is really a bit too tall for me. I was in the DC area and going to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum near the Dulles airport, after a set of meetings. I found that they do not allow tripods, but allow monopods. So, this was a spur of the moment purchase at Best Buy for about $30, the night before. I just used the head from my tripod. It has a 1/4 bolt, so you can use a 1/4 to 3/8 bushing if the head needs a 3/8 bolt.

It's nothing special, but it works just fine. It easily holds my K5 with a DA 60-250.

With it being a bit too tall, I just don't extend one of the leg segments all the way. It has flip leg locks.

1 pound 19 inch folded 70 inch max height 17.6 pound load


Last edited by interested_observer; 09-11-2015 at 11:39 AM.
09-11-2015, 11:59 AM   #6
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One thing to consider is that often, a monopod is used when hiking on uneven terrain. In that case, you might find yourself resting it below the level of your feet. In that case a taller monopod can be useful.

That being said, even though I love my cheapo carbon monopod, I find I don't use it all that much.
09-11-2015, 12:00 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
Do I miss anything useful that a sturdy monopod can provide, just because I have never used a good/expensive one? They are out there and people pay more $ for them must for good reasons.
Not so much sturdy, but speed. I bought a Manfrotto Neotec, an expensive one, only because of the speed with which I can retract or expand it without needing to use both hands. Sports shooters and journalists favour it.

09-11-2015, 12:26 PM   #8
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I am 5'11" and I have had the Manfrotto 679B with the 3265 Joystick Head for about 4-5 years. Fully extended this set up towers over my head. When I went to buy the monopod, I tested the 679B and other offerings from many brands by extending the leg, lock the clamps then pressing down against the floor with moderate force (much more than any camera+lens setup) - only the 679B held up without the clamp slipping.

I wouldn't recommend 234RC tilt head (I have one). My monopod and my two legs form a tripod and just a tilt adjustment is simply not enough for my needs. If you were to have your monopod in front of you, perpendicular to the ground, the 234RC might do the job but adjusting the body to an equipment's limitations is not very comfortable and feels unnatural. The 3265 Joystick head is no longer available new but can be found easily on eBay - I've had my Tamron SP 60B 300/2.8 and K-5 mounted on the monopod without any problem.

You say you are on a budget but you do get what you pay for - why do you think I Have a 234RC Tilt head sitting unused, gathering dust?
09-11-2015, 12:40 PM - 2 Likes   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
cheapo carbon monopod, I find I don't use it all that much
Is it because it is not "dirty cheap"? I stick my monopod in water and mud as a walk stick. I used it fighting with a snake once!
09-11-2015, 12:51 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by grahame Quote
Is it because it is not "dirty cheap"? I stick my monopod in water and mud as a walk stick. I used it fighting with a snake once!
No, because with SR I find that I rarely need more stabilization during the day, even with the 60-250. And with two young kids I often have my hands full . the rest of the time, as a rule I forget to bring it along...

I use an Op-Tech sling strap, and have reporter/backpack connectors on my hiking backpack. I really love those. The camera is close to my body all the time, runs little risk of hitting anything, and is easily removed when I actually want to use it. wonderful system.
09-11-2015, 01:07 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by interested_observer Quote
I am 6'3" and found a dynex dx-sw040 that is really a bit too tall for me. I was in the DC area and going to the Udvar-Hazy Air and Space Museum near the Dulles airport, after a set of meetings. I found that they do not allow tripods, but allow monopods. So, this was a spur of the moment purchase at Best Buy for about $30, the night before. I just used the head from my tripod. It has a 1/4 bolt, so you can use a 1/4 to 3/8 bushing if the head needs a 3/8 bolt.

It's nothing special, but it works just fine. It easily holds my K5 with a DA 60-250.

With it being a bit too tall, I just don't extend one of the leg segments all the way. It has flip leg locks.

1 pound 19 inch folded 70 inch max height 17.6 pound load

But the important question is: did you have a good time at Udvar-Hazy? It's one of my favorite museums / gear testing grounds, since I can shoot wide, tele, macro, low-light, flash - all in air-conditioned comfort, year-round. And the hotels around Dulles are usually cheap on weekends.
09-11-2015, 01:12 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by THoog Quote
But the important question is: did you have a good time at Udvar-Hazy? It's one of my favorite museums / gear testing grounds, since I can shoot wide, tele, macro, low-light, flash - all in air-conditioned comfort, year-round. And the hotels around Dulles are usually cheap on weekends.
Small topic detour:
I went to DC with family and my son and I decided to go to Udvar-Hazy from our base in Maryland. Chose my times well no problems on the beltway either way (yeah!) but - and it's a big one - I realized as we left that I thought I might have forgotten my camera. My son climbed out of his seatbelt and looked and said he saw it. He was wrong - it was another bag. I got to the place - and had only my iPhone. Sad face.
09-11-2015, 01:17 PM   #13
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I have a slik monopod I picked up from a local camera store for $40 that has worked fine for me so far. I'm 6' and it gets my k-30 to eye level easily.
09-11-2015, 01:31 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
Small topic detour:
I went to DC with family and my son and I decided to go to Udvar-Hazy from our base in Maryland. Chose my times well no problems on the beltway either way (yeah!) but - and it's a big one - I realized as we left that I thought I might have forgotten my camera. My son climbed out of his seatbelt and looked and said he saw it. He was wrong - it was another bag. I got to the place - and had only my iPhone. Sad face.
Ouch! There is a photo store (AcePhoto) about 15 minutes away in Sterling that actually stocks Pentax, (another reason why that area is my "Base Camp One" for expeditions north), but I don't think they do rental.

Easing back to the original topic (sorry for the hijack), I can't remember if I've used my monopod at U-H. With the white ceiling, the light levels are actually pretty good, although the combination of daylight and spotlights can drive white balance crazy. I've used the 'elbows on railings' technique a few times.
09-12-2015, 05:37 AM   #15
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Thanks, everyone, and no worries. The point is to get dialog going and to learn something.
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