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03-15-2016, 11:32 AM   #1
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Looking for a sturdy, lightweight travel tripod

I'm looking for a sturdy tripod I can take with me on hikes, biking and around town. I have a nice SLIK tripod, but the thing is just a little too big to fit in a bag and heavy. For a while I tried to get by with table top and gorilla pod tripods, but something free standing would be way better. My big criteria are that it fit in a backpack, not weigh a ton, be able to support my pentax 645 or my K3. I don't need something that gets very tall, if it didn't have a extendable centre column at all that would be amazing, but it seems to be rare to omit the feature. I realize something that will support a medium format camera might be a bit costly, but I'm looking forward to invest in something that will work for some time to come. Acra swiss mount would be great too. Suggestions?

03-15-2016, 11:42 AM   #2
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Here's my go-to tripod available through Amazon. You might even find my review of it there. Light, sturdy, built-in compass, not too expensive.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008JE4S6G?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=od_aui_detailpages00

Note the convenient flip locking screw on the quick release plate. No need to make sure you have a coin with you (how irritating that is!) when out and about. I like the twist-secure leg locks, prefer them to the clamp/lever ones.

Last edited by Wolfeye; 03-15-2016 at 11:48 AM.
03-15-2016, 11:53 AM   #3
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Maybe this:
Sirui T-025x Travel Tripod Review - Introduction | PentaxForums.com Reviews
03-15-2016, 12:04 PM   #4
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I did this same shop last month and ended up with this one: Amazon.com : Dolica TX570B150SL Ultra Compact Tripod with Professional Ball Head (Black) : Travel Tripod : Camera & Photo

I think it fit's the bill nicely at not too steep a price. Fits in my bag easily and has been getting the job done well.

Only thing I did differently was get one of these arca plates: Amazon.com : Arca-Type Quick Release Plate : Camera & Photo

...just because I use a sling strap and wanted a plate I could leave the strap fastener attached to so I can leave the plate on the camera more often. I've been happy with this decision too... Just wish my full size tripod was also arca.... someday...

..oh and I took the spring lock off the head because it was slowing me down...

If you go with this one, just be aware that the monopod version is not an arca type plate/head... I got the version without monopod because I wanted arca...


Last edited by todd; 03-15-2016 at 12:10 PM.
03-15-2016, 12:47 PM   #5
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Thanks so far guys, these all look great! I hadn't thought of getting a cheap one from amazon. The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645? I generally shoot with primes, so the weight is reasonably centered at least.
03-15-2016, 01:18 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645?
Ask @Heie he wrote that great review, I want that tripod but don't have it.
03-15-2016, 01:21 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Thanks so far guys, these all look great! I hadn't thought of getting a cheap one from amazon. The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645? I generally shoot with primes, so the weight is reasonably centered at least.
Never tried the Sirui, but I shoot with the Pentax 645N II on my Dolica and it works fine.
03-15-2016, 01:28 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Thanks so far guys, these all look great! I hadn't thought of getting a cheap one from amazon. The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645? I generally shoot with primes, so the weight is reasonably centered at least.
Watch the review. He uses a Sigma 500mm f/4.5 on it at one point.



03-15-2016, 01:46 PM   #9
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this works great as a travel tripod


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00JXNCQY8?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o09_s00
03-15-2016, 02:04 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Thanks so far guys, these all look great! I hadn't thought of getting a cheap one from amazon. The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645? I generally shoot with primes, so the weight is reasonably centered at least.
If you let me borrow a 645z I will tell you

On a serious note how much does a 645+ lens weigh?

I know on my Sirui I can mount a K-3+grip+spare battery+ Tamron 70-200 with no problem.

That's probably a total of 5 pounds of weigh or close to it.
03-16-2016, 06:39 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
If you let me borrow a 645z I will tell you

On a serious note how much does a 645+ lens weigh?

I know on my Sirui I can mount a K-3+grip+spare battery+ Tamron 70-200 with no problem.

That's probably a total of 5 pounds of weigh or close to it.
I have the film version of the 645. I'd be happy to let you try it... if you were local! :P

I've never weighed it, but I imagine your K3 combo there would weigh about the same or more than the 645 with a prime.
05-17-2016, 02:36 PM   #12
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I just wanted to say thanks to everyone. I ended up ordering a Dolicia, arrived in the mail today. I was planning on getting a more expensive tripod, but this seems like a cheap and cheery tripod - sure packs up small too!
05-17-2016, 09:41 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
I just wanted to say thanks to everyone. I ended up ordering a Dolicia, arrived in the mail today. I was planning on getting a more expensive tripod, but this seems like a cheap and cheery tripod - sure packs up small too!
I ended up buying the Dolica myself. Within the first week one of its legs cracked. It may not actually be super sturdy, so be careful.
05-18-2016, 05:06 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Dipsoid Quote
I ended up buying the Dolica myself. Within the first week one of its legs cracked. It may not actually be super sturdy, so be careful.
Yikes, here's hoping I get some more use out of mine!
05-18-2016, 10:00 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by bobbotron Quote
Thanks so far guys, these all look great! I hadn't thought of getting a cheap one from amazon. The Sirui looks great, do you think it could handle a 645? I generally shoot with primes, so the weight is reasonably centered at least.
The T-025X can surely support a 645. The head should, as long as it's not tipped too low I guess. It's rated for a heavier weight than that but I've never tested it with anything worse than a K-3 with 60-250. It worked flawlessly for that.

I replaced the head with a Sirui K10X at Christmas, and even though it's only slightly larger, it's MUCH sturdier. Impressively so.

With tripods, you mostly get what you pay for. I have a 40$ Dolica and even though it works, it's leagues behind the Sirui. The T-025X is the lightest, most compact, and strongest of the travel tripods. and even though it's expensive, it's a bit cheaper than the competition, with a better warranty. There's also an aluminum version if price is an issue.
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