Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
03-07-2013, 06:01 AM   #1
Junior Member




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands
Posts: 31
Tripod Choice

There are so many tripods to choose from and the ones I tried were not stable enough to hold a Pentax 645 with any lens between 35mm-200mm. So I did two things, I raised my budget, i'm now in the market for a tripod w/o or with head in the range 300-500, where the upper part of this range would benefit from a deal with ballhead. And I've tried to come up with a list of specs I would really like.

I'd like to find a tripod which weights in at max. 1,8-2,0 kilos or 3,5-4,0LBS (is that right?), capable of getting really low for landscapes, macro and other cool perspectives. Height is nice to have, I'm 195cm (6ft5) long, but I prefer stability over maximum height. At the "normal" heights the tripod must be able to carry a 645, with my A120mm Macro, my A35mm and preferably as nice to have for future purposes, maybe a longer telephoto lens. I'll also be using the tripod with my K-5.
I'm likely going to hike a lot with the tripod, it is getting dirty, into water, mud, sand whatever. The weight is pretty important therefore.

I've read a few topics about my particular question on PF, but the mentioned typenumbers are not available anymore or maybe there are some different models for EU markets and VS?

My approach: visiting shops with my own list of wishes and I have some models I would like to see:

Manfrotto 055cxPRO3 *my current favorite on paper
Manfrotto 190csPRO3 *lighter than the 055, but also weaker and will not get as high, plus the max load is lower.
Gitzo??
... Others to come.

I'll hope to get some input from you guys, because everytime when I'm going for some tests I notice that I know to little about the cons and pros of each model... Thanks in advance!

03-07-2013, 06:16 AM   #2
Banned




Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Charleston & Pittsburgh
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,683
I'll get into specifics a bit later sometime, but please consider...

If there's a lot of weight at the end of the tripod head, epsecially with a 645 or even a heavier lens and items of such... I wouldn't be willing to take a chance with anything short of a $400 tripod - and that's probably tripod legs only. I'd make sure that both the tripod and the legs could at least have double the literal supporting weight listing on the tripod - especially for various outdoor conditions (factoring in wind and all), macro use, and all.

I've seen a lot of people total their camera by trying to sacrifice on the weight or stability of a tripod
03-07-2013, 07:04 AM   #3
Junior Member




Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 25
Hi there,
I am using a gitzo series 3 (quite old) and a heavy ballhead. Even this combination has its limits, if you are using a 645d in mirror lock up mode in combination with a lens longer than 100mm in the shutter speed range of 1/60 to 1 sec. Even on solid ground without wind, you will notice a blur.

As usual you have to make your decision. have you considered to buy a used tripod/ballhead?
03-07-2013, 08:36 AM   #4
Junior Member




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands
Posts: 31
Original Poster
Thanks both!

I know there are limitations, the question will be if an upgrade either of budget (spend more) or heavier tripod will solve these problems. And by how much, my first budget was around 250 total, tripod + head. I know this is a no go area, unless going for a second hand would be a viable option. Which is an option, but the problem with that is that comparing products will be a problem, no Gitzo, Manfrotto models to setup next to eachother. So maybe I'am a little biased, but buying a new product in a store has my preference. And since a good tripod will outlive me, I am willing to spend a little more for a new tripod.

@mazwick, interesting, so this is also true for my 120mm macro, where subtle movements are even more visible. Do you notice any difference in the height you're shooting from? What is the weight of this combo? My 645 + 120mm will have a total weight of 2200gr.

03-07-2013, 08:53 AM - 1 Like   #5
Veteran Member




Join Date: May 2009
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 2,869
QuoteOriginally posted by arjen Quote
Thanks both!

I know there are limitations, the question will be if an upgrade either of budget (spend more) or heavier tripod will solve these problems. And by how much, my first budget was around €250 total, tripod + head. I know this is a no go area, unless going for a second hand would be a viable option. Which is an option, but the problem with that is that comparing products will be a problem, no Gitzo, Manfrotto models to setup next to eachother. So maybe I'am a little biased, but buying a new product in a store has my preference. And since a good tripod will outlive me, I am willing to spend a little more for a new tripod.

@mazwick, interesting, so this is also true for my 120mm macro, where subtle movements are even more visible. Do you notice any difference in the height you're shooting from? What is the weight of this combo? My 645 + 120mm will have a total weight of 2200gr.
I can easily recommend Feisol, especially with that budget. I owned a gitzo series 2 basalt previously, and my feisol 3471 is just as good build quality. The 3371/3471 and 3372/3472 series largest legs are 37mm diameter - the same as gitzo series 5 legs. I opted for the 3471 with 4 leg sections. While more leg sections is usually less stable, the 4th section on the 3471 is thicker than the thickest section of my series 2 basalt legs. The 71 vs 72 series are 5lbs vs 4lbs weight. I don't find the 5lbs too taxing, the large leg sections are well padded for carrying, and of course it came with a bag as well. the USD price between the 71 and 72 series is about $320 vs $520 - 1lb wasn't enough to justify the additional expense for me though. It looks as though feisol europe only carries the newer rapid twist locks and the 3371/3471 run $329 euros (FEISOL EUROPE - Carbon Tripods, Monopods, Ballheads)

Onto a ballhead, I also readily recommend photoclam ballheads. It is a great build (i've had mine for 3-4 years now and it works as good as new). Given the camera weight I would go for at least a pc-40n (40mm ball) size. you can find them on ebay from South Korean sellers (they are made there) for around $230 USD shipped. The next size up is the pc-44n but those approach $300usd.

edit: BTW very smart move deciding to spend a little more money on the right setup the first time around, given you know exactly what you are looking for! If you held to $250 euros it would likely end up costing more $ down the road. I am 100% satisfied with the two recommendations I've given, otherwise I wouldn't offer them up - $500 is still a lot of money!

One other thing - I haven't used the feisol ballheads, but others have spoken well of them - looks like they have a couple at $150 euros that have a 50mm ball which might be beneficial - the 645 is pretty big even without lenses. I don't know if the feisol clamp is arca compatible too - the arca plates do add another expense to the equation!

Last edited by pxpaulx; 03-07-2013 at 08:59 AM.
03-07-2013, 09:18 AM   #6
Junior Member




Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 25
QuoteOriginally posted by arjen Quote
Thanks both!



@mazwick, interesting, so this is also true for my 120mm macro, where subtle movements are even more visible. Do you notice any difference in the height you're shooting from? What is the weight of this combo? My 645 + 120mm will have a total weight of 2200gr.

Hi again,
the blur is more pronounced when you use the lens with far distant objects, as every movement is multiplied. I rarely find such kind of blur when I do macro with my 120mm.
I forgot to mention, that I never use the center column of the tripod, I have removed it. This would again multiply the blur. The higher the 645D is mounted the worse is the effect and of course it depends on the ground it stands on wind etc....

I do not use a cable release but a wireless device.

If you want to buy it new from a decent dealer, test the combo with a laser pointer mounted on your 645, release the sutter and check how the point of the pointer dances. That s the best you can do.

Have fun
03-07-2013, 10:40 AM   #7
Pentaxian
mikeSF's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: East Bay Area, CA
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,534
depends of course what YOU are shooting, but i've had a few different types and now prefer a heavier metal tripod, not carbon. when shooting in strong wind or partially submerged in moving water doing long exposures, why risk movement from a light tripod? I hike often and have never been on a hike where i felt my tripod was just too darn heavy. I also moved from a ball and pistol grip to a 3-way head (Manfrotto 329RC4) which is awesome.
good luck in the search
03-07-2013, 11:40 AM   #8
Junior Member




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands
Posts: 31
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by pxpaulx:
I can easily recommend Feisol, especially with that budget. I owned a gitzo series 2 basalt previously, and my feisol 3471 is just as good build quality. The 3371/3471 and 3372/3472 series largest legs are 37mm diameter - the same as gitzo series 5 legs. I opted for the 3471 with 4 leg sections. While more leg sections is usually less stable, the 4th section on the 3471 is thicker than the thickest section of my series 2 basalt legs. The 71 vs 72 series are 5lbs vs 4lbs weight. I don't find the 5lbs too taxing, the large leg sections are well padded for carrying, and of course it came with a bag as well. the USD price between the 71 and 72 series is about $320 vs $520 - 1lb wasn't enough to justify the additional expense for me though. It looks as though feisol europe only carries the newer rapid twist locks and the 3371/3471 run $329 euros (FEISOL EUROPE - Carbon Tripods, Monopods, Ballheads)

Onto a ballhead, I also readily recommend photoclam ballheads. It is a great build (i've had mine for 3-4 years now and it works as good as new). Given the camera weight I would go for at least a pc-40n (40mm ball) size. you can find them on ebay from South Korean sellers (they are made there) for around $230 USD shipped. The next size up is the pc-44n but those approach $300usd.

edit: BTW very smart move deciding to spend a little more money on the right setup the first time around, given you know exactly what you are looking for! If you held to $250 euros it would likely end up costing more $ down the road. I am 100% satisfied with the two recommendations I've given, otherwise I wouldn't offer them up - $500 is still a lot of money!

One other thing - I haven't used the feisol ballheads, but others have spoken well of them - looks like they have a couple at $150 euros that have a 50mm ball which might be beneficial - the 645 is pretty big even without lenses. I don't know if the feisol clamp is arca compatible too - the arca plates do add another expense to the equation!
Thank you Paul for this usefull insight. Feisol wasn't on my list yet, and I've found a few stores in my area where they sell them. I'll certainly look into it.

QuoteOriginally posted by mazwick:
the blur is more pronounced when you use the lens with far distant objects, as every movement is multiplied. I rarely find such kind of blur when I do macro with my 120mm.
I forgot to mention, that I never use the center column of the tripod, I have removed it. This would again multiply the blur. The higher the 645D is mounted the worse is the effect and of course it depends on the ground it stands on wind etc....
Some times when I use my very cheap, crappy tripod on the lowest position I'am able to make 4s exposures with my macrolens without problem. Can't fight physics forever, so i'am convinced that almost every tripod i'll buy will be a huge progression forward for me...


QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF:
depends of course what YOU are shooting, but i've had a few different types and now prefer a heavier metal tripod, not carbon. when shooting in strong wind or partially submerged in moving water doing long exposures, why risk movement from a light tripod? I hike often and have never been on a hike where i felt my tripod was just too darn heavy. I also moved from a ball and pistol grip to a 3-way head (Manfrotto 329RC4) which is awesome.
good luck in the search
This is also pretty usefull insight. To begin, I'm trying to find a solution which serves both portability and sturdiness. If my wishes in weight and such are unrealistic then I'll have to haul more weight evidently. But if I can find that one tripod which is just the right combination...

Thanks everyone! I'm planning a trip to one store(consumer to enhousiast level) tomorrow morning, and next week on tuesday to another one (enthousiast to pro level)

03-07-2013, 12:19 PM   #9
Veteran Member




Join Date: May 2009
Location: Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 2,869
QuoteOriginally posted by arjen Quote
Thank you Paul for this usefull insight. Feisol wasn't on my list yet, and I've found a few stores in my area where they sell them. I'll certainly look into it.
Even better then - I bought sight unseen and haven't been disappointed! I find at 5lbs the 3471 is a solid weight for carbon fiber, but not overly heavy. Also, it is quite tall - I'm 5'11 and depending on the size of ballhead (or a gimbal) the viewfinder is at or above my eye level.
03-07-2013, 01:11 PM   #10
Veteran Member
TenZ.NL's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Below sealevel
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,100
Arjen, If the 55cxpro3 is the same as my 055XproB (except for material offcourse), I have a 468MG hydrostatic ballhead on it (with RC2 plate rated 10Kg`s) and I live very close by (within 10km`s). If you want you`re welcome to test it.

Last edited by TenZ.NL; 03-07-2013 at 01:19 PM.
03-09-2013, 07:14 AM   #11
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Arizona
Photos: Albums
Posts: 330
Most people often underestimate the amount of money they need to spend on support equipment. I will tell you I have about 10kUSD invested in my current support equipment. And I have lost probably 2kUSD trying to get it right. It comes down to your needs and purchasing what fits your needs. Equipment I have used has ranged from 35mm film slrs and 35mm/apsc digital SLRs with up to 600mm lenses, 6x7 and 6x9 film rangefinders, Pentax 67, Pentax 645, Pentax 645D with up to 600mm lens. Equipment ranging from macro focusing rails to long lens support to gyros for aerial photography.

I have four tripods which all serve a specific purpose. A Gitzo series 0 carbon, Gitzo series 4 aluminum, Really Right Stuff series 3 carbon (weight of a series 3 from gitzo with support capabilities close to a series 5 carbon from Gitzo), and Berlebach wooden tripod (16lbs weight and 95lbs load capacity). I have been through other Gitzo (including the explorer series) and Manffroto tripods all of which I sold at a loss.

Tripod heads I use are Arca Swiss D4, Arca Swiss Z2, and Really Right Stuff BH 25. All of these have a specific purpose of use. Tripod heads I have sitting around that never really get use are Kirk BH1 and full Wimberly head; sold a Kirk BH3 at a loss.

Massive fan of geared heads for landscapes. I just upgraded and chose an Arca Swiss due to a lot of complaints about load capacity, durability, etc. with the manfroto 405; not to mention the retarded non arca clamp thingy. The D4 was a good compromise between the Arca Swiss cube and the Manfrotto 405. And I am happy to say this was my first entry into geared heads and I made the right choice finally. Never go back to the standard ball head again. The precision framing it allows with no fuss is a dream.

Words of advice. Don't skimp on what you need. Extra money is better spent from the start than later. Support equipment losses value very fast, you won't come close to recovering the investment minus wear and tear. Don't underestimate maximum height. I find myself setting up at the edge of cliffs often with one or two legs fully extended and still bending over with a tripod that has a maximum height of 68". Don't under estimate load capacity; that number is a generic number which often does not compare across brands. If you are operating even at 75% of the maximum load capacity you will be sacrificing ISO to gain shutter speed to get non blurry images. Don't under estimate your tripod heads. Good tripod heads make a wold of difference. Don't under estimate how much money you are going to spend on various accessories, clamps, plates, lens support, etc., etc... But choose this stuff carefully. Thank about everything you could potentially need and how to choose clamps, rails etc. for multiple purposes. I have about 5 clamps laying around that never get used (@ 100USD each that is 500USD with a resale value of probably 100USD so I keep them for eventual use) and multiple plates and other odds and ends.


QuoteOriginally posted by mikeSF Quote
depends of course what YOU are shooting, but i've had a few different types and now prefer a heavier metal tripod, not carbon. when shooting in strong wind or partially submerged in moving water doing long exposures, why risk movement from a light tripod? I hike often and have never been on a hike where i felt my tripod was just too darn heavy. I also moved from a ball and pistol grip to a 3-way head (Manfrotto 329RC4) which is awesome.
good luck in the search
Partially agree; but that can be overcome by using weights. I carry a bagish thing used as a sink for camping that I can fill with rocks/sand/ or even water to hang underneath. Remember though that his improves support greatly but takes away from load capacity.

Last edited by atlnq9; 03-09-2013 at 07:52 AM.
03-10-2013, 09:25 AM   #12
Junior Member




Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands
Posts: 31
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by tenZ.NL:
Arjen, If the 55cxpro3 is the same as my 055XproB (except for material offcourse), I have a 468MG hydrostatic ballhead on it (with RC2 plate rated 10Kg`s) and I live very close by (within 10km`s). If you want you`re welcome to test it.
Sorry for the late reply, and thank you for the generous offer to test my system on your tripod. I've tried this particular tripod (with a standard ballhead) in the store a while back and it was in the controlled environment of the store that I felt the limit of the tripod was a little to close for comfort. So I don't think it compares to the carbonversion which I've still haven't tested in real-life. But I'll keep the nice invitation in my mind. And i'm curious what your experiences are with this particular setup.

@atinq9, I couldn't agree more, but there is a limit for me. I can't save money forever because there is always a better, pricier system which will exceed expectations. But the bottomline is, and thats my idea too, better spend a little more than be sorry!
03-10-2013, 11:27 AM   #13
Veteran Member
TenZ.NL's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Below sealevel
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,100
QuoteOriginally posted by arjen Quote
Sorry for the late reply, and thank you for the generous offer to test my system on your tripod. I've tried this particular tripod (with a standard ballhead) in the store a while back and it was in the controlled environment of the store that I felt the limit of the tripod was a little to close for comfort. So I don't think it compares to the carbonversion which I've still haven't tested in real-life. But I'll keep the nice invitation in my mind. And i'm curious what your experiences are with this particular setup.
Offcouse, I ment size and height.
I`ve checked the weight of your combo, lets say the 645D (1480gr) with the 120mm Macro (735gr) is about 2,5 kilo`s. My K5 with grip and sigma 150-500 is roughly the same and is longer (work= froce x lenght/arbeid is kracht x arm)
Loadcapacity of the 055cxPRO3 is 8 kg`s (only one kg more than mine) so they are both suited for your intended setup. IMHO it`s the head that makes the difference here.

You said you used a standard ballhead? I think you might want to try a better one.
03-10-2013, 11:35 AM   #14
Pentaxian
Dynamo's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Groningen
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 311
+1 for Feisol..

Hi Arjen, check this...

http://www.feisol.nl/rapid-tripods-traveler-c-1_11.html

I own it and so far very happy with it!!

also check:Feisol CT-3441S tripod experience?

by the way I am not working for feisol..

Last edited by Dynamo; 03-10-2013 at 12:51 PM.
03-11-2013, 12:08 AM   #15
672
Site Supporter




Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: santa monica
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 412
Atlq9, you mention that your wimberly doesnt get used often, so, what head do you favor for supertelephoto? I am asking because i finally had it with a manfrotto 501 (video head) and just recieved a wimberly mark one which i am very excited to try out. I tried an acratech long lens head , but it's not so good with medium format glass. The only downside i can see so far with the wimberly is size and weight for longer hikes.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, height, lens, list, macro, manfrotto, max, medium format, models, range, tripod
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale - Sold: Tabletop tripod & tripod heads MJL Sold Items 3 11-19-2012 09:59 PM
Tripod Strap vs Tripod Bag vs Nothing At All reivax Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 16 01-10-2012 07:58 PM
For Sale - Sold: Slik 813 CF II carbon fiber tripod + tripod head (Australia) Edvinas Sold Items 5 08-02-2009 04:56 PM
Tripod and head choice - Good or bad ? netuser Pentax Camera and Field Accessories 5 12-15-2008 10:30 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:57 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top