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Tripod Thread

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Tripod Thread

Postby George James » Mon Aug 27, 2012 1:59 pm

Don't see a topic for this yet in the Photography forum, so here goes.

Classy 14ers.com photogs, please share with the class your favorite camera stands for hiking.

Fairly certain that I'll eventually become interested in a full size version and would love to hear about all your favorite picks, but I'm currently more interested in something of the mini/compact category that fits inside of an average day pack. Not concerned with getting the camera all the way up to eye level right now, just looking for a reliable platform that's sturdy enough for a system camera weighing less than two pounds.

Thanks a bunch in advance for all your suggestions, comments, and opinions.
- A mountain is not a checkbox to be ticked
- Alpinism and mountaineering are not restricted to 14,000 foot mountains
- Judgment and experience are the two most important pieces of gear you own
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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby crossfitter » Mon Aug 27, 2012 2:28 pm

REI sells this sweet tripod for $20. http://www.rei.com/product/831273/joby-gorillapod-micro-250-camera-tripod

It folds up to about the size of a bottle opener and sits flush with the bottom of the camera. It's small enough that I actually just leave it on my camera permanently. It has a decent range but it's definitely limited compared to other larger tripods. On the other hand, it's works great in a pinch.
- A mountain is not a checkbox to be ticked
- Alpinism and mountaineering are not restricted to 14,000 foot mountains
- Judgment and experience are the two most important pieces of gear you own
- Being honest to yourself and others about your abilities is a characteristic of experienced climbers
- Courage cannot be bought at REI or carried with you in your rucksack


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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby E-dorvs » Mon Aug 27, 2012 2:43 pm

I wonder other people's feeling towards them but Gorillapods have been great for me. I had one problem with a leg connection breaking but I also beat the crap out of it pretty well. I'm on my second in probably 5 years of use now. I have had the "small" (narrow version in this link http://www.rei.com/product/742238/joby-gorillapod ) and the "large" which I think they are now calling the SLR version. They are extremely convenient for attaching to hiking pole, tree, car, etc. while still making a true tripod set up. The flexibility of the legs makes it ideal (in my opinion) for hiking, biking, skiing, whatever as you're rarely on a level surface. Gives a decent bump up from ground level too so you're not completely laying on the ground for framing the photo (assuming you don't have a fold out screen). And it's flexibility actually helps in packing it as I can bend it to fit into different areas of my bag. Quick on-off function too if you leave the screw-on piece (I sound intelligent don't I?) attached to your camera.
"The solitary places do not seem quite lonely. At the gates of the forest, the surprised man of the world is forced to leave his city estimates of great and small, wise and foolish. The knapsack of custom falls off his back with the first step he makes into these precincts. Here is sanctity which shames our religions, and reality which discredits our heroes."
— Ralph Waldo Emersron, Nature.

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby JohnP » Mon Aug 27, 2012 3:44 pm

I've been pretty happy with this small tripod. It has a stable platform and the velcro strap can also be used to secure to different objects. It works well my D90 and is surprisingly stable.

http://www.amazon.com/Pedco-UltraPod-Lightweight-Camera-Tripod/dp/B000ANCPNM

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby mattpayne11 » Mon Aug 27, 2012 5:17 pm

Gorlliapod is OK - I have one. I've used it for some long exposure work when in a pinch. It is certainly the most durable and portable tripod you can get for what it does. I like it.

I know Really Right Stuff, Gitzo, Manfrotto all sell a small tripod too... but I've not tested any of them.

I only really use a Gitzo these days... heavy but it is pretty awesome.

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby rking007 » Mon Aug 27, 2012 6:42 pm

mattpayne11 wrote:Gorlliapod is OK - I have one. I've used it for some long exposure work when in a pinch. It is certainly the most durable and portable tripod you can get for what it does. I like it.

I know Really Right Stuff, Gitzo, Manfrotto all sell a small tripod too... but I've not tested any of them.

I only really use a Gitzo these days... heavy but it is pretty awesome.


Dang, what kind of Gitzo do you have? Carbon fiber = dollas that I can't sink yet, just got a 24-105 F4 IS so I'm recovering costs. :-D I bet it's super light weight compared to anything else professional but just heavy enough to make a difference on a long hike.
- Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby rking007 » Mon Aug 27, 2012 6:46 pm

Here you go, if you can afford it ($560)... only 2.1lbs.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0019QZPGS?ie=UTF8&tag=wwwsteveberar-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B0019QZPGS

Get that with a Really Right Stuff BH-30 ($270) and your in business.
- Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby rking007 » Mon Aug 27, 2012 6:51 pm

Or, if you want to go super lightweight this guys blog has three or four different hiking pole mounted options.

http://www.briangreen.net/2011/07/trekking-pole-camera-mounts.html
- Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby Dave B » Mon Aug 27, 2012 7:34 pm

JohnP wrote:I've been pretty happy with this small tripod. It has a stable platform and the velcro strap can also be used to secure to different objects. It works well my D90 and is surprisingly stable.

http://www.amazon.com/Pedco-UltraPod-Lightweight-Camera-Tripod/dp/B000ANCPNM


I'll second this option. Everything else I've found has been too heavy and/or bulky. And never have I been in a situation where this wasn't adequate.
"There is no cheating in climbing, only lying." - Semi-Rad

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby prestone818 » Mon Aug 27, 2012 8:10 pm

So hard to find a quality light weight affordable tripod

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby dave_navy_VA » Mon Aug 27, 2012 8:57 pm

If you don't mind another couple of pounds more weight, and want a tripod that's more versatile than some of the compacts, the 190 series from Manfrotto might work. They can handle a medium-sized SLR with a pretty good-sized lens easily. Unless you are mounting a lot of other stuff like lights etc back home, it should work fine back there also. These are aluminum -vs carbon fiber but that's all I need for an SLR, and CF is only a factor when you want a lighter but sturdy tripod when you have really big lenses. B&H has some good deals that include a decent head packaged into the tripod also.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/480298-REG/Manfrotto_190XB_Aluminum_Tripod_Kit.html

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Re: Tripod Thread

Postby Steve Gio » Tue Aug 28, 2012 11:40 am

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/763168-REG/Vanguard_NIVELO_204SL_Nivelo_204BK_Tripod_w_Rotating.html

I just ordered one of these. Tried it in store first with my setup and it works great. I use a Olympus e-410 and usually travel with a 14-50mm and a 70-300mm lens. It holds well with the 300mm attached. My e-410 with the 70-300mm only weights 2.8lbs.

Extends up to a usable height and only weighs 1.3 lbs. I already carry a small tripod that weighs 1.2lbs and only extends 18"

Will give it a try real soon but I think this is a winner. I looked at that tent pole tripod and would not spend that for what it is.

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