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Old May 14th, 2012, 10:46 AM   #1
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2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

Hey all. I've recently bought a DSLR, mainly for still photo use, but will utilize for video some also. I already own another camera, and have a set of Vinten Vision Blue sticks. I'm interested in picking up another tripod, for use in doing stills, but could possibly be used for video.

I was wondering on suggestion of tripods to check out, in the sub $500 range? I'd like something light enough to hook to my camera bag, or slung over my shoulder, for hiking around. I love my VB sticks, but their not exactly what I'd consider light weight. There's a local chain camera store, but I wasn't impressed with their selection.

Just looking for a starting point to research.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Old May 14th, 2012, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

Hi, Jeff...............

Well, I guess the first question is.........half bowl or not?

The half bowl, as you know, works best for video due to its easy levelling, BUT the chunky receiver, half ball and head weigh a heck of a lot. Then there's the generaly heavier build of a half bowl set of sticks which really doesn't lend itself to slinging over the shoulder for a 20 mile hike.

Then you'll need a subidiary head on the QR plate to get a "flip" portrait mode.

All in all, totally overkill for stills shooting.

If you go for a standard flat topped stills set of sticks, you get the lighter build, lighter receiver and lighter head (with pan, tilt & flip) but, although nigh on perfect for stills, will be less than stellar for video.

Having a set of VB's to compare it to will bring the systems deficiencies for shooting video home in spades.

If you really want light, I don't see any other way to go except flat top.

One thing you may want to give some thought to is going for a monopod instead.

It's lighter again than a flat topped set of sticks and in many ways more versatile, as it can be used to good effect shooting HD video.

Fitted with a small Manfrotto QR head with flip facility, I find mine invaluable.


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Old May 14th, 2012, 05:44 PM   #3
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

I don't have one of these but if you search DVinfo, you'll find some information. I bookmarked them as interesting next time I look for a travel set of sticks. There's a model that takes a bowl leveling top.
RAPID Carbon Tripods

They are made in Taiwan.
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Old May 14th, 2012, 09:13 PM   #4
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

For stills, nothing beats a good set of carbon fiber legs and a ball head (not pan and tilt) with an Arca-Swiss style quick release. Nothing. Search the various still photography websites to confirm this, if you wish.

Interestingly, Red Rock Micro (a video rig provider) has teamed up with Really Right Stuff ( arguably the premiere supplier of still photography support systems - No, I have no connection with RRS other than as a long-time customer). Red Rock Micro now has a product that teams with RRS camera plates and quick releases so that one can rapidly move a DSLR from a stills tripod to a Red Rock Micro video rig and/or tripod rig ( with follow focus, for example) instantly.

Totally cool and functional.
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Old May 14th, 2012, 09:16 PM   #5
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

RRS is great stuff. Our head is still like new after 8 years. Made right in Glendora California as I recall.
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Old May 14th, 2012, 10:19 PM   #6
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

For stills, nothing beats a good set of carbon fiber legs and a ball head (not pan and tilt) with an Arca-Swiss style quick release. Nothing. Search the various still photography websites to confirm this, if you wish.

Interestingly, Red Rock Micro (a video rig provider) has teamed up with Really Right Stuff ( arguably the premiere supplier of still photography support systems - No, I have no connection with RRS other than as a long-time customer). Red Rock Micro now hasa product that teams with RRS camera plates and quick releases so that one can rapidly move a DSLR from a stills tripod to a Red Rock Micro video rig and/or tripod rig ( with follow focus, for example) instantly.

Totally cool and functional.
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Old May 27th, 2012, 08:16 AM   #7
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

Thanks for all the input, and advice. After doing a little research, and finding a local "higher" end stills camera shop. I've decided upon a Manfrotto set of legs, with a Manfrotto joystick head. After all my main use if for still photo. If I have to use this camera for video, I always have my Vision Blue, or I'll use this set of sticks for a locked off shot only (as a "B" cam).

Im going with aluminum legs, as the guy at the local shop pointed out to me. I'm 6 foot 7, and 300 pounds, the weight difference between carbon fiber and aluminum won't be much of a factor to someone like myself.

Manfrotto 327RC2 Joystick Head 327RC2 B&H Photo Video

Manfrotto 055XPROB Aluminum Tripod Legs (Black) 055XPROB B&H

Definitely not an expensive combo. But as I originally posted, just wanted something I could throw over my shoulder, and go hit the streets for some creative HDR shots, or timelapses.

Thanks as always,
Jeff
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Old May 28th, 2012, 12:02 AM   #8
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

Seems like a very good choice, Jeff.

A vision of meeting all 6' 7" and 300 lbs of you in a dark alley with that lot over your shoulder is a bit on the "Twilight Zone" extreme.

Geez, hope the muggers have decent specs so they can see the squat storm coming!


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Old May 28th, 2012, 12:59 AM   #9
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Re: 2nd pair of sticks, mainly for still photos

Well, I've run night clubs for the better part of the last 20 years. Started out as a bouncer.
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