SUBSCRIBE | NEWSLETTERS | MAPS | VIDEOS | BLOGS | MARKETPLACE | CONTESTS
TRY BACKPACKER FREE!
SUBSCRIBE NOW and get
2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.


» Welcome Guest
[ Log In :: Register ]

 

[ Track This Topic :: Email This Topic :: Print this topic ]

reply to topic new topic new poll
Topic: DSLR Tripods, Good for backpacking?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
 Post Number: 1
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 10:46 am  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

My wife recently bought a DSLR.  She's been into photography for some time but had to sell her old camera and multiple lenses when money got tight.  She's doing a bit better now, and recently bought an intro-level replacement (a Nikon D3200).

Anyhoo, she still has a couple old tripods, but--like most good tripods--they are heavy and bulky.  She'd like to get one that's light enough to carry backpacking, but could still hold a DSLR with a (say...) 300 mm lens for outdoor shots, or a wide-angle lens for long exposures (waterfalls, stars, etc).

Any suggestions?  I know weight is part of what makes a tripod stable, but I've heard of lightweight carbon tripods with a "hook" allowing you to suspend a bag of rocks to stabilize it more when needed.  But I couldn't find any specific models that I recall.  Or, if there are better suggestions, let me know!  I'm leaning toward a XMas gift right now (procrastinator, I know).  Thanks a million!

- Mike


--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 2
Arizona Search for posts by this member.
Valhalla, I am coming
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 570
Joined: Apr. 2007
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 11:24 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Mike I’ve had a Gitzo Mountaineer 0541 for years. It is carbon fiber and weighs 1.7 lbs. You will still need a ball head for it and a quick release plate for your camera. That will run another $350 +. All together I dropped about 8 bills all those years ago but it is still the best. Most other tripods of other materials will be heavier and they don't work as slick and effortlessly either.

With your longer lens you might have to go up a step in the Mountaineer series. The longest I use is a 60mm. Gitzo makes some very useful tripods.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 3
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 11:38 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Arizona,

Thanks for the info!  Looking into it now.  Of course I realized that anything "good" in photography doesn't come cheap (damned laws of physics, I tell ya), but I must admit to having a bit of sticker shock... likely just a function of my own prior ignorance more than the actual price.

Still though, I'd like to see if she could use one of her old ball-heads on a tripod like this.  I'm not even sure how to tell what's compatible with what (I'd have to go into storage and look at what head(s) she already has).  It's probably worth a trip to the local camera shop with her old gear just to see what's compatible with what.

Anyhoo, I'm just rambling.  Thanks again!


--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 4
High_Sierra_Fan Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 42742
Joined: Aug. 2005
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 11:48 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

For that long a lens a mount that supports the lens rather than the camera body centers the mass better unless it's a really short 300mM. Most places (Kirk etc.) that sell ballheads sell adapter plates for common lens supports as well (a support might have come with the lens, they do on my longer and heavier Nikons at any rate).

http://www.kirkphoto.com/Quick-Release-Lens-Plates.html

ETA: Older things will be compatible with the standard threaded mounting bolt. That's unchanged since forever.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 5
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 11:56 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It'd be a 70-300mm zoom, not a larger open-aperture fixed lens (still large, but not as big as many fixed long lenses).  And really, she would only carry and use that lens very occasionally, so perhaps I should revise my premise.  Overall, I'm looking for a tripod to support her camera and likely her standard 18-55 mm zoom lens, or sometimes her brighter 10-24 wide-angle, and occasionally a macro lens.  All pretty short.  If we needed a lens mount for the longer zoom, I could definitely look into that, but I don't want to limit my search to only tripods ideal for that length, as it's not the core of what she'd be using it for (I don't foresee her carrying the long zoom very often while backpacking anyway).  She has a couple much-heavier tripods already.  Sorry if I misled in the OP.

Overall, I'm looking for a lightweight tripod for a standard DSLR setup, that would be light and compact enough to carry backpacking, while effective enough to do her some good on long exposures.  If such a magic thing exists. :D  Arizona's suggestion is a good start, I'd love to see if anyone can improve on it (he may have set the bar pretty high there).


--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 6
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 11:58 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(High_Sierra_Fan @ Dec. 12 2012, 9:48 am)
QUOTE
ETA: Older things will be compatible with the standard threaded mounting bolt. That's unchanged since forever.

Good to know.  Thank you!

--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 7
High_Sierra_Fan Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 42742
Joined: Aug. 2005
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 12:17 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Oh the tripod's the same for whatever, it's a simple accessory for holding the lens that for me stays with the lens. If the lens didn't come with a tripod collar then I defer to the manuf.

Also for the overall weight class is the body a DX size sensor or the larger FX that mimics 35mm film? The tripods come, as you'll see, in weight classes so depending on the weight of the equipment you somewhat get the model... With another variable being how tall it will be extended: for extra long thin legs can have trouble while at shorter heights the same leg diameter will be rock solid. I "cheat" backpacking by intending to simply take my shots from sitting and so reduce the size of the tripod I need (being 6'2" a tripod that gets comfortably to eye level is heavy even in CF). Also if the tripod is mainly for backpacking macro work, flowers etc. then short is very reasonable as that way it's easier to reach off to the side with the off-camera flash on a normal connector cable and still manipulate the camera as well. Granted many full size tripods do "squat" by splaying out their legs way past normal, but if macro is the main use that's a lot of extra weight....

The weight bag hook or a provision for one is usually on the center poll that runs up through the top of the tripod on models with such (Gitzo had/has one called "Rapid" that is a smooth pole that slips up rather than one that you crank up for easier and faster up and down adjustments)

For myself and tripod shooting I like a remote release (usually a simple cable though these days probably electronic) that way right before I take the shot I'm NOT pushing on the camera and setting it moving!
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 8
liv4mtns Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 688
Joined: Jan. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 12:26 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Mike,

I've got a Gitzo GT 2530 6x Carbon Fiber tripod that I am selling. It's part of Gitzo's Mountaineering series. I purchased it brand new. I have been selling off all of my Nikon camera gear recently to go in a different direction. I also have a Manfrotto 468MGRC2 ball head and mounting plate. If she's into Macro photography, I've got a Tamron 90mm macro lens that is incredible. Also have a Nikon 18-200 VR lens that is going also. My super zoom 200-500 lens has already sold. Also have a NIkon D80 body that only has about 3000 actuations. Drop me a line if you might be interested. I was getting ready to post them to eBay where I've already sold some other stuff.

You can click on my link to see some of the photos I've taken with all my lenses.

Here are some links to the items...

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh....details

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c....on.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c....Di.html


--------------
Kevin.

Bozeman MT / Winder GA.



http://kevinboyer.zenfolio.com/
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 9
High_Sierra_Fan Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 42742
Joined: Aug. 2005
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 12:28 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Dec. 12 2012, 8:58 am)
QUOTE

(High_Sierra_Fan @ Dec. 12 2012, 9:48 am)
QUOTE
ETA: Older things will be compatible with the standard threaded mounting bolt. That's unchanged since forever.

Good to know.  Thank you!

IIRC There are two, the standard one is 1/4"
Yep:
"Screw thread
Per ISO 1222:2010,[1] the current tripod screw thread standard for attaching the camera calls for a 1/4-20 UNC[2] or 3/8-16 UNC thread.[3] Most consumer cameras are fitted with 1/4-20 UNC threads. Larger, professional cameras and lenses may be fitted with 3/8-16 UNC threads, plus a removable 1/4-20 UNC adapter, allowing them to be mounted on a tripod using either standard.
Historically, the thread standard for attaching older cameras to tripods was 1/4-20 BSW[4] for smaller cameras or 3/8-16 BSW[5] for larger cameras and pan/tilt heads. In this application the BSW and UNC thread profiles are similar enough that one can mount a modern camera on a legacy tripod and vice versa."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tripod_(photography)
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 10
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 12:52 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

HSF, I wasn't so much worried about the camera thread fitting on the plate, but rather how the ballhead fits on the tripod... something which I admittedly know very little about.  Again, I'll have to go see what gear she already has.  But thanks for the info!

--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 11
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 12:54 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Kevin (liv4mts), I sent you a PM. :)

--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 12
liv4mtns Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 688
Joined: Jan. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 1:03 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Dec. 12 2012, 10:54 am)
QUOTE
Kevin (liv4mts), I sent you a PM. :)



Got it Mike.


--------------
Kevin.

Bozeman MT / Winder GA.



http://kevinboyer.zenfolio.com/
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 13
Dave Senesac Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 3402
Joined: Jun. 2002
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 1:25 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I own a CT114 for larger cameras however this lighter model is well reviewed for lighter weights:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c....od.html

If she already has other tripods she ought to be able to transfer the heads.


--------------
...David

http://davidsenesac.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 14
High_Sierra_Fan Search for posts by this member.

Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 42742
Joined: Aug. 2005
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 1:30 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Dec. 12 2012, 9:52 am)
QUOTE
HSF, I wasn't so much worried about the camera thread fitting on the plate, but rather how the ballhead fits on the tripod... something which I admittedly know very little about.  Again, I'll have to go see what gear she already has.  But thanks for the info!

The same screw thread is used for ballhead-tripod as for camera-tripod. Though the latter is so inflexible I expect it's not done much.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 15
Walkinman Search for posts by this member.
A rainbow
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 7433
Joined: Nov. 2002
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 1:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Hey Mike

Look at some of the Benbo and Induro and Slik models for cheaper, but still good tripod, models. Visit naturescapes.net and look at their stuff - good folks.

Cheers

Carl


--------------
Guided Alaska backpacking and hiking trips

"What good is a used up world and how can it be worth having?" -- Sting, All This Time.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 16
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 2:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for the tips y'all!  Much appreciated. :)

--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 17
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 2:02 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(High_Sierra_Fan @ Dec. 12 2012, 11:30 am)
QUOTE

(GoBlueHiker @ Dec. 12 2012, 9:52 am)
QUOTE
HSF, I wasn't so much worried about the camera thread fitting on the plate, but rather how the ballhead fits on the tripod... something which I admittedly know very little about.  Again, I'll have to go see what gear she already has.  But thanks for the info!

The same screw thread is used for ballhead-tripod as for camera-tripod. Though the latter is so inflexible I expect it's not done much.

Ah, gotcha.  Shows what I know. :D

--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 18
GoBlueHiker Search for posts by this member.
Obsessive Island Hopper...
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 15897
Joined: Jul. 2006
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 7:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Any thoughts on the Velben GEO E series of tripods?  They get decent reviews (although honestly, it's hard to parse out reliable reviews from crap, given how few there are) and seem a bit lighter and somewhat more affordable than other series.  The very lightest model is linked above, although the other models are listed there as well.  If they have any significant drawbacks over other models I'd be curious to know.  I'm not sure if anyone here has experience with 'em.

- Mike


--------------
Wealth needs more.  Happiness needs less.  Simplify.

www.RainForestTreks.com
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
 Post Number: 19
reubenstump Search for posts by this member.
Glacier detail
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 1858
Joined: Sep. 2011
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 7:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I have a couple of Gitzos and fancy schmancy heads to go with them.  The weight is in the metal of the tripod and the head.  The CF doesn't weigh much in comparison.  The same goes for comparable Benros and others.

A 70-300 doesn't weigh much and won't have a collar mount.  That and anything smaller will be mounted via the camera, not the lens.

The wide angle lens(es) could even go in jacket pockets if she thinks they'll be accessed frequently.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info 
 Post Number: 20
Walkinman Search for posts by this member.
A rainbow
Avatar



Group: Members
Posts: 7433
Joined: Nov. 2002
PostIcon Posted on: Dec. 12 2012, 8:24 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic.  Ignore posts   QUOTE


(GoBlueHiker @ Dec. 12 2012, 3:53 pm)
QUOTE
Any thoughts on the Velben GEO E series of tripods?  They get decent reviews (although honestly, it's hard to parse out reliable reviews from crap, given how few there are) and seem a bit lighter and somewhat more affordable than other series.  The very lightest model is linked above, although the other models are listed there as well.  If they have any significant drawbacks over other models I'd be curious to know.  I'm not sure if anyone here has experience with 'em.

- Mike

Hey Mike

Not with that tripod per se, but they do have a good rep, with most photographers I know.

Oh, and +1 w/ Reuben's comment about the 70-300mm. You won't need a tripod collar w/ that lens at all.

Cheers

Carl


--------------
Guided Alaska backpacking and hiking trips

"What good is a used up world and how can it be worth having?" -- Sting, All This Time.
Offline
Top of Page Profile Contact Info WEB 
19 replies since Dec. 12 2012, 10:46 am < Next Oldest | Next Newest >

[ Track This Topic :: Email This Topic :: Print this topic ]


 
reply to topic new topic new poll

» Quick Reply DSLR Tripods
iB Code Buttons
You are posting as:

Do you wish to enable your signature for this post?
Do you wish to enable emoticons for this post?
Track this topic
View All Emoticons
View iB Code



Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
City:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
State:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions