fluid head tri-pod for newbie

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    • #43965

      I am a novice videographer who shoots mostly stage performances and would like to get into wedding videographer at some point. I am ready to start upgrading my gear and am interested in a fluid head tri-pod as mine likes to snag when I am panning across the stage. My current camcorder is just a Sony Handycam Hi-8mm, so camera weight is pretty light. Does anyone have any recommendations for a somewhat inexpensive, yet respectable fluid head tripod? My biggest concern is fluid panning, not necessarily rugged-construction (I probably won’t be doing a lot of nature shooting). Where do you guys shop for items such as this? I’d like to have one in two weeks.

      Thanks for any advice!


    • #184235

      I got this one when I was in high school. It have a smooth head and works well for beginners. Not too expensive either.


    • #184236

      See the alternate post, “Great Tripod Advice” on Videomaker Forums. And, yes, B&H Photo Video is an excellent source for both information and product.

    • #184237


      That looks about what I would like, though it says it is out of stock at the moment.


      I was just looking at that before I checked in here…it sounds like that person is in a whole other price range ($12k camera!). I do have a B&H catalog, I think it came because of my subscription to VideoMaker.

      Thanks guys!


    • #184238

      at first glance, this doesn’t look to bad to me:


      or just wait for the other one to stock up again. You don’t necessarily have to stick to what someone suggests, just browse and see what fits your price range.

    • #184239

      Knowledge is power, range of awareness is relevant – leastwise you know the range, but personally I’d go for something in the Bogen/Manfrotto $500 range from B&H. I purchased one slightly more expensive many, many years ago ($800 or so, I think) and still have it, still use it, not one bolt or screw has worked loose or fallen off, still sturdy as a rock and even has supported a megacrane boom system without a squeek. Of course, I also take pretty good care of the equipment in which I invest.

      Point being, I have purchased so many emergency “get by” tripods over the years, for many reasons, and even thought I was getting some pretty sweet stuff from time-to-time, most all of them have broken parts, or are no longer dependable, and have been tossed into a pile I keep thinking I’ll get around to fixing or repairing. Nope, gonna toss ’em very, VERY soon.

    • #184240

      Sorry I posted this in the other post but this one suits better.

      Nice to see this,,maybe not

      I bought a MB 190XB with a 501 fluid head for my camera. This model was suggested on a couple other forums. My camera weighs 5.5 lbs and with other things that might be added to it would be a max of 7.5 lbs total.

      After reading some of these posts I fear my legs are too small. It says this setup is for a camera up to 7.5 lbs. I thought it would be ok. Most of the others are saying models with multi legs. The one I now have is single legs only.

      My camera is the Pan AG-HVX200A

      What do you guys think about this tripod?

      Now I am getting nervous


    • #184241

      Don’t be nervous. I personally like ROCK SOLID & STEADY, in spite of “heavy” but that’s just me. I have so many occasions where I have to deal with other situations and leave the tripod and camera unattended, though very, VERY rarely out of sight. That’s why I am so strong on solid suport with quality components.

      Your system, unless the legs are flexing and bowing, or you notice some rocking when someone walks by, or outside in even a slight wind, then I’d be concerned. If the tripod jiggles when you least touch it, and you have to hold onto the legs to stabilize it when panning or tilting, then I go for something more substantial.

      Otherwise, you’re probably OK.

    • #184242

      Earlc what do you think about the setup I have now. It was almost 300.00 for the setup. The fluid head seems fine. May not be the best with adjust when it comes to setting the friction/speed of panning. Other than that it seems fine. The tripod itself seems sturdy but it has only single legs and the tripods most are talking about have multi legs.


      This is what I have.

      Please any suggestions will be appreciated. As you say you have seen much. I have not. I rather know now then wait until after it sails away.

      I did order the spreader for it(ground level) and a sand bag. That should help.

      I will get a better one when after I get a few bucks together. Just need to know if I am flirting with disaster with this or if it will do the job for a while.

    • #184243

      With the spreader and sandbag (I’ve used my ditty bag which is usually full of stuff, or even a plastic container with water or sand, but the sand bag will work wonders for stability as well. Personally, I don’t think multi-joint/double/triple legs vs single legs is all THAT and a bag of chips. The brand is certainly known for its quality, and B & H is a very reputable company to deal with. So, looks like you can do ok with this for a good while IMHO.

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