Tripod Help & Suggestions

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    • #44452

      Hello all; Long time no post. I have had a life changeover so to speak. My parents at law are aging and along with that comes changes with all lives that are in orbit.

      Anyway my 22nd anniversary is up and coming (I am getting the wife her first “real” camera. It seems I have peaked her interest.) Anyway she asked what I wanted and I need a tripod replacement. I currently use a Ravelli AVT, but I have had to have done something serious to it in the last two years because the pan is rough now. I have disassembled it and put lithium grease in the internal, it did help but is sticks really bad.

      So when the wife asked me what I wanted a tripod came to mind. However I need to keep the budget real, under $300.00 with tax, but I do not want something so-and-so looks up and reads the reviews, I have come to trust many here at their “real experience” word. So based on what you use and have experience with what do you suggest? I am using a Canon Vixia HF21 and when I shoot in 24FPS I need this thing to be smooth as silk. It is a heavier camera as it has an aluminum body, but it is still light.

      So suggest and post links away. I would like to buy it through B&H if I can (Account there).

      So there it is.



    • #186178

      I have been using the Davis and Sanford Provista 7518 w/FM18 Head for well over a year now and have found it to be an increadible value. Very smooth. Right now B & H has it listed for $189 with free shipping and they are throwing in a 3 wheel dolly. It also includes the case and it arrived with a second camera plate.

      I also use this to support my small backpacker camera crane.

      I’m sure others will give you there opinion and you can spend more but for the price I don’t think you can beat the quality of this support.


    • #186179

      Hi and thanks for the reply. I was just looking it over. The reviews are very mixed so I will ask you. Some of the reviews state that the tripod “sticks” on panning. I think what they might be referring to is what my Ravilli is doing, at the start of a pan it “sticks” and then after that the rest of the pan is ok. So catching the bride and the first second of the pan is a jerk. The other thing that was most common on the reviews was the quick release nut being too close to the camera mount to tighten.

      In your experience have you noticed these two items?

      The dolly is an awesome + if the pan thing is just run of the mill complaints.

    • #186180

      I have one of these and my partner also has one and we have not experienced the sticking. I have found the panning and tilting very smooth. The knob is a little close but it has been workable for me. If money was no object I would certainly look at the manfrotto but I would not hesitate to buy another one of these tripods. I just think it is a great value.

    • #186181

      Hi Greg:

      The tripod is one of those must-haves. Once you get used to it, there is no going back whatsoever. It makes video clean and professional. The trick is in the tripod head and a steady frame below. I use a Manfrotto 501 head (sometimes called Bogen) and solid Manfrotto sticks. Do NOT go lightweight. You will get camera shake. it is smooth as silk, light enough to take on a 2 hour hike (but I am a big guy too!) well respected. Costs under $200 on ebay new.

      I would buy another in a heartbeat. You can easily spend $3,000 on tripods – O Conner – but I think that is out of your league. This will work well.

    • #186182

      Oops – it should have been the 701, not the 501. I also have a monster Manfrotto at twice the weight. When the shot absolutely has to be perfect with not jerks etc. this king wins all the time.

    • #186183

      David: I just looked at that head, I wonder if it will fit my Ravelli tripod. What would I have to measure or check to see if this head will fit. For some reason the head on my Ravelli has never paned correctly.

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