Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Technique › Production Gear › Davis & Sanford Pro Vista Video Tripod w/ FM18 Fluid Hea › I just took a look at the
I just took a look at the description of that tripod on the B&H website. Has a lot of features you’d expect on a much more expensive model (crutch-style legs, mid-leg spreaders, bubble level, good max height). For that low price, they might have cut back on something (durability? smooth panning?). But still, it sounds like the best bet if you’re only going to spend $200 (and you won’t be rough-handling it).
You should look at the "Tips and Techniques" sections of episodes 27 and 28 of Videomaker presents (on the Videomaker website here). They give excellent advice on tripod selection.
My 3 cents worth, 🙂
P.S. — If you could spend a little more…. the Bogen / Manfrotto 3046 Tripod Legs for $229.95, and the Bogen / Manfrotto 3433 (501) Pro Video Head for $149.95 would be a most excellent combination! (Or the Bogen / Manfrotto 501HDV Fluid Video Head for $173.95 adds a counterbalance spring. Useful if people are taking turns operating the camera.) Ahhhh….decisions, decisions! 😕