Last month I went over the various lenses one needs for doing a variety of photoshoots. This month, just as importantly, is the right selection of a good tripod.
Now I have some expertise in this because I have also bought those cheaper versions.
Those $19.95 tripods we see on amazon are great for their intended purpose of being a general light use tripod, but I found out they are very poor when working on a photoshoot that requires accurate framing and camera sbaility.
I think the common phrase - You get what you pay for. - for tripods holds up.
My last few tripods were those inexpensive ones you see everyday. They fit in a small backpack, and are ultra light, and very brittle, and don't hold up to repeated use very well. Let's just say for a heavy DSLR with full frame glass, the camera weighs a lot, and if you do portrait style and not many landscape shots, the tripod needs to hold up and not move during those 1 second exposures. Framing well with no drift is essential when you want to take multiple shots and remove something (like a hanging head prop) from your shots. You also want a ball joint head that will accommodate up to a 5lb camera and lens.
So what sorts of tripods would I not buy under any circumstances?
The big problem with these is not the cost, but the way the tensioner handles larger DSLR's. The dual axis tensioner is very poor as it relies on a small screw to hold larger cameras, There's up to 15degrees of drift when using portrait shots, This is a very hard to use tripod, and basically junk. In some cases there is NO ability to do portrait shots at all!
Here's the tripod I would look for:
The above one is what I use, and for framing it's just perfect. There's not even a 1degree of drift when tightened right, and portrait shots are much easier to frame. It uses a ball joint tensioner that handles DSLR's perfectly, and handles high setups.
Look at the ball joint assembly. That is a high tech design that performs!
So a few shots for JM that were taken with this tripod!
Till Next Month