Recommend a tripod under $300

DeusInvictus7

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Aug 13, 2008
2,377
28
Kitchener, Ontario
Hey everyone,

I'm looking for a first tripod for my DSLR. I have a few narrowed down, but I'm having a hard time really deciding.

My gear so far:
Canon 60D
18-135mm Kit lens
100mm Macro

The ones I have narrowed down so far are these:

Benro A0691TB00
http://www.benrousa.com/products_details_A0691TB00#1

Manfrotto 190XPROB with 804RC2 Head
http://www.manfrotto.ca/product/8374.398.86698.0.0/190XPROB%2C804RC2/_/190XPROB_tripod_with_804RC2_Head

What I'm really looking for is a tripod that isn't too heavy/big to carry around, and something that is sturdy enough for practically everything. So far I'm leaning towards the Benro since it is smaller, lighter, and has a higher load capacity.

If you guys have any other recommendations, shoot!
 

MCAsan

macrumors 601
Jul 9, 2012
4,543
415
Atlanta
unless you are very short, the 190 is not good. Remember that you want the tripod to hold the camera body at height that allows you to see the viewfinder flatfooted without bending over or on tip toes. And that does not include have any center column extended. Remember that when you extend a central column you have a 3 legged mono pod.

Look a some of the Feisol tripods. That is the brand I would select if I did not already have a Gitzo.
 

DeusInvictus7

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Aug 13, 2008
2,377
28
Kitchener, Ontario
Good points. After doing a bit more research, I do realize the 190 won't be the best option. The 055XPROB looks awesome though, and the adjustable center column looks like it'll come in handy for a lot of macro shots.

I'll look at the Feisol ones, and see if there's anything interesting. Thanks for the recommendation!
 

bunit

macrumors regular
Jul 14, 2007
169
0
Westerly RI
Go with a 3 Legged Thing. They are very versatile, sturdy, and light weight. Check out the one called "Adrian", you can get it from B&H without ball head for $240.00 or with a ball head for $330.00. I have the "Eric" and wouldn't even think of getting something different! One of the legs even comes off to be used as a monopod.
 

iBookG4user

macrumors 604
Jun 27, 2006
6,596
2
Seattle, WA
I've had a Feisol ct-3301 for about 4 years now and it has been an awesome tripod. I've taken it all across North America and has been awesome to use :)
 

a.jfred

macrumors 6502
May 28, 2010
384
17
Austin, TX
Go with a 3 Legged Thing. They are very versatile, sturdy, and light weight. Check out the one called "Adrian", you can get it from B&H without ball head for $240.00 or with a ball head for $330.00. I have the "Eric" and wouldn't even think of getting something different! One of the legs even comes off to be used as a monopod.
I have Eric on the way, and am looking forward to playing with it. The fact you can even turn the center column upside down for macro shots is going to be HUGE for me. I currently have the Manfroto 190XDB (I'm 5'2", so "short" works for me), and it was just too cumbersome to cart around with me, so it seldom gets used.
 

TheDrift-

macrumors 6502a
Mar 8, 2010
877
1,369
Good points. After doing a bit more research, I do realize the 190 won't be the best option. The 055XPROB looks awesome though, and the adjustable center column looks like it'll come in handy for a lot of macro shots.

I'll look at the Feisol ones, and see if there's anything interesting. Thanks for the recommendation!
The ProB is very good tripod, the only drawback is its weight. You wont find much sturdier out there...

.....at the end of the world all that will be left will be cockroaches using 055XPROB Tripods!!
 

someoldguy

macrumors 68000
Aug 2, 2009
1,923
5,220
usa
I've had a Benro A-169-m8 for 2 1/2-3 years now . Seems to be pretty much the same as the current TRA169 except with an Arca type camera mount rather than a proprietary one . Got it because I needed something that folded down as much as possible , was reasonably light ,and was high enough for me to use without having to bend too much ( I'm around 6' ). So far its' held up pretty well , couple of cross country flights , Amtrak overheads , rattling around in my car, although I replaced the B-0 ballhead with an Acratech about 6 months back . The B-0 wasn't happy with having a 5D2 and a fully extended 100-400 on it . Worked just fine with stuff up to a 70-200/4 though. No problems so far with the 5 section legs , and leg locks , although if I have everything fully extended I can grab the column and torque it around a bit . Doesn't seem to affect the tripod in use and I accept that as a trade-off for light weight/small size. Hope this helps .
 

Designer Dale

macrumors 68040
Mar 25, 2009
3,950
99
Folding space
The ProB is very good tripod, the only drawback is its weight. You wont find much sturdier out there...

.....at the end of the world all that will be left will be cockroaches using 055XPROB Tripods!!
Agreed. I have this one even though I upgraded to the carbon fiber version of the same tripod. I just got back from three days in the woods with my camera kit and every time I picked up my tripod I said "I'm so glad I sunk the extra bucks into carbon fiber!". The aluminum version may be indestructible, but it's limited in what I call the field.

Dale
 

iBookG4user

macrumors 604
Jun 27, 2006
6,596
2
Seattle, WA
Agreed. I have this one even though I upgraded to the carbon fiber version of the same tripod. I just got back from three days in the woods with my camera kit and every time I picked up my tripod I said "I'm so glad I sunk the extra bucks into carbon fiber!". The aluminum version may be indestructible, but it's limited in what I call the field.

Dale
Carbon fibre is definitely the way to go, the feisol that I bought is worth every penny.
 

mulo

macrumors 68020
Aug 22, 2010
2,267
5
Behind you
Remember that you want the tripod to hold the camera body at height that allows you to see the viewfinder flatfooted without bending over or on tip toes. And that does not include have any center column extended. Remember that when you extend a central column you have a 3 legged mono pod.
so what would you recommend for a 6ft 6in 220pounds man?
 

MCAsan

macrumors 601
Jul 9, 2012
4,543
415
Atlanta
Most brands worth having have charts/tables that show how tall a tripod is in normal shooting position. Personally I recommend the Gitzo Systematic series. Those do not have any center column. If you have to extend a center column you have a 3 legged monopod...that is too short anyway.
 

Phrasikleia

macrumors 601
Feb 24, 2008
4,077
399
Over there------->
so what would you recommend for a 6ft 6in 220pounds man?
Estimate about how high your eye is off the ground when you're wearing your typical shooting footwear, then subtract from that measurement the height of your camera's viewfinder from its tripod socket and the total height of your tripod head. What is left is the height that your tripod legs ought to reach. For you, assuming your shoes, camera, and tripod head are all about average height, I reckon your tripod legs ought to reach about 67 inches tall. Very few of them actually stand that high without the center column extended, however, so just look for the tallest legs you can find.
 

Cheffy Dave

macrumors 68030
For what its worth.

Still using a SLK I bought in the 70's,with my first professional camera, the original Canon F1, which I still have and use, along with 2 Canon FTBQL's, all in mint condition. The Tripod has served me very well, even right into the "Digital" age, using my Canon EOS 5D Mark III
 
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DeusInvictus7

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Aug 13, 2008
2,377
28
Kitchener, Ontario
Agreed. I have this one even though I upgraded to the carbon fiber version of the same tripod. I just got back from three days in the woods with my camera kit and every time I picked up my tripod I said "I'm so glad I sunk the extra bucks into carbon fiber!". The aluminum version may be indestructible, but it's limited in what I call the field.

Dale
To be honest I've actually been looking at the carbon fiber versions of the Manfrotto 055 as well, and they look to be awesome. Obviously I don't really want to buy a tripod only to feel like I have to upgrade in the near future.

Carbon fiber tripods seem to be a really good investment for carrying around on longish walks and even just for regular use. I also like how the 055CXPRO4 is shorter when closed compared to the 055XPROB.

Gitzo's are a bit over my price range for now, since in Canada they seem to be over $600.
 

Kronie

macrumors 6502a
Dec 4, 2008
929
0
I have a Gitzo Explorer. I highly recommend it. It sets up anywhere.