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Old 08-06-2009, 11:30 PM   #1
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Default Mini tripods?

Dumb question but I like to take close ups. The tripods I see for sale are huge. Is there any such thing as a tiny or mini tripod? Even anything that's 18" would be better than these huge bulky tripods I see.
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Old 08-07-2009, 12:05 AM   #2
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Dumb question but I like to take close ups. The tripods I see for sale are huge. Is there any such thing as a tiny or mini tripod? Even anything that's 18" would be better than these huge bulky tripods I see.
For low stuff, mushrooms and plants mainly, I use a Velbon Ultra Maxi F, now discontinued, but the Ultra Maxi-L looks to be essentially identical. Small and light, easy to carry with in the field, and sturdy enough, especially if you don't extend the legs way out. But even with the legs fully extended, I just push downward a bit on the tripod using my left hand and that adds enough stability for sharp shots. I like mine a lot.

These have legs that break out almost horizontally and a center post that unscrews to let you get the tripod head down pretty low, 6.5" off the ground.

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Old 08-07-2009, 12:19 AM   #3
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Dumb question but I like to take close ups. The tripods I see for sale are huge. Is there any such thing as a tiny or mini tripod? Even anything that's 18" would be better than these huge bulky tripods I see.
Any tripod is going to help stabilize your shot. They do make mini tripods and tripods that have grabby legs and so on. I imagine that if you're going to be shooting where you could set it on a table then a smaller tripod would work well for you, otherwise you may end up doing a lot of kneeling or stooping with a smaller one. Something else to consider are some of the lightweight metals and plastics that some 'travel' tripods are made of. Because they're a little taller they offer a wider base even when the legs aren't extended making for an even stabler base. Figure out where you'll really use it.

I did want to add that while size and weight are considerations, the fluidity of the tripod head can be a big deal. I've bought tripods that seem to drift and jerk no matter how smoothly I want it to move or how little. I don't like the heads that you have to screw or unscrew the handle to pan up or down (I'm always forgetting to tighten it and they never end up where you wanted it to be after you tighten it). I got a real nice tripod with one of my larger spotting scopes and I like it best because it's movement is on the spot, there are no catches when I'm panning. The only problem with it is it's too heavy for me to lug around for too long. So I use another one I have, bought specifically because it doesn't weigh too much but I'm not as thrilled with it as my other one.

I am by no means a tripod expert. I would suggest maybe trying a few out at a camera store or electronics store before you buy. Maybe someone else will come along and give us both some more information. I'd love to hear what tripods others use and the advantages and disadvantages those tripods may offer. Then I could add one of those to my wish list....
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Old 08-07-2009, 12:46 AM   #4
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From Wallmart
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/images/i...345/589885.jpg
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Old 08-07-2009, 09:52 AM   #5
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That's surprising, WalMart wants $199.88 for it, way more than photo shops are asking.

B&H in New York, my favorite photo dealer, has it for $129.95, click here.

Sears has it for $126.99, click here.


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Old 08-07-2009, 10:04 AM   #6
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You may want to look for a monopod... small, portable, easy to carry. It won't hold the camera, but it provides a steady support. Lots of birders and outdoor people use them, because they are moving around and they don't want to carry a tripod.

How To Use A Monopod & Multi-Purpose Tripod

I have ordered from B&H for several things and been pleased with the products and service.

As far as "lightweight" tripods, I am always hesitant that they aren't sturdy enough to put my camera on... if the thing tips over, there goes some purty darn expensive equipment.

I did see lots of monopods and the mini-tripods when I was in yosemite. (yosemite is the photographers hotspot.) I'd rather have a sturdy mini-tripod, (like this: Cullmann | Mini Magic Tripod | CU 2701 | B&H Photo Video ), than a lightweight full height one.
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:30 AM   #7
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I have heard people rave about B&H. My next camera will be from them (once I raise the funds), and they price match, I am told.
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:39 AM   #8
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I don't bother shopping at WalMart much any more. I find their prices in need of constantly being shopped. Thanks everyone. What I had in mind was a tripod that was light weight and portable. There are two on this page, Wholesale Cheap Camera Tripods - Digital Mini Tripod - Lightweight Travel Tripod The Portable Folding Mini Digital Camera Tripod with Black Color and the Professional Digital Video Camera Flexible Joints Grip Tripod. They look more along the lines of what I had in mind. My camera wouldn't be falling far if one of those tipped over. The monopod is interesting.
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Old 08-07-2009, 03:29 PM   #9
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B&H is an excellent online vendor. I've used them for many years. They aren't always the lowest price, but they are solid.

Whether a mini tripod will be a help or a hindrance is going to depend on the camera it's being asked to support. If you have a Nikon D3, no mini tripod will do any good. If you have a small lightweight point-and-shoot, you might get away with it.

A decent tripod, however, will never disappoint, and will last forever.
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Old 08-07-2009, 06:11 PM   #10
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I'd wonder about the noise the flexible joint grip one has when it's maneuvered.
Popping sounds will scare a lot of things away.
I can see that mono pod helping me steady myself quite a bit. I tried the maneuvers with a bat and liked #2 the best. Then I put a clicker in my waist on my belt to rest the camera on for a smaller version and that worked equally well. I think I may find something better than a clicker to carry around with me in my next floral quest out. I can use all the help I can get. I loose so many photos from wiggling too much!
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