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Tripod Recommendation for Nikon 3100D

Discussion in 'Help Team' started by Lesley Bonney, May 4, 2017.

  1. Lesley Bonney

    Lesley Bonney New Member

    I love photographing animals and also tried the 'photobooth' effect with dogs to capture different expressions. Although I have taken mainly rescue cats for charities. But I am unsure what tripod to buy.
    Light weight (or heavy weight to support the camera with lens)
    Do I need the multi directional ball and socket tripod head (purchase separately?)

    I am confused...

    Any recommendations appreciated. I am on a budget too at the moment.

    Thank you
  2. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    Tripods will have a maximum carry weight, so the very minimum you need to do is weigh your camera and heaviest lens, and make sure anything you can buy can support that weight.

    Generally, for a given level of sturdiness, the lighter tripods are more expensive. If you plan to carry it long distances, you want light, if you don't, you can reduce your costs.

    Ball head - one 'release' (or lever) and you can move the camera in any axis/direction.
    3-way head - one 'release' (or lever) for each direction, but you can then lock the movement so it only occurs in one direction.

    Cheaper tripods tend to have a built-in head, more expensive tripods come with a detachable head, even more expensive tripods come with no head and you need to buy one separately.

    Having said those things, not all photography benefits from a tripod. By design, a tripod limits the movement of the camera, and if you need free movement, you may find a tripod causes more problems than it solves.
  3. Lesley Bonney

    Lesley Bonney New Member

    Thank you so much!
  4. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    What is your budget? You won't get much that's any good for under £100, and £150 is a better bet. A good tripod can easily cost £200 for the legs, and another £200-+ for the head,

    Unless you buy second-hand, in which case you can probably get something excellent for £50-100. One of mine was over £1000 new. I paid £200 for it.


  5. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    The "best" tripod is one that is stable at your height and you can easily adjust the legs etc. It's no good if you cannot reach a leg section or if the lock is too stiff for you to operate. If you can get to a shop to try out the legs and a head with your camera then you can get an idea of how easy it is to use. A good one lasts for ever so it is worth being sure. There are different heads for different uses. A ballhead is a good all-rounder but you need to check that you can fine adjust the position. A good 3 way head will let you fine adjust positions but the cheaper ones will sag just as you lock them off and you'll spend forever trying to double guess how much it will move.
    EightBitTony likes this.
  6. Lesley Bonney

    Lesley Bonney New Member

    I'm going to weigh the camera with the 70-300mm lens weekend, and budget is probably going to be £100 but my sister wants to buy something for my birthday so I will ask for a few quid to add to it. Will search online for secondhand tripods, Roger, too.
    Thank you all.
  7. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Its not just the weight of the load, but the turning moment. The 70-300 , which does not have a mounting shoe, might cause the camera lens combination to droop after you have locked it off.
  8. dom71

    dom71 Member

    I don't often use a tripod, but love my old Manfrotto Modo 785 when the need arises for one.I think the "Manfrotto Compact Action Tripod" is the nearest current equivalent and can be picked up for less than 50 quid. It may be worth considering as an option - if it proves not to benefit your shooting style, or you feel you need something more substantial, they're popular enough that you should be able to easily get back most of your money selling it on eBay or similar.
  9. Snorri

    Snorri Well-Known Member

    RogerMac likes this.
  10. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

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