Need a Tripod?

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by derek_thornton|1, Dec 19, 2016.

  1. After several years of frequent use my aluminum Gitzo GT3330LS is nearing its end. I went to B&H to look at what Gitzo I could get to replace mine. All I can say is, WOW! Looks like Gitzo no longer makes aluminum tripods and they definatly do not have anything in the $500.00 range. I don't mind switching to CF, it would actually be nice not having to worry about scratching the powder coat (The legs on my Gitzo are trashed)! I just hate the extra step of having to add weight to keep it steady in a river or windy area.
    Anyway my limit is $500.00. From what I have seen there are only 3 manufactures in the $500.00 range that make a tripod without a center column, a must for me. That would be Feisol, Induro and Benro. I know nothing about these brands. What I have read looks pretty good. My question is will they hold up well? I got a tripod that sits in the closet because the legs flop around, no matter how much you tighten them and another that has a broken leg. The spider broke from just pushing the pod into some mud! I go out 3 to 4 times a week and do a lot of hiking, sometimes in areas that have no trails. It needs to be pretty durable. The largest lens I use is a 300mm with either tubes or TC. 90% of the time, just wide angle. And, I use the big Kirk Ballhead.
    The models I am looking at are:
    Feisol CT3342 & CT3371
    Induro GIT303 & GIT404L
    Benro COM37CL
    If anyone has experience with any of these models please let me know how you feel about it, good or bad. Also, if I can add links to these models from B&H to this thread let me know. I dont know if that sort of thing is frowned upon here?
    Thanks for any help,
  2. B&H sells re-branded Induro units as "Oben", their house brand. I've been very pleased with mine (a CF rig). I happened onto a promo + rebate that saved me quite a lot on the Induro alternative. I happened to have a Gitzo head that I liked and intended to use so can only speak to their leg kits but it seems you're covered on that, too. I didn't take time to look up the crossover models to your listed Induros but it should be easy to figure out.
  3. I'm familiar with Feisol 3371 CF (for taller folks) and it suits me perfect. Hey, anything below 5lbs is good for me, since I do hike away from the vehicle. In the last 5yrs ( ?) I've had this thing in sea water, sand, mud....but I do take care of it well and I think that's the insurance for keeping it. I've used 400/3.5 and even 500mm on it and no issues. However, v. often the tripod head (a good one) will cost about as much as the tripod itself. I went for Arca-Swiss....yes, it's an overkill, but I wouldn't go back to anything else. Additional note: the tripod fits into my duffle bag for travel (I do insulate it with clothes)....tho the head is removed....and I never have to deal with "oh, that might be considered as a weapon". Anyway, your mileage might vary. Good luck deciding.
  4. SCL


    You might consider used on Ebay - that's how I got my Gitzo
  5. Follow up: I just looked through the Oben offerings on B&H and it appears that the brand is being sold in their lighter duty variants these days. The pricing seems less dramatic for any savings on the Induro by substituting the Oben version. I saved about $200 in making my decision because of the promos and rebates (a couple of years back). Anyway, happy shopping!
    A quick story on a tripod purchase I made many years back: I was attempting to find a solid tripod to control a Pentax 67 system. Short version is that I borrowed, demoed and tried out in photo shops, many combos with a laser pointer attached to the camera (then inspect on the negatives). I was amazed at how well certain, unexpected gear would work vs the gear I assumed would be best. It seemed that specific frequencies would travel through some substantial gear but not affect others, and not in a predictable manner.
  6. We don't have the models you list, but I use a Benro and my husband used an Induro. We've had them for a few years now. They are well made and hold up. Ours came with cases, which is nice. We take them out in the woods, and I've had mine in water plenty of times. No problem. Here is an interesting post about the Induro models you're interested in. Perhaps you've seen it. If not, it may be useful to you. Best wishes on your decision.
  7. I have a Feisol CT-3442. It's a nice lightweight travel tripod that has held up well in the woods, on sand and in mud, out in the rain and in a couple of inches of water. I just hose it down and wipe it clean at the end of each day. It meets my lightweight/travel needs to support up to a D800e and a prime lens. I use an Acratech Ultimate ballhead with it.
    I have never used it fully extended nor have I used it with a large zoom (I have a Gitzo Series 3 with an AS Z1 ballhead for that). My only complaints about the Feisol -- 1) the collars are not as smooth or as easily deployable as the Gitzo rapid collars and 2) the fit and finish don't inspire the same confidence as a Gitzo --both to be expected.
    If I were to get a travel tripod today, I'd look for a lightly used Gitzo on ebay.
  8. I am happy with Induro model in CF. I have not torture tested it, but it seems well built. And fits your budget. Worth a shot and check user comments on B and H for the models you have chosen. I am not a heavy duty user,but I would stow it in its bag and keep it dry no matter what.
  9. Leszek, I have a couple of questions for you:
    1) After 5 years of use is your 3371 still tight, can you hold it by one leg without the other legs flopping around?
    2) Is it easy to tear down and are the leg lock parts durable?
    3) Have you ever had to send it back for repairs?
    The 3371 is at the top of my list. I am just a little worried about its leg locks. Thanks for the help.
    Here are my top 3 choices
    Thanks for all the help,
  10. I have the CT3342 and so far really like it. I think Gitzo's are great, but the price is terrible. There is less to a tripod than Gitzo (or RRS) would have you believe.
  11. Derek,
    Based on the photo, I think I have the 3371 as well. It's held up very well over the 4 years I've had it.
    1 - absolutely still tight, legs don't move in any situation unless I move them myself
    2 - very fast to tear down. I tested a few tripods with the screw style leg locks and discovered I had to be careful about the sequencing but that seemed to be the same for all of them. If you do them out of order you get all kinds of movement. But they still hold the legs nice and tightly
    It's also so light that I often don't even bother to tear it down - other than cumbersome I maybe collapse one leg section, pick the whole rig up and move.
    3 - I don't even know where I would send it. Never had a need.
    Very happy.
  12. Thanks Allan, Robin and everyone else. I will give the Fiesol a try, may be a while though.
  13. Hi everyone.
    I need advice on which tripod to buy.
    I was looking for reviews so I can see other people's opinions on which tripod is good.I am a bit confused as to which tripod among the ones listed I should buy. Can anyone help? Thanks.
  14. I second the Feisol 3342 and the Acratech Ultimate Ballhead. Just back from Costa Rica doing photograpy in the rain forest. I was using a D750 and a 300mm PF +TC1.4 and it was rock solid. Looking at the photos they are tack sharp and the rig was pretty easy to carry around

Share This Page