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zoom lens factors for kit lens upgrade

mikehit 10 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
28 Sep 2011 10:26AM
Tripods and heads is one subject that people get very worked up about - I think because (like camera bags) size, weight and adjustability are all personal preferences. For example, how tall are you (will you spend loads of time bending over to check the composition?)? Weight - will you be hiking with it or walking short distances from car to viewpoint? Do you prefer twist locks on the tripod legs or lever locks?

The advice is often 'buy once buy right' and I ususally follow this mantra but be aware that this puts you in the realms of spending upwards of 200 for something that may turn out to be not quite right for you. There are some very good relatively cheap (40 -ish) tripods which are also quite light - they may not be the most sturdy of tripods but if you do not take photos in foul weather and if you are not sure how much you will use it they are probably good enough for most situations until you know what qualities are really important to you. Jessops often have a decent range so go to a shop and play around with them.
My main tripod is a Manfrotto 190XPROB and is superbly adaptable for anything from landscapes to macro, but I recently bought the Velbon Ultra Rexi-L for times that I want something more compact on by bag (there is a review of this on the EPZ reviews section). A very popular one for lanscape specialists is the Manfrotto 055 - it is very stable but it ain't compact and it ain't light.

Whichever route you go down I would suggest a midi-sized ballhead as the minimum (the bigger the ball the more stable it is) and get a quick release plate.

Good to hear you are pleased with the 10-20mm. Don't worry about the gap up to 70mm until you know you need it - the quality of digital images now is good enough to put up with cropping and still giev you an image that is comparable to using longer focal lengths even just a few years ago.

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