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Old Feb 1, 2010, 10:29 PM   #1
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Default DA*300 and Tripods

It sometimes takes me a while to figure all the do-dads and features when it comes to equipment. I've owned the DA*300 now for several months. When I got it, I promptly removed the tripod mount and carefully stowed it away for future use. I always used it hand-held (can't remember ever using it when the camera was mounted on the tripod).

Yesterday I got a plate for it, so I can use it with my QR plate (along with an L-bracket for the K-7). Lunch time found me at my favorite spot (the botanical gardens), playing around using the tripod mount. This is the first time I've ever used a lens's tripod mount as none of my other lenses have one. It's really very cool - you can rotate the lens and there's an indent when it's at the proper vertical position, letting you feel when it's properly lined up (assuming your tripod head is level). It does feel more balanced than mounting the camera to the tripod (I tried that also). None of the pictures were exceptional - just close-ups of flowers. But I sure had fun!

Why does it always take me so long to figure out cool stuff like this? If I had known what a difference it makes, how nice it is to work with, I would have put the lens plate much higher on my list of priorities!

I'm sure that many of you out there already know such things, but I sure didn't!
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 6:52 AM   #2
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Harriet, I have found that I leave the tripod mount on all the time on my two lenses that I use that have it, the Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 and the Bigma. Not only is it very nice for quick mounting on the tripod, but for me, the tripod mount is a convenient handhold for supporting the lens when I'm shooting a heavy lens hand-held, which is most of the time. It adds a little to the weight, but the positive control more than makes up for it.

Paul
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 4:05 PM   #3
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Hi Harriet,

It took me a whole year to determine that I was better off using my 300/2.8s on a tripod. . .so I'd consider you a quick learner.

I'd experiment with using your ball head as a faux gimbal.

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pe...bal-heavy.html

The main advantage is that you don't have to worry about frame alignment (tilted images) once you have the tripod leveled. The only planes that the camera will move in are vertical and horizontally around the panning base. You rotate the lens within the tripod collar to change from landscape to portrait (I know you knew that already, but even after using a ballhead like this for a while, I sometimes found myself having to think about it in the field. . .)

I'm hoping to be able to use my new 180 Macro handheld mostly, but I always carry either my Benbo Trekker or Uni Loc in the trunk, so I'll have it handy if I find I want to use it.

Scott
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Old Feb 2, 2010, 11:13 PM   #4
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A very neat idea - I can see how that would work very well - I'll have to try that out tomorrow. I ended up with a Gitzo head (not my first choice, but it works) so I think it would hold up well enough for this, and I know that my QR plate/lens plate should be good enough. I'll have to see if it slips, but I didn't notice any when I was shooting with the lens yesterday (I was out shooting wide angle/low light this morning and macro at lunch). I can see how your idea would allow a lot more freedom of movement, without sacrificing much stability. Thanks for bringing it up.

Does anyone else have some of these cool ideas of how to use a tripod mount on a long lens?
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