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nhmom Aug 20, 2007 9:34 PM

Hi all,

After an almost unfortunate event this weekend with my current tripod I decided it's time to buy something a little more sturdy.

I currently have a Sunpak 6100 (I think that's the number, it's down in my car). I've been very leary of the center post being very wobbly for some time, but just kept an eye on it.This weekend I went out and it was very windy. I had totally forgotten about hanging a weight off the bottom and it blew over in the wind. Luckily I was standing right by it and caught it before hitting the ground.

Anyway, I'm ready to start looking for something else, but not quite sure where to start. A friend just purchased the Manfrotto 3001 or 3011, but I'm seeing B&H has it as discontinued. She was with me this weekend and had no problems with the wind with hers. I also read a review recently about it and the new one that replaced it not being as good as it. What are others opinion on trying to find the older modelsomewhere?

Also, for the head, I read about the grip action (??) as opposed to ball or three way pan with handles. It sounds like a good idea. I currently have the three way pan with handles and I spend more time trying to figure out which handle is going to adjust it which way and loosening and tightening the handles I get frustrated. But, I suspect the grip action ones are going to cost me dearly.

Does the head and legs need to be made by the same company? Or, can I intermex between the brands?

Any input on this appreciated before I start driving myself crazy looking at everything out there. I also noticed the posting about the Amnova?? recently. Is it really a good deal? I thought I read somewhere in my internet hunting this weekend that you get what you pay for.

Thanks for any input on this. Patty

robar Aug 20, 2007 9:55 PM

patty, = ebay= amvona= 858 or 828. great set of legs. yes you can intermix any head with it.. i know quite a few that use these and they are great for the $$. do your research of selling prices and set a limit for your self. it took me about 5 - 7auctions before i got a set at my price...


Black Knight Aug 20, 2007 10:27 PM

HI Patty

I have what i Consider To be a great tripod. The Slik Pro700DX

I dont really have a fancy head, just the stock unit that came with It. But For my purposes It Works great. The head can be Changed If You so desire. One of the big reasons i Got this model is that it has a Max height of 74". I am 6' 3". This way I dont have to Bend Way down and throw out my already bad back.


wadue Aug 20, 2007 10:30 PM

Hi Patty, I'm one of those that Roy is referring to. Last month, I bought the amvona at-858bl for $85 with shipping. Here's a link to one on auction on ebay right now

I realize that there's only 14 hours left on this particular one but if you're interested (& have an ebay login) just search for tripod at858 & you'll get about 15 results. This is the model that I just got & I was just bragging about how this tripod is the best camera accessory that I've ever bought. The legs (as Roy put it) are "rock solid" & the ball head & grip is firm (was actually stiff until this afternoon). Honestly, it isn't light...weighs 7lbs...I'm a big guy (6'3" & 255) so that's not issue for me but what was a factor for me was the height of the tripod & this goes to 78" which I really like. As far as amvona (the seller) goes...excellent...I recommend shipping & I had an issue with the grip being to stiff, sent them an e-mail last nite & had a response 1st thing this AM & bought this last month...they didn't have to respond to my question but they did WITH common sense.

Furthermore, my cousin just bought a Manfrotto from our local camera shop for over $300 & couldn't believe that I only paid $85 for mine & his doesn't reach as high as mine. Ok...Ok...I'll get off of my soapbox but if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. I'll be glad to vouche for this particular model & for amvona!


wadue Aug 20, 2007 10:32 PM

Hey Phil,

I just saw your post & went to click on the link & it wouldn't go through. I'm not sure if it's my pc but thought I'd let you know.


snostorm Aug 20, 2007 11:07 PM

Hi Patty,

I recently won an auction from Amnova for a big Carbon Fiber Dynatran A104 T tripod, and am very pleased. They place all of their tripod models up for no reserve auction in addition to having BIN auctions. I have quite a few tripods, but wanted a CF that was tall enough to use standing without having to extend the center post. This one's tall enough that I don't even extend the legs all the way to get the camera up to eye level -- but I'm only @ 5'6".

As Roy stated, if you go for the no reserve auctions, figure on losing a few before you get one for your price -- you have to keep trying, and not get caught up in the buying frenzy thing. The cool thing is that there are always at least 3 or 4 of each model up for no reserve auction at any given time.

The BIN price on the A104T that I got was $447. I got mine for $120, and could have paid less if I were more patient! The bottom line is that to get a comparable CF pod, I'd have to pay over $300 easily. I lost 6 auctions for this model before I finally got one. One of these was won for over $200, a subsequent one was won for $65 -- I guess I should have held out . . .:roll:

A good strategy would be to pick the tripod model that you feel is right for you, then do a search for that model in auctions that have already ended. You'll get a feel for what they have been going for. You can set your price limit, then find all the auctions for this model and watch them. There are always early bids for super low money, and then a bunch at the end of the auction, pushing the price up quickly. Stick to your max bid, and bid late to get the best deal -- bidding early only drives the price up, IMO.

The quality is very good. They are essentially Manfrotto knock offs from what I understand, and might not be quite as good as the comparable Manfrotto model, but there's not much of a difference, IMO. I don't know enough about the different models to know this for a fact, or be able to quote comparable models.

I think this is one situation where you can, if you play your cards right, get much much more than you pay for. . . I feel I did in this case.


robar Aug 20, 2007 11:24 PM

gawd, scott!! you're giving away for free how you are suppose to do this.. sheesh.. i got my 858s for $33 bucks delivered.. shipping was more than the price. they have lowered the shipping price now. i got my set about a 1 1/2 years ago and the prices delivered are now higher..


bigdawg Aug 20, 2007 11:52 PM

The only thing with a grip action ball head is Panning. You have to maintain a grip while triggering the shutter. May not be a problem for you but I thought I'd add that in. For most of my shots the threeway pan head works great. I like a very positive set with most of my old lens as they are somwhat heavy. Also got a Bogen/Manfrotto tripod and threeway head on Ebay for 44 dollars including shipping. It goes to nearly 7 feet in height. Got the 3011 legs and the 3160 head. You can find some really good buys there. the ones Roy is telling you about must be good ones as some of my friends on the Kodak forum got them and seem very happy.


Black Knight Aug 21, 2007 4:24 AM

wadue wrote:

Hey Phil,

I just saw your post & went to click on the link & it wouldn't go through. I'm not sure if it's my pc but thought I'd let you know.

HI Ron

Weird the link works from my Desktop and my laptop. If anyone else has a problem . i will redo the link


wadue Aug 21, 2007 5:40 AM

Hey Phil,

I just checked it again & it works fine. I must have had too windows open at the time.


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