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Old Oct 24, 2007, 4:46 PM   #1
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I have a (small) amount of money burning a hole in my pocket and I want to buy something for my camera. As it's nowhere near enough for a lens and the camera bag is on its way I wondered about a monopod.

Does anyone here have one? Are they actually useful or just a good idea in theory?

Keith
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Old Oct 24, 2007, 5:13 PM   #2
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yes they are keith, but you'll need an inexpensive head to got with it. it's a shame but i just sold a complete support system with a tripod, monopod, and 2 ball heads. you're in the UK so me looking on ebay for you probably wouldn't do any good. also, there's technique to using a monopod. the monopod i use for macros is nothing but a 12mm x 2m fiberglass rod. about $3 at the local garden shop..

roy
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Old Oct 24, 2007, 6:34 PM   #3
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Hi Keith,

I'm primarily a birder, and the monopod has a definite place in my gear, since I usually have pretty heavy long lenses mounted on my Pentax bodies. I use an aluminum walking stick that can be extended up to 57" and has a cork ball mounted on a 1/4-20 stud (which just happens to be one of the standard tripod head mounting threads). I put a Manfrotto 3229 QR tilt head on it and mount the QR plate either on the body or on the lens depending on the lens.

This serves me well as a hiking stick when I venture off to some relatively remote lake to search out Egrets and Herons, and the like, and it's very light but does a good job of supporting the gear. One of the chief benefits is that it allows me to keep the camera at eye level for long periods of time -- like when a heron is scanning the water for fish, and it doesn't move for 5 minutes -- I can keep the camera, focused on the bird, at eye level just about forever, ready to shoot when it finally makes it's move. Try that without any support with a 6 lb lens like the Tamron SP 300/2.8.

Of course, a tripod does this without having to hold the whole thing up all the time, but my "monopod" weighs about 1/4 of what even my carbon fiber tripods weigh, so if I have to walk a good distance, it's a good alternative.

Scott
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Old Oct 24, 2007, 10:59 PM   #4
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I also use one that sounds the same as the one Scott uses (I bought it at REI, an outdoors sporting equipment store). I like it because I hike quite a bit and use it as a walking stick. I can use it as a pole for macro (like Roy does), as well as putting a small camera mount on it (mine is a ball head). I'm more than willing to carry it, where I'm not so sure I'd bother with a tripod. And it was a whole lot less money than a good tripod would cost.
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 3:42 AM   #5
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Hi Keith,
I use one with my heavier zoom lenses, and I'd say I get much better results than handheld shots. Mine is a relatively cheap model from The 7 day shop in the channel Islands, but it serves the purpose ... just google 7 day shop and have a look around. ... Jack
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 5:13 AM   #6
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Apart from the photogrpahic benefits I find that in long sports sessions a monopod is handy just holding the lens.

Phil
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 12:18 PM   #7
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Here is another thread (inSteve's Wildlife Photography forum) that may be helpful:

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/fo...monopod+cradle
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 4:44 PM   #8
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As always, thanks for the info.

I think I'll definitely get one, just need to find one the right size. Being over 6 ft tall I guess I'll need one of the longer monopods. That lens cradle looks quite interesting, best thing is that I can get the monopod and get one of those later if I want.

Jack - I'm a regular customer at 7dayshop so had alreaqdy spotted their 2 cheap sticks. The cheaper of the two is out of stock and I don't think I want a swivel/tilt head - but then again, what do I know.

Oh well, a trawl through the various online shops sounds the order of the day tomorrow - beats working!
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 5:24 PM   #9
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believe me-- you want the swivel head or a ball head. believe me..

roy
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Old Oct 25, 2007, 5:51 PM   #10
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surfing ebay uk, here's some items. these are the less expensive. you do have some good choices. basicly what you want is something tall enough for you that supports 3.5-4k at least.. something that has a largest section of at least 25mm.. a couple of these have a tilting head that only tilts up, you don't really want them.. i'll ck heads for you..

mono ck specs

mono2 not bad

mono3 so far , best i've seen

mono4 ??? local??

mono5 this is what i have except i use the 679b. i think mine is rated a little lower. something like 8k

mono6 probably a good choice as it has a head.

mono7 anything by manfrotto is good
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