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mebareit Feb 6, 2007 1:01 AM

Hi all, I do a lot of research / reading about what I want to buy before I buy it. Since I got involved in photography the hardest item to research has been the tripod. Not that there is a lack of information the problem is too many choices and different uses. Trying to find a tripod that will do everything I want and not cost too much is not easy. I kind of know what I want but trying to find it is not easy within my budget. Anyway, while doing more searching I came across this review of the Velbon VGB-3 tripod. The author does a good job of reviewing the tripod but also gives you some good tips to help you better select a tripod for you. Here is a link to his review, enjoy.


BillDrew Feb 6, 2007 9:45 AM

I'm not sure how seriously a single review should be taken. No matter who wrote it.

One issue with that tripod is the lack of a quick release. It will become a major hassle if you have to screw the 1/4x20 into the camera each time you use it. That means you are likely to leave the camera attached to the tripod between shots, and carry it over your shoulder. A very good way to bash your camera into a tree, pole, rock, ...

I have never seen the point of a crank-up center post. It does allow fairly easy vertical positioning of your camera, but that is the easiest direction to adjust with any tripod. I think it just adds to the cost and weight of the tripod for no real return.

mebareit Feb 6, 2007 6:11 PM

Hi Bill, my main reason for posting the link is because he gives some good general advise about buying tripods. Like you say, there is light, cheap, and sturdy, you can only have two. Did I get that right?

What would really be great is if some of the more knowledgable would get together and write a short introduction into tripods. Maybe "The good, the bad and the ugly of tripods" or something like that. I know I see a lot of posts requesting information about tripods and heads with the same answers given again and again. Maybe someone who has a web site could post the information there and then we could just refer them to that website. Like, C-K's Digital Camera Page, I know I have read almost all the information he has posted and I have learned a lot. There will always be the questions, "Has anyone used this tripod before or this head". But at least the general information about tripods and heads will be available in one place for all. Maybe even some recomandations in the different price ranges based on different kinds of uses. Myself, the nearest camera shop is about a 90 mile drive. I do most of my shopping on the computer and spend a lot of time reading reviews about what I want to buy. There are others that won't do any research but will ask 50 questions and never try finding out the answer themselves. I know I see a lot of your replies on here and have read many under the Panasonic group. I'm just a newbee, but I am trying to learn the best I can. I always enjoy reading the many replies from yourself and the others that know much more then I do.


BillDrew Feb 6, 2007 8:15 PM


I know I see a lot of your replies on here and have read many under the Panasonic group.
Interesting - I don't have a panasonic and have never even looked at that forum.
But anyhoo - tripods are a personal choice. I like a three axis head, most folks like a ball head. I really don't care much what kind of leg lock system it has so long as it locks firmly - some folks demand twist type or lever type. I really want to be able to pan about a vertical axis for shooting panoramas, a lot of folks don't really much care about that.

The whole point of using a tripod is to keep the camera steady while the shutter is open. Remember that: all else is secondary. Of course you actually have to use the tripod to gain the advantage which is why I harp on having a quick release system.

My nearest camera shop is also about 100 miles away. I still wouldn't buy a tripod without trying it. I will take a chance on a lens, filters, flash, and even a camera. But not a tripod.

mebareit Feb 6, 2007 9:11 PM

My error, I just see your posts all over and I assumed it was also on the Panasinic forum. That is where I spend a lot of time. I guess I am spending more time on the other forums then I realized. The few times I have been in the Phoenix camera shops I don't recall seeing much in the way of tripods. Perhaps they were in the back and not on display. I know I could really use several tripods with some special fixtures for Macro use. I am also more interested in a panning head than a ball head. I have found a head that I like, now I just need to find a bare tripod to go with it. It seems like the bare tripods start at a much higher price. I am guessing because they are better quality and used more by the pros.


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