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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> Walmart bought tripod, what's so bad about it?
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06/15/2006 05:52:24 PM · #1
I am really needing a tripod soon, I am thinking about buying it from walmart or target. My question to you. Is that so bad? I am using a pretty light weight canon 300D. I have never used any tripod as of yet. What are your thoughts?
06/15/2006 05:58:04 PM · #2
Originally posted by jfriesen:

I am really needing a tripod soon, I am thinking about buying it from walmart or target. My question to you. Is that so bad? I am using a pretty light weight canon 300D. I have never used any tripod as of yet. What are your thoughts?


That Wal-Mart is to be avoided whenever humanly possible. Target doesn't engage in most of the same shady practices that Wal-Mart employs and isn't so inherently evil.

My tripod is a very lightweight cheapo POS, but it works well enough for me. A heavier tripod won't shake so much in the breeze, and there have been windy shoots here where I've had two hands planted firmly on the legs and pushing it hard into the ground to keep it from blowing over. Others here can give better recommendations, I'm sure.

Message edited by author 2006-06-15 17:59:05.
06/15/2006 05:58:08 PM · #3
I purchased a $29.95 tripod from wolfcamera. The tripods are ok if you are using a light weight camera and a light weight lens. It worked ok for about a few months then the clamps started to slide and most of all with weight of longer lens the head will not hold the camera steady. I have since purchased a 299.95 tripod. No movement.

So really its up to what you are using it for. Long timed shots you need a very stable tripod with a stable head. Using heavy lens, the same.

Using the tripod for a 4" to 1/20" with light weight or short lens you will be ok with a walmart tripod.
06/15/2006 05:58:16 PM · #4
Depends on how big your lenses are, most of those can only hold up about 3 lbs before they start to slip. A $30 one will get you by for a while. Don't count on using it in the wind or anything.
06/15/2006 06:00:19 PM · #5
Originally posted by karmabreeze:


That Wal-Mart is to be avoided whenever humanly possible. Target doesn't engage in most of the same shady practices that Wal-Mart employs and isn't so inherently evil.


Target does some other things that I disapprove of, but that's sorta OT here. I think the walmart comment was just a generalization for "discount big box store"
06/15/2006 06:00:57 PM · #6
I bought a $30 tripod from walmart when I first started out and it didn't even have enough grip to hold my sigma 24-70 2.8 in a vertical postition, it slid like crazy. Spend the money, get a decent tripod, because if you don't, thats $30 that could have went towards something better that you will eventually get in the future anyways, so why waste the money.
06/15/2006 06:02:27 PM · #7
Originally posted by wavelength:

Originally posted by karmabreeze:


That Wal-Mart is to be avoided whenever humanly possible. Target doesn't engage in most of the same shady practices that Wal-Mart employs and isn't so inherently evil.


Target does some other things that I disapprove of, but that's sorta OT here. I think the walmart comment was just a generalization for "discount big box store"


Mostly, but of the big boxes, Wal-Mart is hands down the absolute worst. Anyway, yeah, this isn't the place for a big socio-political argument, but if I have a choice between Wal-Mart and Target, I think it's a more responsible choice as a consumer to choose Target.
06/15/2006 06:05:46 PM · #8
I don't shoot on a tripod much, but I've found for my needs that the cheapo tripods from Walmart/Target do well enough. Any tripod (when you need one) is better than no tripod.
06/15/2006 06:06:43 PM · #9
I bought a tripod from Walmart and it broke in less than a month.....you get what you pay for.
06/15/2006 06:07:27 PM · #10
I have this. It works great. I got on an Ebay auction for 35.00 plus shipping which was 30.00 so 65.00 total.

Don't buy a cheap one.

Just my $.02
06/15/2006 06:07:32 PM · #11
Best Buy, Circuit City & Sears are certainly worth taking a look at.
Don't wanna' throw this thread into rant, but I won't set foot in W.....
06/15/2006 06:16:42 PM · #12
Manfrotto #055 with Leica ball head.
'nuff said.
06/15/2006 06:20:40 PM · #13
I don't use a tripod very often. I used a Best Buy $30 tripod for at least a year...and it worked fine. It held the camera steady...if it was windy, I'd put something on the center column and it would help...

I now have a more 'professional' tripod and ball head and I can't say my pictures are any better because of it. Sure, the legs extend outward to completely horizontal on each side which makes some situations easier to maneuver, the ball head is a nice feature, and it's just all around more sturdy...but like I said, it certainly didn't improve my photos in any way, shape, or form.

--

So anyway, get what you can afford...as long as it holds the camera steady, it'll do for you what it was meant to do.
06/15/2006 06:25:19 PM · #14
Originally posted by Uusilehto:

Manfrotto #055 with Leica ball head.
'nuff said.


An $800 answer to a Walmart question is probably too much said.
06/15/2006 06:28:48 PM · #15
Originally posted by thegrandwazoo:

I have this. It works great. I got on an Ebay auction for 35.00 plus shipping which was 30.00 so 65.00 total.

Don't buy a cheap one.

Just my $.02


Holy crap! I bought something like that for almos $100. What a steal!

Yeah, If I had it to do over, I'd get a Slik 330DX

edit, wrong pod. doh!

Message edited by author 2006-06-15 18:30:41.
06/15/2006 06:29:28 PM · #16
I agree with you guys about Walmart... I said walmart as a generalization of big depot store.
06/15/2006 06:31:48 PM · #17
My advice is to save up and buy a better tripod that will last - its an investment.
06/15/2006 06:33:25 PM · #18
Originally posted by wavelength:

Yeah, If I had it to do over, I'd get a Slik U212

I think this is what I got a few years ago ... note that it is designed for both still camera and video use, so not all cameras will fit well on the top, and while it can pan nicely, it is not around the "focal point" of the lens, so it's good but not perfect for panos.

Then there's the UltraPod II from REI ...

Message edited by author 2006-06-15 18:35:25.
06/15/2006 06:40:35 PM · #19
go on ebay and find teh seller Amvona. get one of their tripods. I got a tall, heavy-duty one with a pistol grip head, quick release, carry bag and 2 sets of feet - $68 incl shipping. Very comparable to a bogen 2021 and a 322 head - like this.

buy one like this - at-828
06/15/2006 06:43:32 PM · #20
I got the highest end tripod from WalMart. It's available elsewhere too. It held up for almost a year for about 70 bucks. A cheap tripod is better than no tripod...
06/15/2006 06:56:53 PM · #21
Here is an alternative you should look at. I have one that I use when traveling, because it fits into my carry-on luggage. It's much more solid than the Wal-Mart cheapies, and doesn't cost much more. It comes with a small but adequate ball head. Is it as nice as my Bogen 3012 & 488RC4 head? No. Is it functional? Heck yes.
It also has adjustable tension on the clamps, and comes with the allen key to adjust them. It is somewhat shorter than many "full size" tripods, but not so much as to make use a pain.
06/15/2006 07:05:49 PM · #22
Originally posted by jfriesen:

I am really needing a tripod soon, I am thinking about buying it from walmart or target. My question to you. Is that so bad? I am using a pretty light weight canon 300D. I have never used any tripod as of yet. What are your thoughts?


They are not Manfrottos :P

JK, I have a Velvon tripod myself. We have a Walmart tripod we bought in a hurry because we needed it and neither one of us had bothered to bring our tripods with us. It proved to be pretty useless. We wanted it for night shots of San Franciso and this is what I got:

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/6630/thumb/348220.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/6630/thumb/348220.jpg', '/') + 1) . '

100% crop. The tripod was just not stable enough, it was too light to be of any use in a situation like this. If that is all you can afford and you need a tripod ASAP, then by all means get one, however, I recommend you wait and save up a bit and get a good tripod. Just my 2 cents.

June

Message edited by author 2006-06-15 19:09:08.
06/15/2006 07:07:00 PM · #23
Not to pick on Wal*mart, Target, BestBuy, etc. If you have the choice, buy from local small business'. It does two things for your community...

1. Encourages small business development
2. Keeps your money in your local economy. I.e., the camera shop owner takes your money and buys dinner at the restaurant across the street, and then the restaurant owner hires you to shoot his daughter's wedding.

If you buy something at Wal*mart, the money you spend gets sucked off to Bentonville, Arkansas and someone in Bentonville has a nice dinner on you. That's the way I see it anyway. I'm not saying to stop shopping at walmart, bestbuy, etc, just use your smaller local guys when you have a chance.

I admit, I buy a lot of things from online stores (ebay, amazon, B&H), but I always check locally first to see if it is available and at a reasonable price. I bought by SB-600 locally for about $60 more than I could have gotten it online. I bought my Yamaha RXV-1500 locally for about $130 more than I could have gotten it online. At the time, I was a little bummed these items weren't cheaper, but then I figured I'll get that money back at some point from someone here locally and it's always nice to be able to walk back in and ask questions about your product or get help if you need it.

With that being said.... I have owned two cheap tripods. Both broke. Now I have a decent Manfrotto and it is rock solid.

Cheers,
-Jeremy

06/15/2006 07:13:18 PM · #24
Originally posted by jahoward:

2. Keeps your money in your local economy. I.e., the camera shop owner takes your money and buys dinner at the restaurant across the street, and then the restaurant owner hires you to shoot his daughter's wedding.

If you buy something at Wal*mart, the money you spend gets sucked off to Bentonville, Arkansas and someone in Bentonville has a nice dinner on you. That's the way I see it anyway. I'm not saying to stop shopping at walmart, bestbuy, etc, just use your smaller local guys when you have a chance.


I'm always amazed that people will bitch because the oil companies are gouging people but Walmart is evil because it gives people a way to get things cheap... C'mon, which is it...
06/15/2006 07:15:40 PM · #25
Originally posted by karmabreeze:



That Wal-Mart is to be avoided whenever humanly possible. Target doesn't engage in most of the same shady practices that Wal-Mart employs and isn't so inherently evil.



So you are saying Target has high morals? I believe Target does the same things they just haven't been as good at it. Walmart is just the "target" because they are on top.
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