Manfrotto 190XB: A tripod of My Own

Just a follow up on yesterdays look into tripods.

As I had mentioned previously I was scheduled to shoot my first wedding gig today. So this caused quite a stir in the “lack of a tripod on hand” department. So I have spent the better part of two days looking into what kind of tripod I could find for about $250.

Fortunately, I was able to borrow a tripod at the last minute (see last post for details) and the wedding went off without a hitch.

Afterwards, I decided that I would like to prevent any future complications through a lack of basic gear so I bit the bullet and went shopping (AGAIN) for a tripod.

I headed back to George’s on George St, Sydney as I had been there the day before. This time I was much more prepared and had gotten my head around a lot more of the tech specs that I ought to be looking for. (Thanks to my friend the Internet)

I had a little trouble with the first sales person I encountered, not through a lack of me understanding the product but it seems they weren’t from that department. He did try to help…

Eventually I managed to grab the salesman from yesterday who I spoke to about which tripod I wanted. After a few minutes of talking I felt he was confused about me referencing the day before until he realised who I was. I guess I was a bit more confident with the shop talk today. Anyway, so I corrected my mistake from yesterday and tried out the Manfrotto 190XPROB. I figured out how to work the 90 degree tilting column but as I had initially felt yesterday, it seemed unstable for filming and a not really worth it for the extra low inches I would gain.

Alas, they did not have the Manfrotto 190XDB that I inspected yesterday, but as I had since realised that the legs locked with a screw-in type connection I wasn’t too disappointed.

I told the guy what I wanted and we came to the Manfrotto 190XB. It was exactly what I needed. 3 Leg sections with thumb clip locks for height adjustment. The centre column can be exchanged with a shorter one (when I can afford it). The legs have varying snap lock positions to assist with heigh control. Strong aluminium but not as heavy as the Manfrotto 055XB.

I did have a few questions about the feet as I plan on investing in a dolly in the future. My only experience has been that when using a dolly (the ones I have used) you need spiked feet. The salesman was quick to correct me and showed me a very nice basic Manfrotto Dolly which snap locks the rubber feet in with clips instead of the spikes being needed to dig into sockets. I’m not sure if this was the same one I briefly checked out but it is somewhat similar. Manfrotto 127VS Variable spread Dolly.

I already knew that I wanted the 128RC Fluid head for the tripod so I picked up one of those as well.

Altogether with a lovely inshore sale I managed the tripod and head for $249. Perfect! So I picked up a bag and was off.

So not a bad day at all. The wedding job essentially covers the cost of my new tripod so, i’m happy. On top of that, instead of continuously borrowing or hiring I now have a slightly better idea about tripods. Which is never a bad thing.

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