Buyer Guide to Pro Tripods

Posted By Tom Cropper on 06 May 2014

Posted in Used Equipment Buyers Guides

A professional tripod is considered one of, if not the most, important pieces of filming equipment.  Without incurring large costs, it is possible to purchase a professional tripod to fit both budget and requirement easily, with many to choose from. This is not always useful, however. If there are too many to select from it can be a confusing process to determine which one will work best for you.

Video Camera Tripod

Video camera technology is always improving to achieve perfect image stabilisation; however, nothing proves as successful as the use of a good quality pro tripod. A key technical feature that should be considered is the head of the tripod.  Professional standard tripods should have a fluid head containing two floating plates; this will ease the tilt and pan movements. Reliable tilt and pan locks are essential. A quick-release mount plate is especially helpful for professional use as it allows fast action without the need of screwing on or unscrewing the video camera in place.

Tripod Legs

Height, stability, and portability of a tripod are determined by the structure’s legs. No matter what you will be using the tripod for, it is an important consideration to ensure that the legs are strong, firm, and stable.  It is possible to achieve this even with lightweight models. Whilst looking at tripods, be mindful of exactly what you will be using it for, as this will help to identify the key features that you require. Specifications vary for each model and outdoor use, indoor use, aerial videoing etc. can all lend themselves to particular tripod designs and models.

The size and type of video camera that you will be using the tripod for is perhaps the biggest indicator to start from when making a selection. This will dictate certain structural designs, weight allowances, and features that will provide the best functionality.