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Tripods create a steady, level platform for a camera. It is essential for eliminating camera shake caused by camera movement or slow shutter speed. A tripod can be used for close-up, panning and landscape shots, as well as for timed exposures and taking photos in low light. There are so many types and styles of tripods that buying one can be daunting. They come in many different sizes, shapes and prices. A tripod should be easy to set up, easy to use and have controls which are easy to adjust. It should be stable, rugged and high enough for your needs. If you travel a lot, consider a tripod which is lightweight and folds to a compact size.

When choosing a tripod, look for these features:
Stability should be on the top of your list when buying a tripod! It should be lightweight enough to carry, yet strong enough to support your digital camera. If you use add-on lenses factor in the weight of your heaviest lens. The extra lens weight at the front of the camera can topple the tripod.

Quality construction - try to avoid tripods which have a lot of plastic parts, particularly mounting screws. Quality tripods are made of metals such as aluminum, lightweight carbon fiber and titanium alloy.

Quick Release: A tripod has a mounting screw to enable attachment of a camera. You do so by screwing it into a hole found at the bottom of your camera. A tripod with a quick release mounting platform comes with a plate to attach to the bottom of your camera. This lets you quickly attach or detach the camera to the tripod.

Camera positioned horizontally and vertically: The tripod should be able to hold its position when the orientation of the camera is changed.

Height: High enough for comfortable viewing so you don't have to bend over. Most tripods have a center, extension pole, which can be raised for extra height. There are three heights to consider: maximum, minimum and folded height.

Tripod heads - most consumer tripods have permanent three-way pan tilt heads. Ball heads are smaller, lighter and more expensive than pan-tilt heads but are faster and easier to use. Clamps levers or flip-locks to adjustment tripod when on uneven ground. Bubble level - Built-in level helps keep photos straight when shooting scenes with horizons and other horizontal or vertical lines (eg. landscapes, skylines).

This article appears on DigicamHelp


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