I'm looking into buying first tripod for an upcoming hiking trip to Utah and I wanted to get some feedback and comments on recommended tripods.
First the specs: I have a Nikon D70 with a 18-80 mm lens, in the future looking for a 80-200mm. I will be hiking with the tripod. I haven't gotten into landscape photography and my tripod will be used a lot in the future for macro photography.
My current research: I know that price and quality go hand and hand, and that I recognize that my price range won't get me a top of the line tripod but I'm hoping I can find a decent tripod for that value. It seems like the center column can be disruptive to the camera as it leads to instablity. I think I want the ballhead support versus the 3-way pan tilt because the mobility of the ballhead and the quick easy adjustments. However, it seems you would need a bubble level somewhere on your camera or mount to make sure things are good.
I say my range is 100-150 but if there is a solid recommendation a little higher than that, then that'll probably be an option as well. I currently was looking at the Bogen:
Bogen / Manfrotto 3001BN Tripod (Black) with 484RC2 Mini Ballhead (Quick Release) - Supports 8.8 lb (4 kg) $134
Bogen / Manfrotto 725B Digi Black Tripod with Ballhead (Quick Release) - Supports 7.7 lb (3.5 kg) $110
Although the first selection looks as if the legs are seperate from the supporting mount which leads to think if I wanted to upgrade the mounting system I could. However, one post had critized this model because of the camera instability of the center column. If one removes the center column do you need to purchase an additional mount to go connec tthe legs to the ballhead?
Like I said, I'm new to this game so if there is another receommendation or a different brand in that range, I'd love to hear it, thanks.