It’s a sad, sad day. Last night I finally got around to testing my new tripod (which I will write a review on at some point this week) and there was a terrible accident. Here’s what went down…
All of the ball heads I’ve used to date have had some sort of safety release mechanism that requires you to press a button or pull a lever to actually detach the camera once you have loosened the mounting plate. Yesterday, I learned that the Benro Travel Angel A-169 does not have this feature. Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way. Without going into great detail, my 5D and 50mm took quite the tumble. Luckily (I guess) the 50mm took the brunt of the fall and my 5D was spared any damage from what I can tell. If I had dropped any of my L glass I would probably still be screaming and swearing.
Sorry to see you go 50mm, you were by far my favorite lens. Luckily, you were also my cheapest lens so it won’t break the bank to replace you.
So, as you can tell from the date of my last post, I’ve been slacking on getting new posts up on the blog. Well, that is about to change. After weeks of research I’ve finally decided on a tripod and it has finally arrived! I ended up going with the Benro Travel Angel A-1691 tripod (shown below). This setup is very compact, versatile, and relatively light.
Other than taking pictures of my wife making dinner in the kitchen, I haven’t had a chance to use it but I will be sure to post a full review after I get a few hours with the tripod. My initial impressions are good. Build quality seems solid and the anti-twist legs are sweet. My only concerns at the moment are the twist locks and the included ball head.
The twist locks take quite a bit of turning to get the fully locked…nothing like the Gitzo G-locks but this tripod is also less than half the price of a comparable Gitzo. I think the trick is to just turn them as little as possible when unlocking the legs…this will then require less turning to re-lock them in place.
The ball head seems to be able get the job done with my 5D and 50mm or 17-40mm but I do get the smallest bit of creep when the 70-200mm f/4 IS is attached. I think a lens collar will help here but I wouldn’t try using this setup at an extreme angle; we will see how this head works over the upcoming weeks. If a new head is needed, I wouldn’t complain too much as this kit is a pretty solid value and you can’t buy a Travel Angel without a head…seems silly to me.
Anyway, that’s the news here. Keep an eye out for new pictures coming this week.
More info can be found on Benro’s site.