Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2015/10/24

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Subject: [Leica] Light tripods and electronic first curtain
From: mark at (Mark Rabiner)
Date: Sat, 24 Oct 2015 20:49:31 -0400

Again the advantage of a light tripod is also its disadvantage . Hence the
hook at the bottom of the post for hanging a gallon of water in a plastic
milk carton. Its the antidote to too good a tripod with too good of high
tech materials.

The huge tripod a metal Gitzo I bought when I got my 4x5 view camera became
my favorite tripod of my eye level 35mm cameras on my white backdrop. You
could bump into it and it would not budge. Certainly not fall over. It was
indomitable. . The tripod I got for my 35mm cameras I used for my waist
level Hassy and Rollei as they were only two feet off the ground not five.
So they were a perfect match for the tripod.
So when it comes to tripods its always what you don't think its good to have
a selection to choose from at any moment. Possibly hanging in the back
window of your pickup.

I got a better head for my tripod last year. A newer design Gitzo ball head.
It locks down better and just works better all around. We don't want the
head to be a tripods weakest link perhaps we want it to be its strongest.

Image stabilization is certainly the wild card because if the camera is
going to have its film plane jerking around last minute with algorithms of
which we can only dream  the advantage of a tripod would be hard to measure
you're measuring your VR not your TP.. I know some people turn their VR off
when  using a tripod as its the department of redundancy department all over
again and on some cameras using it there is a tripod VR setting. So the VR
knows its subject movemt its dealing with not camera movement. It's probably
a nice help or they'd not have it.
But VR is a digital tripod. Or virtual reality tripod I think if it kind of
like a hologram tripod.

I'm fond of using my 300 4.5 ai as its my only lens which has a tripod
collar on it so the thing is not a vibration waiting to happen. It balances.
I find my 80-300 though fine hand held near useless with a tripod as it
sticks out a mile and when I lock down my head it moves down another inch.
The moon goes from center frame to nowhere to be seen or heard.

Not trimmed as I think the last post has to be there to see what is being
replied  too or with.

On 10/24/15 8:07 PM, "Paul Roark" <roark.paul at> wrote:

> Since the issue of tripods came up, I decided to do a quick and limited
> test of the Sony with the Canon 70-200 f/4 L zoom attached -- set to 200mm.
> It's still sunny here, so 1/60 at f/8 was the "best" I could do for now.
> Of course, all was on self timer release.
> The baseline was a heavy Tiltall tripod with the center pole down.  The
> first question I had was whether the Sony IS decreased sharpness, as the
> Canon does, on a tripod.  It did slightly on the Tiltall.
> I now carry a Gitzo carbon fiber Traveler tripod -- one of Gitzo's
> lightest.  My main question was how this light tripod would do with the
> 200mm lens and the electronic first curtain on.
> All I tested was center sharpness at 200% enlargement, 1/60 and f/8, with
> the camera in a horizontal position.  So, this has to be taken as just a
> first and quick look.
> That said, with e-front curtain activated, the Gitzo Traveler with the pole
> up or down matched the Tiltall in sharpness.
> Interestingly, the image stabilization did not decrease the sharpness with
> the Gitzo. It may have even increased it in one shot, possibly due to some
> wind hitting the tripod.
> The point is that the electronic first curtain release option of the latest
> cameras may allow light tripods to be surprisingly effective,in at least
> some situations.  This option on a camera may be a significant one.
> Paul
> _______________________________________________
> Leica Users Group.
> See for more information

Mark William Rabiner

In reply to: Message from roark.paul at (Paul Roark) ([Leica] Light tripods and electronic first curtain)