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Thread: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

  1. #1

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    Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    Does anyone have a recommendation (or success) with miniature tripods for macro photography?
    I am shooting 4x5 and I find that a full size tripod takes up a large footprint when the legs are fully splayed. It is often hard to fit into some situations , but I do need to get close to the subject and that is often close to the ground. I was looking at something like the large Ultrapod, since it is quite compact. For reference, I am using a Toyo 45a (about 6lbs).

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    Not that I've tried, but I have some table top mic stands where the base is a 12inch disk of cast iron--pretty heavy. It wouldn't be too hard to adapt a 3/8-16 to the top. I bring this up because all the "mini tripods" I've encountered are super light weight, and I'd worry about stability with so little weight. I'd actually be looking for the heaviest mini tripod I could find.

  3. #3
    Pieter's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    A studio pedestal stand (way bigger and heavier than any tripod) has a base that will fit under most any table or surface you have for your still-life setup, allowing you to position the camera close. Otherwise, a tripod arm like Manfrotto makes can help, as long as you use some counterweights (I usually use small sandbags).

  4. #4
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?


  5. #5
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    I have a few new things from SmallRig

    This mini tripod is very strong, the legs to spread farther out and down than they show

    I also use a Majestic tripod and head with a Horsemen rail to reach outer limits

  6. #6

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    If you're talking a few inches off the ground, try a sandbag.

  7. #7

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mudrunner View Post
    Does anyone have a recommendation (or success) with miniature tripods for macro photography?
    I am shooting 4x5 and I find that a full size tripod takes up a large footprint when the legs are fully splayed. It is often hard to fit into some situations , but I do need to get close to the subject and that is often close to the ground. I was looking at something like the large Ultrapod, since it is quite compact. For reference, I am using a Toyo 45a (about 6lbs).

    Thanks in advance.
    Go to the Novoflex web site and check their solutions.

  8. #8

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    The Pedco Ultrapod that you're considering is very inexpensive. My apologies if what I'm going to say involves more than you want to spend. I have a very good tabletop tripod, but I don't think that that class of tripod is stable enough for a 4x5 camera. I'm attaching some photos of a Really Right Stuff Ground Tripod. The photos show it supporting a Blackmagic camera and zoom lens, but it's also rock solid with my 4x5 (Arca-Swiss). Benro and Induro make very good, less expensive versions. Benro and Induro are closely related companies (the ground tripods are almost identical), and I've read that the Mac Group owns both. This is an item where I would not hesitate to buy aluminium rather than carbon fibre.


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  9. #9

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    Quote Originally Posted by r.e. View Post
    The Pedco Ultrapod that you're considering is very inexpensive. My apologies if what I'm going to say involves more than you want to spend. I have a very good tabletop tripod, but I don't think that that class of tripod is stable enough for a 4x5 camera. I'm attaching some photos of a Really Right Stuff Ground Tripod. The photos show it supporting a Blackmagic camera and zoom lens, but it's also rock solid with my 4x5 (Arca-Swiss). Benro and Induro make very good, less expensive versions. Benro and Induro are closely related companies (the ground tripods are almost identical), and I've read that the Mac Group owns both. This is an item where I would not hesitate to buy aluminium rather than carbon fibre.


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    Benro and Induro are the same company and MAC Group distributes them. They donít own them.
    Induro was introduced as a lower price point then Benro.

  10. #10

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    Re: Mini Tripods Solutions for Macro 4x5?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon View Post
    Benro and Induro are the same company and MAC Group distributes them. They don’t own them.
    Induro was introduced as a lower price point then Benro.
    Thanks for the clarification about Benro, Induro and MAC Group. In the case of ground tripods, the Induro is more expensive than the Benro.

    For @Mudrunner... Here are two more photos of the tripod in post #8. This gets a bit fancier. In the first photo, the object on the right is a 6" Riser. In the second photo, the Riser is used to add height. For still photography, this Riser could be used with a half ball levelling base. Also, the half-ball top can be changed out for a flat top. See the video linked in post #23.

    In the case of RRS, my understanding is that the main market for its ground tripod is nature photographers. Until last year, it also made one out of aluminium. As you can imagine, aluminium might be attractive to nature photographers working, for example, in fields and muck. However, that ground tripod has been discontinued. RRS says that it became too expensive to manufacture.

    The problem with tabletop tripods is that they don't have a large enough footprint to support a large camera. If you put your Toyo on the average tabletop tripod, I think that it's likely to be an accident waiting to happen.


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    Last edited by r.e.; 5-Jan-2022 at 16:25.

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