Steady, there!

November 21, 2006 · Posted in Uncategorized 

Across the country newspapers are trying to do video with no budgets. A consumer handycam, Windows Movie Maker or iMovie, and a whole bunch of extra work on the staff photogs, and suddenly the Podunk News has gone Hollywood.

But the video produced is shaky in more ways than one. You need support.

But that’s another topic — I’m talking about camera support here.

As for tripods, you get what you pay for. One of the cheapest fluid head tripods with leveling is the Libec LS22 and it’s around $400. I bought one and it’s the best you’ll get for $400, but I don’t recommend it. You really need to spend more than that to get smooth movement. You might have to be satisfied with a decent still tripod and give up on pans while shooting if your budget is less than that. Bogen/Manfrotto has a really inexpensive video head, the 700RC2, which will go on any tripod and is sorta smooth. It’s a friction head (even though they call it a fluid head) and is probably the best for under $100 if you already have a decent tripod to put it on. It won’t give you leveling, though, and it doesn’t stay smooth in daily use.

To get the kind of movement you see on TV, you need to spend upwards of $1500 on a tripod.


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