Saturday, October 27, 2007

No Tripod Skimping!

It pains me to see a high-quality spotting scope mounted on an inexpensive and flimsy tripod that has a lot of plastic parts. Locating birds through a scope can be difficult enough, but it's made worse with a poor tripod and unrealistic digiscoping expectations. When a bird provides an opportunity to photograph it, struggling with a scope on a wobbly tripod mount is the last thing you want to worry about. I can't emphasize enough how critical having a quality tripod and head is for the kind of digiscoping I do. The Bogen combo I use is by no means perfect; there are things about the 3130 MF/QR head I don't like (slight fluid drift, recoil, etc.). Some of you probably use something other than a Bogen, but my point of isn't to offer or obtain a list of recommendations. Here's my point: tripod skimping – don't do it! The extra money is a worthwhile investment and will return great views and help deliver stellar digital images when digiscoping. If you're forking over big bucks for digiscoping gear, expect to spend $250 or more for a quality tripod and head.

Scope image © 2007 Mike McDowell

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