The whole reason for M4/3 is the small size; 1/2 size camera body + 1/4 frame sensor +1/4 size and weight of lenses = 4 times as many lenses in the same bag compared to my Nikon FF system....hooray!
With such a lightweight camera kit - the accessories have to be small too. I use step up rings to keep to one filter size, have searched out the smallest slave flashguns and triggers, shrunk the size of my tripod and monopod - but still want something more - the "perfect" mini "table top" tripod.
With the English winter now fully here - its a time of biting cold winds, grey skies at noon, and 1/4 second exposures......so time to be carrying a tripod if you want to keep the sensor ISO low.
Minitripod - mania:
I have lost count of the ones I have tried, and the many that I have bought, ranging in price from no-name Chinese micro-size tripods at £1/$1.25 to beautifully made but functionally useless Giotto's at more than £45/$55. However, my latest "best find" has turned out to be one of the cheapest. It is forgetably called a XILETU XS-20, and cost all of $8.00, postage paid, and has come in 2.5 weeks after ordering from a well-known Chinese Buying website. It arrived today, and after a good try out I am very impressed.
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- Please note - I spend my own hard-earned money on photography - and have no connection with the maker or seller
For the price I paid - this XILETU XS-20 has to be the best value of all my tripod finds - so far!
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- It has a ball head - meaning that with uneven surfaces you can always level up the shot
- now you know why in practice I hate the Giotto with its 5 degree stepping "click stop" head - what posessed me to buy it I cannt fathom
- The ball head is far larger than on most mini-tripods - meaning that it it is smooth in use and will lock to hold a Lumix with a 40-150 zoom without drooping under gravity.
- The ball head can be adjusted 90-degrees to come parallell to the ground - meaning you can shoot in portrait format.
- The legs have two locking positions - set by twisting the grey ring by 30-degrees, so it can be set up either 11 or 14 cm from the surface
- Although this is mainly "ABS" type plastic the degree of flex with a micro 4/3 camera and lens is small. Even with a lot of arm weight the most flex I have achieved is 4mm today.
- ABS plastic goes brittle with age - so I am under no illusions that in a decade's time it might crack if dropped
- Weight is 143g
- Folded - it is 20cm long - ideal for a space in the corner of my small size camera bag or for throwning in the outside pocket of a rucksack.
- It is fixed together with phillips' head screws/bolts - so can be tightened up easily with a screwdriver or swiss-army knife if you need it
- At this price, I can afford to pack it, use it and potentially loose it
For just $8, with the ball head (a mobile phone holder is a dollar or two more) I think this has to be amongst the best price / weight / rigidity/ utility mini-tripods I have got.
Is the 1/4 inch camera screw part of the ball head or a separate screw in nipple. Thanks