7 Reasons Why You Should Use a Tripod

November 25, 2009 | Mark Goldstein | Photography Techniques | Comment |

Is a Tripod a Necessity?



To help you capture the ideal shot in all different circumstances. A tripod only takes seconds to erect and adjust, yet it can support your camera in the perfect position for however long you wish, helping you to take great images.

But when would I need it?

Whenever - a steady camera is a necessity for all types of photography so in any situation they will be useful.

Here are some examples of when you will need one.

1. When taking night time shots and sunsets

Natural lighting is reduced and so to get more light into the lens, the camera will adjust exposure and shutter speed when set to the Night setting. However, with a slower shutter speed, there is the risk of camera shake which results in unwanted blurring. A tripod will reduce camera movement and improves picture quality, helping you take the perfect sunrise or sunset.

7 Reasons Why You Should Use a Tripod

2. When you need to be flexible

Tripods don’t just hold cameras, they can hold camcorders and also serve as a light stand that holds flash units, slaves, and reflectors. Using a tripod when using a camcorder will dramatically help picture quality as it will allow you to pan smoothly making your movies lookmuch more professional.

3. When you are taking close up shots

Taking photos of small objects close-up can require a lot of skill, and minor movements will be crucial to a perfect image. Using a tripod will noticeably reduce unwanted movement of the camera.

4. When you are taking action shots and doing sport photography

Panning is vital in taking stunning action shots as it allows you to really capture the movement. Having a tripod makes panning much easier and more fluid.

7 Reasons Why You Should Use a Tripod

5. When you are doing nature photography

A tripod is key in getting great nature shots as you can be waiting around for hours for animals to make an appearance that might only last a few seconds, so you need to be ready.

6. When you are using a telephoto lens

Telephoto lenses tend to be difficult to steady. Their long focal length magnifies any vibration caused by the camera shutter and mirror, wind, or by the photographer themselves. Their slower maximum aperture also causes a frequent need for slower shutter speeds which exacerbates the problem even more.

A good rule of thumb for deciding whether hand-holding a telephoto lens will cause you problems is that a shutter speed of at least 1/ the focal length is required for a sharp picture. For example, if you are using a 500mm. lens the minimum shutter speed you would normally need to use without a tripod would be 1/500th second. When using a shutter speed slower than this simple rule of thumb suggests, a tripod is in order. A good tripod will help steady your camera and ensure sharp pictures.

7 Reasons Why You Should Use a Tripod

7. When you need to be creative

Last but not least, a tripod can really help by making you slow down and think about the shot you are taking and getting the framing right. With a tripod you can also get your camera into places you sometimes can’t. Manytripods have the ability to let you place the camera anywhere from just inches off the ground to way above eye level.

When you're in the studio, the tripod frees you from the camera, and allows you to concentrate on the lighting of your subjects knowing that the camera is both secure and in the right place.

If you want a tripod, but you aren’t sure which one is best for you, then Manfrotto's tripod configuration tool is a great place to start. Based on your choices, the configurater identifies suitable heads and tripods to suit you and can guide you through the Manfrotto catalogue according to your photography needs. Visit www.bogenimaging.co.uk for more information.

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