For limited time only, save 18.18% on the 3Pod P4CFH dropping from 275.00 to 225.00 . The 3Pod P4CFH also comes in . Bonus: No sales tax either, unless you live in New York or New Jersey.
96e convertible P4CFH Tripod / Monopod with H2 ball head from 3POD is a multipurpose, compact camera support system forged with industrial-strength carbon fiber and anodized finishing to make it lighter, harder, more portable and more durable than traditional constructions. Suitable for payloads up to a hefty 28.6 lbs, this tripod / monopod is a true space-saver without sacrificing strength or stability.
The P4CFH uses a cutting edge "flat-travel" design that does away with the bulkier traditional "round" folding style. Its towering 62 inch body collapses magically into an diminutive, completely flat 18 inch package, perfect for stacking with other equipment or tucking neatly into a suitcase.
The removable 2-tiered center column allows this versatile item to switch between tripod and monopod configuration while taking advantage of the column's added height for high-angle shots.
Textured rubber pads at the base of each leg grip for a slip-free hold on smooth surfaces, and can be removed to reveal spikes that anchor the tripod tightly in grass or uneven ground. The legs themselves lock in place with a 1/2 twist, with special metal jacketed clamps that won't rust, loosen, or wear out over time and boasts advanced protection against the destructive forces of heat, cold, dust and moisture.
This is a full featured tripod capable of tackling all the challenges of the trail. Each leg angle is individually adjustable and fixed, as you would expectin superior designed tripods, allowing for compensation to uneven surfaces, evenledges and stairs, in angular placement with 3 position settings. The asymmetrical placement of the legs serves to create a offset to the center of gravity and more flexible positioning in the wild.
I wanted a lightweight tripod to bring on my travels to Asia. I chose this tripod because of its relatively light weight, small collapsed profile (for when stowing this in my luggage) and its rated carrying capacity of 28 lbs. The lens is sturdy enough to support my gripped body and long lens. I also used my camera bag with another body and lens as a weight to stabilize the tripod. My camera system weighs 21 lbs total and the tripod was able to support all that weight. the height without the telescopic center column was adequate with my 5'5" height. Attaching the center column made my set up too high that I needed to tiptoe to see the viewfinder.
Like the light weight and ability to travel flat. Sturdy in the field . Head is adequate for my D 7100. Ahhh but one little problem. I have heard others mention the same problem. The screws that hold the center leg to the head base came loose. OK no problem right ? Not so . The Allen wrenches provided don't fit in the area between the three legs. After some thinking I got out my hacksaw (Don't worry I didn't go after the pod) and trimmed the Allen wrench to fit in the small space and TA DA ! I tightened the screws. Requires a redesign or creativity!
I am a professional photographer and I do a lot of nature photography in addition to weddings. I have always lugged my heavy tripod to my weddings and just figured that was the price I had to pay for great shots. However, I recently started a new project capturing the many waterfalls of Hamilton Ontario which requires a lot of hiking up and down mountainous hillsides. It was then I decided it was time to invest in newer light weight equipment. Since I would be carrying a camera backpack I needed something that was light and would fold small. After extensive research I decided the 3Pod P4CFH tripod with the H2 ballhead was the best choice for me. It has strength and weight benefits from carbon fiber material and with some other nice features the price offers a lot of "bang for the buck". It has a nice design that allows it to fold flat and when I retract the legs fully it shrinks to 18 inches in length. The flat short design, which I was skeptical about at first, makes it so I can easily stack things on it in my carryon or slide it next to other items in my backpack. Brilliant! The center leg unscrews to make a monopod. It comes with a strap and the center leg also has a soft foam rubber hand grip. These are nice, well thought out touches. Sometimes a monopod is all I need and the reduction of weight in my backpack is much appreciated. The center column which attaches to the ballhead unscrews easily which allows me to make the choice of height vs. weight. In many cases I choose in favor of the lower weight on long hikes and heavy loads. I usually use the rubber pads on the feet but in some hillsides with turf or soft earth, I will take the pads off and use the built in spikes instead. The legs adjust easily with a slight twist to loosen and twist back to tighten. The leg angle can also be extended. Recently in very rugged area I need stability on an oddly angled rock which stood waist high. I opened the leg ratchets and the tripod base was almost opened to a platform with the legs retracted. The K2 Ballhead is made from lightweight aluminum and it moves smoothly a full 360 degrees for panoramic shots or panning videos which I also do. It also comes with a quick release plate with a bubble level which locks your camera tightly. My only concern is the piece that attaches to the camera requires frequent retightening. I will have to look into why it continues to loosen on its own. Last but not least it come with a nice compact carry case with a velvet bag for the ballhead. Since my purchase I have photographed Bermuda extensively as well as, 20 of the 100 Hamilton waterfalls and I am very pleased with my choice of equipment.
I have yet to do more with it then just set it up and play with it but it seems great. It is lite enough to carry around yet study enough to properly support my Nikon D800E.
First the good: Head is very good. Smooth rotation, solid locking, feels solid enough for a large lens. Tripod is flatter than a normal design, fairly light but no lighter than other similar size carbon fiber tripods. Monopod feature is useful to give you the option. The Bad Main problem is that the main screw holding the head on the tripod is also holding on the middle leg, and when you remove the head - a common occurrence on a tripod that converts to a monopod - the screw gets loose. There is no way to fully tighten it again on the leg side without a wrench or at least pliers. Since it is a convertible tripod, it is missing the telescoping function most tripods have to raise the head. It does include an extra 8 in section that can be screwed on to raise the head, which also telescopes a bit, but I found that setup to be fairly wobbley. There is too much flexion in that setup to hold a large tele lens steady. So if you never plan on using this as a monopod and you attach the ball head permanently to the tripod, then you can avoid the first problem. However if you want to use the extension mentioned above or to convert to monopod or to ever pack the tripod into it's included case, you will have to deal with the loose screw issue.
Until this tripod I had been using an aluminum & plastic Sunpak tripod that did fine until I got a heavier 70D camera. I was really attracted to this set because of the ability to transform into a monopod, something that I had been looking at the Benro line of tripods for. The 3Pod was much cheaper, so I decided to give it a shot. Overall I'm happy with the tripod. It is very adjustable, the ball head seems to be made of quality materials, and the ability to convert to monopod works as well as I had hoped. I'm also extremely pleased that the pan on the base of the ball head seems to be dampened somehow. It's very nice for panning while shooting video. I could probably gripe about a lot of things that aren't exactly how I'd do them, but I won't. I do have 3 major problems with the designs here, 2 of them with the head. 1. The foam handle is in the wrong place or a foam handle should have been added to the center tube. When you go into monopod mode, the center tube attaches to the top of the leg. The foam handle is way too low to be useful. I have tried using just the leg and the ball head, but that makes for an extremely top-heavy configuration that's also too short. 2. The levels on the ball head are of limited use so far. I'll admit that this is my first ball head, so maybe I don't know what I'm doing, but there is no position that I can put my camera or the head in to that allows me to use either level effectively. The most frustrating part about this is trying to level the camera in portrait orientation. I only care about left to right tilt and the only way to get that set is by using the level in my camera. 3. The ball lock is useless as a tension knob. There are marks on the knob that I imagine are supposed to represent the amount of tension being put on the ball, but I don't get any consistent results. There is a point where the ball is lose and then there's a point where it's not and it's never the same. A quick lever would have been more useful. In the end, I love the tripod, but will probably end up replacing the head down the road with something designed a little better.