Which Tripod?

Posted: 11/20/2011

Which Tripod? Image shot by Dan Domme

Hey Mat!
How you been. I have a newbie question. I want to start doing night photography. I was wondering which tripod is excellent to use. Durable and can sustain the weight of a Mamiya 645?


Mat and his Bogen Tripod on the streets of NYC. Image shot by Dan Domme

Hey there Jhoe,

Mamiya 645 series cameras are hefty, but not so much that it alienates itself from the range of today's newest professional tripods. Any tripod made by Manfrotto or Gitzo should be more than enough to support it over a long exposure. If you're budget conscious and/or don't mind a heavier tripod, I'd suggest looking to a used Manfrotto, or their former name, Bogen for a good deal on a sturdy tripod. Personally, I use an old aluminum Bogen that's 30 years old, and it handles everything from my Mamiya 645AF all the way up to my 8x10.

Typically with tripods, aluminum ones are the least expensive, followed by wood, composite, and carbon fiber. Personally, I'm inclined to like the first two, as they've been around longer, and I like a heavier tripod for those really long night exposures. I've gone as long as a couple hours with little to no movement.

Hope this helps, and all the best with night photography!

-Mat M.
About Mat Marrash
Starting in June 2010, Mat Marrash, a Northwest Ohio native, picked up a medium format film camera and challenged himself to shoot at least one roll of film per week. In the weeks and months following, a healthy interest soon became a lifestyle. During his project, Mat tried out a variety of traditional formats including: 35mm, medium format, large format, instant photography, and even alternative process darkroom printing.

Mat co-hosts The Film Photography Podcast (FPP)



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