Via the Amazon Vine review program, I got the Vanguard Alta Pro 283CT Carbon Fiber Tripod with SBH-100 Ball Head as one of my items. I'm not a professional photographer, but I'm in awe of this tripod. I used to use one that my dad gave me many, many years ago. Needless to say, it was pretty bare bones. This one has everything I could ever imagine that I'd need at my level (and then some!)
The carbon fiber tripod legs extend quickly with little effort, and they are rock solid once tightened down. The center support extends with the flip of a switch, and also detaches so you can mount it horizontally should the need arise. The ball head is a work of art. Bubble levels to check both horizontal and vertical alignment, full rotation, easy camera mounting, the works. It even comes in a great carrying bag that you can sling over your shoulder along with your camera bag. It's got a little heft to it, so it's not something you'd want to carry around "just in case". I'd think you'd want to make sure you were going to use it before you decided to take it along to your next shoot.
The Vanguard isn't cheap, and wouldn't be the first thing on my list as an amateur photographer. But if you wanted to buy one tripod that would last you a very long time and that you'd never outgrow, this would be it.
Disclosure: Obtained From: Amazon Vine Review Program Payment: Free
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About the reviewer
Thomas Duff (duffbert)
Thomas Duff, aka "Duffbert", is a long-time member of the Lotus community. He's primarily focused on the development side of the Notes/Domino environment, currently working for a large insurance … more
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By popular demand, we merged our award-winning Alta Pro 283CT tripod with our popular SBH 100 ball head. Alta Pro tripods have unmatched flexibility, stability and enabling more angle possibilities than ever before. Its innovative Multi-Angle Central Column (MACC) System allows users to move the central column from zero to 180-degree angles in variable vertical and horizontal positions making macro-photography and special wide-angle shots a breeze.The Instant Swivel Stop-n-Lock (ISSL) System securely repositions the central column in one simple movement, in just a few seconds, while maintaining the tripod’s stability. Additional tripod features include advanced camera vibration and shock control, lightweight carbon fiber legs legs that adjust to 25, 50 and 80-degree angles, quarter-twist leg locks, patented premium magnesium die-cast canopy, hexagon-shaped central column for extra stability, and non-slip, spiked rubber feet for changing terrains and a removable hook for hanging camera accessories. Its SBH 100 fluid-like ball head rotates 360 degrees and has smooth locking knobs, an outstanding loading capacity and fine-tuning functions.