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Decent Tripod and Head for Nikon Monarch 82ed-a (2 Viewers)

Colin06

Member
United States
Hello! I plan on getting my first spotting scope soon which will be the Nikon Monarch 82ed-a. I was wondering if any of you have any recommendations for a decent tripod and head to mount it on?
 
Well, for that scope you'll need a stable tripod and a stable head. Lightweight tripods/heads don't work with a scope of that size and weight.

A decent head that's not too expensive and allows you to balance the scope is the Manfrotto 500 AH. I use one for my ED 82A, and it does its job nicely.

A tripod is more difficult. How tall are you? Ideally you shouldn't have ro raise the center column, especially not in windy conditions. What are you prepared to spend on the tripod? Are you planning to do a lot of walking/hiking with the tripod, and how important is it for you to keep the weight down? Do you use the tripod a lot in windy conditions, for instance on seawatches? Any specific recommendation needs to be based on some more information.

Generally speaking I think you get what you pay for with tripods. And I don't trust most of the many Chinese knock-offs, even though some of them may be pretty good. I personally use Gitzo and Berlebach tripods.

Hermann
 
Well, for that scope you'll need a stable tripod and a stable head. Lightweight tripods/heads don't work with a scope of that size and weight.

A decent head that's not too expensive and allows you to balance the scope is the Manfrotto 500 AH. I use one for my ED 82A, and it does its job nicely.

A tripod is more difficult. How tall are you? Ideally you shouldn't have ro raise the center column, especially not in windy conditions. What are you prepared to spend on the tripod? Are you planning to do a lot of walking/hiking with the tripod, and how important is it for you to keep the weight down? Do you use the tripod a lot in windy conditions, for instance on seawatches? Any specific recommendation needs to be based on some more information.

Generally speaking I think you get what you pay for with tripods. And I don't trust most of the many Chinese knock-offs, even though some of them may be pretty good. I personally use Gitzo and Berlebach tripods.

Hermann
I'm 5'11. My budget for a tripod would be in the $200 range, but I'm willing to go a little bit higher. I'd probably go on some walks with the scope. I plan to use it a lot for seawatching and watching shorebirds.
 
I'm 5'11. My budget for a tripod would be in the $200 range, but I'm willing to go a little bit higher.
5'11 means you'll need a fairly tall tripod. For seawatching you definitely don't want to extend the center column a lot. Extending the center column more than a few inches wouldn't work very well in windy conditions.

Your budget means most of the top brands (like Gitzo) are out, Gitzos for instance are pretty expensive. A good tripod, however, can last a lifetime. My oldest Gitzo is well over 30 years old and still going strong.

If I were you I'd look at Manfrotto. They're pretty decent. If you don't want to keep the weight down as much as possible you might want to look at aluminium tripods. Less expensive than carbon fibre tripods, and if you get a reasonably heavy one plenty stable. Wooden tripods are also a possibility (Berlebach), they are, however, a bit unwieldy.
I'd probably go on some walks with the scope. I plan to use it a lot for seawatching and watching shorebirds.
Conflicting requirements: For seawatching you want all the stability you can get, that means heavy tripods work better. But a lot of weight isn't ideal for walking ...

Hermann
 
5'11 means you'll need a fairly tall tripod. For seawatching you definitely don't want to extend the center column a lot. Extending the center column more than a few inches wouldn't work very well in windy conditions.

Your budget means most of the top brands (like Gitzo) are out, Gitzos for instance are pretty expensive. A good tripod, however, can last a lifetime. My oldest Gitzo is well over 30 years old and still going strong.

If I were you I'd look at Manfrotto. They're pretty decent. If you don't want to keep the weight down as much as possible you might want to look at aluminium tripods. Less expensive than carbon fibre tripods, and if you get a reasonably heavy one plenty stable. Wooden tripods are also a possibility (Berlebach), they are, however, a bit unwieldy.

Conflicting requirements: For seawatching you want all the stability you can get, that means heavy tripods work better. But a lot of weight isn't ideal for walking ...

Hermann
Hermann, how heavy of a tripod should I go with for seawatching?
 
Hermann, how heavy of a tripod should I go with for seawatching?
Depends on the conditions ... :cool: I normally use an old aluminium Gitzo that weighs 2.4 kg (+head). In really heavy weather I use a wooden tripod that weighs 3.5 kg (+head). That's not a tripod I'd want to carry longer distances. Definitely not.

For comparison: The lightest tripod I use with my Fieldscope 82A (the predecessor of the Monarch 82A) weighs 1.5 kg. That's a Gitzo carbon tripod.

Hermann
 
I've also been looking at the Slik Pro 700 PRO 700 DX AMT Black. It weighs 5.5 lbs. I'm willing to go with a heavier tripod for more stability when it's windy out. What are your thoughts on Slik?
I could find no reference to the tube diameters, but as the Slik is heavier, they are probably larger than on the Benro. Not a fan of flip-locks though.
In really windy conditions almost nothing short of a Berlebach Uni would provide a vibration-free support at standing height, but that is not a portable option. ;)
Btw, Slik's advertised use of a higher strength alloy is a little misleading. It would only improve the tubes'resistance to denting and not make them any stiffer unless one increased the diameter. Regardless of composition, all aluminium alloys have a similar modulus of elasticity.

John
 
I've also been looking at some of the Manfrotto tripods. Would the Manfrotto 290 Xtra Aluminum Tripod https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/prod...290xta3us_290_xtra_3_section_aluminum.html/qa or the Manfrotto MT190x3 https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1071808-REG/manfrotto_mt190x3_3_section_tripod.html/overview provide more stability than the Benro TMA27A Mach3 AL Series 2 Tripod, 3 Section, Twist Lock, Monopod Conversion. ? Berlebach tripods are out of my budget right now, so how do you think those Manfrottos would hold up in wind?
 
Hello! I plan on getting my first spotting scope soon which will be the Nikon Monarch 82ed-a. I was wondering if any of you have any recommendations for a decent tripod and head to mount it on?
The Manfrotto and Sirui provide good value. As with most tripods that are sturdy they will have a 3/8-16 mounting stud but there are adapters like the one from Camvate that convert them to 1/4"-20 for use with bino to tripod adapters. I would first look for a used tripod being sold as tripods for the most part do not wear out and often their owners want to get a carbon fiber one to replace an aluminum one.
 
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