Slik DX 700 : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

I have a question to those who own this tripod, or know about it. I have an 8 lb. monorail that I take out into the field. I chose this tripod because I felt it was a lot of tripod for the money ( $139.99). I know people who would not use a quick release for a camera this weight, and some who do use the sturdy Bogen ones. This quick release that comes with the DX 700 is somewhat scary to me. According to the B & H catalogue, the description says this tripod holds 15 lbs. What is scary to me is that when you lock the quick release plate, all that happens is there is a piece of metal that puts pressure on the plate to hold it in place. It seems to hold it just fine so far in the house, but I haven't taken it out in the field yet. Any comments would be appreciated. Thanks.

-- Raven (, April 17, 2002


Works fine with my 7# Technika and long, heavy lenses. Also with the Gandolfi 5x7 and 15" lens. Wouldn't use it for 8x10, though.

-- Wilhelmn (, April 17, 2002.

I likewise own a DX700 and successfully use it under a 9lb Toyo 23G monorail camera without any problems. I have never had any problem with the quick-release setup, either. For the money, it is a great deal and I don't regret having purchased one.

However, it IS fairly heavy -- ~7.5lbs, as I recall -- and although the panhead that comes with it works very well with my Autocord, it positions the Toyo much too high above the pivot point and can make it awkward to make fine adjustments quickly and easily.

As an experiment, I recently removed the panhead and center column, substituted a 3/8" bolt and a pair of thick fender washers in their place, and tried using the camera sans tripod head. Surprisingly, this setup works quite well (fortunately, my Toyo has a quick-release rail clamp and it allows 10 degrees of side-to-side adjustment, which is enough in most cases to let me easily level the camera without having to adjust the leg lengths) and it significantly improves the camera's stability. For less than a buck, it's one of the most cost- effective modifications imaginable...

-- Jeffrey Goggin (, April 17, 2002.

I own of these tripods, but I use it with a manfrotto (bogen) head together with a Pacemaker Speed Graphic. It is sturdy and I like it, although the combination is somewhat unusual. Recommended tripod.

-- Jimi Axelsson (, April 18, 2002.

I have one of these and use it with a light 4x5 field camera (Tachihara). I agree the quick release seems flimsy -- though there is a groove, not just pressure holding it in place. Still, I've had no problems with the camera coming loose at all -- even half-jogging with tripod and camera over shoulder. More likely is the screw will unscrew from the camera base, but that's a problem with any camera. Most likely, I trip and drop everything... :-)

It's a good value indeed. Some of the non-visible bits are very flimsy, so be careful disassembling and reassembling. The leg angle locks always seem to be in the wrong position when I set up.

I got an additional release plate ($20 in US) and the short column (about $20 too?). I highly recommend the shorter column. I stand 6' (180cm) and never need more height than the legs and short column. The long column might be useful if I had a stool (and didn't mind the decreased camera stability) or was on very uneven ground.

For what it's worth, ratings of weight capacity for tripods seem completely irrelevant. They are measuring dead weight directly over the center of the tripod. More relevant is the resistance to leveraged weight pulling down on a head when a camera is racked out, etc. No standard way to measure that as far as I know.

-- Eric Pederson (, April 18, 2002.

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