tripod or hand hold?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by PeterDendrinos, Feb 21, 2006.

If you are going to shoot a subject that you know you will want to make larger prints

  1. I always use a tripod

    49 vote(s)
    53.8%
  2. Depending on speed

    32 vote(s)
    35.2%
  3. Not often

    10 vote(s)
    11.0%
  1. PeterDendrinos

    PeterDendrinos Member

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    Ok, those of you that shoot 35mm in particular. If you are going to shoot a subject that you know you will want to make larger prints from, will you always use a tripod, sometimes use one depending on the speed you shoot at, or no generally I hand hold. If you would please indicate what the speed is you consider too slow to hand hold for absolute tack sharp enlargements.

    I thought a pole might enlighten us as to the practices of many, and perhaps change a few of us and our techniques.
     
  2. roteague

    roteague Member

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    I never shoot handheld. It makes no sense for landscapes.
     
  3. Aggie

    Aggie Member

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    Well if I didn't drink so much,,,,opps forgot I don't drink, Well If I didn't breathe so heavily,,,, opps not that young and breathless anymore. Well If this arthritis would quit making my hands shake,,,, yep thats the one,,,,I could hand hold a 35 mm for enlargements.
     
  4. Charles Webb

    Charles Webb Member

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    Peter,
    I use a 35mm both ways, if I know I might want to make an enlargement I usuall opt for the tripod. Hand held with higher shutter speeds will work very well, but my favorite device for 35mm is a monopod. I used to carry a length of sash chain with a 1/4 in 20 thread thing attached, screw it into the tripod socket, then stand on the dangling chain while lifting up and pulling the chain tought. it works much better than just hand holding. Works for me!

    Charlie...............................
     
  5. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    I use a tripod much of the time. Bracing the camera against solid objects is sometimes more convenient. I've ruined many shots by overestimating an ability to do without some kind of support.
     
  6. Anupam Basu

    Anupam Basu Member

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    Not depending on speed but depending on the situation

    Whenever it's feasable I use a tripod, no matter the film speed. In fact, whenever it is feasable for these situations where I know I'll use a tripod, I shoot the slowest film I have - currently TMax 100 at EI 50.

    But I shoot in a lot of situations where tripods are out of the question. Low light concerts etc and street photography. Then getting the shot is much more important. I've handheld 1/4 of a second at f1.4 shooting on the street, making do with whatever support I could get for my elbows.

    First priority is getting the shot. Second priority is getting the best possible quality. Lazyness ought to be the last priority, although sometimes it isn't:smile:.
     
  7. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    To me it depends on the subject and the shooting situation. If the subject is static, I tend to use a tripod and the largest camera that is practical. If the situation does not permit a tripod either for pragmatic or legal reasons, then I shoot handheld and use the largest camera that is practical.
     
  8. Richard Wasserman

    Richard Wasserman Member

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    I'm with David on this one. I use the biggest camera possible and a tripod if it is suitable for what I am shooting.

    Richard Wasserman
     
  9. PeterDendrinos

    PeterDendrinos Member

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    so far i think this is interesting. I would have assumed more shot hand held. My recent background has been 4x5. I of course always use a tripod. As i re-enter the 35mm arena i am inclined to want to shoot freehand. I know however that i want tack sharp results so i use a tripod.

    Interesting all the same

    Pete
     
  10. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    For a static subject anything less than 1/1000th sec will show increasing loss as the shutter speed is lowered. For myself the only time not to use a tripod is when not using one improves the photo...such as active children at play. The tripod should be the most stable one you can afford and still carry a hundred feet.
     
  11. bobfowler

    bobfowler Subscriber

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    I couldn't have said it better...
     
  12. Travis Nunn

    Travis Nunn Member

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    I always use a tripod, except when I'm unable to carry a tripod for whatever reason. If I can't bring a tripod, I'll try to figure another way of support (tree stump, limb, rock or whatever fits the situation.)

    I used to never use a tripod because I hated carrying it around, but a friend of mine convinced me to start and my shots have been so much better since.
     
  13. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I use a tripod whenever I can. If I can't, I try to follow focal length=slowest recommended shutter speed formula, which will deliver "acceptable" sharpness in most situations. Acceptable sharpness is of course subjective.
     
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  15. Changeling1

    Changeling1 Member

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    The only shooting I would do without a tripod would be candid snaps and the like. It's one of the most difficult things to get a beginning photographer to do- use a tripod! It's like the last piece of equipment they would ever want to buy. The best glass and finest films are all for naught–if the image is blurred on account of "camera shake"!

    That being said, however.....

    There is the age-old rule that dictates that the shutter speed should be at least twice as fast as the focal length of the lens if you want to hand hold the camera.
     
  16. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Would that be twice, or four times as sharp as my suggestion? :smile:
     
  17. jimgalli

    jimgalli Subscriber

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    I have 20X30" prints on permanent display that were made with a Nikon FE, 35-70 f3.5-4.5AF (cheap) lens and a Bogen tripod. 20X enlargements. Sadly, all the Nikon's are gone at this point. My daughter's using up the last FM. To this day I won't sell the 300mm f4AF. Such a gorgeous lens.
     
  18. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    Well, I had always been a reluctant tripod user until I started shooting waterfalls. That sort of took care of that bad habit! :wink:

    I still have to slow my attention-deficit self down, so there are times when I am irritated at having to use the tripod... but the best shots I've taken have been from a camera on a tripod.

    I'm with Claire... best one you can get & still carry.
     
  19. Curt

    Curt Subscriber

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    I use one whenever (sp)I am able to. I hand held whenever I have to.
     
  20. Donald Qualls

    Donald Qualls Member

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    If I expect I'll want larger prints, I use a tripod -- under a bigger camera. After getting hooked on 6x9 cm, it's just hard to think about making a print bigger than 8x10 from 35 mm. Yes, I shoot 35 mm -- I'm just about to send my Spotmatic off for its first CLA in 40 years, and I've got 4 other active full frame, and one half frame camera -- but I don't shoot 35 mm for anything I can set up and plan, in general.

    So, relative to 35 mm, I don't use a tripod much (unless doing macro with my Spottie), but have no expectation of making large prints.
     
  21. Bill Mitchell

    Bill Mitchell Member

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    When I was a kid I could hold a Leica steady at 1/4 second, but when I turned 50, I started losing about 10% of my shots from camera shake (shooting Kodachrome 25, usually at f:8 for maximum lens sharpness). As a test, I spent 3 weeks on Cape Cod and used a tripod for every shot -- the slides were needle sharp, but the images sucked compared to my usual spontaneous pictures. So I switched to faster films, started shooting at higher shutter speeds, and frequently carry a small tripod (which I never use). OTOH, I always use a large, heavy Linhof tripod for my 4x5 monorail.
     
  22. Derek Lofgreen

    Derek Lofgreen Subscriber

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    I rarely use a tripod. I mostly shoot people and never could get used to an anchor on my camera. I mostly shoot 400 or ASA so I can get fast enough shutter speeds not to worry to much about camera shake. I can hand hold down to about 1/4 of a second with my 50mm. I just shoot a camera like a shoot my rifle, breath in, hold, squeeze.
     
  23. narsuitus

    narsuitus Member

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    I love big prints.

    If I know in advance that I will be shooting a subject that may be worthy of a big print, I will use a big steady tripod, 6x7cm or 6x9cm format ISO 100 film, and a prime lens set at its sharpest f/stop.

    If I am in a situation where things are changing so rapidly that there is no time to set up or move a tripod, I will use a monopod if I can.

    I routinely carry a tabletop tripod.
     
  24. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    I use a tripod whenever possible. Only when moving around on the floor to get some good shots of my son I shoot handheld. Actually I did some shots of shopwindows just before christmas with Fuji T64 film and 85mm, 1/8sec @1,4. They came out tacksharp.
    I tried some handheld shots of my son sleeping with the P6X7 and Delta 3200.
    A couple of those came out blurred. I think they were shot at 1/60 sec, f/4,5, darned 75mm. That P6X7 is definitely not a lowlight camera.
    Regards Søren
     
  25. gnashings

    gnashings Inactive

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    I think the biggest attribute of 35mm is its flexibility - you can use it when you would be hard pressed to use something else. As such - there are many situations where a tri-pod can't be used, and I find myself using it for those applications most often. But whenver it is at all practical, I mount it on a tri-pod, its like upgrading your camera system for free!:smile:
     
  26. pauldc

    pauldc Member

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    I try to avoid using a tripod in 35mm because I love the freedom and speed of hand holding. If I think it is worth getting the tripod out I might as well put my medium format on it. Most of my 35mm shooting is when I am around family and friends and I find a tripod is not always appropriate to a relaxed atmosphere. If I take a 35mm out for a walk or for landscapes then it is because I want mobility and do not want to be focused too much on photography at the expense of enjoying the walk.

    Also, I am a believer in exploring opportunities within your limitations. A 35mm without a tripod clearly has issues for overall sharpness etc so I tend to push myself to different types of photos than I would take if I had the tripod - wide aperatures, picking details out of the landscape, lots of out of focus backgrounds etc etc This is often a good discipline for me and makes me think more creatively.