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  1. #1
    mrtoml's Avatar
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    Tripod for Mamiya 7

    I have recently acquired a Mamiya 7. It is a pretty light kit and my LF camera tripod (Slik 700) seems like overkill and is quite heavy to cart around. Research has pointed me to the Manfrotto 055 series aka Bogen 3021. Anyone have any other suggestions? I am also thinking I will get a new head (my Slik ballhead is a pain with the Mamiya).

    Any suggestions appreciated.
    Mark Tomlinson
    Currently using Bronica RF645+65mm, Leica M6, Bessa R2a, Nokton LTM 50/1.5, Zeiss Biogon ZM 35/2.8, Nikon 35mm SLRs.
    Join the lith printing forum at http://www.lithprinting.net/

  2. #2
    keithwms's Avatar
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    For tripod use you will probably want an L bracket, the tripod mount can get in the way of the curtain thingie.

    I use my Mamiya RFs off tripod 99.999% of the time. That's why I like them. If I wanted to lug a tripod around I would get myself an MF slr with MLU and all that
    "Only dead fish follow the stream"

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  3. #3
    mrtoml's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by keithwms View Post
    For tripod use you will probably want an L bracket, the tripod mount can get in the way of the curtain thingie.

    I use my Mamiya RFs off tripod 99.999% of the time. That's why I like them. If I wanted to lug a tripod around I would get myself an MF slr with MLU and all that
    I already have 'all that'. But the M7 and tripod will still be lighter than the Bronica and tripod (and arguably better lenses).
    Mark Tomlinson
    Currently using Bronica RF645+65mm, Leica M6, Bessa R2a, Nokton LTM 50/1.5, Zeiss Biogon ZM 35/2.8, Nikon 35mm SLRs.
    Join the lith printing forum at http://www.lithprinting.net/

  4. #4

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    You will be pretty amazed at the quality of negative you can get with Mamiya 7 if you use the camera on a tripod. In contrast to Keith, I use the Mamiya 7 on the tripod whenever possible or necessary. I purchased this system to use on trips where carrying a 5X7 was not feasible and I want to get every bit of image performance I can out of it, which means using slower speed films that may require a tripod in many lighting conditions.

    I use a Gitzo G1298 with a Giotto MH-1001 ball head. The tripod is made of basalt and is very light, but sturdy. The ball head works fine but does not allow use of one of the light L-brackets (Kirk, Acratech, etc.) so the configuration is not as convenient to use in vertical orientation as in horizontal.

    Sandy King







    Quote Originally Posted by mrtoml View Post
    I have recently acquired a Mamiya 7. It is a pretty light kit and my LF camera tripod (Slik 700) seems like overkill and is quite heavy to cart around. Research has pointed me to the Manfrotto 055 series aka Bogen 3021. Anyone have any other suggestions? I am also thinking I will get a new head (my Slik ballhead is a pain with the Mamiya).

    Any suggestions appreciated.

  5. #5

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    For general shooting, I use my Mamiya 7 on a Mamiya carbon fiber tripod with a Bogen 410 head. Any good, solid carbon tripod built for 35mm SLRs should work fine for the M7.

    For travel, especially oversees where weight on airlines is very important and I am carrying my camera around all day and into museums, etc., I use a cheap collapsible tripod. Sorry, I don’t remember the make or number. But, it is a dirt cheap model where the legs pull out to be about 4 feet long. When fully collapsed , the tripod fits in a small shoulder bag. I have gotten some great pictures with it, however, by using the self timer on the M7. It is far from optimal, but it works.

  6. #6

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    I just got a Feisol 3443 and couldn't be more happy with it. It's a major step up from my Bogen 3001.

    Likewise, I am using a Kirk BH-3 and Kirk L bracket for the Mamiya 7. It is so much more rigid than my Bogen medium ballhead that I had to set them up side-by-side to convince myself it wasn't just enthusiasm for a new piece of gear. It is almost miraculous. I also got the Feisol CB-50d medium ballhead. It too is a very nice piece of gear and is in the same class as the Kirk, but the Kirk just has a higher finish and silkiness to the controls that it was worth the additional price to me. Though I'll be using both.

    If I was limiting it just to a Mamiya 7 and lighter equipment, I'd have gone for the Feisol 3441S, which folds even smaller and is lighter.

    in my opinion, the Feisol quality and rigidity is by far the best deal going for quality vs price. It's not quite up to my Gitzo, but neither is the price. Yet I'd say it is well worth the uptick in price from the Manfrottos.

  7. #7
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    If you would like simple and cheap, you would likely be happy with a Bogen 3011 and a medium sized ball head. I've got heavier and more expensive rigs but in testing, I could see no advantage with my Mamiya 7 and 150mm. There is so little motion induced by the camera that I believe much more pod than this tends to be over kill. I'm very careful about camera control and after testing a great deal, arrived at the sad fact that I wasn't getting good control of my MF SLR's without getting into the 11-12# range. I only mention this so that you get a sense that the small pod and the Mamiya 7 combo wasn't just a careless decision based on assumptions. I actually have the Mamiya and light pod with me instead of back home like the big rigs that began to feel like too much of a project to deal with and fell into less and less use.
    Craig Schroeder

  8. #8
    mrtoml's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone. Great advice as always. I will check some of these suggestions out.
    Mark Tomlinson
    Currently using Bronica RF645+65mm, Leica M6, Bessa R2a, Nokton LTM 50/1.5, Zeiss Biogon ZM 35/2.8, Nikon 35mm SLRs.
    Join the lith printing forum at http://www.lithprinting.net/

  9. #9
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    I have used a Manfrotto 055, with my Mamiya TLRs for more then twenty years and I've been very happy with it , I'm sure it would be man enough for a Mamiya 7.
    Ben

  10. #10

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    I would definitely agree with some of the previous comments that you don't need a heavy tripod with the Mamiya 7 since releasing the shutter produces almost no movement. In order to minimize movement I generally use the time delay in place of a cable release.

    The Gitzo G1298 that I mentioned is as heavy as anything you would need for the Mamiya 7, unless you are shooting in a gale. I have an even lighter tripod that would work fine, but the G1298 is pretty lightweight and compact as it is, so I generally carry it everywhere. I also use it with the other cameras that I use, Fuji GA645Zi, Fuji GW690III, and (forgive my sins, a digital Canon G9).

    Sandy King

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