I use an aluminum tripod that is a knockoff of the Manfrotto 055 line. It is fairly heavy, but quite easy to use and sturdy. It was cheap (an Amvona eBay auction) but has turned out to be reliable.

I recently purchased a new ballhead for it - a Manfrotto 054 with Q2 quick release plate. I really like the new ballhead .

Together, they are fairly heavy, but I like that, because I consider the mass reassuring.

The ergonomics of any tripod and head are really important. It is more important that they work well for you than that they have great "specs".

For example, I am left handed, and usually need a tripod that can be adjusted primarily with one hand. Some tripods, and in particular some heads, just don't work for me.