7 Characteristics of Tripods Every Vlogger/Mobile Journalist Should Know...

 7 Characteristics of Tripods Every Vlogger/Mobile Journalist Should Know

Understanding Tripods

You need a tripod. Whether you shoot digital, film or video, you need a tripod.

There are seven characteristics common to all tripods:

  • Collapsed size
  • Size
  • Load capacity
  • Head type
  • Feet
  • Leg locks
  • Common material

The more you know about each, the easier it will be to buy the perfect tripod for your picture-taking needs.

 

Size – Maximum Height Extension is how tall the tripod will stand when every leg is and the center post (a tube that the camera sits on, usually adjustable) is raised as far as it will go.

 

50”Jmary Tripod Aluminium

Collapsed Size – Collapsed Size is how long the tripod measures with everything folded up. This is important especially if you are travelling and need to pack the ‘pod in a bag. This number will let you know if it’ll fit.

Yunteng VCT-5208 Bluetooth Tripod (Black)

Load Capacity – Don’t confuse weight with Maximum Load Capacity. The weight is how much the tripod weighs. The Maximum Load Capacity is the heaviest camera and lens combination the tripod (or tripod head) can handle. If you put a camera that’s heavier than the Maximum Load Capacity on a tripod, you run the risk of a piece breaking or collapsing, causing damage to both the tripod and the camera. So, it’s important to know how much your camera weighs with its heaviest lens and flash attached, and buy a tripod that will handle it.

Head Type – Most tripods come with a head, but it may not be the ideal one for your purposes. Check our  Tripod Head Buying Guide: for an in-depth look at what each kind of tripod head is for.

The head sits atop the center column, a tube in the center of the tripod’s construction that can be raised and lowered either with a hand crank or via a locking collar.

Feet – Feet come in rubber non-slip (used for most indoor and some outdoor shooting); spike (best for outdoor shooting, the spikes hold the tripod firmly in the ground); and custom (which could be anything, including ball-bearings).

Leg Locks – Leg locks are available in Twist (twist the leg to pull it out, twist it in reverse to lock it in position), Lever (open a lever to pull a leg out, close it to lock it) and custom options.

60” WF -3560 Tripod

Common Material – (Which is what most of the tripod is made of) is either plastic (the least inexpensive, it’s not very durable), aluminum (inexpensive and most commonly used, but in heavy-duty tripods can add a lot of weight), carbon fiber (a relatively new material for tripods, it’s durable, lightweight, and flexible–ideal for most uses–but it’ll cost ya), and wood (typically used by nature photographers who don’t mind toting large-format cameras).

 

 

 

Tripods are also great for shooting available-light scenes without a flash, as well as seamless panoramas, fireworks, family portraits (with you in the picture, for a change!), shots of the stars or moon, and dozens of other situations that demand long exposures. You’ll get better close-up images—and more of your picture will be sharp—if you use a tripod, because you can use a smaller aperture and a slower shutter speed without fear of camera movement.

 

What’s your favorite tripod? Leave a comment below…

 

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Panasonic Unveils Video-Oriented GH5S Mirrorless Camera

Somehow, Panasonic has made its GH series of mirrorless cameras even more video-oriented with the unveiling of the DC-GH5S today, at CES. This model is the closest to a fully featured video camera that Panasonic has ever made for its Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera system, boasting vastly improved DCI 4K video quality and features even when compared to its sibling, the GH5. Many of these advancements are due to the use of a newly developed 10.28MP Digital Live MOS sensor with multi-aspect and dual native ISO technology, ensuring consistent views when switching aspect ratios and dramatically improved low-light performance.

Much like its older brother, the GH5S offers internal recording at 10-bit 4:2:2 when working at resolutions up to DCI 4K and 30p. It can reach 60p in 4K at 8-bit internally or 10-bit via the camera’s full-size HDMI port. Internal recording is no slouch, however, because an ALL-Intra 400 Mbps mode is available for highly detailed footage. On top of this, Dual Native ISO, a feature primarily found in Panasonic’s professional video cameras, is supported here, with the base ISO settings being 400 and 2500 for optimal image quality in varying lighting conditions. The ISO range has been vastly improved, as well, with an extended range of up to ISO 204800. Another set of important upgrades comes in rolling shutter, as the GH5S has a 1.3x improvement over the GH5, and with the native inclusion of the V-Log L gamma and Hybrid Log Gamma HDR profile. While 4K is the star of the show, Full HD Variable Frame Rate is available at up to 240 fps for 10x slow-motion capture.

It’s easy to forget that this camera is still able to function as an extremely capable stills camera, and that now, with the latest Venus Engine, it can deliver 14-bit raw images with improved dynamic range and detail. Burst shooting is available with continuous DFD Autofocus technology at up to 8 fps and with AF-S at 12 fps. The camera can make use of its extreme video capabilities for a 4K PHOTO mode, which captures 8MP images at a rate of 60 fps so that you never miss the shot. Users who relying on tethering will benefit from Lumix Tether software, which allows for remote camera control and immediate high-speed transfer of images while shooting via the camera’s USB 3.1 Type-C connection. For working in the field, there are dual UHS-II U3 SD card slots.

The camera’s physical design has changed slightly from its predecessors, since it now offers a larger, more ergonomic red Record button on the top panel. It is splash-, dust-, and freezeproof, with numerous seals throughout the magnesium-alloy frame and lightweight body. Also, it features a large 3.2″ 1.62m-dot vari-angle LCD touchscreen and a 0.76x 3.68m-dot OLED LVF with a 120-fps refresh rate. Other benefits are a PC sync port, and a new Timecode In/Out function via a PC sync to BNC cable adapter.

The GH5S is the best video-oriented mirrorless camera that Panasonic has released so far, and with the DC-G9 and DC-GH5 staying in the lineup, users will be able to find a camera best suited for their specific workflow.

Are you planning to purchase a GH5S? Let us know why or why not in the Comments section, below, and follow us.

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This $19 Tripod Helps Me Take Photos Like a Semi-Professional Photographer

Photo: Maxine Builder

During the height of my (admittedly short-lived) freelancing career, I was writing at least three beauty stories a week, and my then-editor insisted that I illustrate these with photos of my face to show how well the skin-care products and makeup I was reviewing worked. This was fine, except I had none of the equipment I needed to take publication-worthy self-portraits or even serviceable selfies, since my iPhone’s front-facing camera seemed to have the megapixels of a potato (meaning it sucked). So I took photos of myself by balancing a DSLR camera on top of piles of junk, setting a self-timer, and silently praying that my camera wouldn’t tumble to the ground while I “posed,” often with an armful of bottles and tubes.

But my camera fell more times during these MacGyver-ed home photo shoots than I’d like to acknowledge, and after one particularly nasty spill, I came to the no-brainer conclusion that even the cheapest tripod would keep my camera safer than no tripod. So I bought literally the cheapest full-height tripod I could find on Amazon — the AmazonBasics Lightweight Tripod, for less than $25 — figuring that if I hated it or it broke, I at least hadn’t invested too much money.

The punch line, of course, is that this tripod is very good, and nearly three years and two trans-Pacific flights later, it still works perfectly. It’s cheap but feels expensive, with aluminum legs that smoothly glide to whatever height you need and lock into place with the snap of a plastic buckle. There’s a level on the camera plate, so you know if you’re shooting straight, and rubber feet that pivot and stabilize the rig, even if you’re setting up on carpet or an otherwise uneven surface. If you need to take a vertical photo, the mount easily rotates and locks in place with a turn of a knob.

This tripod is also as light as the name suggests, and it’s compact, folding down to fit into a checked suitcase. I know this from experience, because I brought it with me when I traveled to Seoul, South Korea, for a few months, to write about K-beauty and take many photos of myself wearing sheet masks both for work and my own narcissistic pleasure.

I don’t take as many selfies on a professional basis these days, but I still sometimes take photos for my stories, and I’ll bust out this tripod if I feel like I need an extra set of hands. It’s a great thing to have at family gatherings, when taking a group photo can be an ordeal, and with the addition of a little adapter mount to use it with my iPhone, it’s become and remained an irreplaceable part of my makeshift photography kit.

Even my boyfriend, a professional photographer who has spent hundreds of dollars on “sticks,” as they call them in the business, is impressed with the quality of this tripod for the price. In his experience, cheap tripods wiggle loose from the weight of the camera and change their positioning, even after you’ve set them — that never happens with this one. Though he’s right that my tripod isn’t going to support a camera that weighs dozens of pounds or help me pan across a scene as smoothly as if it were on a proper video tripod with a fluid head mount, it reliably keeps my camera in one place for as long as I need it to be there. For my semi-professional purposes, that’s really all I need.

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CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE: RICH MANS HOBBY

A sultry Sunday at the Ngong Racecourse was the most anticipated car event of the year. The annual CBA concours d’elegance “rich man’s hobby” I just didn’t find a better term to give the event. The anticipation was in the air with over 10,000 people who had come from far and wide to witness the showcase of very elegant automotive from the last century. I was full of zeal about the event.

There was a showcase of the best motorcycles and cars from the 1920s to date. The air was filled with endless roars from the 1000cc motorcycles, whose engines were so loud that you were scared of losing your eardrums. But Oh! Well that was the joy of the event. Lest we forget about the cars that were showcased at the event from the Rolls Royce, Alfa Romeo, Mercedes Benz, Ford and an array of other exceptional cars from the  20th Century.

               

Apart from vintage cars from the 20th century there were exotic cars from the 21st century being showcased at the event. Cars that would make you drop your jaw and wonder if they existed on Kenyan soils. Custom made to the precision and done to fulfill ones soul. I had my gear ready and on the go to document this particular event. With the internet age everybody had either a phone or a camera in hand to take photos and videos for their social media handles. But I had gone an extra mile in terms of documenting the event. It’s like I was a media company by myself.

                

Packed in my gear was an AKASO EK7000 4K Action Camera 4K Resolution packed with all the necessary accessories in my kit ready to shoot at any angle and position. Whether there was a crowd of people stretching their hands to shoot with their phones and trying to zoom into the action. I had an extendable monopod I just had to mount my camera and walaaa! With a few clicks I was shooting already my videos in HD or UltraHD and taking pictures at the click of buttons.

I was able to record very awesome clips from the Camera at very phenomenal angles which you would need expensive gear to maneuver. All in all, the camera can pretty work anywhere and at any position you desire. All you need is just the right accessories and you mount the camera and off you go to record. Whether it is under water, swimming, cooking and all other activities you need to record this camera is just handy.

So if you are an aspiring or an established Vlogger or Videographer and you haven’t  used the camera I would urge you to head to www.cdigadgets.com and get yourself one and start chasing the dream that you desire.

The event was a success thanks to the equipment I had I was able to record all the action at the event. The cars were just phenomenal and out of this world. The Concours D’elegance: rich’s man hobby ended at a high note with a very annoying traffic. I guess it was all about cars.

 

 

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My Favorite Fitness Gadget( SanDisk mp3 Player)

 

 

Gideon

I LOVE Listening to Music & Audio books.In fact I use this to motivate myself in the Chilly Mornings .Lets be honest Running 5.am in the Morning is easier said than done.I usually down load to my Mp3 sanDisk some inspiring Audio  the night before so when alarm goes off (though most don’t need one)Remember a certain song or Audio book I want to listen to and that’s it.That usually does the trick.I also use for hiking stuff..3hrs of Rock and Oldskool hip hop usually do it for me climbing Mt.Longonot.

SanDisk Clip Sport 8GB MP3 Player

Better yet,once I start listening to music or an audiobook while running ,I get to chew those miles .Carrying a phone is a bit bulky and tends to wear someone down.The phone might even break due to the rigorous running involved.It’s for this reason that I choose to use an Mp3 player which is comparatively small,has a large memory(up to 8 GB) that can hold up to 30 minutes of audiobooks plus 300 songs.The memory can also be expanded via an external mem card up to 32 GB.

SanDisk Clip Sport 8GB MP3 Player
My Mp3 Player

 

I have had one for close to a year now and the experience has been blissful.It has very little or few signs of wear and tear.I easily clip it on my track suit and I off I go.

 

Editor:Gideon

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10 ACCESSORIES THAT MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR ACTION CAMERA

Adventure, travel and outdoor sports are slowly becoming part of many Kenyans weekend plan or ‘form’ as we like to call it. Many people have a bucket list of events that they plan attend before the year ends and this has seen many event planners try to cash in on the ever growing number of outdoor fun lovers. People see it as a way of relaxing after a long week in the ever busy city of Nairobi as well as other big towns. Others see outdoor adventure as a way of making new friends and having everlasting memories. For this to happen, one has to take pictures and videos that will serve as a reminder of the great times. People are investing in all action cameras that capture vivid pictures and videos that ordinary mobile phone cameras cannot. The other big advantage that these cameras have over ordinary cameras is the user’s ability to use them for different purposes and on different angles that sometimes seem unreal. This is partly because of the different action camera accessories that have been manufactured to enable the user take videos in almost all angles and at different locations. If you are a proud owner of a GoPro, Akaso, or an SJ Cam, we take a  look at 10 accessories that will come in handy  if you are planning a zip lining  trip to Keraita forest, hiking at Mt. Longonot, Bungee jumping in Diani or water rafting at sagana.

 

1.Jaws Flex Clamp

      

This is a clamp that allows for quick and secure repositioning of the camera. It’s a simple tension clamp with a diameter of 0.25 to 2 inches, but the tips of the clamp move slightly so it can grab onto irregular shapes securely. There is a quick release base on top of the clamp, so you can attach a camera right to it. The clamp is ideal for skaters and Deejays who want to record their mix sessions. Click Here

  1. Chest strap

When you want to take shots from a lower angle without using your hands, The chest strap is your best bet. Helmet mounts are great but not all activities require one, and sometimes you don’t want footage that swivels and turns along with your head. The adjustable chest contraption is ideal for highlighting your hands, whether you are playing a piano or biking, allowing you to capture action shots from the centre of your chest. These straps can also be used at food and wine festivals by chefs and tasters. Click here

3.Floaty Bobber .

 

             

Your Camera might be waterproof, but doesn’t mean it’s capable of floating on its own in the event it gets lost at sea. Thankfully, There is the floaty bobber, an apt-titles accessory that’s designed to make sure your camera acts more like a bobber than an anchor. It’s a nice accessory to help secure your expensive camera while in water at Lake Naivasha or in the swimming pool. Click here

4.Gorilla Pod

                             

This accessory allows you to attach the camera anywhere with graspable legs and rubber foot grips easily secure to any surface. Unlike traditional tripods, the gorilla does not require an elevated flat surface for you to take the perfect shot. The flexible joints helps the gorilla pod to bend and rotate 360 degrees to form the perfect shape. The slim line attachment stays connected to your camera while the lock ring keeps your camera securely attached. Unlike other camera tripods, the legs and the arms on this one have ball and socket joints  that bend and twist into countless shapes and configurations so you can practically mount it anywhere. This item is very useful for adventure travellers.

5.Snorkel mask

             

The snorkel mask comes with detachable camera mount and an ear plug. It makes it easier than ever to breath comfortably through your mouth or nose while you are snorkelling. With the integrated mount you can easily attach your camera to capture and share your deep diving adventure with friends and family. It is very appropriate for people who love water sports. Click here

6 .Head Strap

                      

The head strap camera mount makes hands-free filming a breeze. Adjustable nylon straps with non-slip rubber inserts create and maintain a proper fit, while the durable buckle ensures secure, reliable connections. The head strap mount lets you focus on the task at hand. The  mount can be placed over almost any helmet or directly on your head. The mount won’t get in the way of sunglasses or audio headsets ,and it can be comfortably worn over a hat.

 

7.Battery BacPac

 

All action cameras aren’t known for their long lasting battery life. In normal use, you’ll probably get an hour and half of recording time before having to switch to a new battery. Swapping batteries is not always an option. You can imagine, if you are deep in Indian ocean in your full Scuba gear or bungee jumping and suddenly the camera goes off. The bacpac provides extended life and doesn’t require you to swap out multiple batteries. The bacpac however does not work on all cameras.

8 Extreme waterproof case for iphone.

 Until the recent entry by players like Akaso and SJ cam, all action cameras like Go pro were quite expensive. People realized that their mobile phones(particularly iphones) could do a similar job in recording videos and taking some good shots. The biggest challenge however, was how to use the phone in extreme conditions or under water. This accessory is meant to counter all those challenges.

It is fully sealed ,shock proof and compatible with all Go pro mounting kits. The touchable screen allows you to operate your iphone under water. It’s in built 170 degrees wide angle lens, turns your iphone into an action camera or GPS on land or in water.

9.Suction cup mounting

                  

The suction cup mount provides a broad range of of motion and stability you can enjoy the POV filming. The mount has simple and compact design, it has an easy one press button to  install and release the device. The cup keeps the contact surface clean and flat. It is recommended for non-impact activities only.

10.Carrying case

Whether surfing, on safari or simply enjoying the outdoors, you may need to carry your camera with you. Whatever the adventure may be, experience peace of mind and ultimate convenience with a large camera case. It keeps your cameras and must have accessories securely stored, neatly organized  and very much protected.

 

 

This accessories are available at the following CDI Gadgets outlets;
Bazaar plaza 4th floor.Call/Whattsapp:0795717078
The Hub karen-DashCam center
Jumia.co.ke
www.cdigadgets.com

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