Automatic Tripod

Click for bigger image.

Panographers need their tripods. Period. And I wish deployment of the tripods to be faster, smoother, not hitting kids or anyone else when I am doing it and simply, just not as tiring.

For a commercial shoot, it’s generally easy with the place scouted out before the actual shoot be it a hotel, resort, exhibition hall and I go in before the business day even start. Carry around my full pano gear mounted on a fully extended tripod is not a problem.

The above picture is National Geographic’s NGET1. An “automatic” tripod that allow fast deployment of it’s legs but weighing in at 3.2Kg. It just has to be lighter (and while at it, cheaper). It’s around $554 pounds approx $1140.30 SGD. The NGET1 is actually made by tripod gurus, Manfrotto. From a day shoot (I’ve done more than 50 panoramas during a short Malaysia trip to shoot Hotair Balloons) , deploying and retracting for every single panoramas can be a real chore. One pano, 3 legs retract and 3 extends.

I would imagine fast deployment meant having some electronic acutators shooting the legs out, the faster, the more force which means it’s dangerous. Anyone inventing anything yet?

What will be ideal?

– Priced at up to SGD$1000.00
– Have a load of at least 3kg
– Multiple height designs
– As compact as can be, folded length should not exceed approx 70cm, max height to be at least 1.2 Meters
– Carbon Fibre?
– Not 3.2Kg when nothing is loaded! National Geographic videographers/ photographers sure have big arm muscles…walking in some rain forest with this will kill anyone but may be useful to ward off attacking orang utans or the local man-eating tribe?