My Experience with the Peak Design Travel Tripod

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The Peak Design Journey Tripod. Let’s simply get it on the market: it’s $600 for the carbon fiber mannequin. That’s some huge cash. You should purchase cheaper tripods which might be objectively higher at a whole lot of issues that this tripod does. The primary promoting level is that it’s gentle and packs up tiny, so it’s much less of a burden to make use of whenever you’re touring.

My earlier journey tripod was a sub $100 generic mannequin from Amazon. Constituted of aluminum, it was just a little heavy. It didn’t fold up sufficiently small. And after a decade of use, the toes began rusting and the froth on the legs was beginning to flake aside. Two years in the past, I took a visit to England and was wracked with anxiousness about getting the tripod there. I managed to suit it in my checked bag, but it surely was tighter in opposition to the perimeters of my suitcase than I’d have preferred. As I used to be packing my garments, I felt like I wasn’t capable of pack as a lot as I’d have preferred as a result of the tripod was taking over a lot house.

To be honest, I used to be being form of a child about it. However I knew that I needed one thing smaller and lighter, and after I in contrast the folded size of the Peak Design tripod to mine, I noticed that it was practically a pound lighter and 10 inches shorter. For the subsequent two days I agonized over the “add to cart” button, including it, taking it out, and including it once more. Finally I went via the checkout. I used to be now the proprietor of a $600 tripod.

What had I achieved? As quickly because the delivery discover confirmed up in my inbox, I eagerly began stalking the monitoring quantity. When it arrived, I wasted no time unboxing it and taking it out for a shoot. That’s when just a little little bit of disappointment with the design crept in.

My largest criticism is the pinnacle. I get that they had been making an attempt to make one which was compact with out a whole lot of protrusions, and it’s a very intelligent concept. Elevating the middle column brings the ball head out from between the legs and permits it to maneuver freely. Adjusting the peak of the middle column is like setting the time on an previous watch: you pull the 7/eight inch knob out and spin. The sides are grooved so you may get some friction.

However after I spun the knob to lock the column I by no means felt tremendous assured that it will be tight sufficient. I can’t think about it will likely be straightforward to regulate with gloved arms.

Elevating the middle submit a bit permits you to alter the angle of the ball head, which you do by spinning a wheel alongside its horizontal floor to loosen and tighten it. Identical to the middle column I discovered that it wasn’t the best to lock down securely. A number of occasions I’ve seen my digital camera (a Fuji XT-2 with the 18-55 equipment lens) slowly slipping down as I composed my shot. That is on me for not tightening up the ball head sufficient, however the course of feels so much tougher than it should be since there’s solely about an inch of clearance between the underside of the digital camera and the stress ring.

I feel what would make this just a little simpler to make use of could be a plastic protrusion on the middle column wheel and the ball head tensioner to allow you to get some additional leverage to guarantee that they’re each locked tight.

The latching mechanism for the fast launch is okay. I truthfully prefer it higher than the way in which I needed to mount my digital camera on my earlier tripod. Apparently, the kind of protrusion I would love on the tripod’s different changes is current on the wheel used to lock the digital camera physique to the pinnacle.

The legs are good. Like actually, actually, actually, good. My favourite half is that I can simply latch and unlatch the entire legs without delay with one hand, which makes establishing the tripod a breeze. I do know some folks actually don’t like that has 5 leg segments, however that doesn’t trouble me. When the whole lot is lastly locked down tight, I’ve discovered the tripod extraordinarily secure.

I wouldn’t wish to rely upon it in 20 MPH winds on prime of a glacier, however I can’t consider another journey tripod I’d both.

For me, the most important plus to the tripod is that it not solely collapses small, but it surely doesn’t have enormous circumference. This tripod will match my checked baggage or a backpack and depart loads of room for no matter different stuff I must deliver. I’m far more more likely to take this with me after I exit. In addition to the comfort of carrying this round, I feel paying $600 might be a robust motivator as effectively.

Peak Design sells an adapter plate that can mean you can exchange the ball head with a special one, however including an additional few inches of peak appears to defeat the aim of getting such a compact tripod within the first place. Hopefully the design of the adapter will enable for the pinnacle to be eliminated and reattached rapidly so it might probably stay compact.

This tripod received’t be for everyone. You may get sturdier tripods for much less. You may get tripods that fold down simply as small for much less. You may get tripods which might be lighter for much less cash. From what I’ve seen there are not any tripods which have the entire qualities that the Peak Design one has.

Would I purchase it once more? In all probability not. I feel the ergonomics of the ball head are poor for what I’d anticipate from a premium $600 tripod.


In regards to the writer: Ben Ruset is a New Jersey-based panorama photographer. You could find extra of his work on his web site.

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