The Tallest, Strongest Tripod for Under $100


The industry's tallest, strongest tripods are usually made of carbon fiber, assembled in Europe, and cost tons of money. Buyers are typically well-funded professionals or hobbyists with a lot of disposable income. While a pro set of $900+ sticks might not be in the cards for everyone, serious photographers and video makers would do well to consider the budget-friendly Slik Pro 700DX.

The tripod is available in black or silver and has many of the features of the big brand, high-priced models. It's tall: maximum height is just over 70" (55" without the center column extended). It's strong: Slik rates the sticks for up to 22lbs. With the right head, this set up can comfotably support up to an 800mm lens with a pro body. All 3 legs are padded at the top for easy carrying, and the center column even  seperates for convenient low angle shooting.

Instead of carbon fiber, the legs employ A.M.T. -- a lightweight alloy made up of aluminum, magnesium, and titanium. A friend put me on to the 700DX a few years back. I've used it for a variety of photo and video jobs. Whether you need a good primary or secondary tripod, the Slik Pro 700DX delivers a level of stability and quality well above its price tag. I recommend the black sticks -- they won't reflect stray light on your subjects. Product pics below.

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I hope to be able to buy my very first DSLR in 2010, and I'll strongly consider picking up this tripod too. I look forward to a "Best $100 Tripod Head for Shooting Video with a DSLR" post. Or better yet, how about a "Best Tripod Head for Under $500 for Shooting Video with a DSLR if You Only Want to Buy a Tripod Head Once in Your Life" post? :)