Howdy!

My brother and I are looking for a new tripod. What are good tripods for stop motion animation? We currently got the velbon df60 which have worked okay, but the weight is a bit to light so it's not that sturdy and easy to bump, which tend to be annoying. And some parts are now broken.

We were thinking of getting a geared head, it is supposedly better than a ball head, cause it is more precise? We do alot of camera movements in our films, alot of tilts and pans etc...andwe like to have the ability to do that.

Our budget is around 500 dollars.

Any thoughts? Thanks!

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Get a big heavy tripod and some sandbags to weight it down. The more solid the better. I bought a second-hand Manfrotto 075B which is excellent. Cost £125. A geared head would be essential for panning and tilting. There's a thread on this site somewhere where people discuss how they have set up their geared heads.

Sandbags are cheap and really give it solidity.

Most tripods for photography are way too flimsy IMHO.

You can get away with a normal tripod (not a light travel one for putting in your backpack, but not heavy either), provided you don't touch the camera to take the shots (which you won't, using a frame grabber) or bump into it when animating.  But if you pass by it closely when going between the puppet and the computer, there is a very big risk that sooner or later your foot will brush against it.  So yes, a solid sturdy one is best.  I mostly use an old Foba which is pretty heavy, heavier than the Manfrotto, but I sometimes use a smaller tripod which I got from a charity shop for $8.  

The Manfrotto 075B (B is for Black) is excellent, and so is the lighter (but not too light) 55B.

A triangular piece of plywood on the floor, with holes to set the tripod feet in, can steady the legs so they don't slide around, and a sandbag or two on the ply keeps it in place.  If you really bump into the tripod hard, probably nothing will hold it, but this will prevent a lighter bump from moving it and wrecking the shot.

I use a Manfrotto 410 Jr geared head which allows me to do controlled, even pans and tilts.  They make a bigger one, but it is not necessary.  A fluid head is of no use for animation - well, if you can lock it you can still use it, but the fluid is of no benefit.

Thanks for the tips Simon and Nick! Do they still make Manfrotto 075B? I can't find any info about it at all. I took a look at the 055 series and they look very good and so does the  Manfrotto 410 Jr geared head. Haven't thought of using sandbags.

Very helpful guys! Thanks alot!

The Manfrotto 410 Jr works very well.

If you can, depending on your studio floor, I find the best solution is hot-gluing the tripod feet to the floor. Sandbags weigh it down ok, but hot glue keeps it locked. When you want to move it, pour rubbing alcohol on the glue and it will release from the floor.

Looks like the 075 is no longer made,  I didn't find any on the Manfrotto site either.  But there should be some for sale second-hand from time to time.  I came across a couple of articles by photographers who had been using them for 30 years, one was bought used in the first place, and they were still going strong.  So a used one should be ok.

Otherwise, look at the maximum load each of the current models is designed to support, to get an idea of how sturdy they are.  I know it's pretty hard to tell from a photo what they are like.

Thanks guys. We bought the Manfrotto 410 Jr and a Manfrotto 055XPRO3. We tried it out a bit and it works great so far. Heavy and sturdy. And the 410 Jr head is awesome and a real improvement.

Excellent. You will not regret your choices!

while i watching the robotchicken backstage, i came across this cool idea of "fixing" a camera :3

this is awesome.. I wonder how they have attached that geared head to the weight plate.. nice idea here.. 

how's the 410 and the 055xpro3.. I am considering going for the same set up now any day.. I am defo going for the 410, heard good things about it all around, but not sure on the tripod.. this one has had good reviews, 

Twin Tales said:

Thanks guys. We bought the Manfrotto 410 Jr and a Manfrotto 055XPRO3. We tried it out a bit and it works great so far. Heavy and sturdy. And the 410 Jr head is awesome and a real improvement.

I have a smooth silky budget of about $50 for anything, so if you have a phone with a good camera, buy a tripod that people take selfies with. The software I use has a remote camera option so its quite versatile and good if you need tricky shots.

I am not familiar with min tripods for mobile phone cameras, but if your into your DIY I'm sure you can build something to hold your camera.. there's so many attachment parts you can buy now off eBay or amazon.. I bought a pack of assorted bits of camera screws, adaptors, converters, you can build something to hold your camera.. If I may make a suggestion, check this awesome slider out, this may be your B

best buy.. I love it... I just got one, haven't had much time to try it out properly but it's had excellent reviews, one guy on youtube says it's the best thing around for the budget and it's small, it's lightweight, it's flexible to use... 

I cut / paste this from amazon.. you can attach your mobile phone to it.. 

This item:   Zecti 15.7''/40cm Carbon Fiber Slider Camera Track Slider with 17 pounds/8 kilograms Load Capacity for Stabilizing Movie Film Video Making Photography DSLR Camera£43.99

Camera Slider

click on this link, if it works it will take you to amazon page of the slider... hopefully.. 

and I attached it as a file.. not sure if it will work.. but this little slider is within your budget, and it's really cool... do a search on youtube of it if you want to see some reviews... 

and I ended up buying the 410 and the 055xpro3..like the Twin Tales guys above... I was thinking of sending it back, I been throwing money at the animation lately.. I know I should be more careful, how I spend my savings, there are lots of ways of saving money, I just haven't got the time to go and do all the research on youtube and then the diy etc...  

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