Bogen Manfrotto Tripod Review
Specifically, this is a review of Bogen's Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro Tripod Legs (Black).
For this review, and through this website, you will see this tripod with the ball head, which is reviewed separately.
I was about to buy one from Amazon, but they didn't have the ball head in stock. So, I checked with Adorama, and not only did they have it in stock, but they sold it as a kit (tripod and head) and tossed in a very nice tripod bag for free.
This tripod is a professional-level photography tripod which permits any number of heads to be used.
Overall, this product is sturdy and is pleasant to use, while not being overly heavy. It is relatively affordable with several online sets selling it as a kit with a head and sometimes a carrying bag as well.
Maximum Height with the column extended: 70.3 inches
Maximum Height with the column closed: 55.9 inches
Minimum Height with the column in the horizontal position: 3.95 inches
Closed Length: 25.8 inches
Leg Sections: 3
Maximum Load Capacity: 15.4 pounds
Weight, without head: 5.3 pounds
This set of tripod legs performs like a trooper.
The leg locks feel nice and sturdy and the ability to use the center shift in both a raised/lowered way (normal) as well as a horizontal setup is amazing. This is a nice feature for those of us who enjoy macro photography.
Center column in horizontal position
In addition to the horizontal setup, it is easy to ensure you have the tripod itself level with the easy to read ball level.
The ball level on the tripod itself is easy to read.
This is good because the legs not only telescope with easy to adjust for uneven terrain, but the legs can be raised beyond the normal angle to everything up to completely horizontal. This is a nice feature when working next to a wall so that you can maintain some stability where there might not normally be enough room to extend a leg down to the ground.
Two of the legs have a rubbery kind of padding near the top, which is soft on the hands, and means it won't be as cold to pick up in the winter. The third leg sadly does not have this feature and instead is just dark black with the logo and model number information printed on with white paint. I wish they had located this information elsewhere on the tripod so that all three legs could have enjoyed the comfortable rubbery grip.
According to the documentation these grips are called "leg warmers." Um, okay.
The tripod has held the weight of my Nikon D300 as well as several heavy lenses. It has done so without any apparent strain. To help with using heavy equipment at odd angles, such as with the column in the horizontal position, there is a built-in hook onto which you can hang a weight. An obvious and simply to use weight is just your camera bag. This adds a great deal of stability to an already stable tripod.
Regardless of a photo-type head (the ball head being a popular option) or a video-type head (with the ability to lock for different types of panning) this is nice an easy to use set of tripod legs.
For this site I really only have one other tripod to compare this one to and since there are so many points of comparison I wrote the whole thing into a separate article: Tripod Wars.