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  #1  
Old March 6th, 2012, 01:44 PM
woowoochick woowoochick is offline
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Default Has anyone used this alternative to a tripod?

I don't really want to bring a tripod with me on a cruise, so I was looking for an alternative. Has anyone used anything like this http://www.adorama.com/CZPPK.html
Hopefully I added that link correctly. It looks like it might fit over the ship rail and might help to steady the camera. Thoughts anyone?
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  #2  
Old March 6th, 2012, 02:39 PM
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While it does not weigh much, it's physical size would take up a fair amount of room in your luggage. Personally, I find that if I rest my elbows on the railing, it works just as well as anything else to take pictures. Don't forget that while the ship is moving, there is a lot of vibration going on, and in a lot of cases its better to just hold the camera and not worry about bracing.

I have carried tripods/monopods in the past, and 99% of the time they never get used so I leave them home now. Bracing against a handy tree/fence/street light etc., will do wonders for steadying you during your shot.

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Old March 6th, 2012, 05:41 PM
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The rails are almost universally topped with wood and bracing the camera against the solid rail will likely be more steady that a soft pad that allows some flex. I mentioned the wood topping because the wood is softer than the camera and won't cause it any harm.

Here's a "rail-pod" shot with the camera held firmly against the rail for about two seconds:



Dave
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  #4  
Old March 6th, 2012, 06:17 PM
woowoochick woowoochick is offline
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Thank you both for your replies. I will take your advise and try to brace myself. Dave that is an amazing picture!! Thanks for sharing.
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  #5  
Old March 7th, 2012, 09:43 AM
woowoochick woowoochick is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pierces View Post
The rails are almost universally topped with wood and bracing the camera against the solid rail will likely be more steady that a soft pad that allows some flex. I mentioned the wood topping because the wood is softer than the camera and won't cause it any harm.

Here's a "rail-pod" shot with the camera held firmly against the rail for about two seconds:



Dave
Dave - I'm a beginner when it comes to photography and am trying to learn. You seem to give so much good advise on these boards. I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing your camera settings for that picture. I know you said your shutter speed was about 2 seconds. What about ISO or Aperture?? Do you normally use all manual, or shoot in aperture priority?
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Old March 7th, 2012, 11:14 AM
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There are all sorts of lightweight tripods you can take with you on a cruise, including the Gorillapod, TrekTech T-Pod, and even some travel-friendly tripods like Benro's "Travel Flat" full size tripods (my favorite).
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  #7  
Old March 7th, 2012, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awboater View Post
There are all sorts of lightweight tripods you can take with you on a cruise, including the Gorillapod, TrekTech T-Pod, and even some travel-friendly tripods like Benro's "Travel Flat" full size tripods (my favorite).
You could also take a chain pod which is small and light. Not nearly as good as a real tripod or monopod but much lighter.

DON
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  #8  
Old March 7th, 2012, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woowoochick View Post
Dave - I'm a beginner when it comes to photography and am trying to learn. You seem to give so much good advise on these boards. I was wondering if you wouldn't mind sharing your camera settings for that picture. I know you said your shutter speed was about 2 seconds. What about ISO or Aperture?? Do you normally use all manual, or shoot in aperture priority?
Memory failed me...

It was shot at 4s - f/16 - iso100

I usually shoot in aperture priority, probably 99% of the time. I like the control it gives me over depth of field.

The f/16 aperture in this case was not for DOF, but to lengthen the exposure. It was after sunset, but still fairly light.

Dave
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They say photography is an extension of the photographer. I'm surprised that more of my photos aren't darker with a lack of focus...



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  #9  
Old March 7th, 2012, 06:56 PM
woowoochick woowoochick is offline
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Thanks again everyone.

Dave - Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I hope someday I will understand all this!

Don - I never heard of a chain pod before - I actually had to google it. Very interesting the way that works! I might have to try it.

Awboater - Someone at work just offered to let me borrow their gorillapod, so I might have to take him up on it. I should at least give it a try!
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  #10  
Old March 7th, 2012, 10:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woowoochick View Post
Thanks again everyone.



Awboater - Someone at work just offered to let me borrow their gorillapod, so I might have to take him up on it. I should at least give it a try!
There are two sizes of Gorillapod; compact camera and DSLR size. The small one will not work on a DSLR, only the large one.
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Upcoming Cruises:
Cruise 17: Celebrity Equinox 10nt Ultimate Caribbean 14 Mar 2014
Cruise 18: Eyeball of the Seas - itinerary and date TBD.

Previous Cruises:

Majesty OTS; 4 nt Bahamas 2 Oct 2000.
Explorer OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 29 Sep 2001.
Voyager OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean 22 Sep 2002.
Mariner OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 16 Oct 2005.
Grandeur OTS; 10 nt Ultimate Caribbean 7 Dec 2009.
Freedom OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 14 Mar 2010.
Monarch OTS; 4 nt Bahamas 22 Mar 2010.
Radiance OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean Oct 9, 2010.
Allure OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean 16 Jan 2011.
Jewel OTS; 11 nt Southern Caribbean 28 Mar 2011.
Freedom OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 9 Oct 2011.
HAL Zuiderdam; 11 nt Panama Canal Sunfarer 6 Feb 2012.
Celebrity Constellation; 14nt Exotic Southern Caribbean 21 Apr, 2012.
Explorer OTS; 7nt Bermuda 23 Sep, 2012.
Vision OTS: 10 nt Eastern Caribbean 15 Feb 2013
Oasis OTS: 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 5 Oct 2013
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  #11  
Old March 8th, 2012, 01:15 AM
donaldsc donaldsc is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woowoochick View Post
Thanks again everyone.

Dave - Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I hope someday I will understand all this!

Don - I never heard of a chain pod before - I actually had to google it. Very interesting the way that works! I might have to try it.

Awboater - Someone at work just offered to let me borrow their gorillapod, so I might have to take him up on it. I should at least give it a try!
The nice thing about a chain pod is that you can just stick it in your pocket.

DON
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  #12  
Old March 8th, 2012, 03:04 AM
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The "Chain Pod" seems to be a lower-cost alternative to a Kirk Strap Pod (Kirk doesn't do anything cheap):

http://www.kirkphoto.com/Strap-Pod.html

Not sure which one was first, but I have used a strap pod before. Surprisingly it does help somewhat, but I have not found it to be much good for longer-term exposures - those approaching 1sec or longer.

I am sure it has a lot to do with your ability to stay steady.
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Upcoming Cruises:
Cruise 17: Celebrity Equinox 10nt Ultimate Caribbean 14 Mar 2014
Cruise 18: Eyeball of the Seas - itinerary and date TBD.

Previous Cruises:

Majesty OTS; 4 nt Bahamas 2 Oct 2000.
Explorer OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 29 Sep 2001.
Voyager OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean 22 Sep 2002.
Mariner OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 16 Oct 2005.
Grandeur OTS; 10 nt Ultimate Caribbean 7 Dec 2009.
Freedom OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 14 Mar 2010.
Monarch OTS; 4 nt Bahamas 22 Mar 2010.
Radiance OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean Oct 9, 2010.
Allure OTS; 7 nt Western Caribbean 16 Jan 2011.
Jewel OTS; 11 nt Southern Caribbean 28 Mar 2011.
Freedom OTS; 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 9 Oct 2011.
HAL Zuiderdam; 11 nt Panama Canal Sunfarer 6 Feb 2012.
Celebrity Constellation; 14nt Exotic Southern Caribbean 21 Apr, 2012.
Explorer OTS; 7nt Bermuda 23 Sep, 2012.
Vision OTS: 10 nt Eastern Caribbean 15 Feb 2013
Oasis OTS: 7 nt Eastern Caribbean 5 Oct 2013

Last edited by awboater; March 8th, 2012 at 03:06 AM.
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  #13  
Old March 8th, 2012, 04:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woowoochick View Post
Dave - Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I hope someday I will understand all this!
I wrote an article on low-light photography that has a section on exposure and the relationship between aperture, shutter speed and ISO. It also deals with various ways of steadying your camera when the light is not so good. You might find some of the info relevant.

http://pptphoto.com/ArticlePages/LowLight.htm

Dave
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They say photography is an extension of the photographer. I'm surprised that more of my photos aren't darker with a lack of focus...



Last cruise Celebrity Century, 4/14, 7 days - Pacific Coast •
Next cruises • Decmber 2014 - Allure of the Seas - 7 Day Eastern Caribbean • September 2015 - Serenade of the Seas - 12 Day Fall Colors •
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  #14  
Old March 9th, 2012, 07:29 AM
woowoochick woowoochick is offline
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Thanks again everyone! My coworker brought in his gorillapod and it is the larger one that would fit my camera. I think I will bring it on vacation.

Dave - I'm going to read your article now. Low light photography is very difficult for me, so I can use all the help & knowledge I can get!
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  #15  
Old March 12th, 2012, 01:41 PM
Leo Jay Leo Jay is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pierces View Post
The rails are almost universally topped with wood and bracing the camera against the solid rail will likely be more steady that a soft pad that allows some flex. I mentioned the wood topping because the wood is softer than the camera and won't cause it any harm.

Here's a "rail-pod" shot with the camera held firmly against the rail for about two seconds:



Dave
Nice shot!
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