When shopping around for a high quality tripod it is important to look for certain features. In this comparison guide we examine two high quality professional trade tripods that offer exceptional value. From leg angle settings to lightweight and durability it is important to know the specifics before investing in equipment you need to depend on whether you are a professional or semi-professional photographer.
Vanguard Alta Pro 263AT
First up is the Vanguard tripod. Vanguard makes the Alta Pro lineup in aluminum and carbon fiber. Today we take a look at their 263AT aluminum model. This model features 26mm 3 section alloy legs that you can adjust to 25, 50, and 80-degree angles. This allows you to take extremely low angle photos. The hexagon shaped central column moves from 0 to 180 degrees. Vanguard’s Instant Swivel Stop-n-Lock system will secure reposition the central column in an easy movement. This tripod includes a bubble level and anti-shock ring as well as quick flip leg locks and rubber feet with retractable spikes. This feature enables you to set your camera at varying heights on multiple terrain.
The great thing about the Alta Pro 263AT is the instant swivel Stop-n-Lock that secures your angle quickly and easily and with the built in bubble level you’ll know your shot will be level. The multi-angle central column that provides a 0 to 180 degree angle is great because it allows you to set up your camera below the legs of the tripod if you need to shoot a near ground level photo. Weighing in at just under 6 lbs this is an excellent buy.
Manfrotto 055XPROB Pro
Manfrotto offers one of their best tripods yet with the 055XPROB Pro model. This tripod features a faceted center column that eliminates column rotation. You can easily swing the center column from 0 to 180 degrees like the Vanguard tripod. Also like the Vanguard, the Manfrotto features a handy built in bubble level so you know the shot you are taking will be perfectly level.
You can adjust the leg angles in the following angles: 23 degrees, 45 degrees, 65 degrees, and 88 degrees for multiple angles. The Q90 horizontal column feature enables you to reach very low positions and reach ground level easily for nearly any low level shots you need.
Also like the Vanguard, this model features leg locks for easy setup and tear down during a shoot. Two legs are also equipped with permanent leg warmers which protect the legs in extreme weather conditions. Weighing in at only 6.55 pounds this tripod is easy to setup and easy to store.
Both tripods offer multiple angles for setting up your camera. Both have built in levels and multi angle legs with leg locks. The feature that stands out the most is the leg warmers on the Manfrotto tripod. This feature protects the legs from extreme weather which is useful for photographers in extreme cold climates. The spikes on the bottom of the rubber feet on the Vanguard tripod offer extra grip and protection from it tipping over which is useful in a variety of terrain. Other than those two differences both are quality tripods that would suit any photographer’s needs.