- Compact size, lightweight
- Heavy reliance on plastic parts, pan/tilt head, flex under load
- Review Price: £119.00
The Nivelo 245BK tripod from Vanguard is designed for those looking for a lightweight and compact tripod for use with either a Compact System Camera or entry-level to mid-price DSLR.
The leg sections are constructed from aluminium, along with a few other parts, though the rest of it is constructed from plastic. This includes the panhead, tripod collar and the hinges on the legs – areas which are potentially going to be coming under a fair amount of pressure – and it would have been nice to have seen metal used here for a more hardwearing, durable finish.
Its construction does mean it’s relatively lightweight, tipping the scales at just 1.14kg, while the 245BK has a collapsed length of only 37cm thanks to the five leg sections, making it a realistic travel option, too.
Fully extended and with the centre column raised, you have a working height of 1.61m, while the legs can be individually positioned at 25° and 50° depending on the level you want to shoot at. If you want to shoot macro photography, the centre column can be reversed very quickly thanks to the anti-spin design on the collar, allowing you to rotate the centre column 180° in one fluid movement.
The 245BK employs twist locks and once you’ve got used to them, they allow you to set the tripod up pretty quickly. When it’s fully extended, you can expect to see a reasonable amount of flex in the legs, though a small DSLR set-up or Compact System Camera should be pretty stable.
The inclusion of a pan and tilt head is a curious one, as it doesn’t offer the full range of movement of a ball head or three-way head, and could cause some frustration when composing some shots. It does have, however, a neat quick release to allow you to attach and remove your camera fast, and a bubble level is also included.
The 245BK has some nice touches, but the rigidity and durability just aren’t there for the price. For £119, there are more sturdy tripods out there that’ll do a better job.
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