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Hakuba Carbon Fiber Tripods 
by Gary Stanley

About two years ago I said goodbye to my old and very heavy tripod. It had served me very well, but this older, and much more mature body, was telling me of the virtues of carbon fiber. I was also hearing from other Pros now switching to carbon fiber tripods who were more than pleased with the results.

I kept looking in my wallet, and looking in my wallet, but no matter how hard I stared, the money didn't materialize. Six or seven hundred dollars was a lot of money to invest in something I already owned. After all, my old tripod was just heavier. I could start working out, and in five or six years I wouldn't even notice how heavy my tripod was! 

Enter the Velbon Carmagne 630 tripod from Hakuba USA. It was carbon fiber with magnesium components, well made, sturdy, a great warranty, and it didn't cost an arm and a leg. When I looked back into my wallet, low and behold there was just enough money to purchase this little gem.

Today I'm happy to report that I'm just as enthused about its virtues as I was two years ago. The carbon fiber's ability to absorb vibration much like the old wooden field tripods is nothing short of amazing. My wife Pam recently gave up her old aluminum tripod for the new HG-6230C carbon fiber tripod from Hakuba, and she is just as happy as a pig in .....straw (Gotcha!!). 

All kidding aside, carbon fiber is the way to go. All of their models in both the four section Carmangne 640 and HG-6240 as well as the three section Carmagne 630 and HG-6230 will go low-to-the-ground for low-level shooting positions.

Look for a street price for the 630 of around $399 or less. The HG6230C with an aluminum collar will come in at about $299 or a little less.

Yes! rumor has it they're working on a taller beefier version for you 600mm wildlife shooters out there. Both Pam and I have used them with our heavier wildlife lenses with no problem. I have even gone against my own words of wisdom, and used the center column for more height, and still my images are nice and sharp. Good job Hakuba! Oh, by the way, I have their nifty 'Stone Bag' that easily attaches to the legs of my tripod with clips similar to a camera strap. When I get to my shooting destination, I can put stones or other weight into this bag to add low-level weight to help stabilize the tripod in windy conditions.

For more information contact you local dealer or Hakuba at www.hakubausa.com

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