Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1 Kit
One of the most important pieces of equipment in any photographers kit is a quality tripod.
- A good tripod gives you a solid “foundation” for your camera
- A solid foundation helps create sharp images
- A solid foundation is important for long exposures
- Using a tripod helps with precision framing
- A tripod can help you get sharper shots with a telephoto lens
- These are just some of the reasons every photographer should own a decent tripod personally I consider an absolute critical piece of gear to own.
I was recently sent the Travel Angel Tripod Kit FTA28AB1 shown in the image above to try out.
This kit includes, tripod, ball head, padded carry bag, interchangeable feet, walking stick handle (yes a walking stick handle) and a screw in attachment to convert one of the legs into a monopod (very cool feature!).
On opening the box It was clear this is was going to be a decent quality tripod. The padded carry bag is well made and feels like it will last, it has a couple of external pockets, the clips, rings zipper handles are metal, the bag itself is made from decent material. The inside is padded and a nice “Benro” blue with logos printed all over it, It looks great and is quite compact. Its a nice bag!
Opening up the bag the tripod is kept in a lightweight Blue Benro dust bag. In one of the two side pockets is extra metal spike feet, an allen key, a “head” for the monopod and a handle for the walking stick (yes the first mention wasn’t a mistake) and a small hand strap all kept in another small blue Benro dust bag. The other pocket held the bags carry strap and has a small mesh divider inside, I used this pocket on its first outing to hold my keys, my phone also fits.
I liked the bag the whole kit comes in.
Enough about the bag lets get to the actual tripod!!!!!
So what do we get with the BENRO Travel Angel FTA28AB1 Kit quite a lot it turns out, Including a 5 year Warranty. Rather than go into the specs I will go over what this tripod offers, its features etc and I will list the specs at the end.
We get a Black Tripod with Aluminium legs and magnesium centre spider/hinges where the legs attach and a Benro triple action ball head with arca swiss type quick release plate.
Adjustable in 3 positions allowing for you to adjust to many positions on uneven ground, rocks etc
We get two styles of feet that screw in, metal spike and rubber for different surfaces.
Rubber twist locks for height adjustment that resist the elements, dust, sand, water etc
One leg is removable and converts to a monopod or a walking stick and has foam handgrip.
The legs are easy to adjust with a quick turn of the twist locks or buy popping up the button/lock on the spider.
The monopod is easily deployed with a few twists and attachment of a small fixed head (supplied), you can also attach the ball head to this. This gets it up to a decent height for me I’m 176cm or for someone taller the centre column is also removable and can be used to extend the monopod. This leg can also be used as a walking stick with the attached round wooden top handle, different!
I love the idea of the rubber twist locks I’ve had a lot of trouble with sand/dirt/water clogging up my tripod legs and making them hard to extend/close the sealing on the Benro should help.
Metal spike feet, rubber foot, walking stick handle, monopod fixed head, hand strap and fancy Benro Blue bag to hold it all.
- Is reversible so you can use the camera upside down under the tripod to get extremely close to the ground for those macro shots.
- The column is sturdy enough to actually use extended.
- It has a hook at the bottom for attaching extra weight.
I’ve never used a tripod for macro as Ive never been able to get close to the ground the fact the column can be used upside down means I could use this tripod for that purpose.
My usual advice is to drop the column into its lowest position due to the column usually a bit of a weak point on tripods and I would absolutely still do this but the Travel Angel’s centre column is actually quite sturdy and doesn’t move when locked in, if you needed to use the extra height it would be very usable.
- Magnesium and well made
- Excellent leg locks that are easy to use
- Allows the legs to be folded upwards
The centre spider is well made I really like that the leg locks are easy and smooth to use and I love how the legs fold upwards when the tripod is packed up making the whole package pretty small, the tripod folds to 45.5cm long.
The centre magnesium spider with machine leg locks.
The Monopod detaches (screws off) at the point under the anodised blue ring, you can also see the top of the monopods foam grip.
- Triple action
- Arca swiss quick release plate (industry standard)
- spirit level
- panning indicator numbers
I Love ball heads they are just easy to use the Benro B1 moves super smooth, locks well has a small spirit levela and indicators for panning (helps with creating panoramics). The Arca swiss type quick release plate is an industry standard with plenty of different types of plates available that have various benefits in use. The locking mechanism for this plate is great, twist to half release and allow the plate/camera to be moved sideways and to centre the plate. Pull and twist to fully release and remove the plate/camera. I used this tripod and head recently and there was no movement and and adjusting the head was precise, nice!
Benro Triple action ball head
The Benro Travel Angel FTA28AB1 Kit is fantastic versatile kit, sitting in a mid price range bracket. Everything about it is decent quality, with nice little touches (anodised aluminium in Benro blue, nice machined logos on the spider etc), great bag etc, It looks great.
More importantly though it works really well, and is by far the best Tripod I’ve personally used. Using it in the field its rock solid with a Canon 6d dslr and Samyang 24mm 1.4 and handled the wind on Sorrento’s cliffs well, with the weight on the centre column hook it could even handle a lot more. Everything is easy to operate making it quick to set up and compose, re-compose your shots. It has nice features to help keep out the elements. It packs up really compact and would be certainly usable on a hike and easily packed neatly in the car.
There is also nothing about this tripod that gets in the way of taking your images its just nice to use and looking at the quality I think it will stay that way for a long time. A big thumbs up from me so far!
Maximum load -10kg
Weight – 2.1kg
Folded size – 455mm (45.5cm)
Maximum Height with centre column extended – 1595mm (159.5cm)
Maximum Height with centre column lowered – 134cm
Leg Section – 4
Leg Lock – Twist Lock
Quick Release Plate – PU60