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I was recording my daughter's band performance, with a Vivitar HF-TR59 59" Tripod set on wooden bleachers, Sony a7iii with 24-240 lens, OIS on. Camera shake warning was on most of the time, and one could see the some camera movement on the recording. A possible cause was other parents settling themselves on the benches: the wooden planks of the bleaches transferred their movements from tens of feet away.

Thus the question: how do I avoid that? Are there tripods available with vibration dampening? Or perhaps one can place something on the floor underneath the tripod? I have doubts about placing a soft mat underneath the tripod because, even though that may dampen floor vibration, that may also destabilize the tripod.

marked as duplicate by Michael C, xiota, inkista, flolilo, Romeo Ninov Dec 15 '18 at 10:43

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  • What tripod are you using now? Cheap tripods are not very stable. Those wooden bleachers might be part of the problem. – Mike Sowsun Dec 15 '18 at 1:25
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    Regarding the vote-to-close by reason of being about video: this absolutely does have a photographic context. Understanding the limits of tripods, and their placement, is just as important in photography as it is in videography. – scottbb Dec 15 '18 at 2:09
  • Related: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/94720/… – Hueco Dec 15 '18 at 4:16
  • Regarding the dupe, I think this question can be a stand-alone when you ask how to stabilize a tripod on a particularly bouncy surface. At some point, it’s less about stabilizing the tripod and more about counteracting the ground bouncing. A perfectly rigid tripod on a flexy wood rail still gets bad shots. OP, if you edit your question to focus in on this, I’d vote to reopen. – Hueco Dec 15 '18 at 16:34
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    @mattdm I disagree, because I think the basic fundamental answer common to both is: you can't adequately stabilize a tripod when the ground/surface below it is moving/shaking. In that case, a tripod is not the solution. Compensating for that motion requires some sort of suspension mount, whether it's a body rig (steadicam, etc.), or a damped jib, etc. Tripods are meant to confer the "absolute" (non-moving) position of the ground underneath to a higher vantage point. If the "absolute" reference point is no longer absolute, then a tripod is not the solution. – scottbb Dec 17 '18 at 0:59

Sandbag, or in my case, a backpack, hung from the hook to weigh the tripod down. Helps on softer surfaces.

  • I think a lot of the vibration might have been from people on the wooden bleachers. Anchoring the tripod more firmly (usually a good thing) to the vibrating bleachers probably won't solve the problem... – BobT Dec 15 '18 at 14:26
  • @BobT, exactly; just added that to the question. – Michael Dec 15 '18 at 22:46

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