I just took delivery of a new tripod, this Dolica, and I have to say for $45, I’m completely blown away by the quality of it. This is my first non-Manfrotto / Bogen that wasn’t a worn-out hand-me-down, and it is very solid. I look forward to providing updating this post as I use it further, but it seems clear it’s a great value for the money.
Key features that impress me:
Reversible center post, useful for macro Flip lock legs that hold tightly and should support plenty of weight
Smart center column screw lock
Very large and very firm ballhead
Impressive positive-locking 3-position legs
MUCH better carry bag than for my bottom-of-the-line Manfrotto (which was more than twice as expensive).
The one thing I’m not thrilled about: The last (thinnest) leg extension could be beefier – it seems a bit thin, so I wonder how it’ll age, though when new, it does lock firmly and seems stable.