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| p.1 #5 · First Tripod and Head; looking for Feedback |
The Manfrotto CF does not seem appropriate for your needs. Without a head attached its folded length is about 21" which is a poor match for standard suitcases. As has been mentioned you will be better off with a ball head instead of a geared head. IMO one of the weaknesses of the Manfrotto tripod designs is their proprietary quick release head and lack of rigidly attached custom body plates. The body plate mates the camera to the clamp on the head. If there is any wiggle or rotation, it is a big deal; you will have wasted your money. You will enjoy using a tripod with an arca swiss clamp -- totally rigid, easy on, easy off. In addition, there are standard body plates made for the 5D and the arca swiss clamp (Kirk and RSS, $50-100); they bolt to the base of the camera and fit rigidly in the clamp.
I recommend the CT3442 from Feisol. It can be used without a center column for extra stability. It folds to about 17 in and weighs about a kilogram. If you go that route, pay attention to the size of the ball head and the position of the adjustment knobs, so that the tripod can be folded back over the head, saving room when folded.