I just purchased this tripod, so I don't have much experience with it yet, but I am pleasantly surprised with it's versatility and low weight so far. When shopping for a carbon fiber tripod I was alarmed by the prices, so this one at $170 seemed too good to be true. It has a ball head, but 2 bubble floats to help level it if necessary, and one of the legs unscrews to make a monopod (seems like more of a sales gimmick, but maybe I'll come to understand its value).
Sounds like a great pickup Tom. There is no doubt that a good tripod is worth its weight in gold. If not heavy enough it will most likely, in time, take a beating. If too heavy it will hardly get used after a while. Alas, such is the sad plight of the 2 that I own
I found when I was able to get out and about chasing subjects the mono pod became my weapon of choice. You will probably use you tripod more when staging outdoor shots and that to me was when a heavy stable tripod was needed. I even thought about adapting a ball head to a suveyors tripod but never did as that thing was a tank.LOL
I have two Manfrotto tripods, one sturdy heavy the other is one of their travel tripods. I must admit that I took the travel tripod with me through Europe last year and never even used it once. The heavier tripod I recently used during the lunar eclipse, but again, that was a one off. Whilst I appreciate them when I need them, I find myself just shooting hand held, even during the evenings/night time.