how many times have you gave up bringing a full-sized tripod when traveling due to the lack of space in your luggage? we would imagine that could be rather often. at least, we know we did on pretty regular basis. either that or we sacrificed some other essentials. either way it is never an idea scenario. with the new Giottos Silk Road Series YTL Tripods, things might just work out differently. the YTL features a new Y-shaped center tube that is said to be 30 percent more compact when folded than the traditional round columns used in today’s tripods. honestly, this is another innovation that begs the question ‘why didn’t we think of that?’ seriously, it is totally a no brainer but yet, we have wait till decades later for Giottos to figure that out for us. anyway, now that the circular form of the tube is out of the way, the tripod legs can now tuck closer into the center Y tube, thereby making the tripod a whole lot more compact. 30 percent space saving may not sound like much, but when space and weight are premiums, that’s like water in the desert for serious shutterbugs. depending on the model chosen, the tripod can shoulder up to 11 to 22 pounds (5 to 10 kilograms) of imaging rig. available in three- and four-section variants with two- or three-way center tube and a choice of aluminum or light-weight carbon fiber construction, the new Giottos Silk Road Series YTL Tripods command a price ranging from £100 to £350 (that’s about $159 to $555 in green backs).