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Old May 18th, 2009, 01:38 PM   #1
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HM700 & Accessories

I just recently purchased the HM700 and was looking for some advice on a tripod & batteries.

For the tripod, I saw a used Cartoni Alfa II that comes with the Cartoni Action Pro One-Stage Aluminum legs. It seems like a decent price at about $900. Does anyone have any experience with this unit, and would it make a good fit for the HM700 and possibly an HM100 (down the road)? I also saw a used Vinten Vision 6, but it was quite a bit more. I was hoping to stay around $1000. It seems like a good "lightly" used tripod might be a better way to go than new, but I'm open to suggestions. Also, besides e-bay, is there a good sight for used equipment of this nature?

As for the battery, someone mentioned the Switronix as an alternative to the Anton Bauer. It seems they make a version of the Dionic 90, and two batteries with a dual charger can run about $1000. I'm afraid I don't know an exact model number. If anyone has had some experience with these batteries, I wouldn't mind some feedback these as well.

Finally I see that there is a Switronix TorchLED TL-50 which might be a good camera mounted light for quick "news type" interviews. Any thoughts on this unit, or any camera mountable light that might work well with the 700.

Thanks ;-)
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Old May 18th, 2009, 01:56 PM   #2
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The Cartoni Alpha head is 100mm and the Action Pro legs are 75mm. If the pieces you are looking at fit together, something is off. (Also, I think $900 is high for what you describe.)

I have both an Alpha system and and an ActionPro system.

The ActionPro head is not good. The ActionPro legs are okay, but a bit lightweight. (I gave the ActionPro setup to someone just needing to hold up a PD150.) The ActionPro head nor legs are suitable for my HD110, so I doubt would be good for for HM700, though the legs could be used.

The Alpha head is pretty good. It was replaced by the Focus which many like, but I do not like.

If getting a Cartoni setup used, I would want to see it in person and try it out.

For places to buy used equipment, this site is about the best around. For more info on tripods go to the tripod section of this forum. There are some dedicated contributors there.

I do like Cartoni for some things: I have alpha legs, a Cartoni Dolly, and the Cartoni jib.

However, I prefer the Gitzo 1380 head I have, though the Alpha is also very usable. (I also have lightweight Gitzo legs for travel and other uses.)
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Old May 18th, 2009, 02:17 PM   #3
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Thanks for the quick reply. In terms of the head, what is for sale is the Alfa II which supposedly can hold a load up to 22lbs, and with that comes the A/B lightweight tripod legs. I thought it was the Action Pro One-Stage, but I was mistaken.

So from what I gather, you feel that the Alfa head was not bad, but even for the Alfa II do you feel that $900 is too much?

Thanks,
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Old May 18th, 2009, 02:51 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Kenneth Gurney View Post
Thanks for the quick reply. In terms of the head, what is for sale is the Alfa II which supposedly can hold a load up to 22lbs, and with that comes the A/B lightweight tripod legs. I thought it was the Action Pro One-Stage, but I was mistaken.

So from what I gather, you feel that the Alfa head was not bad, but even for the Alfa II do you feel that $900 is too much?

Thanks,
The price is probably okay if all is in good shape. I'm not sure what the A/B lightweight legs are. I have found the Cartoni Alpha to be very smooth head. The counter balance is not as fully featured as the Focus and other heads. However, it should work well for the HM700. Make shure you get the plate that goes with the head. Also, the pan bar. Cartoni parts are very expensive.

Also, does it come with the bag to carry it? Is this the set that were sold together (head, legs, bag), or are these separate pieces put together?

Here is the old Cartoni page on the Alpha:
Cartoni - ALFA
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Old May 18th, 2009, 03:32 PM   #5
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Yes this is a set. It's on e-bay:

Cartoni Alfa II Professional Video Tripod Great Shape - eBay (item 180349811642 end time May-23-09 10:05:56 PDT)

It includes the head, tripod, carrying case & looks to be in good shape. I know it's not a high end Vinten or Sachtler, but compared to what I have now (which is a very cheap Bogen tripod), I think it would be huge improvement. Of course I was hoping to get some input from others before taking the plunge :-), and unfortunately I can physically try out the unit before I buy.

Also is there a listing for used equipment on this site? I see a shop link, but don't see anything there for what I am looking for, and I am new to this forum.

Thanks,
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Old May 18th, 2009, 04:00 PM   #6
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I have this tripod setup, and it has been very good. I used it with lighter cameras than the HM700, but I have had the HD110 on it with no problem. As I mentioned before, the counterbalance is not sophisticated.

The tripod is heavy duty. I use mine now to support the jib.

The legs are very strong and sturdy. The are also quick to setup.

I don't see the camera plate in the picture.

(A note, if you get this head, it's not obvious, but after the plate snaps in, it is necessary to snap the lever even further to lock the plate in place.)

I paid about this a few years ago for the one I bought.

The sales site on dvinfo.net is toward the bottom under the heading "Marketplace." If you only see two listing under marketplace, you may need to wait a few days after joining here to see it. The section is called "Private Classified."
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Old May 18th, 2009, 04:04 PM   #7
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If you need to get the camera plate, here it is at B&H:
Cartoni | A500 Quick Release Plate | A500 | B&H Photo Video

In case I wasn't clear, if the tripod and head in question are in good shape, I think the price is reasonable.

But on reading the questions, the seller says the plate does come with it. I don't understand what the seller means by talking about the ActionPro.
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Old May 18th, 2009, 04:16 PM   #8
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Thanks you've been very helpful :-) I appreciate the input. I have sent the seller an email and asked about the plate. The sale also has a best offer option, so if the plate isn't included I may offer a bit less.

So...any thoughts on batteries ;-)
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Old May 18th, 2009, 04:22 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Kenneth Gurney View Post
Thanks you've been very helpful :-) I appreciate the input. I have sent the seller an email and asked about the plate. The sale also has a best offer option, so if the plate isn't included I may offer a bit less.

So...any thoughts on batteries ;-)
Look at the questions and answers on the listing, it says the plate is included.
There have already been 5 offers, and the seller has rejected them.

In my opinion, this is a good deal. The seller has 100% positive feedback, and this is a private sale. Could be his tripod or a friends, but I would tend to believe that it is in very good condition.
=========================

Tim Dashwood is the resident expert on the JVC cameras, and he uses Swit batteries. He has posted on several occasions that they have worked out well.

The genuine Anton Bauer batteries can't be faulted on quality, but they are expensive. I would think the Swit would be fine.
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Old May 18th, 2009, 04:31 PM   #10
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I'd browse through the relevant sections of the GY-HD JVC forum since for power and tripod as well as other acc like on cam lights have been well covered and are directly relevant
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