Recommendations for a carbon fibre tripod and head for V1? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Sony HVR-V1 / HDR-FX7
Pro and consumer versions of this Sony 3-CMOS HDV camcorder.


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Old June 19th, 2007, 10:03 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Brian S. Nelson View Post
Do you Zsolt ,or anyone else, have an opinion regarding the smaller Sachtler heads like the DV-2 II?
I used a DV2-II on a rental once, had it under a Z1 for about 8 days of shooting.

It's not a bad little head at all. It has the nice smooth Sachtler pans like the bigger ones, little to no sticktion at the start of a move.

Unfortunately it does not have many choices for settings. Fluid is either on or off, no further adjustments are possible. For what I like, I didn't consider buying one. I believe you have to move up to the DV6 or DV8 to get multiple drag settings.
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Old June 19th, 2007, 04:13 PM   #17
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DV2-II ....

Unfortunately it does not have many choices for settings. Fluid is either on or off, no further adjustments are possible. For what I like, I didn't consider buying one. I believe you have to move up to the DV6 or DV8 to get multiple drag settings.
For the same reason I finally ended up with ordering the DV6 regardless heavier weight and higher price.

A head usually serves a number of cameras, so buying a good one is an investment you wont regret. For balancing V1 correctly I suggest you to get a long camera plate (sold separately) that allows front-back adjustment.

Here is an article on choosing the right tripod and head.

http://www.dvuser.co.uk/tripods.php

And you may also consider Libec LS38 - it turned out to be a nice gear in this review, while its price is impressively low.

http://www.dvuser.co.uk/content.php?CID=150

I hope these articles will help.
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Old June 19th, 2007, 04:52 PM   #18
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There are two distinct types of setups in this thread. The several tripods and heads suggested in the last few posts will come in at 10 or more pounds and be 32 inches long or longer.

When I talk about lightweight for travel (put in a carry-on or medium suitcase, the total weight for me (both head and tripod) needs to be under 4 pounds and be less than 24 inches long -- preferably less than 22 inches long.

I am talking about a very specialized setup, not a setup for general use.

Regarding the Cinesaddle... it is well worth the money if you have a need for it. It is commonly used by news crews and by people in very fast moving situations where a tripod is both impossible to carry and much, much to involved to set down and get a shot. The Cinesaddles are exceptionally well made and give an instant platform on anything from a skateboard to a barrel cactus, on the back edge of a theater seat, on a music stand, or tied (with the mounting kit) to the hood of a car. They work great for tracking shots as they are pushed along handrails, etc. etc. etc. And the Cinesaddles are featherweight. They also work great as stools.

However, as I said before, they don't replace a tripod for standard shooting.
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Old June 20th, 2007, 09:54 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Brian S. Nelson View Post
Do you Zsolt ,or anyone else, have an opinion regarding the smaller Sachtler heads like the DV-2 II?
I've played with it a bit...for a baby lightweight head, it's not bad at all.

It only gives you two choices of drag on the pan and tilt, though...sort of no resistance, and a bit of resistance. For not much more money, the DV-6 head felt a lot smoother.

The DV6 is a little heavier, and almost overkill for a Z1/V1 camera, but a great pro head.

Last edited by Bill Ward; June 20th, 2007 at 10:58 PM.
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 02:23 AM   #20
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Gitzo 2180 with the Manfrotto 756B legs (not carbon fiber); works like a charm. The other day I needed to walk a couple of kilometers, climb up a small steep rocky mountain and operate the V1P in a howling very gusty up to perhaps 80 k/h nor-wester. Not quite as smooth as my Cartoni Action Pro but did the trick. As Zsolt Gordos tells us ‘if you want to achieve results, you cannot avoid weight’ and in these conditions I agree with him but you don’t always need to carry it with you. I popped a 5 kg rock, more or less, in a plastic bag and hung it under the camera attached to the legs using a bit of number 8 wire I fashioned into a crude S hook and Bob’s your uncle; did the trick. Oh yes, the 5 kg rock was there up the hill and there it remains. Without the rock the tripod and V1P would have been blown over and down the mountain.

The Gitzo 2180 with the Manfrotto 756B legs is light-weight, smallish, and so far has been a very useful addition to my bag of tools. There is no way I would have carried my Cartoni Action Pro to this shoot and I do not have the luxury of a porter.
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 03:35 AM   #21
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The Gitzo 2180 with the Manfrotto 756B legs is light-weight, smallish, and so far has been a very useful addition to my bag of tools. There is no way I would have carried my Cartoni Action Pro to this shoot and I do not have the luxury of a porter.
Thank you for this report. I am glad to hear the the Gitzo 2180 works okay. Of everything I have seen, this head has been the best I've seen for an absolutely light head (about 1 lb.).

The tripod you used also looks very interesting. For its size it comes in a little heavier than a carbon fiber, but at 1/3 to 1/4 the price. It also looks good as a second tripod as it has features that work well with a still camera.
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Old June 28th, 2007, 01:14 PM   #22
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I went ahead and purchased the Gitzo G2180 fluid head and GT1540 legs. Overall the set up is very light compared to my current tripod of similar dimensions. However I have to say that I am rather disappointed with the head. To call it 'fluid' is somewhat misleading, if you know how a true fluid head reacts. The pan and tilt drag is pretty much an 'on' 'off' type of mechanism with very little scope in between. Also there is a considerable amount of stiction on this head. Inevitably it will do 80% of the job I purchased it for, but overall I would warn others that they are giving up a substantial amount of fluidity/smoothness if they choose this head.

Last edited by Nigel Davey; June 28th, 2007 at 02:30 PM.
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Old June 30th, 2007, 01:57 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Nigel Davey View Post
I went ahead and purchased the Gitzo G2180 fluid head and GT1540 legs. Overall the set up is very light compared to my current tripod of similar dimensions. However I have to say that I am rather disappointed with the head. To call it 'fluid' is somewhat misleading, if you know how a true fluid head reacts. The pan and tilt drag is pretty much an 'on' 'off' type of mechanism with very little scope in between. Also there is a considerable amount of stiction on this head. Inevitably it will do 80% of the job I purchased it for, but overall I would warn others that they are giving up a substantial amount of fluidity/smoothness if they choose this head.
This is what Gitzo says about this head:

"The G2180 is fine tuned for use with medium sized spotting scopes, but is also ideal for DSLRs with long lenses and or compact DV camcorders."

The information is somewhat misleading. Probably its suitable for a beach holiday movie, definitely not for pro application.

And this head has nothing to do with anything "fluid". It is a friction head, with all the problems coming with that.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 02:58 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Zsolt Gordos View Post

The information is somewhat misleading. Probably its suitable for a beach holiday movie, definitely not for pro application.
In my opinion this information is highly misleading, sorry and no offense intended Zsolt. For how many hours shooting have you used the Gitzo 2180 head to enable such a put down. When a piece of equipment such as a tripod head is called “pro’ or ‘not pro’ I have to wonder about the snobbery factor. Such a characterization is a bit silly and quite unhelpful for folks looking for buying advice be they pro or whatever. I compared my Bogen / Manfrotto 3460 (503) with the Gitzo 2180 and regarding smoothness I prefer the Gitzo 2180. I also compared my Cartoni Action Pro with the Gitzo 2180 and regarding smoothness I prefer the Cartoni Action Pro.

I should add that to set up the Gitzo 2180 to perform at its best requires a, dare I say, ‘professional touch’ so it is not fool proof by any means. But please remember the context here; ultra-lightweight heads that are actually usable. The Gitzo 2180 is that, in my experience, and I would hope that folks reading this thread down the road are not inclined to rubbish the Gitzo 2180 for the wrong reasons. For the price/weight/functionality I have yet to find anything better for use with my V1P when the going gets rough and it’s uphill all the way.

Last edited by John McCully; July 1st, 2007 at 03:38 AM.
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Old July 1st, 2007, 11:37 AM   #25
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If there is a better head that weighs 2.2 lbs. or less, please let me know. I have to buy one within the week.

The only comparable head I have found is the Bogen 701RC2:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...luid_Head.html

The Bogen is actually slightly lighter than the Gitzo. However, it doesn't allow for using a long plate and it doesn't seem to operate as well as the Gitzo.

The Bogen legs that match the 701 are almost twice as heavy (4 lbs.) as comparable Gitzo legs (2.2 lbs.).

The carry-on restriction I have to deal with is 13 lbs. on one airline and 18 lbs. on the other. I have to take an XH-A1 (or V1U, not clear yet which), wide angle lens, a DSLR, flash units and some associated accessories and the tripod and head in the carry-on.

Some adjustments can by made by carrying things in coat pockets, etc. However, I don't think I'll get away with a 10 pound tripod head in my pocket.

An additional concern is that everything must pack. Nothing must give away that I am carrying camera equipment when it is not in use.

I looked at a very fine carry-on bag that is advertised as looking like regular luggage, having security features, etc. the main selling point is that it meets all size requirements for international air travel. But the bag weighs over 13 lbs. with nothing in it! This is over my carry-on weight limit. Besides that, it is only 5 lbs. shy of the Lufthansa carry-on weight limit of 18 lbs., and I consider Lufthansa the premiere airline for total global travel.

But back to the tripod issue, if I could carry a 20+ pound tripod in it's own bag, I wouldn't be taking the under 5 pound XH-A1. (I do own a Cartoni Action Pro, Cartoni Alpha and a Gitzo 1380, with matching legs.)

Perhaps I could check the tripod? The only trouble here is that I have to carry lights, stands and a host of other accessories. My total weight limit is 50 lbs. for _all_ checked luggage, including a few clothes, etc.

So, I need the equipment to tape interviews, to raise the light on a stage with only work lights, (one part of the work), and then the cameras and tripod and necessary extras in an anonymous bag for walking around and taking public transportation.

I haven't paid for it yet, but the Gitzo 2180 "spotting scope" head looks like the best option from what I've seen.
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Old July 2nd, 2007, 06:24 AM   #26
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If there is a better head that weighs 2.2 lbs. or less, please let me know...the Gitzo 2180 "spotting scope" head looks like the best option from what I've seen.
Please let me know also. I shall certainly be watching this space. Lightweight high tech is good. Along with smooth, adjustable, ultra-smooth to the finest degree...that I can carry load-free wherever I want to go. That's my tripod!

Jack, you have a serious logistics problem to deal with it seems. Try the Gitzo 2180 if you haven't already done so and see if it meets your needs, see if it might be a handy tool to have in the box.

Seems like a fun project you have on the go; good luck and enjoy...
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