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Old September 16th, 2008, 09:26 PM   #121
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Tripod Under 1k for EX1? Suggestions?

This summer (2009) I will be heading to Africa to shoot a documentary. I will be there for about 5 weeks and I need a good, reliable tripod with a fluid head that will support a Sony PMW-EX1 well. I think it would be good to have a tripod system that doesn't need a spreader.

I really like the Miller DS20 Solo but it is about $350 out of my budget.

Any suggestions for a tripod system $1000 or less?


THAT WOULD BE AMAZING.

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Old September 16th, 2008, 09:46 PM   #122
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Bogen / Manfrotto | 351MVB2 Tripod Legs with | 503HDV,351MVB2K

For the money, I'm thrilled with the 5xx series heads (I own 2 501s - wish I would have bought 503's). They aren't about to put Sachtler out of business but when you're spending your OWN money, it's a decent compromise. Avoid the 501 head though. Teflon friction. Not as controllable when it comes to drag.

PS. This kit has a mid-spreader. Much better than a floor spreader IMHO.
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Old September 19th, 2008, 11:48 AM   #123
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Vinten PRO-06-HDVM for $999 at B&H.
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Old September 22nd, 2008, 08:07 PM   #124
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Bogen bought Vinten or vice versa but they now share technology. I read somewhere that the Bogen 503HDV head and the Vinten Pro 6 head were basically the same head with different badging. I have had several different Bogen sticks/heads. While they were not "video elite cool", they were functional and durable and performed equal to products that cost a lot more.
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Old September 24th, 2008, 01:50 AM   #125
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Thanks for your responses!

I would really like to go without the mid-level spreader if possible. What do you guys thing about the 503hdv head with the 535k CF legs?

Here is the address to the B&H kit:

Bogen / Manfrotto | 503HDV,535K 535 Tripod 503 HDV | 503HDV,535K
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Old September 24th, 2008, 03:57 PM   #126
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Good Afternoon,

I have a vinten vision 6 and a gitzo 1380

The gitzo 1380 is surprisingly good!!! once set I can get it about as smooth as the vinten.

the 1380 head is availble for 990 dollars at b&H if you have a set of legs.

for a whole set up perhaps try the libec 38 A

Libec | LS-38M(2A) Professional Tripod System | LS38M2A | B&H



I have heard it is one of those sweet ones good and not beyond dimenishing returns.

check out the reviews on line!!
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Old October 14th, 2008, 05:36 PM   #127
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Michael, if you are serious about your work, forget Manfrotto and its derivatives....

Get the Libec LS 38, thats the best bang for the buck in your price category. In fact I see it below 500$ but that site is not sponsor here, so.... cannot tell you.
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Old October 14th, 2008, 05:49 PM   #128
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Are there any suggestions for tripods without spreaders?
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Old October 15th, 2008, 02:14 AM   #129
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Hi Michael,

I am looking at the 535 legs too. I bought the 351MVB2 legs and the 503 head and I wasn't too happy with the legs. I come from a broadcast background so I am used to higher end Sachtlers, Millers and O'Conners. The 351MVB2 legs were heavy, cumbersome and a general pain in the ass to use. Plus they aren't that tall, just a little higher than 5 feet, 6 feet with the 503 head. I would like a little more height myself.

I started a thread about the 535 legs and so far I haven't gotten much of a response other than Zsolt's suggestion. The 535s look good on paper though! Lighter, taller, and no pesky spreader. I use an EX1 too BTW.

The 503 head is pretty good for the money though!
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Old October 18th, 2008, 01:21 PM   #130
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thanks jesse. it's nice to know that i may be on the right track :)
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Old December 11th, 2008, 09:12 AM   #131
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OT: tripod upgrade for my fully-blown EX1 rig

With the RR matte box and glass filters, the 11" field/studio monitor, on-camera light powered from a 100 Wh brick battery, Letus Extreme 35mm adapter with a Canon lens - the overall weight of my EX1 rig has just exceeded 10 kg...

I need to upgrade my Manfrotto 503/535 tripod, and I'm facing a dilemma: being sort of loyal Manfrotto customer, should I opt for their 526 top-of-the-line head (up to 16 kg payload), or spend roughly the same amount on another, higher-end brand, like e.g. Libec LS-70 (up to 14kg payload).

Also similar would be the price for the highly regarded Miller Solo DS-20 combo, but it's rated 10 kg (no safety margin left).

I'd like to hear your opinions whether high-level head from Manfrotto are comparable to mid-range solution from their competitors, or still are considered "poor man's supports" :)
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Old December 11th, 2008, 01:31 PM   #132
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Wow, Piotr...............

I nearly choked on my corn flakes reading your post.

If ever there was an example of a Rolls Royce camera system (HD to boot) sitting on a skateboard support "thing", yours is it.

My initial reaction was that you must be editing/watching the output of this odd pairing on your mobile phone or something even smaller, then I saw the 50" HD set listed so must assume you just need glasses instead.

This because your only comment about your existing, er, system, was that you'd run out of safety margin weight wise.

Nothing about the entire set up waving about like a 3am New Years eve drunk.

Joking aside, I did a quick mental tally up and reckon the camera system must have a ticket price well in excess of US$10k, and probably very significantly more.

Currently sitting on a support system costing a gnats whisker under a grand.

I see your current thinking is to double the budget and go for, er, a system, costing a whole 2 grand at the very most.

Now, I'm all for customer loyalty, it's a great thing, especially if the product can "do the business", but IMPO, Manfrotto shouldn't even be a a rank outsider for consideration to be sitting under that camera system.

Working on the tried and true "you get what you pay for" mantra, a camera system such as yours should really be matched to something that can do it justice, which is gonna cost one heck of a lot more than 2 grand.

Now, I'm a Vinten guy. If I had that camera system of yours, my choice of weapon would be:

Vinten | VISION 8 Fluid Head (100mm Ball Base) | 3441-3 | B&H

and

Vinten | 3498-3 ENG/EFP 2-Stage Fibertec Tripod Legs | 34983

with

Vinten | 3781-3 Spread-Loc Mid-Level Spreader with | 3781-3

and

Vinten | 3532-3 Soft Carrying Case | 35323 | B&H Photo Video

I'll leave you to do the math.

I'm sure that just about everyone who uses gear at this level will have their own personal favourites that they'll rave about, the same as me.

My point is, do stick a Rolls Royce support system under that box brownie of yours, not a skateboard.

CS
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Old December 11th, 2008, 01:47 PM   #133
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Chris nice suggested setup. I am moving from a EX1 up to EX3 with a lot of extras and currently have a Gitzo 1380 with carbon legs. It has been great but way short of my new needs. I like your suggestion but will need to go to a rental house and have it as one of the many to check out.

I was at B&H and AbelCineTech yesterday and looked at the Miller Arrow 25 and was not impressed at all. Plastic and the one on B&H floor had a broken tilt lock. I like all alum system no plastic and a weight rating 4 times the weight of the rig as I did with my EX1.
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Old December 11th, 2008, 01:56 PM   #134
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I did the math, Chris, and even though what you're saying is absolutely right, I just cannot afford anything like this at the moment. As simple as that.

So perhaps I should re-word my enquiry: given my rig being what it is, and having just the Manfrotto 503/525 to sell away, plus some $1,000 to spare at the moment, what would be better (not: WHAT IS BEST):

- the sexy Miller Solo DS-20 (10 kg), or
- the Libec LS-70 (14 kg), or
- the Manfrotto 526 (16 kg) on some of their best legs?

Basing on the payload specs alone, I'd say the latter - but then, I never had an opportunity to "feel" the Miller.

What would you answer to my question put like this?
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Old December 11th, 2008, 02:04 PM   #135
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I just purchased this Bogen tripod system: Bogen / Manfrotto | 3193 Tripod (Black) w/526 Fluid | 526MVBKIT

It's heavy, but I think it will work well for my EX1, Ultimate setup.

By the time I add in batteries, HD monitor, etc. I was needing something that could support over 24lb and I couldn't afford a Vinten or Sachtler setup.

Still getting used to such a big tripod, but it's sturdy.
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