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Old February 22nd, 2004, 02:53 PM   #1
John Carey
 
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Tripod for PD170

I am looking to buy a good tripod. i have used cheap and 2 thousand dollar tripods that my school has. Here is what I want. I want a tripod that is a solid piece, and is sturdy, but MOST importantly, is easy to setup. I need a tripod that I can unfold, setup, and balance rather quickly. So ease of use, and Fast and easy balancing are the main issues. I just used some German Tripod that supposedly cost 2 grand for a small project, I mean, it was great, but it took forever to balance all the shots.
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 07:36 PM   #2
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Hi John,

You might want to look at the Bogen 542 A.R.T. tripod. It literally only takes my camera operators 10 seconds to set up as soon as it's out of the bag! I have 505 heads with each one of mine.

check it out at:

http://www.bogenimaging.us/


HTH

Doug
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 08:04 PM   #3
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I use the Bogen 755B video tripod with the 501 head. I think it's quite a nice combo for the price. I think I got it for somewhere around $350, with a Bogen case.
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 10:36 PM   #4
John Carey
 
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Hey Doug

Hey Doug, the 542ART IS WAYYY out of my price range. The PD170 cost alot of money itself. For the Tripod, I have about a $300 dollar budget. (I will probably have to grab something used)

With that said, what would you suggest as far as a sturdy tripod for my PD170 that is Extremely easy to setup and get a balanced, centered shot?

ALSO, EMPHASIS ON Ease of Use and QUICKNESS. There will be many times when I will have about 1 minute to take the tripod out my bag, set it up, center the bubble on the head, get the shot ready, and than another minute for focus and getting the camera ready.

john
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 11:05 PM   #5
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John,
That's a modest budget for a good tripod and head.

In general, you're looking for a head that connects to the legs via a leveling ball rather than a center column. This makes for a much easier job of levelling. You're also looking for a head featuring a quick-release plate.

Good luck.
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Old February 22nd, 2004, 11:42 PM   #6
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The leveling ball is the crucial element. Without one, it can take minutes to level the head. With it, it only takes a few seconds even when the legs aren't even close to even.

You didn't say anything about height. One of the big differences among tripods is how high they go. I shoot a lot of school performances where I have to shoot over the top of the audience. Of course folks in the audience occasionally stand up during the performance, which means that you need to shoot from a high vantage point to keep from missing what's happening on stage. I extend my Bogen 475's to full height and stand on the second step of a kitchen step stool. This works pretty well because the 475's go pretty high. If I had it to do over again, I'd probably go with something even higher. If you won't have this type of situation to contend with, then you have a lot more choices with respect to tripod legs.
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 12:11 AM   #7
John Carey
 
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Good point alan

Alan, you just made a great point. As for the head, the 501 seems to be the best bang for the buck interms of a leveling ball
Like I said, it has to be easy to center,

Also, now that you say that, Yeah, I need something that can go high, because I will be shooting alot of concert footage, and if im in the back of a room, I will need to be above the audience. This feature is a must. But I am pretty confined to a lower budget, however The used market seems to offer some pretty good buys. So what do you guys suggest, this is what I need

-A tripod that is not flimsy, something that is sturdy
-Very easy to setup and fast to level and balance your shot
-Can go high to shoot over audiences head.



Thanks for the help
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 09:59 AM   #8
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Isn't 501 overkill for PD-170?

I use 700RC2 for VX2100, and 501 for DSR-250.

However the 700RC2 sloughed to the right after a while, enough that it shows. It make sense, since there is support only on the left side, right side is "hanging" in the air. Had to rig something to balance it. Really tempted to replace it with a 501, but then I worry about the weigh on my little tripod. Too bad there is nothing in between.
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 10:51 AM   #9
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The 501 is certainly not overkill for a PD-170, I used one for several years with my VX-2000; it's really a rather low-end head, although it's a good value for the money. I paid close to $300 for the 3221 legs and 501 head with no ball leveler however. You Ccan probably do better than that these days. I suspect you're going to be hard pressed to get the height, sturdiness, head and leveler you want for that price.

I agree that the ball is a "must have" if setup time is important. I now use a Miller DS-5 which I really like. The ball makes leveling instantaneous. But that's an $800 tripod (although I read they are currently on sale, but not in the $300 range).
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 12:50 PM   #10
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You could check the Manfrotto / Bogen MDeve line:

http://www.manfrotto.com/product/ite...&sectionid=299

They are center column tripods very affordable, but the center column has ball levelling. Iīve used it with my XM2 and itīs a 15 sec. setup.
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 01:27 PM   #11
John Carey
 
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alright, well tell me what you think of this

1. As for the head, the 501 (3433)sounds like good bang for the buck. It can hold enough weight for my pd170, and has a leveling ball. Do you agree?


2. Secondly, with that said, what Bogen Tripod do you suggest. What is a Good Bogen Tripod that offers bang for the buck? Like I said, my main interest is something that I can setup fast and balance out my shot very quickly. I will also need something sturdy because If I am at a loud concert setting and the bass is vibrating the floor, I will need something that will stay still. A high Height is also key.

Thanks alot
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 01:34 PM   #12
John Carey
 
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ALSO, How about 501 (3433) & 3191

Bogen / Manfrotto 3191 Professional Video Pro Tripod Legs (Chrome) with 100mm Half Ball and 3433 (501) Pro Video Fluid Head - Supports 13.2 lbs

BH Sells it for 500 bucks. What do you guys think of this deal for me? What would the Cons be?
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Old February 23rd, 2004, 05:14 PM   #13
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Well as long as you know the 501 is not a true fluid head (see other threads on problems with this particular head) then it might be OK. The 503 heads seems to get better user reviews.
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Old February 24th, 2004, 06:51 PM   #14
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Re: ALSO, How about 501 (3433) & 3191

<<<-- Originally posted by John Carey : Bogen / Manfrotto 3191 Professional Video Pro Tripod Legs (Chrome) with 100mm Half Ball and 3433 (501) Pro Video Fluid Head - Supports 13.2 lbs

BH Sells it for 500 bucks. What do you guys think of this deal for me? What would the Cons be? -->>>

If you pick the 3181 you will get a similar tripod and pay a bit less ($374). If I were you I would put the extra money on the fluid head, perhaps picking a 503 instead.

I am going through a similar dilemma, but I am willing to spend around $350, so I am still between the 3181/501 package and the Libec M20.


Carlos
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