Bogen 503 Head with DVX100A? at DVinfo.net

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Old March 26th, 2004, 11:27 PM   #1
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Counterbalance Question?

Anyone know how well the 503 would handle counterbalance of a 11-12lb payload (DVX100A camera, 2 stage mattebox with filters and light weight support, and follow focus)???

Am trying to figure out whether to buy Manfrotto 503 or 516 head.
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Old March 26th, 2004, 11:53 PM   #2
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I don't think that will add up to 12 lbs.

Nevertheless, my opinion is to use a better head, such as a Vinten Vision 3 or a Sachtler. You're looking at, what, $6,000+ in the camera package and its accessories? It just makes sense to use a support rig that's more on-par with that expenditure. You will notice quite a difference in engineering.
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Old March 27th, 2004, 12:04 AM   #3
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Hey Ken,

Thanks for the reply. Can't get a confirmed weight yet as I'm still in the process of ordering everything (I can't wait!). I'm thinking it should be pretty close to that..maybe more like 10-11lb.

Unfortunately I can't afford to spend anymore...would love to get a Sachtler if I could. Am planning on getting the 350MV legs (Bogen 3190)

I know the 503 can take a 13lb payload. I'm just worried how it will handle tilts???
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Old March 27th, 2004, 12:42 AM   #4
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Barry,
I have the DVX100A and use all of the components you reference (except the follow focus at the moment). It's not nearly 12 lbs. I've not weighed it, but I don't even think it comes to 10 lbs. My guess would be closer to 8 lbs.

My fully-loaded XL1s with matte box, loaded CH-910, FU-1000 b&w viewfinder, 16x manual lens, etc. is far larger than the DVX100A and weighs in at around 10-11 lbs.

The DVX100A is a far more compact little camera than the XL1s with a center of gravity much closer to the the camera's physical centroid. (Unlike a loaded XL1s that's extremely nose-heavy and needs quite a bit of shifting and counterforce gymnastics for balance.) I don't think you'll have too much trouble striking a balance on the 503. You may, in fact, find that it operates smoother if you add a bit more mass. These heads are not true fluid designs and operate on lubricated friction. So sometimes adding mass can help with smoother pan motions (to overcome stiction more smoothly). And remember that many of your moves will likely be combinations of pan and tilt motions.

I have a 516 head and can tell you that that would be vast overkill.

Good luck with your project, Barry!
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Old March 27th, 2004, 01:08 AM   #5
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Thanks again for shedding light on that Ken..much appreciated!

I'll let you know how it goes..really excited to finally get the stuff and start shooting.
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