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Old July 9th, 2004, 06:20 AM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Kuwait, Kuwait
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need a precise tripod head

Hello,
I own Bogen 3046 Tripod Legs with 3433 Pro Video Fluid Head, pictured here:

Bogen 3046 Tripod

I use it with Canon XL1s. It's working OK so far, but I have a problem: the panning is not super precise. for example: if i wanna pan the head 1 inch or less, the shot will slightly "jump". it's like there's a gap in the fluid head. you can pan fast shots, but you can't pan in millimeters.

I donno if it's because the tripod is cheap, or a problem in the head.

anyways, i'm looking into buying a more professional tripod, which is super precise in movement. budget doesn't matter. any suggestions?
Nawaf Alali is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 9th, 2004, 06:29 AM   #2
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The 501 head is frequently discussed here and it's interesting to see that people have some strong conflicting opinions on it. I suppose it has to do with your expectations and shooting style.

I have a 501 myself, but hardly use it anymore, unless I need two tripods. I had the same sort of problems you describe, and I think it's just the nature of the 501. It works fine for quick panning, or shots on the wide end of the zoom. But if you zoom all the way in and want smooth motion then it doesn't do a very good job.

I replaced mine with a Miller DS-5 which was a huge improvement, and cost around $800 with the legs. It also has a ball leveller which I don't know how I ever lived without.

I don't know anything about the legs you have, but I suspect most of your problems are in the 501 head, especially using a heavier camera like the XL-1, since I'm only using the little PDX-10. Browse through this forum and you'll find lots of discussion of the 501, and plenty of suggestions for upgrades from different manufacturers.
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Old July 9th, 2004, 09:52 AM   #3
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The legs are fine, I use 3 of them and love 'em. The 501 is not a true fluid head so thats where I think you should start. Although I have and use the 501's I also have a 503 which is way ahead of the 501 for smooth moves. There is also the 510 and 516 but they are a little costly, (the 510 about 8 or 9 hundred and the 516 anout 5 hundred) so if I were you look at the budget you have and then go from there. The 503 might work well for you but it almost sounds like the 510 or 516 might really be what you want.
Don B.
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Old July 10th, 2004, 06:41 AM   #4
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I've looked at the 516 & 510. I'm probably going for the 516.

thanx for the advice
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Old July 10th, 2004, 07:02 AM   #5
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I just want to second Boyd's comment about the ball leveller. I bought a tripod, head and optional centre column with leveller last month at B&H. From the minute I started using it I couldn't believe I'd shot anything without it, and I still feel that way every time I use it. The time and shots it saves are amazing.

David Hurdon
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