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Old April 17th, 2010, 06:38 PM   #1
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Miller or Sachtler head

I'm on the fence between a Miller Compass 15 and Sachtler FSB 6. Payload will be DSLR + rails, follow focus and small monitor. Maybe a few other doo-dads. I'm still adding up the payloads.

I have a Sachtler DV8 and am very happy with it under my EX-1 kit but don't need to hump a big rig around for a DSLR. So the controls would be familiar on the Sachtler.

I've read that the Miller heads have had durability issues in the past. I couldn't discern any issues while looking at them at NAB but that was for only a few minutes.

Have the issues with the Miller heads been resolved? Any compelling reason to choose one over the other?

Thanks
Bob
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Old April 17th, 2010, 06:45 PM   #2
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Mmmm…Miller

Bob-

I checked out the Miller Compass 15 up close at NAB, for exactly the same setup you describe, and thought it was perfect. Nice action, lighter weight, and built solid for sure.
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Old April 17th, 2010, 06:54 PM   #3
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Thanks Stephen. I liked the Solo legs, for sure. My local shop suggested I seriously think about the Sachtler head on the Miller sticks. I'm open to that. The all-Miller kit will work out to about $100 cheaper.
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Old April 17th, 2010, 08:54 PM   #4
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Again…Miller

…and two years ago, I did exactly that: put a Sachtler DV6-SB head on Miller sticks. For my EX1/HPX170/HPX500 shooting, it was a great combination. For my DSLR package, it's overkill, and it's a beast to lug around.

So go Miller. I don't think you'll be disappointed at all.
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Old April 27th, 2010, 05:09 PM   #5
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We have a few Compass 15s. They do feel like they'll be reliable unlike the DS10/20 heads.
The problem with the Compass 15 is even at the lowest counterbalance setting it will not correctly counterbalance a camera such as the EX1, even with my quite heavy 3rd party battery on it. The suggestion to go with a Sachtler head and Miller legs seems a good one to me. Miller's Solo legs are great, very good solution for awkward positions. On the downside they are slow to work with compared to the speedlock types of legs.
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Old April 28th, 2010, 03:34 PM   #6
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Bob (K)........................

As you're actually in the "Big Apple" , may I suggest you take your rig down/ up/ across to B&H and take a Vinten 3 AS for a test drive.

The "perfect balance" system is just made for rigs like yours.

I won't bang on about it, 'cos if you've never used one, it won't mean much, but seeing as you're planning on dropping some serious dollars here..................


CS
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Old April 29th, 2010, 12:01 AM   #7
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Miller too.

Miller again .. I have the Compass 15 with the Solo CF legs and it's great with my Canon XH-A1 .. balances fine.

A Miller HQ demo here showed us how to use the Solo screw locks .. you keep its legs together lengthen them out and 1/2 turn the locks to tighten 'em .. quick and easy. Temporarily mark the legs to your working height till you're happy then permanently mark 'em. The very low height feature is great .. also fast. Extend one leg it's a monopod.

You can get a US made hard case not available in Oz.
Cheers.
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