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Old April 30th, 2010, 06:01 AM   #1
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Sticks/adapter for a 501HDV

I purchased my new AG-HMC150 on eBay and the seller included a 501HDV head (just the head, no adapter/plate/arm/sticks) to go with it.

What should I be looking for in sticks and a bag to go with this thing? Do I need to go with Manfrotto for sticks? Do I need the Manfrotto ball adapter?

I need something that I can setup in the middle of rural Wisconsin (outside, not always on even ground) without it blowing away but at the same time somewhat easy to carry around if I'm in a building. I've used Manfrotto plastic legs before which fail part 1 of that and their metal legs which are close to failing part 2.

The less expensive the better. I want to get a nice tripod someday, but right now I just need something that holds the camera.
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Old April 30th, 2010, 06:14 AM   #2
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Well it depends on your definition of cheap but I will say I've been using a set of 525 legs with a ball and 501 HDV head for my small form factor cameras for a long time and it works just fine. I have a center spreader on the legs got rid of the ground spreader, and with and never had a problem. I've used the legs and the ball with a bigger head and have run 25 pound rigs without a problem.

I also have a set of 3246 legs with a 501 head. If I need height thats the one I use. IT'll get up 8 feet with the center column all the way up, no ball head needed.

As for an adaptor plate, yes you would need one but I can't remember if they offer the plate all by itself.

I think there have been some discussions about the topic before, maybe search a bit in the tripod forum.
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Old April 30th, 2010, 08:59 PM   #3
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Hi Nick.................

As Don said, it depends on how you define cheap.

Rather than go 'round the houses on the subject, it's probably easier if you spend a bit of time wandering around here:

Pro Video Tripods & Support | B&H Photo Video

Everything you need to get that 501 into service is there, tripods from under $100 to in excess of $4,000 (just make sure it has a 3/8" - 16 thread at the top to screw the head onto if it isn't a bowl tripod)).

Bits for the head like pan bar, top plate (501PL, I believe) and bags are there too.

Mix and match to suit your pocket.

If you want recommendations on cheap, search the Support forum here at DVinfo, there's literally dozens of threads extolling the virtues of many cheap setups, whether they're cheap enough for you, of course.............


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Old May 1st, 2010, 12:24 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
Well it depends on your definition of cheap but I will say I've been using a set of 525 legs with a ball and 501 HDV head for my small form factor cameras for a long time and it works just fine. I have a center spreader on the legs got rid of the ground spreader, and with and never had a problem. I've used the legs and the ball with a bigger head and have run 25 pound rigs without a problem.

I also have a set of 3246 legs with a 501 head. If I need height thats the one I use. IT'll get up 8 feet with the center column all the way up, no ball head needed.

That 3246 looks nifty. Amazon links it with the 028B... are they the same?

Those are advertised as "studio tripods"... what does that mean exactly? If I'm doing a documentary piece outside am I going to have a huge problem?

Keeping everything under $300 would be great

And I have been looking at the B&H site quite a bit... there is just a wide selection and I don't want to buy a tripod that won't work with this head (or only get half of the total number of items I need to make a functional tripod)

Last edited by Nick Catalano; May 1st, 2010 at 03:29 AM.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 06:41 AM   #5
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Nick,
I would guess the 3246 is classified a studio tripod because it doesn't have a ball leveler head and can only be leveled by adjust the legs. That to me is a hugh problem especially outdoors. The main reason I still use it is 1) the height advantage and I use it mostly indoors so getting it level is generally not a problem. It is a good set of legs that would not require a ball head to be able to mount the 501 head to it. Simply screw the head to the center column, raise the column to allow access to the set screws on the bottom of the plate tighten said screws and go.
For the money its a good setup but IF you could afford it I would go with the 525 legs and a ball head. That way you can level the camera simply by adjusting the head but if money is a n issue then by all means go with the 3246.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 11:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
For the money its a good setup but IF you could afford it I would go with the 525 legs and a ball head. That way you can level the camera simply by adjusting the head but if money is a n issue then by all means go with the 3246.
How vital is a spreader on the 525?

I've found the spreader on another Manfrotto kit to be much more trouble than it is probably worth and the mid-level spreader is $70 extra
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Old May 1st, 2010, 10:49 PM   #7
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well you need the spreader but I never used the floor spreader on mine. I got the center spreader when I got the legs and haven't looked back since. IMO unless you're always on a perfectly level floor the bottom spreader really doen't help. The center spreader will still llow the legs to go just about to the ground and keeps them from moving individually.

Since all of the Bogen gear is now running under the Manfrotto name the model numbers are all the Manfrotto numbers so 028B for the 3246 is probably right.
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 06:00 AM   #8
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What about a bag for the 525? Is there anything special I should be looking for?
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