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Old November 23rd, 2010, 09:42 PM   #76
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OK, update time again...........

No response from E - Image in China, I'll try their Australian distributor and see what gives, tomorrow.

I've decided to put a hold on the Gitzo's, for no other reason than the current shootout is already doing my head in.

Fear not, however.

Due to me being able to standardise the data sheet with all objective data for every single system I review, plus being able to do the same for the actual review itself, every system reviewed in future will be directly comparable to every other system reviewed in the past.

In short, there will be a comprehensive database of info, plus my part objective, part subjective personal review to boot, all here on DVinfo.

I'm hoping that we will be able to sort some clever software that will allow a comprehensive, side by side comparison of any three or four systems, across manufacturers, at the click of a button.

Look, was that a squadron of pink pigs flying over just then?

Moving on, the real life photo shoot started on the Sachtler today (ah, sun, don't you just love it) plus some serious testing.

Found my first "Oooh, I won't do that again" with the FSB 6 head. Scary or what!

Had my Canon XH A1 parked up on top and was doing counterbalance/ drag figures.

Had the drag set to 1, the CB at 1. Tilted the rig forward to get a better look at what I was doing and switched the drag to 0 and the CB to 2.

Whoops! Wallop! The entire rig took off downwards like a Saturn 5 missile.

No damage done but note to self: Switching CB disconnects CB entirely untill it has re - engaged, hold pan bar if zero drag set!

More as and when.


CS
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Old November 24th, 2010, 02:56 AM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Soucy View Post
What delusional state were you in when you gave the CF 75's the flick?

Dang,, they're so pretty I'd like to hang 'em on the wall as art!
Chris - I thought it was a good idea at the time, as part of my kit downsizing. In hindsight I maybe should've just sold the head and kept those lovely legs!
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Old November 24th, 2010, 08:56 AM   #78
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Manfrotto 504HD

I just want to make sure that you have been able to access a 504HD system for your test. It is a marked improvement over and different than any Manfrotto "fluid" head I have distributed previously. FYI - We will be introducing the 509HD at NAB 2011 which will be the 504HD's bigger brother.
Thanks,
A very interested (and biased) obsever - Manfrotto US Sales and Product Manager
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Old November 24th, 2010, 12:43 PM   #79
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Chris,

I'd like to offer my services to long-term-test several of the tripods after you are through with them I figure I can publish my results in 10 years. Earlier would be irresponsible and unworthy of the fine craftsmanship and reputations concerned. You can PM me for the shipping address : )
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Old November 24th, 2010, 02:11 PM   #80
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Hi, guys..................

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Beckett View Post
I thought it was a good idea at the time
You know, some of the dumbest things I've ever done have been filed in that drawer!



Quote:
Manfrotto US Sales and Product Manager
Well, dang, doesn't that beat all! Where have you guys been hiding?

Welcome aboard, Wayne, good to have you on DVinfo.

You familiar with our other Vitec reps here - Peter (Can Do!) Harman and Barbara (This is how it works**) Joumann?

Are you the "go to" guy in the States for 504HD test drives then?

Quote:
able to access a 504HD system for your test
Well, I think so. (Ignores resultant ominous silence).

Both the Libec and the Manfrotto are being supplied by distributors, which is always fraught, as any test gear comes straight off their bottom line and they're caught between a rock and a hard place if the manufacturer gets ratty about a review the distributor has commissioned.

With both I'd feel a heck of a lot better if only they'd answer mails in a timely fashion (you listening, guys?).

I have my fingers crossed and saying prayers, but always work on a "if I ain't got a package on the doorstep, I ain't got........." basis.

Stay tuned to this channel for the next exciting episode.


Quote:
I'd like to offer my services
You know, that's kinda funny, in a sad sort of way (not you Roger, no, no, no).

Waaay back when this was being planned, I thought, I'm gonna have some of the most amazing camera support gear on the planet here, in my living room, in little old one horse town (sans equine component) Dunedin.

I reckoned there'd be guys (and maybe guyesses) who'd gnaw their right arms off to get to play with this stuff.

Phone the local video club, get squat. Phone anybody and everybody I can think of who has anything to do with video, get squat.

I gave up, significantly disillusioned.

Maybe I should have found the horse.


CS

** Spoken with a charming Bavarian accent.
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Old November 26th, 2010, 10:05 AM   #81
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Late requests ...

May I add a request to your extensive and well considered list?

I recently rented sticks for a shoot & received the Sachtler DV4 -- a few years old I suspect, and probably not available anymore. In using them, I was constantly frustrated by a couple of things that it would be nice to see referenced in your comparison:
1) Bubble level location. The DV4 I used had the bubble level at the six o'clock position, directly under the camera plate. You could look down at it if you removed the camera -- otherwise you were stuck with an oblique and couldn't really get a level;
2) Lever lengths for the pan & tilt lock. I was shooting some industrial shots that involved a pan and tilt, lock on subject, later resume pan and tilt. Shots were minutes long, the middle were lock-off. As I could never find a 'perfect' balance for the camera, I was either obliged to hold steady with the pan arm for the duration of the lock-off (so not really 'locked' ...) or carefully tighten the lock while the camera was rolling, loosen later to resume pan/tilt. Doable, but I'd have preferred it if the lock levers were twice as long as they were;
3) Visual indicator of lock positions. For the pan & tilt functions you could tell by the angle of the lever whether the lock was tight or loose -- for the legs, you couldn't tell anything without checking them with your fingers. Quick release leg locks are perfect, but I do prefer them in most instances;

Thanks for all your efforts. Using the older Sachtler sticks was a reminder to me of how important it is to a smooth workflow to have a tripod that does what you want, when you want with minimal fuss and fiddling. And a reminder of how much I hate floor spreaders. And bottom of the leg twist locks. And camera plates that have only coarse fore & aft balance adjustments.

Cheers,
GB
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Old November 26th, 2010, 01:56 PM   #82
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Hi, RGB.................

I think you can take it for granted that any system displaying the list of horrors you outlined, and had the misfortune to fall into my grasp, would very quickly find itself sent back whence it came with a note attached:

"You're kidding, right?"

If you read a couple of my reviews you'll see that not a lot gets by me without comment, and nothing is safe.


CS
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Old November 26th, 2010, 06:50 PM   #83
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I haven't seen the latest list of items to be included in the reviews, but after reading the post about the damaged head and your reply, I might suggest adding a check box for the availability of owners/maintenance/parts manuals to owners.
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Old November 27th, 2010, 09:04 PM   #84
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Hi, Ed..........

Yeah, pretty well got that covered in V. 8, er, I think.

Better check that again, just in case.


CS
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Old November 28th, 2010, 01:27 AM   #85
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Yes, I guess you have it well covered other than telling us what the inside left screws are made off.

The table is set, let's now get on with the party !
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Old November 28th, 2010, 08:29 PM   #86
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Thanks chris, i will give it a try.

Last edited by Daniel Caruso; November 29th, 2010 at 07:44 AM.
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Old November 28th, 2010, 11:59 PM   #87
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Hi, Daniel...............

You may care to mail Wayne directly, as you're both members, just click on his name and you'll get his details.

Not entirely sure he's quite prepared for what sticking his head over the DVinfo parapet has meant, but he'll get there in time, just be gentle.

Vincent:

Well, there is a small problem with just "party".

One actually needs to have the gear here, hot and ready to go,

So far, I have the VB and the Sachtler rigs (and the latter missing some very important bits to boot).

Of the others, nothing, squat, nada.

"I'm working on it" may sound a bit hackneyed, but that's what I'm doing.

When I've got it, I've got it.

Can't review stuff I ain't got, certainly not for a "shootout", and that's for sure.

And there are sure going to be some suprises for this round of reviews, I kid you not.

I can't say anymore lest I scare the kids and horses anymore than I've already done.

Be patient, I'm getting there, this was always going to be the "shootout" from Hell to organise and do, I will, the Gods willing, get there.


CS
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Old December 1st, 2010, 11:09 PM   #88
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Update.............

Libec RS250 arrived this arvo, boxing a bit the worse for wear, but no harm done.

Long plate and boots included but no GLS, however, the feet are perfect replicas of the Manfrotto so it fits the Manfrotto unit like a glove.

Very neat looking MLS, some serious thought gone into that.

Nice looking unit, not quite the "poke your eye out" looks of the Sachtler or Vinten rigs but workmanlike and everything necessary seems to be in the right place and do what it's supposed to.

Just waiting on the Manfrotto 504HD and it's "play ball".

Nearly there boys and girls.


CS
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 02:57 PM   #89
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"Are we there yet?"
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 06:24 PM   #90
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Quiet................

in back there!

Can't you see I'm trying to drive!


CS

Bloody kids!

Last edited by Chris Soucy; December 3rd, 2010 at 12:46 AM. Reason: ++Update
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