Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M? at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 25th, 2011, 08:39 AM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: New Delhi, India
Posts: 485
Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

I want to use the Oconnor 1030 HD fluid head and looking for a suitable tripod. I have decided on the Oconnor 1030HD, can't spend more on a fluid head at the moment. I would appreciate if you can help me select a suitable tripod.

I want to use these for wildlife filming. At the moment using DSLR (Canon 1D Mark IV plus the 400mm f2.8 L IS USM lens, with this combination weighing about 7kgs). I don't rule out moving into heavier film cameras with interchangeable lenses. :-)

The Oconnor 25L is a 2 stage 100mm bowl CF tripod.
OConnor 25L Carbon Fiber 2-Stage Tripod Legs 25L-103 B&H Photo

I am also looking at the Sachtler DA-150M Medium Aluminium tripod. It has 150 mm bowl. It is supposed to support 110 lbs as opposed to the 60lbs of the Oconnor 25L. It is cheaper as well. Sachtler DA-150M Medium Aluminum Tripod Legs 6157 B&H Photo

Since I am going to order from US in the next week, I would like to have your suggestions about these two or any other tripod you think is good.

Cheers,
Sabyasachi
__________________
Wild Tiger Productions
http://www.indiawilds.com/about.htm
Sabyasachi Patra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 25th, 2011, 03:56 PM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Wow, Sayasachi...................

Probably the first time anyone has got my jaw to drop in this Forum in many a year, but, man, have you done so.

I'm so used to the opposite situation, newbie pays a squillion bucks for a camera system, then comes here asking what tripod system they can get for 25 cents, I'm struggling to come to terms with the reverse.

However, as with most things, there is a happy medium to be had here, and I think you may just have zoomed straight past it with your chosen head.

Great head? No doubt, whatsoever.

1D Mk IV & 400 mm f2.8? Nah, don't think so, my friend.

If you check out the COG/ Counterbalance graph here: 1030HD

It quite clearly shows that the 1030HD has a minimum counterbalance range of 16 pounds at, wait for it.................14 inches above the head plate.

As your camera rig weighs in at about 7kg (15.4 pounds) you'd think you'd be safe, wouldn't you?

Nope, 'fraid not.

Being a DSLR, the entire combo wouldn't have a COG any higher than a gnats knee cap, maybe 3 inches at best.

Result?

It's going to do it's level best to launch you into low Earth orbit every time you take the tilt drag setting off "Emergency Stop".

Not a good look, I'm afraid and almost totally unmanageable, even with muscles of steel and grim determination.

I would seriously suggest you go back to the drawing board on this one, as this unit is buying a head for a system you don't and may never have, and one which will leave you cursing every time you use it for the entire duration.

Can't comment too much on the sticks as have tried neither, my only comment is with regard to the Sachtler you indicated - either you're very short or you do a lot of low level stuff.

At a maximum working height of 31.5", I'd never get off my knees trying to use it.

Get back to us, I'm sure we can thrash out a setup for the system you DO have, as opposed to the one you don't.


CS

PS: As I try to be a "one stop shop" for this sort of stuff, I've been doing a bit of digging on your behalf.

In order to match your kit specifications and still have continuously variable counterbalance a' la the OConnor, I've dived into the Vinten site and had a good sniff 'round.

The Vision 5 AS head COG graph seems to nail your current rigs weight and approximate COG perfectly, so I'll run with that one.

On the sticks front, you want solid, I'll give you solid: either the Vinten 3883 - 3 (aluminium) or 3884 - 3 (carbon fibre). Both rated to 99 pounds.

The sticks require the additional Spread - Loc spreader (3781 - 3) and I'll throw in what I think is the appropriate case, the (3340 - 3) Padded Case as well.

All up, the aluminium system comes in at $4,352.65 plus shipping, the Carbon Fiber system at $4,756 dead, plus shipping.

There, two systems tailor made for your rig, both tough as nails and full, ready to use systems, all for less than that original OConnor head on it's own.

Can't say fairer than that.

PPS: The sticks mentioned are both 100 bowl units. If you want to go completely OTT you could step up to 150 mm versions of the same units for an additional $155 (alloy) or $295 (cf), however, the head in question is a 75 mm base and I can't find a 150 to 75 reducer anywhere as a one piece unit, and using a 150 to 100 PLUS a 100 to 75 seperately could be a trifle unwieldy.

Last edited by Chris Soucy; March 25th, 2011 at 06:24 PM. Reason: ++Update
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 25th, 2011, 07:13 PM   #3
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Soucy View Post
If you check out the COG/ Counterbalance graph here: 1030HD

It quite clearly shows that the 1030HD has a minimum counterbalance range of 16 pounds at, wait for it.................14 inches above the head plate..
Some cute prose in there Chris, but you have this backwards--apparently the graph isn't "quite clear" after all.

At 14 inches, the MAXIMUM--not minimum--payload is 16 lbs. At 3", the maximum is 50 lbs. There's no minimum listed in the chart. I've had far less than 16 lbs on my 1030 and you can dial it down just fine.

My only real complaint with the 1030 is that the counterbalance is a tiresome mechanism to adjust, but it gets there eventually. And operationally, it's as perfect as they come. At NAB I'm going to give the other manufacturers a fair shake to see what they've come up with, but in the past I've never found a head that is as good as the O'Connor's, which is why I own several.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 25th, 2011, 08:12 PM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

What a very strange way to do a COG graph.

However, I stand corrected.

Disregard entire post.


CS
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 26th, 2011, 03:51 PM   #5
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Chris, not sure I'm understanding what you are suggesting is different about the O'Connor COG graph than those of other manufacturers.

They all demonstrate the same principle: the higher the center of gravity, the less payload the head can effectively counterbalance. This is shown as a downward curve. Why it is that Vinten includes additional curves to illustrate that the counterbalance will handle a greater weight at a reduced tilt angle and O'Connor does not, I'm not sure--I feel like I had seen those diagrams out of O'Connor in the past. Still, the concept remains the same.

I've never dialed my 1030 all the way down (that I can remember) so I don't know what is the absolute minimum payload (and at what height!) the head can work with, but I feel confident that it should be able to work with as little as 5 lbs. And I do feel like it's a solid investment for the future, as the form factor of large sensor camera and lens will likely settle into the 10-30 lb range over the next few years. I'm a big champion of "buy the best head you can afford" and for me that is O'Connor. There's a reason that they can be found on nearly all feature film and episodic television sets.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 26th, 2011, 10:38 PM   #6
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Hi, Charles...

The Sachtler site lists graphs for each of their heads, which indicate both upper and lower limits for COG/ payload weight.

Vinten go one better by deliniating those limits into three bands, that allowing +/- 90 degrees tilt and then the same for 60 degrees and 40 degrees.

The OConnor graph line, with nothing else specified (like "this thing goes down to 5 ounces or, This is the maximum, there is no minimum)) is quite obscure on what the head can actually do beneath it's maximum rating.

The fact that the graph (as far as I can see) doesn't even say that the line IS the maximum, only makes it even more obscure.

However, I guess in the industry, at that level, it's common knowledge, so is felt not even worth mentioning.

I'd really like to see the bottom end of that COG/ payload graph, as it would reveal just HOW good it would be with much lighter/ lower COG loads.

Short of buying one and doing it myself (not a chance in Hades), guess I'll never know.

Thanks for correcting me on it though, much appreciated.

As I always say, if you're gonna screw up, at least do it real good!


CS
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 28th, 2011, 06:50 AM   #7
Vitec Group
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Munich
Posts: 22
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Hi Chris,

Sachtler counterbalance system works for all specified tilt angles - without having an implication for payload weight. Therefore Sachtler does not need not show 40, 60 ....degree on the graphs.

Barbara
Barbara Jaumann is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 28th, 2011, 08:19 AM   #8
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Further, since it was the other brand in question, I believe that the same is true of the O'Connor heads AND they do not have a minimum payload, hence the single line on the graph. I know this is true of the 2575, and the manual bears this out (see p.8). Coincidentally I'm going in to O'Connor today so I will ask them if this is true of all of their heads.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 28th, 2011, 12:18 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: New Delhi, India
Posts: 485
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

I saw this description for the Oconnor 1030 HD head in the Oconnor site.
"This new mid-sized head, based on OConnor's Ultimate 2575 fluid head, features OConnor's stepless, ultra-smooth pan & tilt fluid drag specifically enhanced for HD applications.
Designed to give you the ultimate control and stability for your HD shooting. The 1030HD has the same features and controls as our 2575 fluid head, the standard for 35mm film cameras. Featuring OConnor's patented sinusoidal counterbalance system for true, accurate balance at any point in the tilt range. Add to this OConnor's stepless, ultra-smooth pan & tilt fluid drag specifically enhanced for HD applications, and you've got the best of all possible combinations".

So it says that counterbalance works at any point in the tilt range. I remember reading that counterbalance is from 0 kg upwards. Am unable to find it recollect where I had read it. That is one of the main reasons for selecting this head. (Whether I came to know of Oconnor from walt disney history or somewhere I just can't remember).

Hi Chris, Charles and Barbara,

One of the reasons for zooming past the manfrotto and other such heads and jumping to the Oconnor is because, I want to get it right. I can't afford to keep on buying heads (fluid heads I mean. :-) ) and losing money in the long run. It is a big amount for me, however I just can't stand jittery footage. In future the plan is to get an interchangeable lens camera for filming.

I am now considering the Sachtler CF-100ENG HD 2CF Carbon Fiber 2-Stage Heavy-Duty Tripod Legs (100mm Bowl) - Supports 209 lbs
Sachtler CF-100ENG HD 2CF Carbon Fiber HD Tripod Legs 5390 B&H

Please keep on pouring your suggestions.
Unfortunately, there are not many tripod reviews (at least I dont see many or probably I don't know where to find those). So it is good that Chris is making effort to get reviews done, albeit entry level tripods. Inputs from experienced users like Charles is definitely a big help. I am happy that product managers like Barbara are also there to help. Thanks a ton.

Cheers,
Sabyasachi
__________________
Wild Tiger Productions
http://www.indiawilds.com/about.htm
Sabyasachi Patra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 28th, 2011, 11:15 PM   #10
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Whew! Where to start............

Charles:

Didn't get around to reading the manual, just the obvious stuff on the web site, more fool me.

I will try not to let that one trip me up again.

Barbara:

Well, hello.

Well aware of the "no decrease in tilt angles" aspect of you're beutifully engineered heads, HOWEVER, there is an issue with the stepped nature of said aspect (that has yet to be published) that has given me no end of grief, that being the need to use tilt drag to compensate for the inevitable steps in the CB system.

I have, to date, and I do keep trying, failed to find a rig configuration that doesn't require the application of tilt drag level 2 to stop the head "creeping", either up or down, when releasing the pan bar.

This results in having only 2 tilt drag levels available, either 2 or 3, which is on a par with the Libec RS series heads.

They do, at least, have continuously variable CB, which is a bit of a step ahead of yours, sorry to say.

I have no doubt whatsoever I shall get buried alive by Sachtler owners saying that situation is perfectly OK, but I've found it quite constricting, coming from the Vinten.

Damn good bearings though, I must say.

Sabyasachi:

Ah, reviews!

Well, I suppose I should point out that 99.9% of DVinfo'ers (of which yourself and Charles are pretty obviously not part) would never consider the purchase of such a head, period.

In fact, I can only remember an O'Connor head being mentioned once before, in the years I've been trawling the threads.

I'd dearly love to do a review of such a piece of kit, HOWEVER, someone like Charles, with his undoubted access to relevant camera gear and massive experience in the industry, is far better qualified to do so, especially as he actually has one knocking around the bottom of his "bits and bobs" drawer, lucky sod.

I would strongly suggest he does so, it would surely be a major boost to the "top end" here on DVinfo, and would add an extra dimension to the database CH will post up sometime soon, when he gets out of "one armed paper hanger" mode.

The head, if capable of CB'ing anything from a matchbox to a 30 odd pound cine camera, is a very special beast indeed, carrying a very special price tag to match, not you're usual DVinfo fare, but, then again.........

Good luck with your search for gear.


CS
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 29th, 2011, 02:22 AM   #11
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

FYI gents, spoke to the tech at O'Connor (now part of the Vitec group along with Sachtler and Vinten) and he confirmed that the 1030, like the rest of the O'Connor line, has effectively no minimum weight spec. Thus you could conceivably use the lightest cameras on any of their heads and not experience kickback to the center position.

I will note again that the counterbalance adjustment on the 1030 is a pain to negotiate--it's tight to turn and slow to adjust and requires a lot of trial and error, especially compared to the numeric readout on its big brothers. But once you are there, you are there. Operationally, it is a compromise-free head--and I have yet to experience that from any other manufacturer (although, as I said, I'll be trying other heads at NAB to see what the competition is up to these days).

Theoretically I might do a "gear I love and use" blog type thing down the road.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 29th, 2011, 03:01 AM   #12
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Fairfield, Dunedin, New Zealand
Posts: 3,634
Images: 18
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Your Mission, Charles, should you wish to accept it............

Is to write a comprehensive review of that head, on the set of sticks of your choice, and post it on DVinfo, alongside my rather meager offerings down at the consumer level.

It would be great to have someone with your experience and knowledge do this (IF you have the time and energy, and you need plenty of both) and you can certainly write well, why not give it a go?

I jest not, and fully expect you to say no, but, you're an absolute natural for this, and I've seen some of the other stuff you've reviewed, and well done it was.

Just need to flesh it out a bit (what the heck, I'll stop trying to teach my Granny to suck eggs - and heck, I'm old enough to be HIS Granny!).

Whatayasay? (sounds much better with a Kiwi accent)

It would help DVinfo go "up market", if only we had people who had or used "up market" stuff contributing.

[Geez, why am I starting to sound like a DVinfo sales guy?]

The better info we can put out there on camera support, the better the info, it can't come from those as don't know, only from those as do.


CS
Chris Soucy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 29th, 2011, 12:18 PM   #13
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: New Delhi, India
Posts: 485
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Charles,
Do you own the 1030 HD or the studio version? 1030 is the max that I can afford right now and the 2065 will be overkill for some time.

I agree with Chris that it would be great if you can share your experiences. Hmmm..I am no sales man either. I am Regular crew. :-) It is always great to read actual user experiences who have handled variety of stuff to present a balanced perspective.

Cheers,
Sabyasachi
__________________
Wild Tiger Productions
http://www.indiawilds.com/about.htm
Sabyasachi Patra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 3rd, 2011, 10:39 AM   #14
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: New Delhi, India
Posts: 485
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

I thought of asking how you guys carry a tripod like the Sachtler and an Oconnor 1030 HD or other large fluid head in flight? Any suggestions for a case?
__________________
Wild Tiger Productions
http://www.indiawilds.com/about.htm
Sabyasachi Patra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 3rd, 2011, 10:55 AM   #15
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 6,781
Re: Tripod: Oconnor 25L or Sachtler DA-150M?

Sorry, missed the followup from the 29th--I have the 1030B, an older model which is roughly equivalent to the HD model. For heavier cameras I own a 2575, the big daddy head which is the industry standard for full-size cameras

For shipping the standard container is the Tuffpak but I'm sure that someone has figured out an inexpensive alternative like a ski or golf bag case.
__________________
Charles Papert
www.charlespapert.com
Charles Papert is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:59 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network