Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Old January 31st, 2012, 10:49 PM   #16
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Well, no need for me to tell the assembled that Peter and Vinten are all over this like a rash, and we're all sitting with bated breath, waiting to hear exactly what is going on.

I have no doubt there's more than a couple of VB owners going "What the f*$k" as they read this thread too.

Peter would have been onto it even faster, but his automatic "new post" notifications from DVinfo have been on the fritz since Christmas (he had this thread tagged for that very reason) and that still hasn't been resolved, as far as I am aware.

Given that he has to sleep sometime, I'm not expecting a response from him for another few hours at the earliest (current: 17.37 hrs NZ time; 12.37 Singapore: 04.37 London).

As I am still as clueless as everybody else as to what is going on, I shan't bother to speculate, suffice it to say, the alarm bells are ringing everywhere.

Appologies for the "no news there, then" post, but it's better than total silence.

Peter will, I'm sure, be back in a few hours, with news and a strategy.


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Old February 1st, 2012, 03:12 AM   #17
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

It's definitely not the Vinten Experience that I'm familiar with. I was out in the pi**ing rain all day on Sunday and things were falling apart left right and centre (mainly my humour and sanity), but throughout it all I was getting beautiful smooth pans and tilts with the VB.

Vinten's quality control is pretty stringent, so I wouldn't be surprised if something had happened to these tripods after they left the factor. (Are you sure they're Vision Blue tripods, and not the older, Manfrotto-based models? Dumb question, I know...)

The worst thing I can say about the VB is that there is no "zero" drag setting. This isn't a problem for me though, the head and legs are perfect in every respect.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 03:12 AM   #18
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

I got word from the retail store that Peter did ask someone locally to contact the store, and they're sending someone over to look at the affected heads. I also got word that they ordered a Sachtler Cine DSLR for me to test with no obligations as I had expressed interest between the Vinten VB and the Sachtler CineDSLR.

Peter has undoubtedly been very helpful, going so far as to suggest that I request for a loaner tripod for my upcoming shoot even though I haven't firmly decided on purchasing any Vinten product yet. Hope to hear more from the sales rep / store after they meet tomorrow!

@ Chris S : You've had the chance to use both systems, right?

@ Mike B: I think I'd be able to tell the difference between a supposedly great Perfect Counterbalance head and a re-shelled Manfrotto / ProTouch ;) Yeah the lack of a zero drag setting is something I realised too, but honestly, I doubt I'd ever be using it without drag anyway! The only concern for me right now in terms of design is the angles (with Sachtler's CineDSLR doing full tilts at 5kg counterbalanced), assuming my experience was only due to defective units.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 03:40 AM   #19
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Yep, not only tried, but have, both systems, sort of (I use the "have" in the loosest sense of the word, the Cine/ FSB 6 system actually belongs to Sachtler. Hmm, wonder if they want it back sometime?).

What can I tell you?

Great head. Excellent bearings. Wonderfull snap load. Terrific ergonomics. Terrible drag settings (3 + OFF, and OFF means OFF) and stepped CB adjustments.

Swings and roundabouts, as they say in English.

So, yes, I've had a chance to use both systems, as that was the question.

Anything else, just ask.

More, as and when.


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Old February 1st, 2012, 03:52 AM   #20
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Haha, I've always wondered when if you would ever complete your Sachtler reviews like you've done for the other brands ;) Been a reader for a long time!

Thanks for the info on the CineDSLR :) The store owner I talked to recommended them because, like they all say, "it performs like a Sachtler" so surely they're doing something right. Just a matter of whether it's true for DSLRs.
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Old February 1st, 2012, 04:35 AM   #21
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zexun Tan View Post
Haha, I've always wondered when if you would ever complete your Sachtler reviews like you've done for the other brands ;) .
Ssssh, don't tell anyone, but I loathed the sticks, and Babs will kill me (she's one dangerous lady is Babs) if I give her any more grief, so it's gone "into hiding", which is what I'll have to do if that review ever sees the light of day.

The DSLR is a slightly cut down version of the FSB 6, from memory, though up from the FSB 4, apart from that, it's identical.

Nice kit.

"Nobody ever got fired for buying Sachtler" . Quote: Chris Soucy (unless someone thought of it first?)


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Old February 1st, 2012, 05:44 AM   #22
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Oh what a shame. Seems like Vinten does get most of the things right the way you want them.

If I may ask, what makes a good tripod good? Like for example, how do you usually test for wind-up of a tripod? The reason I ask is because I have a 100mm Manfrotto CF here called the 540ART for proper ENG cameras (you tried to help me find the parts diagram to no avail last year, but I got it repaired). For real sturdiness sake and assuming portability isn't a problem, which would be better?
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 09:15 AM   #23
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Talked to my local Vitec group contact and he said he still has yet to look into the issue by asking for tripods back. He said he had no demo Vinten Vision Blue tripods or heads to loan out too. Bummer!

I've attached 4 images of a current rig that balances perfectly with my 501HDV at about 2.3 - 2.4kg. The battery of the LCD monitor does not block the sliding plate at all.

It's definitely not a safe rig, especially for the hotshoe. But there's no other way I can get it the way I want it to work for a 501HDV in case I can't upgrade to the Vinten VB or similar in time for my shoot... so maybe an hour of using it like that won't hurt?
Attached Thumbnails
Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?-1-small.jpg   Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?-2-small.jpg  

Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?-3-small.jpg   Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?-4-small.jpg  


Last edited by Zexun Tan; February 2nd, 2012 at 11:17 AM.
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 10:50 AM   #24
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Chris,

I'm in a similar situation as the OP. I have a Manfrotto 503 head on 520 legs with GLS and am considering upgrading at least the head to a Sachtler FSB6 or a Vinten Blue, but maybe also get new legs.

The camera, with all accessories like shotgun, on-camera light, shoulder rig, wireless receiver, cables etc. comes out at around 5.7 kg (Canon XF300) fully loaded.

While talking to the Dutch representative, he told me the FSB6 from Sachtler was more maintenance proof and required less service than the Vinten Blue head, especially when used in tropical environments. (Hard to imagine with the freezing cold here)

What do you think about the remarks of the Dutch representative and do you have any suggestions to add to everything said above?
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 11:14 AM   #25
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

I'm not Chris, but I think that I'd first strip down the rig if you want to use it on a VB - it's a 5kg max payload head with limited tilting at max (or getting close to max) counterbalance settings.
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 03:41 PM   #26
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Hmm, where to start?

Harm first, I guess.

Ah, the Manfrotto 503/ 520 combo. Boy, does that take me back a ways.

That is exactly where I started my journey into the mysteries of proper camera support, about 6 years ago, when I first parked my brand spanking new Canon XH A1 HDV camcorder on what had been my faithfull SD support for about 5 years.

Shot about 20 seconds of video and fired it up to my (also new) 46" Full HD Sony, and felt the blood drain into my shoes.

To paraphrase that immortal line from Jaws, I knew in that 20 seconds "we're gonna need a bigger camera support".

Tried the incremental approach, with a Vinten Vision 3 "insert spring and pray" head. Still crap and the camera wouldn't CB, either.

This, incidently is the point where Peter Harman and I first crossed paths, as he fired a handfull of springs to me to try (free, too!). I knew right then that Vinten and I were going to get on famously.

In the same shipment from B&H as the head was a set of Manfrotto 528XB's to park under my Hague jib.

Tried the V 3 on those, now that was a serious improvement, pity I could barely lift the combo and run'ngun was not even an option.

I had got the camera to CB by now, with a ME67 shotgun up high and a wireless receiver, perfect, though I had by then discovered the limitations that Vinten 3 lobed clamp knob and massive clamp cup imposed on head adjustment with both tripods.

To cut a long story, my next sticks purchase was a set of Vinten FiberTec's, the top of the line CF nested I beams, beautifull and still are, even if they did damn near bankrupt me. Strongest set of sticks I have ever used, by a country mile.

The V 3 has pretty well been retired, replaced by a V 3 AS, and a little way down the track joined by a VB system complete.

So, to Harms little dilema.

OK, head. I think that weight/ COG will overwhelm a VB, sail straight over the head (sorry!) of a V 3 AS, putting you in V 5 AS territory

Now you're talking some serious money, as I know that head won't play nice with a set of 520's, and a serious Vinten set of sticks will be required. Something like this:

Vinten V5AS-AP2M Vision Pozi-Loc Aluminum Tripod V5AS-AP2M B&H

As you can see, about this point is where you have to seriously evaluate the Vinten/ Sachtler options.

If I was in your boots, I'd fire a mail to both Barbara.Jaumann@VitecGroup.com (for Sachtler) and Peter.Harman@VitecGroup.com (for Vinten) and ask

a) What system they think is the most likely to work with your rig, and

b) For a test drive of what they think is appropriate.

I, personally think it's going to be a bit of a toss up between a FSB 6 and a FSB 8 Sachtler head, depending on the exact CB graph of each, though I'm pretty sure a V 5 AS is going to be the Vinten option.

As I said, you're talking serious money, whichever way you go.

Now, as for "the Dutch representative" (you didn't say of what) comments, I have NEVER heard of either a Sachtler or Vinten head of any description requiring any sort of maintenance within their expected life spans if used correctly and not subject to physical abuse, no matter what weather conditions they're used in.

IMHO, it's complete piffle, but maybe Barbara or Peter can tell us otherwise.

"War and Peace" volume VII ends.


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Old February 2nd, 2012, 03:59 PM   #27
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Chris,

Thank you so much for the speedy reply and the overwhelming amount of info. Fantastic. I'll read it with more attention the second time I go through it all, but I think you have shown me the way to go.

Yes, this current setup dates back to the early 2000's when I used it with a Sony VX2000 and PD150.

Not that anyone should remind me, but I'm getting old, when I remember those years.

OTOH, it shows that tripods and heads generally outlast several generations of cameras...

Thanks again for your speedy reply. BTW, did you have your breakfast already or did I mess that up?
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 04:09 PM   #28
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Nah, breakfast, or what passes for it here - three mugs of strong coffee and more cigarettes than I care to admit to, well and truly had before I hit DVinfo!


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Old February 2nd, 2012, 04:33 PM   #29
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

This is one alternative to your suggestion, right?

Vinten V5AS-CP2M Vision Pozi-Loc Carbon Fiber Tripod V5AS-CP2M
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Old February 2nd, 2012, 05:00 PM   #30
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Re: Upgrading from 501HDV: Vinten VB or Sachtler DSLR/FSB-6?

Zexun, your turn.

Quote:
how do you usually test for wind-up of a tripod?
Very good question.

The easiest way, for the average shooter, is to load up an HD camera on it, set the zoom to maximum focal lenght, set the pan drag to maximum, lock the tilt horizontal, run video and pan left and let go the pan bar, pan right and let go the pan bar, repeat about 4 or 5 times.

Fire that video into a decent full HD set and watch what happens at the end of every pan.

The long focal length on the lens magnifies any pull back dramatically (note: a Manfrotto 501/503 will display goo sticktion pull back on top of any tripod unwind).

This is all very well and good, but unless you have a benchmark to compare it too, hard to say if it's good, bad or indifferent.

If you meant "you" as in ME, I have a purpose built aluminium "U" channel bar 1 metre long, with a Manfrotto 75 half ball base screwed into a chunky aluminium block welded dead centre.

I mount that into the tripod in question using the inbuilt level to ensure it is perfectly horizontal, make sure that clamp knob is REAL tight, put concrete blocks on the feet/ spreader, attach a pulley system to one end of the bar onto which I can load measured weights and park a laser pointer into a special holder at the other end of the bar.

The laser is set dead centre on a graduated target about 23 metres away, and it's deflection is measured as I add 100 gram weights up to about 1 kilo.

I do that for every tripod I test, soon sorts the wheat from the chaff, but is exceedingly time consuming, and, in practise, one heck of a lot of buggering about.

Don't try this at home, boys and girls, unless you're terminally anal.


CS
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