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Old March 4th, 2013, 03:10 PM   #1
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Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

Thanks to Peter Harman and Andrew Butler from Vinten (and tripod guru Chris Soucy), I've been able to test, review and film with the awesome new Vinten Vision blue3 tripod for camera's in the 6.6 to 14.6 lb / 3.0 to 6.6 kg weight range and their new blueBridge accessory which enables you to use even lighter camera's then specified on your Vision blue tripod.

The review can be found here:
DerranNL: Vinten Vision blue3 and blueBridge - Review and Video

And to see the Vinten Vision blue3 with the blueBridge in action in Amsterdam, please watch the video below:

Hope you enjoy!
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Last edited by Derran Rootring; March 4th, 2013 at 04:07 PM.
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Old March 5th, 2013, 12:51 AM   #2
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Re: Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

A year or so ago I found myself caught up in the excitement of the Vision Blue. Rather than borrow or hire one for a day or two I decided to test a unit at the local dealer by subjecting it to the most testing condition that it was likely to encounter from me. Accordingly I used my EX3 fitted with a 300 mm Nikon lens. This represents an angle of view equivalent to a 1550 mm lens on the full 35 mm frame. This is a very severe test which is why I chose it. I was disappointed with the amount of wind-up and so no purchase.

I did not see any reference to wind-up in your article. Do you have any thoughts as to a maximum useable focal length for the VB3? Is it likely to be better than the model I tested?

You make a strong point about the non-linear relationship of drag to pan and/or tilt velocity and make a reference to some Vinten literature. I too like diagrams and graphs but notice that Vinten has the undesirable habit of comparing their products to un-named rival product(s). If the rival products were identified and available one could do a comparison to see if the differences were in fact desirable in practice. If the rival product was named one could also do a search to learn of the standing of the rival among users. As the units used on Vinten graph axes are unspecified you cannot even make comparable measurements on existing equipment.

From the reports I have read it is obviously a popular product, however I am uncomfortable with Vintenís advertising strategy.
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Old March 5th, 2013, 02:59 AM   #3
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Re: Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

Hi Alastair, sorry to hear your experience with the Vision blue wasnít what you were expecting. One point that Iíd like to get checked is this. What units are you referring to? Iíve checked our brochure this morning and the units are specified on the counterbalance performance charts as are those on the Drag Technology chart. We always specify the CofG height for the counterbalance range, whereas other manufacturers often donít and this can be very confusing when comparing pan and tilt heads.

Alistair, we are always happy for you to loan any of our kit, so if youíd like to re-visit your original testing, give us a call and we will arrange for a free loan.

Hereís the link to the 2012/13 Vinten Brochure http://www.vinten.com/en/system/file...%20Q3_2012.pdf
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Old March 5th, 2013, 06:29 AM   #4
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Re: Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

Hi Alastair, I see Peter already gave you a helpful reply and I would definitely like to encourage you to take up on his offer and try one again.

I don't believe I've ever used such an extreme focal length on any of my cameras, but in my Amsterdam video you'll see plenty of examples of using the full 200 mm zoom of the lens. I've used the same setup on my former Sachtler tripod (DV-6SB) and always needed to use the highest drag setting available at full zoom. This high drag setting also makes panning and tilting very difficult unless a very subtle movement is sufficient. I've noticed that the Vinten legs provide a very rigid base and with the Vb and Vb3 I never even had to think about applying full drag to the head to make the footage usable at full zoom and was still able to track moving subjects at any speed. Hope this answers your question.
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Old March 5th, 2013, 07:42 AM   #5
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Re: Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

The whip pan of the Vinten heads is also a great feature - you don't need to dial down the drag if you suddenly need a fast movement. 1500mm is a really, really high zoom. I'm not sure if you will get anything at the VB price point that will give you perfection.

I'm glad I made the move from Sachtler DV6-SB to VB. I just prefer the Vinten feel, the counterbalance and the drag system seems much more "right" to me. My camera (currently a Panasonic AC130) only goes up to 600mm or so, so it's more than acceptable.


(Oh, and I see Peter is on the front cover of the Vinten 2013 brochure. Nice balancing!)
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Old March 5th, 2013, 07:50 AM   #6
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Re: Vinten Vision blue3 Video and Review

Hi Peter,

Thanks for the offer to arrange an evaluation loan. Decades ago I built a tripod and head primarily for underwater use. Regrettably those days have passed but the head and legs have seen several reincarnations for more terrestrial use particularly with long lenses. I had always assumed that because it was home made that it would be inferior to commercial products. It actually competes surprisingly well but is heavy and slow to set up which is why I took an interest in the highly praised VB. I am still interested in the drag properties of silicone fluids (I use GEís Viscasil 600,000) and in my effort above I can vary the thickness of the fluid layer and hence vary Drag Torque versus Angular Velocity characteristics.

Derranís article suggested reading further particularly if we liked drawings. His link takes one to page 06 of Vinten Camera Supports 2008 and shows graphs of Angular Velocity versus Drag Torque, neither axis indicated the units used. One graph showed the characteristics of the Vinten and the other showed an un-named competitor. There is a similar graph in the current brochure and there is another graph again with unspecified units depicting perfect balance in the Vinten and an unspecified competitor.
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