What's the best Tripod & Head I can get for around $400? - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

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Old January 16th, 2006, 01:17 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcus Marchesseault
Why would you ban center-column tripods?
If I may, the reason is quite simple. The proper tripod design has the legs extending to an apex as close to the camera as possible for pure stability.

If you work entirely within cloistered calm, such as a studio not built over a cement works, a rising-column tripod might be okay, assuming noblody walks by or breathes.

In the real world, on location, in thick and thin, in pounding surf, in gale-force wind, in a landslide, you need STABILITY! Which same is only realized with a cup-head tripod.

QED.

Hey, you can never buy too much tripod, but you sure as hell can buy too little, to your infinite regret. I recently traded my Manfrotto 3066 head to a guy for his 503. I kept my 3192 tripod, still the flagship of the Manfrotto line, when I might just as easily swapped for his 3182 'pod. Why'd I keep the unit modeled after the USS Missouri's anchor? Because it is so stable, I couldn't countenance trading it for anything less.

But go ahead! Select the 90-ounce weakling. I'm tired of tripods that act like toy dogs, all trembling and shaking. Give me a real dog, a dog with teeth and balls (well, a half of one, anyway), a dog that'll stand guard, a tall breed of dog on the land!
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Last edited by Doug Boze; January 16th, 2006 at 01:00 PM.
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Old June 2nd, 2006, 04:24 PM   #17
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Well... I started this thread back in December and I just now got my tripod/head. If only money grew on trees. I went with the Manfrotto 351mvb2 tripod with the 503 head. They were in the specials section at B&H. They came with a free gift in the form of a notebook breifcase (quite nice, I actually needed one). A nice soft bag was also included. I am very happy with my purchase. The legs seem sturdy enough to me, and the head is very smooth. The whole thing only set me back $495. Thanks everyone, for all the advice. As always DVinfo has been a great help.
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Old June 8th, 2006, 10:25 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Picklesimer
Well... I started this thread back in December and I just now got my tripod/head. If only money grew on trees. I went with the Manfrotto 351mvb2 tripod with the 503 head. They were in the specials section at B&H. They came with a free gift in the form of a notebook breifcase (quite nice, I actually needed one). A nice soft bag was also included. I am very happy with my purchase. The legs seem sturdy enough to me, and the head is very smooth. The whole thing only set me back $495. Thanks everyone, for all the advice. As always DVinfo has been a great help.
Have you had time to field test the setup? How's it working out for you? Any issues with the height of those legs? General pros & cons?

I am getting so close to buying my first real camera setup and I figured one of the most important 1st accessories should be a decent tripod / head that won't force me to take out a loan. I plan to shoot mainly outdoors, "nature stuff" (several lakes and forests where I live).
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Old June 10th, 2006, 07:50 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin Voelker

Center column tripods should be outlawed.
I haven't had much experience around tripods in general, so I have no idea why you don't like them. I do have a bunch of experience at being tall though, and the fact that my Bogen center column tripod brings the camera to eye level is a nice point. Any other tripod bring the cam up to around 6'?
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Old August 10th, 2006, 04:11 AM   #20
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Does the 351MVB2 has spikes, or only padded shoes? I want to know this because I will be using the tripod both indoors and outdoors.
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Old August 14th, 2006, 01:59 PM   #21
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Will the 503 head hold up the weight of the XL2 without having to lock it down when you walk away from it. Will it "stick" in place?

I have a Lebec TH-M20 (ok for DVX100) but is not sturdy enough for the XL2 but it can work - as long as you always lock your levers tight when you walk away -otherwise the lens weight will fall forward. But i was hoping to get the 503 head and that it would be strong enough to hold it up to where you can point the camera to a certain direction and it would seem to "stick" in that place. Will the 503 do this w/ XL2? Thanks!
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Old October 6th, 2006, 12:12 AM   #22
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I'm looking into buying the Manfrotto 351MVB2 Aluminum Video Tripod Kit that comes with the Manfrotto 503 head. I'm getting it from B & H and their catalog says it includes a "75mm half bowl". Am I correct in assuming that this is a half-bowl leveling device? The kind where you loosen something under the middle of the tripod (no center-post, of course) and you can swivel the camera/tripod head around a little until the bubble leveler tells you you are level and then you lock it down?

I sure hope so. My only worry is that on the Bogen / Manfrotto site the half-bowl leveler was not specifically mentioned in their itemized "features included" list for the 351MVB2, yet a half-bowl balancer WAS listed in an itemized list of features for one of their more expensive 516 head systems.

Yet, the B & H web page lists a 75mm Half Bowl included clear as day.

Am I OK here? I don't want to own any tripod that doesn't have a ball leveler.
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Old October 6th, 2006, 01:54 AM   #23
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Maat,

I have the Manfrotto 503 head and the 525 MVB Tripod, and I love the combination. It holds up my H1 really nicely. I did notice on my invoice that I paid an extra $100 for 'Manfrotto 520 75mm half ball'. I notice that my invoice says 'ball' and not bowl. But in the tripod description, they say it comes with a 75mm 'bowl'. I think you need this 'ball' in addition to the 503 to get the levelling capability, so just check and see if B&H is including this.

I also paid extra for a nice travel bag.

Good Luck.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 11:01 AM   #24
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A colleage of mine who is big on wedding coverage and used the PD170 uses Libec tripods (libec.com). B&H sells them. She says they are good tripods and low in price. Maybe worth checking out. I looked at the site and would go at least one model up from the bottom.
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