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Old July 26th, 2003, 12:56 PM   #16
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Sam,

What kind of budget do you have? You might want to look at the Gitzo's. I played with one briefly a few weeks ago and several members have spoken very highly of them. If you can afford the Vinten or Sachtler, they are great (I use a Vinten, also). But in the under $1,000 range the Gitzo's might be the best choice.

Ken and Frank like the Miller and it is under $1,000 also.
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Old July 27th, 2003, 04:04 PM   #17
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I use the 501 head for my GL1 and find it pretty O.K. when configured properly.

For my XL1s I just bought the Bogen 505 Multispring Pro. I learnt how to use it and it is pretty smooth. Understanding exactly how much weight you are loading and using the proper plate length It is a balancing act! It is smooth as a baby.

Now the drawbacks: a) the locking mechanism can be noisy (I figured out how to lock and unlock a balance setting without making noise and scaring my subject; b) the springs are not very seamless to exchange. One should be able to exchange them on the fly when one changes lenses( if need it) and last but not least c) It should be priced a bit more competitively.

I guesstimate that the price will go down once its market gets going.

It does stay where you want it when you want it even without locking it in place, when the balance is configured properly. Not very difficult.
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Old July 27th, 2003, 08:12 PM   #18
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Start-up budget

Thanks for the suggestions, but especially due to a recent v8 purchase ;-) I'm afraid I have to stay in the low bracket for a 2nd video head for now. Jacque's original question brought up the 3063 (which I have too) vs. 501 vs. 503. It seems many prefer 503 to 501, but it was right up my alley to compare those to the 3063. I was wondering if the 501 or 503 were worth the upgrade vs. 3063 in that price range. I guess the 503 probably still wins out there, but I was hoping to hear from someone of similar cicumstances. Hopefully next year I'll be choosing among the qualities you've recommended... AFTER the v8's paid off. Thanks for sharing your experiences, much to look forward to. Wow Jacques, congrats on your upgrade!
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Old July 31st, 2003, 05:29 PM   #19
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Rob Lohman....

Miller's are handled in Japan by this company.
Komamura Corporation
Kumy Takahashi
3-2-4 Nihonbashi Ningyocho, Chuo-ku,
Tokyo 103-0013
Tel: OR|RWOW|OPPW
Fax: OR|RURX|RQRX
kumy@komamura.co.jp
http://www.komamura.co.jp
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Old July 31st, 2003, 06:02 PM   #20
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>You may also have to tighten it up slightly which can sometimes >lead to some jerky movements up and down.

I'm using the 501 head with the VX2000. The panning seems
to be ok, but as the poster above wrote, you have to tighten
the vertical tilt. With my vx2000, this leads to jerkiness.
I suppose I'm complaining only because I didn't reach the ideal.
I plan to extend the handle to see if that helps.
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Old July 31st, 2003, 06:49 PM   #21
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John, the Miller DS5 is fine for the XL1, but the DS10 would be even better, especially for a loaded one. The DS5 sells for $1500 Canadian. That's well under $1000 US. Here is an e-mail contact for the Canadian Miller distributor/dealer

peter@leoscamera.com

If you want to get even a cheaper price from Australia (where they're made), go to the Miller DS5 thread in this forum. There you will find prices for both the DS5 and DS10 and AU dealer info. The DS5 from Down-Under is about $1000 Canadian.
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Old August 13th, 2003, 04:04 PM   #22
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want to upgrade from manfrotto 501

<<<-- Originally posted by Chris Hurd : Complete Millers, sticks and head, are close to $2000 USD. -->>>

Chris, what about this model?

I've been pretty happy with the 501, but recently have been shooting some extreme telephoto shots, and it's really easy to ruin them with a jerky movement. I'm using a PDX-10, so camera weight is not an issue.

Any other recommendations?
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Old August 13th, 2003, 05:58 PM   #23
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In the under $1,000 category all the heads are fluid effect heads. Spend more than $1,000 and you can start looking at true fluid heads from Miller, Vinten and Sachtler and O'Connor. The fluid effect heads may not be suitable for XL1's loaded with many accessories. They should perform fine for smaller, lighter, cameras.
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Old August 13th, 2003, 08:30 PM   #24
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The Vinten Vision 3 takes different spring "weights" so you can
go with anything from a peewee single chip on up to a DSR-500WS
with brick. I've used the #2l, #3 & #9 springs and been really pleased.
Described by a fellow shooter as "walking with marshmellow shoes."
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Old January 14th, 2004, 05:13 PM   #25
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Vinten Vision 3

Jacques,

I am seriously thinking of upgrading from my Vinten Pro 5 Tripod to the Vinten Vision 3 with two stage legs. I'm starting to find the Pro 5's limitations. It's either that or my expectations are rising, probably both! Not yet sure whether to go for Aluminium or Carbon Fibre and have always used the standard ground level spreader but I understand the mid-level spreader would be better for my kind of use but it's price is unbelievable. It's all Wildlife fieldwork with the XL1 which the majority of time would either have the manual 16x lens or Canon EF 100-400mm lens attached to it with lens support rods and the MA200 with batteries etc.

So I'm pleased with your comment about panning with the 100-400 lens.

What do you mean by the comments on the plate though? Is it really a bad thing and is the cost of the Mid-Level spreader worth it? Will I see a real improvement in stability?

Thanks

Gareth
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Old January 15th, 2004, 08:36 AM   #26
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Re: Vinten Vision 3

<<<-- Originally posted by Gareth Trezise
I am seriously thinking of upgrading from my Vinten Pro 5 Tripod to the Vinten Vision 3 with two stage legs. I'm starting to find the Pro 5's limitations.>>>

What limitations are you speaking of?

<<<I understand the mid-level spreader would be better for my kind of use but it's price is unbelievable. It's all Wildlife fieldwork with the XL1 which the majority of time would either have the manual 16x lens or Canon EF 100-400mm lens attached to it with lens support rods and the MA200 with batteries etc.>>>

I went with the aluminium legs and the standard ground spreader.
The ground spreader isn't the greatest when used in brush or
marsh, but I haven't really had that much issue with it.
The fibre carbon legs were a chunk more money and only saved 1lb.

<<So I'm pleased with your comment about panning with the 100-400 lens.>>

Well, I didn't say it was easy!!! It is NOT easy to get usable footage
when zoomed fully in as you'll find, BUT at least it is possible . . . I've done it.
I wouldn't even try it with a bogen.

<<<What do you mean by the comments on the plate though? Is it really a bad thing and is the cost of the Mid-Level spreader worth it? Will I see a real improvement in stability?>>>

The plate attaches with a plastic part that looks like a double ended C wrench
that holds the two mounting screws. The non threaded one doesn't fit into
the XL1 hole it is supposed to (so I don't use it) and that leaves only one
screw holding the plate to the camera. That means that the camera can
spin on the plate unless you hog it down pretty tight. The plate is unlabeled,
so until you label it, it is easy to put it on backwards.

Sorry, but I haven't used the mid level spreader so I can't comment.
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Old January 15th, 2004, 10:24 AM   #27
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Thanks Jacques.

I'm just not finding it smooth enough. Maybe it has seen better days and is wearing out, I don't know. Either way the Vision 3 must be a better product than the Pro 5. Not knocking it though. It has served me well and I won't be getting rid of it.

Thanks for the explanation on the plate. Have spoken to them and they confirm with some they did have problems but the part has now been rectified. You should ask them to post you it. Can't cost them much for that.

A local dealer is getting both legs in for me to try out and they now do a package price with the mid-level spreader. You don't have to have the ground-level as well. So I'll look at both and see what suits me best.

Gareth
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