Libec LS-38? - Page 3 at DVinfo.net

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Old December 29th, 2006, 12:00 PM   #31
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I know that the LS-22 works perfectly for lightweight cameras, I tried my ZR60 on it, and it was really incredibly silky smooth. The only thing I'd be worried about on the 38 would be the counterbalance, but I suppose you could turn it off for the GS.

The decision here would be whether or not you're alright with this tripod being for light cameras or whether you want this to be your one and only tripod that you can use even if you change out to a heavier camera.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 12:57 PM   #32
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Yes, the Ls-22 is a far better head than the 501 or 503. The one thing you lose is the ability to mount larger cameras...but if you're putting a $30,000 20lb camera on a 503 head, you've probably budgeted things pretty poorly. The 22 has very nice and smooth motion, though the quick-release plate is pretty awkward. The Ls-38 is a different design internally (though similar-looking from the outside), and in addition to the added capacity it has a more refined feel. How much more? That's a personal choice. In terms of balancing, I wouldn't worry too much about the dvx on it. I find it has a pretty light effort. If you're super worried, you can always add a plate of steel between the qr plate and the camera. But I personally think it's fine as is.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 04:19 PM   #33
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I bought the 22 for the XH A1 and it's a perfect fit. Like all the cheaper tripods, it's not idiot-proof like the O'Connor or Gitzo, but it's perfectly OK once you get accustomed to using it. With an expensive tripod, you can pan and stop and remove your hand from the handle and everything stays right where it is. With the cheaper ones, you take the pressure off, and there's just a little bit of bounceback, ie., it will shift back to the left or right a tiny fraction. You learn to keep your hand in position and hold it steady, and life is good. It reminds me of an ancient old O'Conner C I used for a long time back in my 16mm days. It acted the same way.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 06:53 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wills
The only thing I'd be worried about on the 38 would be the counterbalance, but I suppose you could turn it off for the GS.
Nope, can't turn it off or adjust it. I'm using it with an A1 and am very satisfied with it.
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Old December 29th, 2006, 07:16 PM   #35
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Really? I have a little switch on the back of my 22 which allows me to turn off the counterbalance or switch it to front- or back-heavy setups. The 38 doesn't?
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Old December 29th, 2006, 11:25 PM   #36
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Thanks guys for sharing your valuable info/experience.

I was originally thinking to get a Vinten Vision 3 + Miller Solo CF leg. Got my wife's approval already. However, after reading the discussions about the Libec here, may be I can get the LS-22 or LS-38 instead and save myself some money for other gear. I am constantly facing the question of whether to spend the extra bucks and get something decent and "future-proved" (I guess there is nothing such as future-proved these days). I guess that it is always a difficult decision to make.
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Old December 30th, 2006, 06:31 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wills
Really? The 38 doesn't?
If it has one, they hid it really well and didn't mention it in the manual. I believe the lack of counterbalance adjustment was discussed in a magazine review. "The built in pre-tensioned spring appears to be built for cameras such as the Sony Z1 and Panasonic HVX200 with a few add-on accessories." This is taken from http://www.dvuser.co.uk/images/magaz...es/issue-4.pdf Very informative review. It solidified my decision to purchase one.
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Old December 30th, 2006, 06:46 AM   #38
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Not sure if it helps, but I've got an H55 head- and really the only difference is a preset 2 stage damper adjustment on pan and tilt. The heavier setting I can't find a use for - too damped, so pretty well the same in feel to the one you guys are talking about. I use a 5100 JVC on it, and an old SP Betaand the counterbalance spring is a little too light, but quite usable. One thing I have noticed is that the paint finish is pretty resistant to knock and scratches - which is handy.
P
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Old January 8th, 2007, 05:52 PM   #39
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Manfrotto/Bogen vs. Libec LS38

Based on the review at dvinfo, the Libec seems like a much better option than most Manfrotto/Bogen solutions in the $500-$700 range (with a 503 head), which makes it kind of... interesting that several sales people recommends a B/F solution, and fails to mention the Libec LS38. It would be interesting with more comments from people who have tried both solutions. The reviewer at dvinfo specifically mentions that he didn't like the 503.
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Old January 8th, 2007, 10:58 PM   #40
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Bogen dealers will naturally try to sell more bogen products. I have a friend who's a salesman for one of the largest dealers in the u.s., and he showed me their cost vs. their selling point. Needless to say, a salesman working on comission will do better for him/herself pitching the bogen gear. Libec also lacks the market confidence, so if someone's teetering on whether or not they really "need" a new tripod, (window shopping), it's a lot easier to sell them impulsively on a brand they've seen out and about and heard of.
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Old January 9th, 2007, 08:52 AM   #41
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how does the LS-38 compare to the Vinten pro 6?
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Old January 9th, 2007, 02:48 PM   #42
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Libec ls-38 and miller solo

I mention early in this thread that I'd report back on the compatibility of the Libec ls-38 and miller solo:

I just bought the Libec LS-38 head ($350US)
and the Miller Solo graphite legs ($470US).
They combo fits just like they were made for each other.
I think they're great in comparison to anything in this price range.
The head has a very nice build quality, and it's movement is comparable to a class of heads selling for 3-5x the price.
Solo sticks are just awesome for run-and-gun shooting, and suitable for most applications. They set up so easily, and the build quality is quickly evident after a short time using them. At less than $900, the combo is very attractive.
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Old January 15th, 2007, 01:50 AM   #43
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Jacobs

I just bought the Libec LS-38 head ($350US)
and the Miller Solo graphite legs ($470US).
They combo fits just like they were made for each other.
I think they're great in comparison to anything in this price range.
So you're not having the bounceback issues Bill Pryor mentioned above? ("With an expensive tripod, you can pan and stop and remove your hand from the handle and everything stays right where it is. With the cheaper ones, you take the pressure off, and there's just a little bit of bounceback, ie., it will shift back to the left or right a tiny fraction. ")

I have now tried the 503 head with a Canon XH A1 (which has 20X zoom), and the bounceback at the end of the pan is very visible.
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Old January 27th, 2007, 09:14 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Quinn
Just received my LS-38 from B&H;

Now for the head: the pan on it seems to be excellent, with no stiction that I can detect, very smooth indeed. However, the tilt on mine seems to be something else, with a noticeable soft region before hitting the fluid action, unless I'm missing seeing some adjustment, but I don't think there's anything to adjust.
I concur on the panning action. It is smooth, and at the end of a pan, there is very little backlash in either direction. I did my tests at 20x on an alphanumeric chart. However, depending on how much downward pressure you put on the pan bar, I can feel some uneveness in the rotation surfaces, as though there were tiny grains of sand or metal lodged in the pseudo-fluid plates. It is hard to describe in words, but if you have one of these heads. rotate it a full 360 deg and see if you can sense the slight grit in opposing surfaces as they slide past each other.

As for the tilt, I'd rate it average. After you balance your camera (mine is an XH-A1) on the head, there is a tendency to return to level from a tilted forward or backward position. The mechanism is spring loaded, and as mentioned, there is no adjustment. In the soft region, the head will stay where you put it, but beyond that, be prepared to lock down, or keep holding on to the bar.

The soft kit bag is too small. Once the rubber feet are attached, you have to jiggle the legs to get the bag to zip up. This is annoying.

So overall, I'd say this is not a perfect head/tripod combo, but for under $700, it seems like a good buy. I can easily live with some of these flaws for the price, and spend my money on more important things.
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Old January 28th, 2007, 10:31 AM   #45
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Haven't experienced that "sand grit" feel, if I were you I'd probably get on the phone with libec, it sounds like they have good customer support and could talk you through simple fixes. Apparently, it is a true fluid head, so either something is just slightly off, or it's defective.

As for the balance - what you're experiencing is a balance spring which is too strong for your camera. The A1 falls more into the weight range of the LS-22, not the 38. All tripods with fixed or adjustable springs have certain limits to what they can balance. Even then, the balance may be limited to +- 60 or +- 30 degrees. Outside those limitations, you'll feel either slippage or creep back to horizontal. Usually the true balance range is fairly small, within about 4-5lbs of the rated load. In your case, the A1 is just too light, and the C.G. of the camera is too low for the tripod to balance it with the fixed spring. You could adjust either or both, and you'll find that the behavior of the tripod is entirely different and more to your liking. Try accessorizing your camera, rods, matteboxes, even wireless mic receivers taped to the carry handle. If these aren't things you own, try this:

Go to a hardware store and buy a bar of steel 3-4" wide, about 1/4" thick. They should be able to cut it for you, but use this formula: The density of steel is .290 Lb/Cu. Inch. With 1/4" steel 4" wide by 17.25" long, you'll get about 5lbs. If it seems too long and out of control, double the thickness and half the length. Drill 2 holes in the center, one 1/4" all the way through, and the other using a tap-kit only a little ways in. Tap that hole to 1/4"-20. Counter-sink the first hold, and get a 1/4" screw that sticks through just enough to catch your cam. Now you have a universal weight plate for your camera. This is actually a GREAT thing to have. Most bottom-end tripod heads are meant to balance 11lbs minimum, so with this plate you should be able to use just about any pro-level head. The ls-38 is a fantastic deal, and it performs beautifully when you load it enough. If you're worried about losing the quick-release feature, buy a cheap bogen QR adapter. It'll snap on and off exactly at your pre-balanced point every time.

Obviously, this seems like a lot of work to make the balance feature usable, but its actually what you'd have to go through with any pro-level head and that camera - even the sachtler dv6-sb can't truly balance it (and that head is crap anyways). Your camera is just too light! Throw a 5lb weight plate in your kit, and you'll notice a world of difference in the way all heads behave.
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