Libec LS-22: My first impression at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old January 18th, 2007, 03:08 PM   #1
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 173
Libec LS-22: My first impression

Just got my LS-22 combo with the ZC-3DV remote control from B&H. Since there are not many posts talking about this trip, may be I can share some thought and photos with people who might be interested in this budget combo. This is my first tripod set with a so-called "fluid" head (I know that it is not fluid, but it is "fluid" comparing with the 700RC2 I have).

Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6852.jpg

The combo comes with the H22 head, T58 1-stage tripod, SP-1 ground spreader, a TC50 padded bag and ZC-3DV remote control.

Head Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6838.jpg
A very solid head. The side shells are made of hard plastic. The mounting and center piece is made of metal. I find the pan and tilt are much smoother than my 700RC2. There is no drag adjustment. With my DVX100A, I can balance it with the neutral balance setting (there are front heavy, neutral and back heavy settings). The head can maintain position if I tilt the camera (not more than +/- 10 degrees) and let my hand go. If I tilt more than 10 degrees and let go, the camera will bounce back slowly as expected. Pan is good as well. However, it does bounce back at the end of the pan. I did not experience any sudden loss of drag. Too bad that it does not come with a slide mounting plate. To adjust the positing of the camera on the quick mount, you need to disengage the QM from the head first. Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6851.jpg

Leg Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6849.jpg
It's single stage. Well built. I don't have a lot to say about the leg. However, I am not happy with the ground spreader. I have never use tripods with a ground spreader. I don't know whether the spreaders with other tripods are the same. However, I can say I hate it. First of all, the SP-1 is made of plastic. I always fear that I might break it when folding and unfolding. Furthermore, the hooks for the mid spreader do not perfectly line up with the slots on the ground spreader. Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6845.jpg You need to extend the legs by 2cm at the final stage of folding. Otherwise, you will break the ground spreader! Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6856.jpg This photo shows how the hook fits inside the slot when they properly line up. This photo shows the construction of the center of the spreaderLibec LS-22: My first impression-img_6857.jpg. Originally I was going to get the tripod with a mid-spreader for $50 more from Zotz. However, they would't take my Canadian credit card... too bad, my only option was B&H and their combo only comes with the ground spreader.

Remote control Libec LS-22: My first impression-img_6842.jpg
I am very happy with this remote. The rocker is smooth and there are two jacks for the cable. One on the top and another on the side.

Overall, I am happy with the set. For the price, nothing can beat it. BTW, the whole set is not 8lb. It is 10lb with spreader and remote control. I weighted it.
Paul Leung is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 25th, 2007, 04:46 PM   #2
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Paris, France
Posts: 126
I was pretty happy with this tripod, too.

However, the Lanc cable that connects to the Remote control broke off after flying to a shoot. I've yet to find a replacement.

Then, just a week ago, American Airlines broke off one of the legs. They claimed that since it was photographic equipment, they wouldn't do anything for me.

I've written them to try to get them to at least buy me a replacement leg.
__________________
Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value. - Albert Einstein

http://advaloreminternational.com
Victor Muh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 26th, 2007, 11:29 AM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 326
Wow, can't believe I missed this thread. I've had the LS22 for just over a month now, and I still am consistently amazed by it, and also Libec's service.

As to how the head feels, I love it. Better than the Manfrottos I've tried anyday. Also, it's really, really smooth, and has very little bounceback with a 7-8 pound camera kit on it (just visible at 16x zoom). The counterbalance spring holds my big camera kit at around a plus or minus 10 degree range, but beyond that, the camera will take a slow nosedive. I'm topping out the weight capacity of the head though, so no real qualms there. I'd imagine it's better with a DVX or HVX, or something along those lines. Also, just to clarify, the head is all metal, save for 2 non-load-bearing plastic side pieces, which appear to just be covers. The rest, including the quick release is all grey powdercoated aluminum. I popped a Manfrotto sliding quick release on it and my Steadicam for quick transfers and balancing.

The legs are ultra-sturdy for me, and have had no problems, other than being a little light. (I just stand on the spreader, and I'm fine.) For me, this ground spreader is just like every other single ground spreader I've used, even on the big ol' Vinten I was carrying around as a loaner before I ordered this thing. I haven't had any problems with anything not lining up. My spreader works just as it should. About the non-fitting spreader, the mid-level clips don't match up on mine either, but there have been no adverse effects of not doing the "lower 2 cm" routine, I hadn't even noticed it until I looked for it on a shoot today after seeing your problems. Oh, and one other feature. On this tripod, I found that it had the same spring-loaded cord leg locking system that I had used on a Vinten. Very nice touch over the much more simple clips that are on other tripods. I personally have been using ground-level spreaders for a while though, and this one was a quite good one.

The LANC remote works perfectly in it's "Panasonic" setting with the DVC60. No problems there. I taped the cord in a spiral around the handle so that it's the right length for just reaching up to my camera, so that alleviates the problem of having 3 feet of cord dangling around.

Oh, and one final thing, something that's almost more important then the review itself. Libec's support has been second to none here. In the pre-sale time, I was deciding which tripod to buy, and I called up Libec. I was really easily able to have around a 10 minute discussion about the tripods with the first person who answered the phone (Yes, no machines here), and I was incredibly surprised to have been given no pressure, no hype, and just the simple facts about the tripods. Then, once I had recieved my tripod, I had a slight problem with the tilt lock. One call to Libec, 20 minutes chatting with the head of service and support, and it was fixed. No machines, no asking for serial numbers, nothing. Just talking to someone at Libec who actually grabbed some tools and a LS22 head and walked me through the process of adjusting a little screw.

Well, that's been my experiences. It's a good little tripod, and certainly at $400, it's really incredible.

Last edited by Tom Wills; January 26th, 2007 at 11:25 PM.
Tom Wills is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 27th, 2007, 12:44 AM   #4
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Posts: 173
Tom, thanks for the correction. I did not realise the quick release is made of aluminum.
Paul Leung is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 3rd, 2007, 10:44 AM   #5
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Antrim, Northern Ireland
Posts: 1,569
I've just taken delivery of a Libec TH-950DV, which is the LS22 head on a set of two-stage legs. I also have a Libec LS-37, the predecessor to the -38.

Buyer's remorse with the -37? A bit, yup. It's a rock solid tripod, the legs are great, but the head really isn't suited to my VX2100, the counterbalance is designed for heavier cameras.

The TH-950 is a lovely piece of kit. It's lightweight, balances perfectly almost perfectly, and I really like the new quick-catch on the legs, where you just lift the tab and they fall down. There's a little catch at the bottom of the mid-level spreader to hold the legs together when you're carrying it, e.g. when it's slung over the sloulder.

The legs are a little lightweight, but nothing that can't be overcome if you use a light touch, which is all that's really needed.

Just for fun, I mounted the LS22 head on the LS37 legs to get a combination from heaven! The big hefty one-stage legs with ground-level spreader really are nice and solid. I have a feeling I will hang on to the -37 just for the legs, and use the 950's legs if I have to do a lot of walking with the camera gear.

My long term goal is to get a Vinten Vision 3 or similar, but at only UK 200 I don't really see how you can go wrong with the TH-950DV.

I've attached some pics showing the tripod with camera, the release tabs on the legs, the travel lock on the spreader and the tripod fully collapsed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wills
I popped a Manfrotto sliding quick release on it and my Steadicam for quick transfers and balancing.
Tom, I've had a look at this (MN357). I'm thinking of getting one, but details are scarce (and there's no shops I can visit in this part of Ireland). Does this just mount onto the Libec quick release plate using the standard screw? It would be very useful to be able to balance more easily, especially when the camera is fully loaded with mic, Lanc controller and battery.
Attached Thumbnails
Libec LS-22: My first impression-th950dv-1.jpg   Libec LS-22: My first impression-th950dv-2.jpg  

Libec LS-22: My first impression-th950dv-3.jpg   Libec LS-22: My first impression-th950dv-4.jpg  

Mike Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 3rd, 2007, 09:33 PM   #6
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 326
Yep, the sliding quick release has 1/4"x20 and 3/8"x16 holes on the bottom. You just use the 1/4"x20 screw from the Libec plate to line it up.
Tom Wills is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 4th, 2007, 01:53 AM   #7
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Antrim, Northern Ireland
Posts: 1,569
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wills
Yep, the sliding quick release has 1/4"x20 and 3/8"x16 holes on the bottom. You just use the 1/4"x20 screw from the Libec plate to line it up.
Excellent - thanks Tom!
Mike Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 7th, 2007, 07:20 AM   #8
Trustee
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Antrim, Northern Ireland
Posts: 1,569
Just in case anyone's intersted, I took delivery of the Bogen/Manfrotto MN357 universal sliding plate yesterday and mounted it on the '22.

Sweeeet! With the VX2100 fully loaded (big battery, stereo mic, Lanc control, LCD sun-shade) it balances absolutely *beautifully*. The sliding plate cost me about 30 ($50-60ish) and makes mounting the cam and balancing so much easier.

I can balance perfectly at most angles. If I complete the pan or tilt and then remove my hand from the pan bar, the camera staus where it is without moving at all, and without having to lock off (though I would still do that if I was going to walk off and do something else). Absolutely brilliant considering the complete price.

It takes a bit more creative balancing if I want to have the camera tilting down up or down more than about 60 degrees from the horizontal, but that would be needed so rarely that I don't see it as a problem at all.

So thanks Tom, that was a great suggestion.
Mike Beckett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2009, 08:40 PM   #9
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Bangor, Northern Ireland
Posts: 29
Old thread revival!

What's the difference between the Libec TH-950DV and the LS-22? Would either of them be more suited to an XH-A1?

EDIT: Ignore - I know the answer!
Jonathan MacDonald is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > The Tools of DV and HD Production > Support Your Local Camera > Tripod Sticks & Heads

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:17 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network