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Old October 8th, 2008, 10:41 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Roger Shealy View Post

Take a look at the Velbon 607. It looks to be a slightly larger build of the Sony 870 without a LANC for around $70 and get's great reviews on B&H and Amazon. I suspect stongly the sony 870 is really just the smaller Velbon with LANC. You can order extra plates for about $12. If you don't want to zoom during shoots (which I try to avoid at all cost for creative work) then you can get buy with an inexpensive sony LANC for around $40 that will give you a start/stop, picture button, and two speed zoom. It's not great for zooming during capture, but you probably aren't doing that anyway. If you want a precise zoom, you can look at the Canon Lanc (1000 or 2000), Bogen 321 series, or others. Just get your wallet out.
Originally Posted by Roger Shealy View Post
Just got in a Velbon 607 and it's really the same as the Sony VCT-870RM except:

607 has drag adjustments for tilt and pan, Sony doesn't (good)
607 has rubber feet with retractable spikes, Sony doesn't (good)
870 has the Sony LANC handle, which is very nice compared to cheap Velbon handle

Looks like Sony contracted Velbon to cheapen up the head adjustments, and added a nice LANC. Other than that, these are the same pods.
Hey thanks for the feedback Roger. Although $70 for the tripod + $40 for the lanc seems pretty close to the $120 price of the Sony VCT-870RM, right? I think I do like the lanc (I find myself needing to zoom during shots for my needs) so I wonder if it might be smart to sacrifice the advantages the 607 has over the Sony for the good lanc.

What about the better 1170RM? Thought $120 to $350 is quite a jump - at least for where I am right now.
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Old October 9th, 2008, 04:42 AM   #32
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No doubt having a LANC is nice, and the Sony 870 LANC is a good if all you need is zoom, photo, on/off, and start/stop. The zoom is backwards on the 870; W in front, T to back. I don't know what camera you have, but you could consider an aftermarket LANC suited for your camera and you could swap it between tripods.

I'm tempted by the 1170 as well. I just hate to spend that much without seeing it first (just went through this with a Bogen 503HDV (351 kit) that was very disappointing for $650). The ball head is a great feature to have for quick leveling. the I think the 1170 is very similar to the Sunpak 620-810; once again without the LANC that Sony offers. The Sunpak can be had for around $120 on the net, if you can find it.

One other thing. I'm noticing how little zooming, panning, and tilting most professional creative work contains. I understand if you are a one-man-band shooting a wedding or other event you have to use these features. Next time you watch a movie or TV show, notice how infrequently they do anything other than a fixed camera with a fixed lens. For creative shots I'm finding the more I find a great angle and provide multiple vantage points with a fixed camera, the more professional the piece looks.
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Old October 9th, 2008, 05:18 AM   #33
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I've always suspected that those Sonys are branded Libecs.

The 1170 certainly looks very similar to the TH-950DV model I had a while ago. The legs are identical, and the head looks the same. The manual I found online seems to confirm this. The LANC is the only difference I can see.

Not that this is a bad thing, though you might find the Libec cheaper if you are shopping around.

One thing I would say - much as I disliked my 503HDV (badged as a Vinten in my case) - it was way, way better than my Libec 950 model.
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Old October 9th, 2008, 05:36 PM   #34
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You may be right. Evidently the base pod used in the 1170 is identical or very similar to a number of units. I'm not sure who makes it. One ad claimed the 1170 was made in Japan. I wonder.
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Old October 10th, 2008, 12:22 AM   #35
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finally mounted the EX3 to the dynex. The tripod itself it plently sturdy enough for the heavy camera. I haven't retried to the pan and tilt test at full zoom yet. I'll report back.

The pan and tilt locks on the head are able to stop the camera just fine.
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Old October 20th, 2008, 10:40 AM   #36
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I have the Velbone 607, and I feel it is a great value for $70. But, I am an amateur, so I've never tried anything better. There are some pans with it in this video which I think are decent: Fall Foliage Near The Water on Vimeo, password is hf100.

Turn HD off, to see a smoother version of the video.

Last edited by Peter Holzel; October 20th, 2008 at 11:10 AM.
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Old February 5th, 2010, 11:11 PM   #37
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Hi Giroud. I am thinking of buying the Weifeng as the Matthews M25 does not lock at 360 with a slider on top.
The torque causes it to move..(I am using a indislider / glidetrack DIY version - the igus slider).

The M25 does not have adjustable drag so I cannot tighten it up..

Does the Weifeng have adjustable tension and does it lock well at 360 deg ?

Originally Posted by Giroud Francois View Post
you can get a WEIFENG EI-717 for as low as 150$
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Old February 6th, 2010, 06:27 AM   #38
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the weifeng has lock and drag for tilt and lock for pan, but has they use screws , there is not a special lock position, so you need to make sure the screw is tightly locked.
consequence of being chinese, i am not sure that the quality of the screw will happily suport that. what i would do is to drill a small hole so the screw goes in and then it is definitely locked without applying any force.
what i have done too is to add a threaded tube, just in the part that join legs and bowl.
this part has en empty space between the legs so you can add a small tube with thread inside. i just filled the remaining space with epoxy glue.
that way i can add an arm between the rail and the leg, or add anything else, like a monitor.
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