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Thread: Urgent tripod head help

  1. #1
    Super Duper
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    Urgent tripod head help

    Hi,

    My Manfrotto 468MG just died on me, I left it out in the direct sun in the middle east for just 20 minutes and when I can back the friction was dead and there was a lot of fluid all over the ball. I assume the hydrostatic system burst in the heat somehow (it's not happened before in a lot of shooting in the same heat but hey). I'm stuck here without a ballhead and rather wary of buying another Manfrotto.

    I can get hold of a RRS BH-55/40 in 10 days (but I have to order tonight) which I can survive with timewise, I need a head with (very) good tension control but for relatively light loads (5D + 70-200L), enough to be very stiff at maximum release for easy fine composition, good panning mechanism which locks down tight and general reliability and ease of use. Light is good!

    I have the RRS lever release already and don't want to have to use anything else.

    Any thoughts or should I start spending money?
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Ben,
    Jack and Guy just bought a couple of the new Gitzo heads down here at the lighting workshop and they look GREAT. Lightweight and solid as a rock. They got them from David at Dale Labs who's also a forum member. Unfortunately he's on his way to Photokina right now but here's a link to Dale's website and I'm sure someone else there can help you.

    http://www.dalelabs.com/

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Thanks David but I have to order today, are these on the market yet?
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

    Website: http://www.timelessjewishart.com

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Yes Ben they are the Series 2 maybe what you are after
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...Ballhead_.html

    Now if you use a Arca style than you are better off with RRS or Kirk camera plates than Gitzo's which is kind of weird.

    I got a Pan head from RRS to use and it is nice
    http://reallyrightstuff.com/rrs/Item...CL%2D1&eq=&Tp=

    or something like these

    http://reallyrightstuff.com/rrs/item...atus=0&Tp=&Bc=

    http://reallyrightstuff.com/rrs/item...atus=0&Tp=&Bc=
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    BTW solid as a rock and very light weight and very hard for it to creep or spill over
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Hi Guy,

    I'm kinda married to the Arca system, compatability between my multiple heads, L plates for all my bodies, lever releases, pano heads, etc. Infact RRS have made quite a bit out of me in the past!

    I think I'm going to end up going for the BH-55 or 40, you used to own the 55 did you not?
    Last edited by Ben Rubinstein; 22nd September 2008 at 10:57.
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

    Website: http://www.timelessjewishart.com

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    The BH-55 is a great head . It is heavy though but built like a rock also. I use Arca also on all my plates reason I went with the RRS pano head or you can just screw a camera plate arca style in the Gitzo head. I don't like the Gitzo plate setup reason i went with the RRS camera plates. The head is great though but you need to buy the head and the plate so the costs are high
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    OK, just ordered the BH-40. I'd upgrade my tripod at the same time if it were in anyway possible to work out the differences between Gitzo models!
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

    Website: http://www.timelessjewishart.com

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    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Guy,

    Seriously, Gitzo? I had one of the old series, 1276M I think, worst piece of crap I ever saw. But perhaps the new design fixes all problems with the old design.

    I used an RRS head for half an hour last year, very impressive.

    Lars
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    What were you're problems Lars? The new leg design is a huge improvement, it's actually useable, I hated the old system. Hey, even if it's bad it comes with a lifetime warranty and retains it's value well, it can't be worse than my Manfrotto MF3 which although good isn't quite as rock solid and is heavier and longer closed than the 2542L that I just ordered, an eye level tripod (heaven!).
    I am not a painter, nor an artist. Therefore I can see straight, and that may be my undoing. - Alfred Stieglitz

    Website: http://www.timelessjewishart.com

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars Vinberg View Post
    Guy,

    Seriously, Gitzo? I had one of the old series, 1276M I think, worst piece of crap I ever saw. But perhaps the new design fixes all problems with the old design.

    I used an RRS head for half an hour last year, very impressive.

    Lars
    Lars,

    Totally agree with the older ballheads, but this newest series is a whole new Gitzo --- they really got their act together with this one
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Senior Member Lars's Avatar
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    Re: Urgent tripod head help

    Ben,
    Clarifying - I was talking about Gitzo's ballheads. I have three sets of Gitzo carbon fiber legs (1, 3, and 5 series) and they are of course great.

    BTW I was watching an episode of the old 1971 TV series "The Persuaders" the other night (Roger Moore, Tony Curtis), featuring a studio photographer - of course she was using a Gitzo with her Hasselblad.
    Monochrome: http://mochro.com

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