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The great tripod & head thread!

doccdiamond

Member
I use a similar setup with an ALPA Plus - great combo for architecture. In rare cases where I need 90degree angle I add a nice 90degree dove tail adapter from Novoflex.

Is the shown setup fixed with the Arca-Swiss quick link? Would you recommend this and how is it secured against turning out the camera accidentally? Like a camera bayonet?
Thanks for your feedback as my closest Arca dealer is not just around the corner…
 

JeffK

Well-known member
I use a similar setup with an ALPA Plus - great combo for architecture. In rare cases where I need 90degree angle I add a nice 90degree dove tail adapter from Novoflex.

Is the shown setup fixed with the Arca-Swiss quick link? Would you recommend this and how is it secured against turning out the camera accidentally? Like a camera bayonet?
Thanks for your feedback as my closest Arca dealer is not just around the corner…
The Arca-Swiss rep in the US advised me that the classic knob to tighten was stronger than the quicklink I have on my Z1 DP ballhead, so I stuck with his guidance and went with that. Also the least expensive model too.
 

Mexecutioner

Well-known member
I think he meant the quick link that attaches the core 75 to the gitzo and not the clamp (quick release or flip lock) on the 75 itself.

the quick links are fantastic. I have 6 of them, 3 on gitzos, two on my studio stand and one on a platypod and they feel super secure.
 
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Unfortunately, the 400 by itself has more CA than the cover of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon. (Any lens whose price is less than its focal length is likely to be bad... There are no doubt exceptions.)

The Pentax 67 300mm f/4 ED-IF is the dark horse here. We'll see...
Matt, the CA you're describing from your Pentax 67 M* 400 ED-IF doesn't square with user reports with the 50mp 33x44 sensor on the Pentax Forums site:

Like the 67 300mm ED-IF, the 400 has four elements in the first group, two of which are ED glass.

Have you had your 400mm checked? It might have an element out of alignment.
 

JeffK

Well-known member
I think he meant the quick link that attaches the core 75 to the gitzo and not the clamp (quick release or flip lock) on the 75 itself.

the quick links are fantastic. I have 6 of them, 3 on gitzos, two on my studio stand and one on a platypod and they feel super secure.
Ahh, yes. I have quick link on both heads and the base on the systematic. Love it. Easy to use.
 

anyone

Well-known member
I have three of their ballheads, the G2 geared head and two of their tripods among other accessories they make. I can't compare the quality directly to Arca Swiss products but I can say the they are built as well (or better) as anything I own of RRS, Kirk, Acratech, Jobu Design, Gitzo etc. Zero issues, everything just functions as it should...
Thank you! This gives me the confidence to order the G2 geared head which is an absolute bargain.
 

doccdiamond

Member
I think he meant the quick link that attaches the core 75 to the gitzo and not the clamp (quick release or flip lock) on the 75 itself.

the quick links are fantastic. I have 6 of them, 3 on gitzos, two on my studio stand and one on a platypod and they feel super secure.
Exactly - thank you!
 

Geoff

Well-known member
At one time was checking the sharpness of the Zeiss 250 vs. Schneider 300 APO. Thought to look at an object far away and compare. See crop below. Especially sharpness on far right, pretty decent for an image taken in the middle of the city (Chicago). Ultimately there was little difference between the two lenses once the Zeiss was stopped down to f8 - and it also was lighter and thus more stable (for sharpness).

Issues included stability, some stopping down , and low ISO (to keep noise down)... so ISO 100, shutter 1/100, I think f8. Tripod stability wasn't the issue, but the mount was. Had to use Linhof 3D Micro (geared, heavy) as its mass worked to dampen any vibration, even with leaf shutters. Other mounts (D4, ball head) were less satisfactory.

Points out the many different factors involved in long tele use - not just the lens, nor its support - but rather the whole combination.  Full Moon 11.2016  31 crp.jpeg
 

dj may

Well-known member
Are Leofoto products copycat of established producers like Arca, RRS, Gitzo, etc., as someone mentioned? If yes, why would an informed photographer (who I assume would not want work copied without credit), support them?
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Matt, the CA you're describing from your Pentax 67 M* 400 ED-IF doesn't square with user reports with the 50mp 33x44 sensor on the Pentax Forums site:

Like the 67 300mm ED-IF, the 400 has four elements in the first group, two of which are ED glass.

Have you had your 400mm checked? It might have an element out of alignment.

I don't have the ED-IF version of the 400/4 which is, as you say, superb. I have the older version: this lens, which is vastly cheaper on the used market, and was more of a "I wonder how such an old uncorrected design will work with a modern camera?" experiment, rather than a lens I would use in practice. When de-fringed, it is quite good in the center, I was pleased to see!
 
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MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Are Leofoto products copycat of established producers like Arca, RRS, Gitzo, etc., as someone mentioned? If yes, why would an informed photographer (who I assume would not want work copied without credit), support them?
I don't know. I'm sure the similarities between the Leofoto LH-40 and LH-55 ballheads and the RRS BH-40 and BH-55 are pure coincidence. Or perhaps convergent evolution. :rolleyes: (They have the Golden Arches, we have the Golden Arcs!)

Disclaimer showing my hypocrisy - I have a Leofoto long lens rail because I have had a RRS one on backorder for 3 months now, and it is a different design I've not seen anywhere else (except a half-dozen Chinese companies on eBay.) I don't know who really came up with that design.
 
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Makten

Well-known member
Are Leofoto products copycat of established producers like Arca, RRS, Gitzo, etc., as someone mentioned? If yes, why would an informed photographer (who I assume would not want work copied without credit), support them?
Why not if the design is not patented? I mean, it's really simple stuff, like a ball and a clamp. Of course there will be significant similarities across different brands. The "premium" products will still sell but personally I think they are grossly overpriced, so I won't even consider them. No loss for them. :)

If someone wants to copy my photos by doing their own versions of the same scene, that's totally fine. :giggle:
 

Shashin

Well-known member
Are Leofoto products copycat of established producers like Arca, RRS, Gitzo, etc., as someone mentioned? If yes, why would an informed photographer (who I assume would not want work copied without credit), support them?
Because they don't copy the prices.

(BTW, I do not buy Leophoto.)
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
<Rant deleted> I'm not going to change anyone's mind. But for the definitions of Copyright, Trademark, and Patent, take a look here: uspto.gov.
 

Makten

Well-known member
<Rant deleted> I'm not going to change anyone's mind. But for the definitions of Copyright, Trademark, and Patent, take a look here: uspto.gov.
Of course you can change peoples mind with arguments. I certainly began thinking about it more than I've done before.
However, I can't see that there is anything else than a patent that could be a legal violation when it comes to Leofoto versus the other brands. Yes, they have most certainly looked a lot at the competition, but they don't make direct copies. They are far from identical and the whole mechanical design more or less makes the possible variations somewhat limited.
Also; not veryone here is in the US. And we're not all fortunate enought to afford any product that we might desire. ;)

I use a Leofoto tripod and ball head, and to me they strike a great balance between cost and performance. I would however not mind if they would have been a liiiittle bit more creative with their design of the ball heads.
My only gripe with the ball head is the limitations that are inherent in all ball heads; it will move slightly when you tighten it up. Partly because of the clamp itself (which can be better or worse), but partly also because you are applying force to the whole tripod assembly. And if the ground is not rock solid, the tripod will move.
For that reason I've been thinking about a geared head, but that comes with other limitations instead.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Well, I checked with my local expert (Federal Magistrate Judge and ex-corporate litigator. How's THAT for an Appeal to Authority fallacy!). Her strong opinion is that Leofoto is doing nothing actionable here. (Assuming there is no patent violation, and I searched the patent office database and didn't find one for RRS ballheads. Four pages of panorama patents and tripod feet, but no ballheads.) They would have to make an almost indistinguishable copy that would fool a casual observer. I confess surprise, but I withdraw my objections.
 

anwarp

Active member
I suspect that any patent that existed on the concept of a ball head has expired. So unless you consider an innovative non-spherical shape or something like that, there is nothing new to patent.
Full disclosure: I am not a lawyer.
 
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