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Thread: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

  1. #1
    carbonmetrictree
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    Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    So....is this actually worth $1,700? I'm using a Bogen/Manfrotto 410 flipped upside down, and have been happy with the results. My main issues with this head is the size and how each axis introduces a bit of vibration when using an ALPA 12 Max. Eric Staudenmaier gave me a quick demo of his, and it does seem a lot more efficient than this big, honkin Bogen head.

  2. #2
    Subscriber Member jotloob's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    I have replaced my Manfrotto 410 by an ARCA SWISS CUBE C1 and am not missing the 410 for just one second .
    I agree that the cube C1 is rather expensive , but the easy handling and the precision you get with the C1 is worth it , especially when using my ARCA 4x5 or 6x9 F-line metric LF camera and MF gear .
    I think , when you invest thousands of $ in precision camera gear , you should also go for the best head .
    A chain is only as strong as the weakest link .

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    This midwest boy just can't get past $1,700, for a tripod head. If the 410 didn't do the job really well for all these many years, it'd be another matter ... but if it ain't broke why fix it? ... especially a $1,700. fix

  4. #4
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    My reply would be something you would hear out of a 5 year old wanting his first air rifle.

    "But...moooom, it's so awesome!"

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    This midwest boy just can't get past $1,700, for a tripod head. If the 410 didn't do the job really well for all these many years, it'd be another matter ... but if it ain't broke why fix it? ... especially a $1,700. fix

  5. #5
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    One of the main things about the head is how compact it is compared to the 405/410 (the bigger one).

    The real question is: Any one has a used one to sell?


    Quote Originally Posted by jotloob View Post
    I have replaced my Manfrotto 410 by an ARCA SWISS CUBE C1 and am not missing the 410 for just one second .
    I agree that the cube C1 is rather expensive , but the easy handling and the precision you get with the C1 is worth it , especially when using my ARCA 4x5 or 6x9 F-line metric LF camera and MF gear .
    I think , when you invest thousands of $ in precision camera gear , you should also go for the best head .
    A chain is only as strong as the weakest link .

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Well, not that I wouldn't knock you over the head with my 410 and take your ArcaCube ... if I could get away with it and not have my behind warmed by Dad when he got home from work ... LOL!

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Opened the forum to see this as a thread and my heart went into hyper drive thinking someone had news of the “Cube”.

    I searched for used cubes late last year even saving a search on e-bay; there just isn’t a used market! Those who have them must take them to their grave or become family heirlooms.

    I remember when I first saw the write-up and thought yeah it look neat but is it worth $1,700? Fast forward to now and do a search in B&H where they are “in-stock” at $2,400. Guess what? There isn’t a week that goes by that I don’t think about transferring the cube from my wish list into the shopping cart and be done with it.

    What happens if I don’t like it? Can’t return it; do I want to be the first ever to sell it on the used market? How could I face my friends? So I have an idea; meet Jack in person after begging him to bring his cube (he’s got to wonder does Don what to met me of my cube?) then I’ll get the chance to see it in action. Gotta me careful as I might just really fall for it and stop off at a stop and rob to help finance it.

    In a way I think we might need to develop a support group …

    don
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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    The CUBE weighs in at just over 2 pounds, and is smaller in stature than the smaller of the 405/410. IOW it is a *LOT* smaller than the larger one.

    Anyway, that aside, there is ZERO slop anywhere in the CUBE system, including the gear drive, even with the friction dials set to minimum. The biggest difference here is the CUBE is a rack-and-pinion drive while the 405/410's are worm drive -- and worm drive designs have inherently more gear slop. Comparing them directly is like comparing the driving experiences between a Mercedes and a Chevy on the Coast Highway to one-another. So yes, they both get you there, but one does it with a lot more class, comfort and convenience.

    Final comment: I have never heard of anybody selling one of these because they didn't like it. Moreover, the fact you rarely see these for sale used (like one per year across all of the boards, eBay and Craig's list combined) I think is a good indicator of customer satisfaction.

    Final, final comment to Marc and Don: I know you guys well enough to simply say, "Trust me, hold your breath, pucker up your pucker string and part with the cash for one and get it over with. Two minutes after you have fiddled with it with it on top of your tripod and your camera on top of it, you won't ever look back!"

    ,
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

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

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by carbonmetrictree View Post
    So....is this actually worth $1,700? I'm using a Bogen/Manfrotto 410 flipped upside down, and have been happy with the results. My main issues with this head is the size and how each axis introduces a bit of vibration when using an ALPA 12 Max. Eric Staudenmaier gave me a quick demo of his, and it does seem a lot more efficient than this big, honkin Bogen head.
    $1700?
    Where? I would jump on it in an instant.
    See if they have two :-)
    -bob

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    I had the Manfrotto 405 for a few years and it had to go back for service once because one of the drives seized up and then it just kept getting more sloppy. The cube is awesome. I wish I had paid $1700 for it that would have been a bargain. You know all there is know already, there no downside. I can even use it with gloves on. Rock solid. I rarely find that when layering images together do I need to adjust the alignment anymore, except when someone kicks the tripod and doesn't tell me.
    You could sell the case it comes in on ebay and recover at least a few hundred$$. Give one to Paris Hilton to carry around and it would be more.

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Don't forget the other nice feature. Once the body of the cube is leveled you can rotate with the top collar and keep the camera level where ever it turns.

  12. #12
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Bob, just do it -- and before Moab -- you won't regret it!
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

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

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Heck,
    Who needs money anyway when you can have gear.
    -bob

  14. #14
    Member jdbfreeheel's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Can't afford it right now and still enjoy my RRS setup. I'm not affiliated, just passing on info. It looks to still be valid.

    $2000.00.

    http://photo.net/gc/view-one?classified_ad_id=846190

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Another vote for the cube here....can't seem to live without it.
    Last edited by David Klepacki; 30th June 2013 at 21:29.
    Likes 1 Member(s) liked this post

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Will the cube fit ok on a Gitzo series 1 for travel or do I need to lug the series 2?
    Nope, the series 3 is right out.
    -bob

  17. #17
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    You'll want the 2 minimum -- and I'm bringing my 3 to Moab...
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

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

  18. #18
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Okay, so after doing some errands today, I forgot about the Cube for half a day...I have to say that YOU GUYS AREN'T HELPING!!

    Because I am a 5' 3" Japanese guy, a BIG HONKIN' Bogen 405 is pretty huge. I'm still scared of that one day that I turn the release knob for one of the axis' by mistake and see my equipment fly 180 degrees into one of my tripod legs by mistake.

    In terms of the awesome $1,700 price, I'll let you guys know where I found it after I secure 5 of these things. It is from a VERY reputable dealer ( I just might have to wait awhile to have one manufactured).


    And, of course, Jack. You better be freaking kidding about having two- I might have to drop by your house unannounced with a few thugs to rip the Cubes out from under your pillow!


    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    You'll want the 2 minimum -- and I'm bringing my 3 to Moab...


    Lastly- Has everyone seen the LevelHead?
    Last edited by carbonmetrictree; 17th January 2009 at 12:11.

  19. #19
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Andrew, the "2" in that post was referring to the size of Gitzo leg set I was recommending
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

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

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    I had seen this before and just rechecked the website this morning. While it looks good it just isnt a Cube. Im a little put off that the only way to get in touch is by e-mail.

    I checked B&H (thankfully they were closed) and see that I can get the Cube here (Tucson) by 1/21 just in time for my trip. Im really trying to be good here and no my wife isnt looking over my shoulder as I write this. Decided to wait till after I see how we did on taxes.

    Ill be okay so long as I dont open this thread anymore. The real trouble with me is I really believe in the line when you turn your camera on does it return the favor


    Don

    A not so recovering gear-aholic.
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  21. #21
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    LOL, don't mind me, I'm not dense or anything.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Flesher View Post
    Andrew, the "2" in that post was referring to the size of Gitzo leg set I was recommending

  22. #22
    Member Clawery's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Don,

    I'm still hounding Arca-Swiss to try to get you a demo Cube for our Feb. trip.
    I hope to have an answer sometime next week.

    Chris Lawery
    Sales Manager
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    Capture Integration, Phase One Dealer of the Year

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  23. #23
    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by Clawery View Post
    Don,

    I'm still hounding Arca-Swiss to try to get you a demo Cube for our Feb. trip.
    I hope to have an answer sometime next week.

    Chris Lawery
    Sales Manager
    [email protected]
    Capture Integration, Phase One Dealer of the Year

    877-217-9870 | National
    404-234-5195 | Cell
    Sign up for our Newsletter | Read Our Latest Newsletter

    Think I might be able to get a "demo" price afterwards?
    Don Libby
    Iron Creek Photography
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  24. #24
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Maybe a recession discount, say 75% off added to the normal 25% sale price.


    Quote Originally Posted by Iron Creek View Post
    Think I might be able to get a "demo" price afterwards?

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Good Luk Chris - i had an order for one of those with you guys for over 2 months and it still didnt arrive - did it ever get there?

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    If B&H delivers as they usually do, I will bring my new demo cube to Moab.
    -bob

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Look forward to seeing it
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Guy,
    Jack will be bring his too, so when you are looking at it can I look at your 28mm Mamy? :-)
    -bob

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by carbonmetrictree View Post

    Lastly- Has everyone seen the LevelHead?
    I looked at the LevelHead, but was not impressed as it does not replace a ball head, which you might need to get enough roll or pitch. Not to mention yaw, of which it provides no solace.
    -bob

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    You can not only look at it you can shoot with it also but fare warning once you touch it you will want one.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Can I put my house on the FS forum?
    -bob

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Sure we will only charge 3 percent listing fees instead of the normal 6 percent real estate brokers charge. Funny thing is i used to have a real estate license many years ago. I actually sold one house too. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

  33. #33
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    I definitely agree, Bob. Plus, it would look really ridiculous if you mounted, say, nine of these together to get a total of 90 degrees, LOL.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    I looked at the LevelHead, but was not impressed as it does not replace a ball head, which you might need to get enough roll or pitch. Not to mention yaw, of which it provides no solace.
    -bob

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    i have found the cube to be very useful, however it has it's quirks.
    there is one axis where you have a fast forward down tilt of up to 60 degrees (usually set to tilt forward and down. this would be used for a shot pointing down where you don't intend to level the camera base front to rear. fortunately, the cube has a pan axis on it's base to swing the tilted camera around
    the other two axes are adjusted with rack and pinion and while accurate and deliberate are slower to adjust, requiring quite a few turns to go 20 degrees. very nice for accurately setting f-b and r-l level; then or course, you have a level panning axis at the top.

    also the adjusting knobs are adequate but on the small side

  35. #35
    Pedro Mendes
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Hi
    Somebody in Japan likes the Cube very much.
    Cheers
    Pedro

    http://www.monthlyphoto.com/news/new...eq=1&s_seq=373

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    That is Korean and it is the knock-off version. (and the web site is located in Korea too)
    -bob

  37. #37
    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    i have found the cube to be very useful, however it has it's quirks.
    there is one axis where you have a fast forward down tilt of up to 60 degrees (usually set to tilt forward and down. this would be used for a shot pointing down where you don't intend to level the camera base front to rear. fortunately, the cube has a pan axis on it's base to swing the tilted camera around
    the other two axes are adjusted with rack and pinion and while accurate and deliberate are slower to adjust, requiring quite a few turns to go 20 degrees. very nice for accurately setting f-b and r-l level; then or course, you have a level panning axis at the top.

    also the adjusting knobs are adequate but on the small side
    So John,

    Are we going to see the "JLM Improved" version anytime soon? If so, I call shotgun on being the first beta tester!

    ,
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

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

  38. #38
    Subscriber Member jotloob's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro Mendes View Post
    Hi
    Somebody in Japan likes the Cube very much.
    Cheers
    Pedro

    http://www.monthlyphoto.com/news/new...eq=1&s_seq=373
    Shame on plagiators . It is a crime to behave against pending patents .

  39. #39
    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Curious

    Just how many people have either decided to or pulled out the cash for a CUBE based on this thread? Jack the CUBES serial numbered? If so itd be nice to see once the dust settles.

    don
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Don,
    I always knew I wanted one, but since I was doing the Moab shoot, I thought that I might as well add a couple more pounds to my kit.
    -bob

  41. #41
    Super Duper
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    Don,
    I always knew I wanted one, but since I was doing the Moab shoot, I thought that I might as well add a couple more pounds to my kit.
    -bob
    Not sure when Jack wrote his review on Luminous Landscape however I’ve lusted over the CUBE ever since then, has to be several years now. I kick myself every time I think of the money I would have saved had I just bit the bullet at the time.

    A 35% increase in what 2 years? Wow what an investment.

    Just think of the exercise you'll get.

    I'm just sorry that I've had my Redwoods trip planed so far out in advance to miss this trip, it’d be great to finally to some faces to the names; hopefully next one.
    Last edited by Don Libby; 18th January 2009 at 12:49.
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Been lurking about on this thread and thought I'd mention that Jack convinced me to buy one a year or so ago, and am very happy I did. Built like a battleship and does pretty much anything as already discussed. My 2 cents is that I just called Badger Graphic and bought it. No waiting, they had it in stock....and it appears I've made money with the price increases !! Of course that was over a year ago, but it might be worth a call if you've recently robbed a bank !!


    Buy one, you won't regret it !

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    jack:

    i've had the bug to make my own tripod head since the 70's. the cube, however, does not look like a moneymaker, despite the high price. it is extremely complex, demanding and extremely well made. the only improvement i could imagine would be a rapid function for each axis.

    they could probably shave off some bucks if they ditched the Hermes quality leather stow bag

  44. #44
    ericstaud
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by carbonmetrictree View Post
    So....is this actually worth $1,700? I'm using a Bogen/Manfrotto 410 flipped upside down, and have been happy with the results. My main issues with this head is the size and how each axis introduces a bit of vibration when using an ALPA 12 Max. Eric Staudenmaier gave me a quick demo of his, and it does seem a lot more efficient than this big, honkin Bogen head.
    I still love mine Andrew. Had the 410 and after a few years it got too loose for me. The only thing the cube is missing is a geared pan on top. Can you get on designing one of those when you're done with the headphone amp?

  45. #45
    carbonmetrictree
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    You know me too well, Eric. I'm actually thinking of putting your headphone amp into a redesigned Cube and include a bone conduction transmitter, so you can listen to your music silently while lining up your next shot. I'll also include an attachment for the 12 Max as a flip down LCD display so you can watch Luminous Landscape DVDs at the same time- The only way to rewind and fast forward will be to shift the x axis left and right.

    I'm finding that the 405 and 410 are great to use. But, the arm for each rotational axis introduces vibration with the heavy Rodenstock 28mm HR on the Max. Even if it is minimal, I am noticing that some of my images are slightly soft with a 10-15mph breeze with everything locked down and using my body as a shield (long exposures).

    The only issue I was worried about was rotating the Cube 90, but I see now that you release the flip lock 60, and shift over for the extra 30.


    Quote Originally Posted by ericstaud View Post
    I still love mine Andrew. Had the 410 and after a few years it got too loose for me. The only thing the cube is missing is a geared pan on top. Can you get on designing one of those when you're done with the headphone amp?

    Jim- I forgot about asking Badger about availability. I'll keep that in mind once I get the balls to click the "add to cart" button.

  46. #46
    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Andrew,

    Not to worry; you're safe for now. Badger Graphics doesn't have cubes in stock.

    Steve

  47. #47
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro Mendes View Post
    Hi
    Somebody in Japan likes the Cube very much.
    Jesus Honkers, that thing is almost the size of an RZ67 body!!! Although it is a copy, I presume it is the same size as the real Cube.
    Carsten - Website

  48. #48
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Carsten, the "real" Cube is about 3" or 75mm on a side and weighs in at just over 2 pounds or about 1 kilo -- not much larger or heavier than a medium sized ballhead.
    Jack
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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Ah okay, just the size of a Contax 645 body then
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: Arca Swiss C1 Cube

    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro Mendes View Post
    Hi
    Somebody in Japan likes the Cube very much.
    Cheers
    Pedro

    http://www.monthlyphoto.com/news/new...eq=1&s_seq=373
    Not Japan, but South Korea. The letters were Korean not any of the three alphabets used by the Japanese.

    That, BTW, is a knock off that is made in Korea. It is by a company called PhotoClam and the model is called "Multiflex Head".

    Here is a pic:


    I am trying to get some pricing on that one, but I don't read/speak Korean.

    Here is the manual such as it is. There is one shot there where they are just showing off.
    Last edited by etrigan63; 20th January 2009 at 07:41.
    Carlos Echenique | Carlos Echenique Photography |Olympus OM-D E-M1 MK II | Olympus Pen-F - M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 25mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8, Rokinon 12mm f/2 NCS, M.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8, M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, M.Zuiko 40-150mm f/2.8 PRO

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